Misconception | Teen Ink


December 8, 2022
By cj127212 BRONZE, Hemet, California
cj127212 BRONZE, Hemet, California
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

I’m a Christian. And no, I’m not one of those “preachers” that stand at the corners of streets with a sign that reads, “You’re going to hell” as they flap their bible around and shout nonsense at anyone who dares to pass by them. I’m definitely not a saint and will never claim to be perfect or condemn those around me at any chance I get. Christianity seems to have gained this bad reputation of being homophobic, prejudice, money hungry, and self righteous which upsets me, because that very bible they shake around teaches us the complete opposite.

The words of Jesus make it clear how we are supposed to live. Jesus calls us to be the light of the world, to share the good news and to spread the gospel, to be an example to others and show his kindness and love through our lives, he says this in Matthew 5:14-16 , “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” This passage makes it clear that we aren’t supposed to be condemning and correcting people as we are called to be an example of God’s never ending love.

Speaking of love, we are also called to love everyone, no matter who it is because in the end we are all born sinners, it says so in Romans 3:23, “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.”. But besides being a sinner it’s God's command to be loving and to show compassion to everyone around us in John 15:12-13. “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends.” God even tells us to love our enemies in Matthew 5:43-44 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.”

On the lines of our “enemies” we are told not to judge others in Matthew 7:1-3, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.3 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?” We are called not to judge because its an act of self-righteousness, that all of us fall short like mentioned before and that judging others is entirely hypocritical of us. Another act we are taught not to do is get revenge, in fact we are called to more for the ones who do us wrong in Matthew 38-42, “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.39 But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41 If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.”.

The point I’m trying to make here is that Christianity, despite its common stereotypes, isn't about being hateful and prejudice, or to fake being a good person, or to look holy to others. Our job here is to spread the gospel and to be a helping hand to those who are in need, to be an example of what Jesus offers everyone on the Earth. I'm also not saying that everyone will be like this, many, even I, struggle with these callings and its tough to follow them. But these lessons that Jesus teaches is what being a Christian is all about.

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