What should we be? Liberal, Conservative or Christian???
Rush Limbaugh electrified and rallied the conservative audience at the recent CPAC meetings. He also upset liberals and some conservatives with his verbal assaults on President Obama's spending plans. Are you a conservative? Then you most likely stimulated to stand for the conservative principles as expounded in those meetings. If you are a liberal, you were likely upset at Mr. Limbaugh's remarks and the CPAC meetings in general.
What should we be? Liberal, Conservative or Christian???
To understand what we should be in life, we need to know the general characteristics attributed to liberals and conservatives.
A liberal is one who is bent on change, is tolerant, free, generous, progressive, possibly licentious and democratic.
A conservative is one who is preserving, resistant to change, cautious, moderate, tradition-bound and right wing.
Those definitions are from dictionaries and various internet sources and reflect some political positions as well.
How should Christians look on life? Our example is Jesus Christ. Was He a liberal, conservative or both? Let's look at some of His characteristics. But remember that we are talking about human labels being applied to One Who is perfect.
Jesus Christ taught that it was more blessed to give than to receive—a "liberal" teaching (Acts:20:35I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.). When the woman was caught in adultery and brought before Jesus, "conservative" accusers would have had her stoned, but Jesus intervened on her behalf—a liberal move that angered the conservatives (John:8:1-11 Jesus went unto the mount of Olives.  And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.  And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,  They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.  Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?  This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.  So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.  And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.  And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.  When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?  She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more. ).
Jesus Christ also ate with sinners which was not a "cool" thing to do in the eyes of conservatives of His time (Mark:2:15-17 And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him.  And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners?  When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. ).
So we see that Jesus had a "liberal" side when it came to life. But, He also had a conservative side. Jesus Christ held fast to principles of God's law (Matthew:5:17-20 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.  For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.  Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.  For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven. ). He taught the need to obey the law (Matthew:19:16-23 And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?  And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.  He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness,  Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  The young man saith unto him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet?  Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.  But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.  Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. ). He Himself said He kept God's commandments (John:15:10If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.). He is resistant to change—He is the same, yesterday, today and forever and He does not change His basic plan for humankind (Hebrews:13:8Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. and Malachi:3:6For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.). These fall into the conservative definition.
So we learn from the example of the One Who founded Christianity, that Christians are to conduct themselves in ways that could be labeled both liberal and conservative. They know that they need to be forgiving, to go the extra mile, to grow in grace and knowledge and to overcome their flaws (liberal positions). They also know that they need to hold fast to truth and law without variance. They know to keep true to the way of life prescribed in Scripture. They do not change what God has given to them.
So what are you—Liberal, Conservative or Christian? I hope a Christian who knows when and how to be liberal and when and how to be conservative in matters of life!
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