Come Willing to be Wrong and Change

1/6/2007

speech bubble representing person 2 talkingWe want to be reconciled to our brothers here. Can it help if they come here, and maybe it would help solve some of the problems? The groups have different opinions and we are divided. Maybe coming together can create a very good environment, and they could be open to resolve some of these issues.

speech bubble representing person 3 talkingDo the other men want to reconcile? Or do they not want to reconcile?

speech bubble representing person 2 talkingI do believe they want to reconcile, because I have been in meetings with some of them.

speech bubble representing person 3 talkingIn Acts 15 there was a major clash between brothers. Do you remember where some wanted circumcision and the others said, “No”? It was a major clash over an issue similar in magnitude. However, something they knew when they got together was that someone was going to walk out of that room and know they were wrong, and change.

I know that leadership is one of the topics at hand and there are questions: Do we have a main pastor? Do we have a person in charge of everything? I know that’s one of the topics, if I understand the letters that I’ve received. Some want a “main pastor” and others say, “No, we’re all brothers. There are gifts that include shepherd, but not a boss over anyone.” Somebody has got to be wrong. Both ways of thinking cannot be right. The Bible will decide.

In Acts 15, can everyone who enters the room be right? “Circumcision is required of all Gentile believers.” “No, circumcision is not required of all Gentile believers.” Can both be right? No! God has an answer. So, if everyone who enters the room in Acts 15 is willing to be wrong, willing to change, and willing to be unified because they’ve changed, then there is hope of reconciliation. But there’s not hope if everyone who walks into the room says, “I came into the room believing all Gentiles should be circumcised. And I’m going to leave this room believing all Gentiles should be circumcised. And I’m going to convince everybody else. And if they don’t believe me, then I refuse to be reconciled.”

That wasn’t their attitude. Everyone came into the room willing to be wrong and God’s answer emerged. Many people walked out of that room having changed their minds. Therefore, they could be reconciled.

This question about leadership is a similar matter. If someone believes it’s okay to have a boss and others say, “No, Jesus forbids that.” You can’t both walk into the room and walk out of the room holding on to the same opinion and hope to be reconciled. This is critical to the Body of Christ, and understanding leadership is essential to having unity. So, unless everyone walks into the room willing to be wrong and to change, there is no reason to walk into the room!

In Acts 15, the ones who demanded circumcision were very sure of themselves and they wanted to express exactly how they felt, but they were also willing to be wrong. And they walked out of that room changed. They decided, “Ok, no circumcision. We were wrong.” That was the beauty of the love they had for one another and the love they had for God. They were willing to change their viewpoint. So, if everyone is willing to change as we walk into that room—and I mean everyone—then we can have reconciliation walking out of the room, and the Spirit can be pleased.

But there will be a very different outcome if everyone is just trying to sell their point and they don’t want to hear any other viewpoint because they want to be the boss, or whatever the issue might be. And maybe that’s not the only issue, but I think it contributes to the whole problem, and it is unsettling. If everyone is willing to take a look at it and to change and be changed, then God can have unity and reconciliation. That is the only way we can have that unity: everyone has decided before they walk into the room that they are willing to change.

 

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