willing to be hated?

Randy Alcorn asks if you are willing to be hated for what you believe. Here are some excerpts, but you have to go read the rest. especially the quote from D.L. Moody. I have heard it before, but it is still a good one.

Of course, this does NOT mean being hateful. Nor does it mean seeking to be hated. Or having a persecution complex, so you think people don’t like you because you’re following Christ, when they actually don’t like you because you’re an idiot.

I am all for graciousness, kindness and servant-hearted love as we speak the truth. I seek to practice this with the nonchristians I’m around. But at some point the greatest kindness we can offer them, coming out of a life of humility and faithfulness to Christ, is the good news about Jesus. (That good news actually involves some very bad news about human sinfulness, which is what makes the cross an offense, meaning that it ticks people off).
….
If we seek our culture’s approval, we’ll either never get it or get it only at the expense of failing to represent Christ. We are promised, that if we “live godly lives in Christ Jesus” we “will suffer persecution.” If we’re not suffering persecution, at some level, then what does that suggest?
…..
I’m all for audience analysis and understanding the perceptions of this generation and speaking in a way they can understand. But instead of letting the world set our agenda and the ground rules of what we can and can’t say, let’s ask the Lord how best to take the timeless message of the gospel to these people.

But, and I say this coming out of some of the conversations I’ve had with cool Christians, the answer is not altering the contents of the gospel to make it something everyone can easily agree with. If the gospel becomes nothing more than the reflection of a worldview they already have, it has nothing to offer them. It’s God’s gospel. Given the price He paid on the cross to offer it, He has the right to say difficult things such as Jesus is the only way to the Father and we are hell-bound without him. That message is not popular and never will be. Our job isn’t to edit the message, but to deliver it.
…..
It’s not our job to be popular. We are not contestants on American Idol. And we are not Christ’s speechwriters or PR team, airbrushing Jesus so He has greater appeal to people who don’t want to hear what He said about sin and hell. He’s the King, He calls the shots, we’re just His ambassadors. So let’s represent the real Jesus, the whole Jesus, not just the culturally acceptable one.

There is nothing new or postmodern about the gospel turning some people off. That’s always been true, just as it’s always been true that some people are longing to hear it and will deeply appreciate it that you had enough courage to tell them about Jesus.

emphasis added

hat tip to challies

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