Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I Got Versed!

Hebrews 4:12 says,
"For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."

The word of God is pointed, sharp and cutting. In Ephesians 6 the Word of God is called the sword of the Spirit. It's a weapon.

But like any weapon, if it is used incorrectly it can be hurtful and damaging. Blood can gush out. Or tears.

A couple weeks ago I got versed. That's what I call it. I went to an old student's facebook page and he was talking about not watching Lost, the tv show. I happen to be a big Lost fan and so I commented on his post, "Oh come on over to the darkside. You'll love it." After my comment I put a little sideways smiley face - :0) - an email and facebook way to say "I'm kidding." No big deal, right? In fact, he commented in response to me, "It's all dark." Now I know this kid from way back and I know he's got a wicked sense of humor. Dry. Funny. So I chuckled.

And then...

The next girl who commented is someone I don't know. I will admit this and say hey, maybe she was joking. But I don't know her and there was no smiley face or LOL (laughing out loud) after her comment. She said, "And you know we shouldn't have fellowship with the darkness."

What? I read this and said aloud to John, "I got versed!"

She was referring to 2 Corinthians 2:16 when Paul is talking about being unequally yoked with unbelievers.

Have you ever been versed? Like that? I think that's like taking a dagger and tossing it into a crowd. Scriptures are for teaching and convicting, but not like that. Not willy-nilly. Not to judge someone you've never met. I think the best use of the Scripture is when we allow the Spirit to use it to convict ourselves. Or when we use it with others who have our permission, be it in a church setting or a Bible study. Yep, I'm not all that excited about street corner preachers, but if God wants to use them, He's not gonna ask my permission. :0)

Scripture is used inappropriately and out of context all the time. I'm sure I've done this. But I hope I don't "verse" others. If I do, tell me. John told me he hates it when Christians verse each other with Romans 8:28, "All things work together for good." Say someone has a tragedy, and some well meaning? but ignorant Christian recites Romans 8:28. Not wise in most situations. It's like saying "This is God's will" after someone dies. Maybe it is true literally, but it's the last thing the grieved want or need to hear.

So I'm ranting a little bit. But brothers and sisters in Christ, watch how you use our Lord's words. Make sure love is behind your comments. Don't make someone leave you and say, "I got versed!"

And by the way, Lost is on tonight. If you think I'm fellowshipping with the darkness by watching it, keep that little judgement to yourselves. :0)


Diane Marie Shaw said...

Robbie, this afternoon I ran into someone who goes to our church at one of our other campuses so I haven't seen her in awhile. When I asked how she was she told me her 40 year old son died suddenly on Dec. 8th. As I hugged her I thought, "don't give her any scriptural platitudes (I didn't want to verse her)." I told her how sorry I was and that I coudn't possibly know the pain she is going through. I think she appreciated that. She did bring up the healing that God is bringing to her so I was free to talk about that.
It is always hard to know what to say when there is tragedy.

Jan Parrish said...

I so agree with John on that one.

When your life is falling apart and Miss Life is Perfect flings out,"Well you know, all things work together for good." It makes me want to hurl. But she doesn't notice b/c she's on the way to get her nails done.

I promise not to verse you unless it's done with blessing. ;)

Red Bridges Home said...

OH girl! I've been there. Both sides and do try to remember to keep my platitudes to myself. -- I got versed by someone I haven't seen in years who didn't like a Tiger Woods joke I told. Now she's all over facebook tellling people I'm a hypocrite. I sometimes wish people would just lighten up a little bit, kwim? --

And speaking of lightening up -- things are settling down on my end and yes, I'd love to finish our other conversation this week -- I'm off facebook for lent, but I'll hit you via email if that is okay. ((Hugs)) Deana

Robbie Iobst said...

Diane, in my humble opinion telling someone you are sorry and hugging them is plenty wonderful. I've had many people die in my life and every time I have always appreciated those who just FEEL with me. There's no need for anything else.

Jan, I married a wise man. Thank you!

Deana, I agree that many Christians should lighten up! :0) And absolutely email me because I would love to hear your thoughts on what I asked you about.

smithsk said...

Hello Robbie -
You make an excellent "point" that the Word of God is like a weapon.
Anyone who has been entrusted with a weapon has a high moral responsibility. Any soldier or police officer will tell you handling a weapon properly takes skill and maturity. Otherwise, a great deal of harm can be afflicted and the weapon can be turned on the bearer.
How many kids have been pricked out of the church by being "versed?"
I'm so glad you wrote about this.

Robbie Iobst said...

Thank you Susan! And thank you again for the crock pot meatloaf recipe. Can't wait to try it. :0)

tonya said...

Robbie, this post is very timely. It is a great reminder to all of us to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and see if we are to say something or not. Just because you don't agree or understand why someone is doing something, it doesn't mean quote Scripture.
Great Post. :)

Robbie Iobst said...

Tonya, thank you SO much for your kind words! :0)

denise said...

I think when people quote Scripture to someone in pain, they want to fix the problem and they don't have anything to give of themselves. I agree 100% with you Robbie. LOST rocks!

denise said...

Oh, and Jan, you crack me up!

Megan DiMaria said...

Great advice!!

Carla Gade said...

Oh,yes,I've been versed. Very hurtful thing when taken out of context. I try not to verse others in that way.


Mary said...

Excellent, Robbie! I'm catching up on your past posts, and this one is perfect timing for me. I haven't thought about the sharpness of the Word like that before. I don't want to "verse" people. I think I might have versed my kids a few times. Ouch!

I am on a journey toward lightening up. God has been working with me on that one lately.