Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Stupid Arguments

"Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord's servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will" (2 Timothy 2:22-26).

One mark of maturity is the ability to avoid stupid arguments. I have seen (and been involved in) my share of stupid arguments, but lately I have seen the need to avoid them. They do not help me or those with whom I am tempted to argue.

I do not need to make enemies simply because I think the tax rate should be lower or higher than someone else does. I do not need to look down on others who prefer another valid translation of the Scriptures. I do not even need to have an opinion on many issues. I certainly do not need to spend my time arguing about the trivial.

When I argue, I need to make sure that it is an argument worthy of my time and energy.

Neither Jesus nor the apostles were against making arguments that were worthwhile. They launched stinging attacks against legalism. They were willing to stand strong in contending for the faith against theological and ethical liberalism. However, they did not look for petty quarrels. When arguments occurred, they kept their perspective and sought to honor God in their responses to their opponents.

I want to do the same. I want to avoid stupid arguments. I want to choose my battles wisely and engage in them in a Christ-honoring manner.


Anonymous said...

I needed to hear this. I make pithy comments sometimes that rile people up, but often they're over something stupid.

Thanks for posting :)

Tim Archer said...

I'm afraid there's a debater in me, just aching to get out and fight anyone/everyone about anything/everything. I need to remember the points you make. (and that the Bible makes!)

Grace and peace,
Tim Archer

Terry said...

I certainly wasn't thinking about you guys when I wrote this post--I was thinking about myself--but it's nice to know that I'm in such good company. Thanks for the comments, Wes and Tim!

Rick Morgan said...

We are all in the same boat, from time to time you just want somebody to listen to you whether they want to or not.

Terry said...

Yes, that's true, Rick. Thanks for the comment!