The world is full of people with many different opinions on just about anything and everything-thank goodness right? It’s called diversity. Now while diversity is a good thing, having different views and opinions on any given subject can lead to problems. We generally form groups around common interests and those who share an alternative interest are usually seen as rivals. In Australia there are Holden car clubs for Holden enthusiasts and there are Ford car clubs for Ford enthusiasts. Often there is a great rivalry between them. This rivalry, really any rivalry, can at it’s worst lead to animosity and violence.
Within Christianity we are not exempt from this animosity and violence either. Christianity is full of diversity and flavour, and with this diversity often comes disagreement and ugliness. As we look back through Church history there are groups and individuals that have been killed or seriously oppressed for differences in belief. Violence and death aside, there is some nasty behaviour that goes on today. All you have to do is google Rob Bell and Love Wins and it won’t be long before all kinds of ugliness appears in the search results from both sides of that particular debate.
Unfortunately I think as Christians we don’t know how to disagree with each other well. I struggle with it my self. For instance, if I know someone likes a particular Christian author I don’t, or holds to a certain system of theology I don’t, it can be hard to see beyond it. It’s almost like their different opinion is like a negative score against their name. It’s odd how it happens, and it is not something to be proud of. I’m working on changing this in my own life, but we’ll move on.
All this discussion is to introduce you to a video from the Gospel Coalition talking about this very issue; How do we disagree well. The three guys share some helpful thoughts, and their discussion around the Internet and differences of opinion is very good; very thought provoking.