Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Opinion(s) That Matter

Today's reflection covers a wide variety of topics in the realm of feasting and fasting.  We'll focus here on one aspect - "Whose am I?". 

On the one hand, we'd all like to be the perfect Christian and say that we belong to God, and God's opinion is the only one that counts.  It's a nice thought, but we wouldn't have such prolific jokes about "Do I look fat in this?" if it were true.  So, we turn to the Bible to see if there are others, either historically speaking or directly, whose opinions should matter to us. 

Exodus 20:12 - Honor thy father and thy mother...  Okay, that makes sense - we may all be children of God, but God needs help with toddlers and teenagers. 

Genesis 2:4 - Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.  It's probably a wise idea to take your spouse's opinion into account.  Not doing so tends to cause rather large problems.

Matthew 23:1-4 - Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples, saying, "The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair of Moses; therefore all that they tell you, do and observe, but do not do according to their deeds; for they say things, and do not do them".  Okay, so the caveat here is that we're to follow what God has said and what the scribes and Pharisees repeat, but not follow the hypocrisy. 

From Mark 12:17 - Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's.  We are children of God, but we still have to live in the world, and abide by local law. 

From Colossians 3:22-25 - Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing God.  And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men,  knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.  But he who does wrong will be repaid for what he has done, and there is no partiality.  So, employers are the ones who determine our wages, so it's probably wise to take their opinions into consideration.  Employers are reminded in the next chapter that they're still answerable to God, so treat their employees properly as well.

So there are others whose opinions should be taken into consideration, but almost always are the caveats that everyone needs to act in accordance with God's will; that anyone else's opinion should only matter in earthly things, not heavenly things.  Ultimately the answer to "Whose am I?" is still God, but we still live in the world until we are called to that accounting with Him.

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