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I’m Always Right and You’re Always Wrong

I’m Always Right and You’re Always Wrong

And why not do evil that good may come? —as some people slanderously charge us with saying. Their condemnation is just. Romans 3:8

As an addict in recovery, I’m supposed to daily assess my personal inventory, continually working on my flaws. Drug use wasn’t my only struggle and recovery isn’t only about not using drugs. Recovery is about continued growth and transformation – in all areas of life. To do this, I must first accept that I’m not always right. I still have flaws and I still engage in destructive thoughts and behaviors. If I never admit I’m wrong, I’ll stop growing in my faith and recovery.

The problem is, one of my flaws is that I don’t like to admit my flaws. I always think I’m right – about everything. Anyone who disagrees with me is inherently wrong. I don’t just kindly disagree with others on specific issues though. I tend to regard the one who disagrees with me as wrong about everything.

Faith and politics are prone to this kind of thinking. I’m on God’s side so I’m always right. Everything the other side thinks and does is wrong and evil. In such a condition, we’re incapable of admitting our own flaws or considering that we may be wrong about anything. The problem, of course, is that we’re still human. We’re still flawed, and we’re still capable of failure.

Paul knew this about Christians and even accepted critique of his own faith in today’s passage. In the narrative, Paul addressed the warped line of thinking – that some Christians apparently embraced – which said, if God works his good will even through our evil, then why shouldn’t we just commit more evil? He acknowledged that others condemned Christians for such thinking and said their criticism was just. Paul understood that not everything believed by Christians was correct and he didn’t try and defend every crazy idea put forth by all Christians.

In faith – and in politics – we should learn from Paul. Like Paul, we should entertain criticism from those who don’t agree with us. If we’re honest, we’ll see that we still have flaws and aren’t infallible. When we only surround ourselves with those who agree with us, we sit in an echo chamber, only hearing what we want to hear. If we want to keep growing – which is supposed to be the daily Christian life (Luke 9:23) – then we must consider the possibility that we’re not always right about everything.

 

2 Responses

  1. Virgil Stangeland says:

    Your blog, “I’m Always Right and You’re Always Wrong” was sent to me by my friend Dave. Recently, the answer to to the “I’m right and your wrong” attitude was revealed to me, in the following Bible verses:
    Philippians 3:4-9 (NIV) If someone else thinks they have reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for righteousness based on the law, faultless. But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law (or from opinion, position and accomplishments), but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.
    Isn’t Paul showing us that when we are in-Christ (fully surrendered to Christ) all of our fleshly desires, opinion and position are nothing; a bunch of garbage? If we no longer have a righteous of our own will we ever be right? VIRGIL

    • Scott says:

      That’s a great question Virgil. I’m still asking if/when I’ll be fully surrendered. I don’t think I’m there yet. Thanks!

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