We should expect our preacher to communicate to himself and to us the diagnosis that God makes upon our condition and the corrective action that God prescribes. We don’t need or want the preacher to interfere with this process by filtering out the inconvenient or disturbing bits.
While the angry, “I guess I showed them” type of response may be gratifying in the moment, it doesn’t help in the long run. Such a response brings division which grieves the Lord who died to bring unity.
I sometimes wonder how Christians would be viewed if every interaction would be restrained by these three goals. I would think that fewer people would think the church to be a bunch of judgmental hypocrites if these were followed.
Rather than fueling the divide between people, Christians should be at the forefront of those who are trying to bring peace and reconciliation. Listening before sharing opinions, would be a good start toward bringing this about.
I want to offer some clarification about my previous post. My intent was not to criticize my friends for being upset about what was said in the sermon. There was nothing inherently wrong with feeling uncomfortable about a choice of words used in the pulpit.
But this is exactly what we celebrate at Easter. Jesus came back from being dead and caused a stir in Jerusalem one Sunday morning. This event should cause us to ask all sorts of questions if we are really connecting with what happened.