Hi, all! I asked my brother, Jared, to guest post for me this week. I hope you are all edified by his article—I know I was by studying with him!
Every day, we make compromises. I compromise with my roommates on what to eat for supper. As a student, I often compromise study time for an episode on Netflix or a game of basketball. We face compromises in our Christian lives as well. It is up to us to recognize these compromises and know when to give in and when to stand our ground.
A Compromise with Society
We are surrounded by ideas and beliefs contrary to the will of God. This has been the case since mankind was created in the garden (Gen. 3:4-5). Some that hold these false beliefs spend their time convincing others to share their views or, at least, to accept and encourage them. Christians are being bombarded with influences telling them to participate in or condone sinful activities like partying and fornication, or even to give up their faith entirely. The societal pressure for Christians to “live and let live” has been increasing exponentially, but Scripture teaches us to fight that mentality. Rom. 12:2 tells us that we are not to be “conformed to this world” but, rather, that we should “discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” This passage warns against molding our lifestyles to the world, but also against compromising our mindset. Many will tell you, “You don’t have to participate—just accept and respect our choice of living.” However, the apostle Paul had a different opinion about idly watching others sin. In Rom. 1:25-32, he detailed a lengthy list of sins that are worthy of death, including fornication, deceit and homosexuality. Paul concludes his commentary by saying that not only those who practice the sins are worthy of death but also those who “give approval to those who practice them.” We cannot quietly stand by accepting sin. Some may be offended by our beliefs and aggressively push for us to change, but our first and foremost duty must be to our Creator. You and I must stand with Christ and say “I will not compromise my morals to please society. I will be steadfast in my morals to please God.”
A Compromise with Ourselves
Many of our decisions involve choosing one thing over another. These choices range from what color to paint our room to whether or not to accept salvation. Sometimes, we compromise what is best for what we want at the time. We rationalize that just one drink really isn’t so bad or that we earned the right to lie to our boss about being sick today or that stealing is worth the consequences. Compromising our morals for our desires does have a consequence: it weakens our relationship with our God. We find in 1 Jn. 3:4 that when we disobey the law of God, we have sinned. James tells us that if we know the right choice but don’t choose it, we commit sin (Jas. 4:17). If we know that we should go visit the sick, help those in need and teach others about Christ, but we fail to act, we have sinned. When we compromise our morals, whether to entertain a sinful pleasure or to omit something required by God, it is destructive to our spiritual life.
A Compromise with God
However, not all compromises are wrong. Compromises can be made to end conflict and restore peace. Likewise, not all spiritual compromises result in a failure to please God—some are made to please Him. Jesus called His disciples to deny themselves—compromise their desires—and follow after Him (Mk. 8:34). Compromise by recording the game instead of skipping church services. Spend time in God’s Word rather than searching for the perfect Instagram filter. Share the hope of Christ with others instead of going out for a drink. Humble yourself to compromise what you want for what God demands! Paul encourages us to “put to death” our evil desires (Col. 3:5). In order to be acceptable to God, we must compromise our desires and walk with Christ.