A message that even Christians miss quite often is that of being an example to others at all times “in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity,” and “a model of good works” the Bible says, and it all begins with tolerance.
Jesus said the example of a Christian is like that of a light that shines so all can see.
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
– Matthew 5:16
“Christian” isn’t just a title for someone who declares they are a follower of Christ or someone who reads the New Testament. A Christian is someone who has the teachings and mindset of Jesus firmly within their mind and heart. That someone contains the spirit of Christ will be apparent by the things they say or don’t say and by the things they do or don’t do.
“Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity,”
The Bible offers the following guidance:
“Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.”
–1 Timothy 4:12
“With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,”
Look at any hateful situation throughout the history of humankind and you will find intolerance. One of the biggest drivers of hate has been a lack of tolerance by one group of people toward another group of people who were different.
Jesus called this wrong behavior out, saying:
“Judge not, that you be not judged.”
– Matthew 7:1
We have to separate ourselves from intolerant people and thinking. It’s easy to get caught up in group-think focusing on worldly matters rather than that of God’s kingdom to which Christians belong.
“I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.”
They forget that in God’s eyes – all are equal.
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
Tolerance means we can agree to disagree without hating or warring with one another.
“Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
–1 Corinthians 13:7
To develop tolerance, you must first…
The Bible gives all of us the tools we need to be loving and develop a loving mindset.
Jesus said the first important commandment was to love God with all your heart and of the second most important commandment:
“And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.'”
– Mark 12:30-31
We are commanded by God to love each other and get along.
“Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord.”
– Hebrews 12:14
A Christian lives by the Christian Spirit. The apostle Paul defined it as such:
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”