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Blog-Pastor-Dave Four Aspects of Our Beliefs #4 – Preferences

Four Aspects of Our Beliefs #4 – Preferences

We all have preferences of what food we like, what kind of car is the best, what sport is the most enjoyable. The “right” flavor, or the “best” choice, or “most” enjoyable is a matter of preference.

In our Christian journey, we also develop personal opinions and practices that work best for us.

For example, Christians have preferences about:

• which Bible translation is best.
• which worship style is preferred.
• which activities are, or are not, acceptable.
• which political viewpoint is better.
• which movies are permissible to watch or not.
• which is right, drinking wine or abstaining.
• how to educate children.
• how to discipline children.
• how to celebrate Christian holidays.
• what to prioritize in spending money.

These preferences can emerge from personal applications of biblical principles. Or they can come from family traditions or personal feelings.

We would like to believe that many of our preferences are compatible with the Bible. Yet these are areas in which the Bible does not speak clearly.

Preferences are certainly not elevated to the high standard of biblical absolutes. And they are less important, less central, than distinctives and convictions in our belief system.

Plus, we may discover a wide variety of diverse opinions among believers on preferences. Even our own opinions and viewpoints on these may change over time.

God’s Word advises us: “do not destroy the work of God” over these minor matters (Romans 14:20).

Admittedly, some believers have narrower views, and some believers have broader views. It is pride that divides.

We may decide to keep these preferences between ourselves and God. When they do come up in conversation, we can state our opinion and explain why without forcing our preferences on others.

Our goal is building up one another, and people may appreciate how we think about a particular issue. But arguing for what we feel is right or best is unnecessary. We can agree to disagree agreeably and honorably.

This doesn’t mean that we always give in to the scruples of other Christians. Rather, we develop a mutual appreciation. We respect how each has come to their own conclusions on these areas.

Obeying the truths of God’s Word as we best understand them, while maintaining the unity of the Spirit, is the balance we seek even and especially with preferences.

~ Pastor Dave


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