By Michael Crandall
Senior Pastor, Hillcrest Baptist Church, Dyersburg
Focal Passage: Matthew 5:21-26
Conflict is a word that most of us do not like hearing, but for some they enjoy being in the middle of it. Conflict is something that keeps me up at night. I do not like having it anywhere around me! As a believer in Christ there are people all around us watching to see how we deal with conflict. There are times when we can avoid it at all cost, but there are also times where we must face it head on and see what we can do to help fix the issues.
Many times in life we face conflict. Sometimes, it is small issues that later become major issues. It is imperative that we understand that the world around us is watching our every move! It does not mean we do not deal with the issue at hand, but it does mean we follow Jesus’ commands on how we deal with it!
Jesus in Matthew 5 tells the believers exactly how we should approach and deal with it, in a Christ-like manner! He says: “You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘You shall not commit murder’ and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering. Make friends quickly with your opponent at law while you are with him on the way, so that your opponent may not hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. Truly I say to you, you will not come out of there until you have paid up the last cent.”
As a believer and follower of Christ we should look and act differently when it comes to conflict! We should approach it with a Christ-like attitude! We should never look just like the world that is around us!