Today I received the following message from a friend on FB. Hi Bro, I just got this note from P****n D****y claiming that you are a Universalist and that I should unfriend you. I just wanted to let you know that if you are a Universalist then I probably like you even more now. And I wanted to let you know that this note is going around. I imagine that people send messages about me all the time. I get unfriended daily by racists and haters and bigots, etc. Don’t let the haters get you down, bro!
I thought to myself, aren’t Universalists like Unitarians? I have heard the word Universalist before but was not exactly sure of the precise definition. So I had to look it up to be sure. Here is what I found.
A Unitarian or a Universalist is a monotheist, typically is not a Christian, and rejects the idea of Jesus as Almighty God, a person that does not believe in the Trinity. I thought to myself, ”That’s not me”.
It took me a few seconds to grasp where someone would get that idea, and then I remembered someone I deleted as a friend here on FB couple days ago.Last week when I shared the story on my blog,”I met a Muslim Today”, the individual mentioned above became argumentative with other friends making comments. The person asked me if I told the Muslim about Jesus and that basically without salvation they were going to hell. I did not respond and they began leaving statements that were not Christ like repeatedly and I deleted them.
I have many readers that are not Christians. In my blog I try to share the love of Christ. I try to show the love of Christ. I welcome comments from those that disagree with me. But a comment that is self righteous and used as a platform to criticize other readers does not glorify our Lord or our faith. I was embarrassed as there were those of other faiths emailing me that they forgave her, and were praying for her for what they perceived as her hatred for them.
I believe as we witness we should do so in meekness of spirit. Meekness, a tolerant, yielding spirit, represents having the right of way but not insisting on it. Jesus himself sets the tone of this approach in His discussion with the sons of Zebedee and the disciples in Matt. 20:25
You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.
Sharing the love of Christ to me is not about spouting out a piece of scripture informing someone of their impending judgment unless they immediately accept Christ as their Lord and Savior. In the course of my life I have been fortunate to gain many friends. I have Muslim friends, Buddhist friends, Mormon friends, Jehovah Witness friends, atheist friends, agnostic friends. I have a friend who is some kind of a white witch or something. I have a friend Michael Nunn, a guy I boxed in the amateurs, the former Middleweight and Super Middleweight champion of the world who is serving 26 years in federal prison for selling drugs. I have a Muslim friend Omar. His cousin blew himself up at a bus station as a terrorist. I have a dear friend Hitesh who is a devout Hindu, who was raised in a Catholic school but does not view Christ as I do. In fact a lot of people I know do not view my Lord as I do. My friends come from all walks of life. The majority of my friends believe as I do that Christ as Lord, but not all of them.
The reason I have so many people that I know that are not believers, and do not believe as I do, is because I look for them, find them and befriend them. I want to know what they think about God, I want to know their views on Christ. I want to know who or what they pray to, and if they don’t why.I remember years ago when I was working for Tommy Barnett, I met a Satanist named Bobby. I invited him to dinner. He refused saying that it was a waste of my time trying to convert him as he said, “I know the Bible better than you do”. I informed him that I was simply curious about Satanism. He made me promise to never say the name Jesus to him at all. I agreed. Over the course of our dinner he shared with me his beliefs. I listened as he explained the various rituals and practices of his belief. I listened with extreme curiosity and wanted to understand the premise and foundation of his faith. During the course of the evening I never once mentioned God or Christ or my faith. At the end of the evening he invited me to accompany him to one of their meetings; I agreed to do so, with the understanding that he also accompany me to one of my meetings. I went first with him and the following Sunday he and his wife came to church with me, as agreed. When Pastor Barnett gave the altar call, up out of his seat he came, wife in tow and found himself at the altar, on his knees, at the foot of the cross. I never spoke a word to him at all, but there he was, in Christ, redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb.
As I understand it, it is the duty of every Muslim to convert unbelievers to Islam. They believe that they should share their interpretation of God with me that, so that I might be converted. I always invite them to do so. I am always amazed as men and women share their faith, and it blesses me, as I get to see their heart, their sincere belief in their doctrine. It always touches me when someone opens their soul and shares it with me no matter their faith. I also believe it is my privilege and honor to share Christ and Him crucified to those I meet and converse with in daily life. Sometime it is from a pulpit, sometime it is on a plane. Sometime it is not by word at all but by an action or a gesture. Sometimes I never say a word about my faith, but share the love of Christ by planting a seed so that the Holy Spirit can use it, so that God might be glorified.
I have quite a few special Muslim friends here in FB. I am always pleased and thankful as they send me things and share with me articles and videos of their faith. We talk about God, Allah, and Christ each in his own way trying to show the strength of their beliefs in their faith. Honestly I guess I enjoy some of these conversations the most as I am enlightened in many new ways as I share and receive.
I also have a dear Hindu fiend as I mentioned above. I watch him do his special prayers and see the statue of Ganesh in his car. I ask him what does that mean, why do you pray this prayer? How does it make you feel? I see when he is moved at times as he practices his faith, and I ask him to share with me. I do not ask these questions so I can then later tell him that his views are different than mine, and so he is wrong and I am right. I ask these questions because I really care about him and love him dearly.
I have a lifelong friend Palestinian born, devout Muslim who lives in Jordan named Khalid. I have known him almost 30 years. When we were young we would sit and argue stringently about our faiths all the time. We would get mad. We finally agreed that there neither one would ever convince the other. We agreed there would be a day when we would be judged and we would see who was right. We do not let our religious differences ever come between us. He know how I feel and I know how he feels, and we both show each other more love than normal as we are trying to out-love one another in the name of our God.
I was blessed to tears today as a Muslim friend of mine here on FB Imran wrote to me Happy Easter, and shared Matthew 5:3 with me. I felt blessed that he cared enough about me, respected my belief in my God and Savior Jesus Christ’s resurrection and blessed this day for me, the holiest of holy in my faith. I am humbled by his show of love for me.
So I guess the point of this story is we all have varying points of God, Christ and faith. Whatever you believe, I want to hear it; I want to understand what makes you tick, what moves your heart. I want you to know Christ; I want you to be able to see Him in me. Are there any Universalists out here on FB? I don’t know any. I would like to invite you to be my friend on FB. I want to know how you feel, what and what you think. Tell me about you faith, I welcome it. I will not judge you; I will not criticize you or your beliefs. I will share with you my heart and who I am, why I believe what I do and Who I have put my trust in, if you allow me, and get to know you and share with you this thing we call life.