One of my favorite Bible teachers, Derek Prince, a British scholar and leader of the Charismatic Movement of the 1970’s, used to say, “You can disagree with me and still go to heaven; but this is what I believe.” I like to maintain the same posture when it comes to my teachings and relationships with other Christian believers of diverse religious backgrounds.
One of the most important lessons the Holy Spirit has taught me over the many years that I’ve been a Christian, I believe is, the importance of humility. You see, I haven’t been the easiest person to get along with in this area. In the past, I’ve had the tendency to believe I’m right about everything. But time, and time again, the LORD has proven me wrong about a lot of things. I’ve been wrong about certain Bible doctrines in the past that I held dear, therefore I’ve had to change my position – no matter how painful and embarrassing. I’ve been wrong about certain relationships and people that I have trusted. I’ve even been wrong about hearing the voice of God and His direction for my life.
Through it all, God has taught me that I am not God, I’m far from perfect, and that I don’t have all the answers. That I must always remain teachable and humble. When I need to be corrected by Him, or by someone He sends into my life as a messenger of God, I must be willing to change my opinion or direction if needed.
“But God gives us even more grace, as the Scripture says, ‘God is opposed to the arrogant and proud, but he gives grace to those who humble themselves before Him.” James 4:6 (JCV)
However, I don’t believe I am the only one who has a problem with religious arrogance. I suspect that many of you reading this today also struggle with this same issue. It seems to be a common malady in the Christian church. That’s why we always need to pray, “Lord, keep me humble and teachable. Help me to overcome my sinful tendency to be self-righteous and right about everything. Help me to disagree with my brothers and sisters in Christ and continue to love them and pray for them – regardless of their religious backgrounds and opinions that may be different from mine.”
– Pastor Luis Yosefus
“The greatest person in the kingdom of heaven will be the one who will humble himself like this little child [trusting, teachable, loving, and lowly].” – Matthew 18:4 (JCV)