I’ve always been troubled by the idea that two equally God-fearing, God-worshipping individuals could have such radically different opinions theologically, politically, and socially. For this to be possible, it seems almost as though God’s system is faulty. The truth should be clear and easy to discern.
Could it be that God designed things this way? Perhaps He wants it to be easy to grasp the fundamentals of the Christian faith (Jesus is Lord, He was crucified for our sins, and then was resurrected). This possibility leaves other, outlying details subject to interpretation, based on what kind of and how much importance each of us places on individual tenets of the faith.
If this is true, then we, as believers in Christ and earnest seekers of truth, never give up our quest for knowledge. We never quit thinking, never quit debating each other, never quit refining our own beliefs, never quit being sharpened by our fellow believers (Proverbs 27:17).
For example, I may place great emphasis on complete and total surrender of everything in my life to God, keeping for myself only enough material goods for a meager sustenance and lifestyle, allowing me to give generously to others and lift them up. Another person may cherish the freedom we have in Christ to buy, sell, and turn a profit, thus creating a more lavish lifestyle for himself.
One individual may emphasize the social aspects of the gospel, crusading for justice and equality for all mankind. Another individual’s mantra may be based on a capitalistic interpretation of God’s word — “If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10b).
Is any one of these approaches completely right or wrong, or are they all a part of the greater whole of God’s word and will?
I don’t have the answer to this question. I believe, however, that having such differing opinions is valuable to us as believers in Christ. As we keep searching for truth in the Scriptures, may God’s word become sharper and clearer to us, as we become more and more unified in our faith in Jesus.