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Righteousness


John 8:7 NIV "When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, 'If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.'" 

Josh grew up in the church and was active in his youth group growing up. Like many children who were raised in a Christian home, Josh adopted the faith of his parents. But that all changed when he turned 30. 

Josh fell in love with another woman and left his wife. When he told his family about his decision, his mother couldn't stop "preaching" at him about his sinfulness and his sister outright told him that he would go to hell because of this sin. 

Today, Josh is a disciple of Buddha. 

I can't justify Josh's behavior. There is no excuse for breaking his marriage vows, leaving his wife and flaunting his decision is his family's face. But neither is there any excuse for his family's reaction. If their judgmental spirit didn't push him away from Christianity toward Buddhism, it certainly was a contributor in his decision to leave the faith of his childhood to walk down another path in life.

Too bad, especially since the faith his family follows that he left teaches the importance of love, forgiveness and acceptance just like it teaches the importance of fidelity and family values. His mother and sister didn't foster repentance in Josh's heart, instead, they pushed him away from their faith and severed their relationship with him.

Being right is one thing. Being righteous is another. To be righteous, we must treat other people with respect, love and forgiveness. Even when they are wrong. Especially when they are wrong.

(Josh's story from ON Mission, July/Aug 2001, p. 28)

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