On my more cynical days, I would define a “Christian” like this:
“A Christian is one who is waiting to have a problem with you, and when getting their long-awaited problem with you, it is probably over your use of a word that they’ve determined you can’t use the way you did.”
There are days I loathe communicating further with anyone who calls themselves a Christian. I am going to say “grace,” “works,” “repent,” “faith,” “confess,” or pretty much any other word in a way that defies regulations.
My use of such a word at such a wrong time obviously shows my complete lack of spiritual maturity, sensitivity, biblical literacy, ignorance of Church History, and I’m probably a half step from hell.
If I decide to explain myself, 95% of the time the person with the “problem” with me comes to see that we believe the same thing, they just defined my words differently from my intended definition.
Going through this so many times should teach us to give each other a break, a benefit of the doubt. On the contrary, however, it merely heightens our awareness of our favorite words and how “vital it is that everyone define them my way.”
I don’t know who is a half step from hell, what I do know is that what we say does not define who gets there.
It’s about time we all just shut up, quit picking fights with each other over definitions, and get busy doing the will of God.
And no, my use of the term “get busy” was not meant to foster any fights with puritanical sexual sensitivities.