Should Christians Publicly Share their Criticism of Other Christians?

Have you ever been disappointed in someone you “follow” online?  Do you unfollow or unfriend?  

That’s my case today. We know that many bloggers post statements and opinions that we may not agree with (mine included!) but we follow because of the person’s overall ideals and appeal. In this particular situation, after reading this blogger’s recent post that I unfollowed. I felt that this Christian writer’s criticisms were wholly unnecessary. It was unsettling to read their harsh and cutting statements against another Christian family, albeit a public family, in regards to a terrible incident that took place several years ago (before they were on television). The family has since made very sincere, public statements regarding the incident (which was the result of a pop culture magazine breaking the story). Mainstream media outlets have kept the story highlighted on every social media feed. 

Out of the gate, let me say this first:  I am NOT condoning the confessed sin or stating that the victims were unharmed.  However, I do think that it is unnecessary for Christians to opine (although their right, certainly) on any type of “scandal” such as this.  I’ll tell you why.

Some of these opinions were given from the “facts” – which were stories from the mainstream media and pop culture venues – the same unethical groups who will use any opportunity to take down people of faith or political conservatism, especially if it can create readers or viewership. 

Seeing these posts have left me frustrated because I do not believe it helps the cause of Christ.  Before I could even respond to this issue with my own opinion, it was first necessary that I research truth from the Bible before putting my thoughts out here in the blogosphere.  

And this is what I found over and over:  Christians should not judge other Christians.    

While Christian bloggers can certainly give their own opinions on a subject, I think we must be careful to state it as our own thoughts and not allow them to become stones hurled at another believer – even when they did wrong or handled something incorrectly.  
This is where I feel it crosses the line between an opinion on a subject and judgment of another

“Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this,
not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother’s way.”

Romans 14:13 (NKJV)

“Do not speak evil of one another, brethren.  He who speaks evil of a brother
and judges his brother, speaks evil of the law and judges the law. 
But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. 
There is one Lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy. 
Who are you to judge another?”

James 4:11-12 (NKVJ)
Please, before you blog or even speak on an issue such as the one in the news yesterday, why not follow these steps first: 

     Pray.  Pray for all those involved, the victims, and that the situation will create not discord among believers, but instead, glorify Christ!  Remember Romans 8:28: “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”  As Christians, we should want issues such as this to be turned around by God for the good, and for his glory.  We can promote the saving grace of Christ and lead the unsaved to him through our words, written or verbal. The offender in this recent case, (a minor at the time) repented and then gave his life to Christ.  Let’s tell about the redemptionin this story, not glorify the sin.  I wish more bloggers would have said – “if you relate to this situation in any way, I have the Answer for you!”

      Read God’s Word.  Many of us give opinions from our own understanding. (I am guilty of this too!)  By reading the Bible first, we see what God tells us to do. To be truthful, those bloggers who do not appear to be writing from what they have read, received and learned from God’s Word are those who I will no longer follow. I prefer to learn from those who go to God first for wisdom before reacting with the written (or verbal) word. 

      Give Grace.  If an unbeliever came to your church tomorrow and repented, should he be berated for his sin later, or receive grace and forgiveness as we received?  Wouldn’t we help the newly saved redeem himself and learn how to make things right?  We have also received grace, therefore we must extend it to others.  Romans 6:14 says, “For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.”
With so much focus on current pop culture and the continual destruction of today’s society, we as Christians should be focused on this:  “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”  (Romans 12:21) 

If you are a blogger, think of the readers who will come across your blog who may not know Christ. Consider those who need encouragement and light instead of more darkness from the world.  Tell us, the readers, your stories, your experiences and how you learned from them. Share with us what you found in God’s Word that was exciting and how you are applying it to your life.  We want to laugh with you, cry with you and learn from you.  Such things are so much more powerful than casting opinionated rocks towards other Christians who are wading in the same waters as we are, just under different circumstances.

And that is my viewpoint, what I learned and what I want to share with you.  

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