Archive for the ‘Respect’ Category

SHOWING RESPECT

(I Peter 2:13-23)

INTRODUCTION: We live in a very rude world. And unfortunately, people are becoming ruder by the minute. Common courtesy isn’t so common any more. It seems that respect for people is at an all time low. Our favorite kind of humor today is sarcasm — put down humor. Whether it is one of the many late night comedians who many tune in and listen to, to hear them put down society. Their favorite targets are those in authority, those in leadership; those who should be respected if for no other reason than because of their position.

I Peter 2:17Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.”

But the Bible makes it very clear that respect is one of those values that is necessary for life. The Bible is very specific about this. Make your attitude and your responses in situations a serious matter of prayer. Remember it may be you with the wrong attitude. Ask God to give you insight to determine the right behavior in situations that can cause you to get angry. (Ecclesiastes 7:9 – Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.)

In this 2 part series we are considering the why and how of showing respect. In part #1 of this 2 part series we examined  the “why” and in part #2 we will examine the “how”.

5 PRACTICAL WAYS TO SHOW RESPECT – In a world that’s full of rudeness and disrespect, how can we show respect to others in a practical way?

When We Speak, Be Tactful, Not Just Truthful. Proverbs 15:4 “A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.”

What is tact?

  • Tact is the ability to make a point without making an enemy.
  • Tact is when you tell someone to go jump off a cliff in a way that makes them look forward to the journey.
  • Tact is treating everybody as if they knew what they were talking about.
  • Tact is the art of telling someone he’s open minded when he’s really just got a hole in his head.

The primary way we show respect is with our words.

  • ‘Wholesome‘ carries with it the idea of healing or curative.
  • This verse reminds us that we need to give attention to how we speak. Paul admonished us to ‘Speak the truth in love’
  • The way we say something will go a long way in determining how well it’s going to be received. Learning how to be truthful and tactful at the same time is an absolute essential of being respectful.
  • People with tact often have a lot less to retract. We don’t have to eat our words as often if we say them in a kind way.
  • Many people today don’t understand this; they often confuse rudeness with frankness. “I just tell it like it is and let the chips fall where they may!” That’s not being frank; that’s being mean and disrespectful to people.

The Power of the tongueSolomon wrote about the power of the tongue in (Proverbs 18:21 –  Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.)

“The power of the tongue” to do Good.

  • The tongue has the ability to dispense good council and wisdom from trusted Godly leaders when we need it. (Proverbs 10:20 – The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked is little worth.)
  • The tongue has the power of encouragement. The right word at the right time can do wonders to encourage someone with a heavy heart. (Proverbs 12:25 – Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: but a good word maketh it glad.)
  • The tongue has the power to stop anger before it has a chance to boil over. (Proverbs 15:1 – A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.)
  • Using your words in a Godly uplifting way can bring great joy. The tongue can be the source of many good fruitful works in our life. (Proverbs 15:23 – A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!)

The power of the tongue” to do Evil.

  • In the list of 7 abominations in the sight of God, Solomon mentions lying lips and those that sow discord among the brethren. (Proverbs 6:17,19 – A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.) – Notice in the same sentence that God condemns murder; He mentions and condemns lying as well. To tell a lie, especially about another Christian, is a serious sin. (Colossians 3:9Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;)
  • A person with a perverse tongue will fall into mischief. (Proverbs 17:20 – He that hath a froward heart findeth no good: and he that hath a perverse tongue falleth into mischief.)
  • Gossip will cause deep and lasting wounds. (Proverbs 18:8 – The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.)
  • Notice what the “abomination” is in this passage. It is one who uses his or her tongue to sow discord among the brethren or among saved people.
  • Your tongue has a lot of potential, potential to do good and potential to do evil. What are you using your tongue for? Are you building up your friends and people you know or are you tearing them down behind their back? Are you spreading lies about someone? Are you gossiping about someone? Are you using the power of your tongue for good or for evil?

When We Are Served, Be Understanding Not Demanding. Luke 6:31And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.

  • One of the greatest tests of our character is how we treat people when they serve us. Waitress, waiters, clerks, employees, even family!
  • When people are doing something for us, are we understanding or are we demanding?
  • It takes no intelligence at all to be rude. But it takes great character and great maturity to be understanding, and not demanding, of people. The best place to practice this is at home.
  • I know people who treat their families in ways they would never consider treating a stranger. They say hurtful things to their families or people they know that they would never consider saying to someone they didn’t know. That’s not right. God says even in our families we need to be understanding, not demanding.

When We Disagree, Be Gentle Not Judgmental. Romans 14:12 “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.”  This verse reminds us that ultimately we will all give an accounting before the Lord.

  • I am going to give an account to God for myself and everyone else will give an     account for themselves.
  • Judgment belongs to God, not me.
  • I can disagree with you on any number of issues, without becoming disagreeable or judgmental.
  • Remember, telling the truth is not being judgmental.
  • But if I use the truth to attack and beat people down, then I am wrong. (Ephesians 4:29 – Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.)
  • Paul reminded us that if we don’t have love, then people won’t hear the message of truth that we want to proclaim. (I Corinthians 13:1 – Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.)
  • We can be right on an issue but if we’re rude about it, we’re wrong!

When We Share Our Faith, Be Respecting Not Rejecting. I Peter 3:15 “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:”

  • We cannot argue people into heaven.
  • We won’t see them come to Christ if our attitude is wrong when we are talking to them about God or the Bible.
  • When we share our faith we must do so with gentleness and respect.

When People Are Rude, Respond Politely. Romans 12:17 “Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.” Don’t retaliate by being rude back.  That only makes things worse. A good rule of communication is “Act, don’t react.” God expects us to react to every situation, every individual, in manner that is biblical. (Ephesians 4:31-32 – Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.)

IN CONCLUSION: We all want to be respected. We want other people to treat us with dignity. The Bible makes it very clear that respect is one of those values that is necessary for life. The Bible is very specific about this. We find that we are to respect parents, people in authority, and church leadership. Being respectful and courteous to people is one of the great evidences that you know God. How you treat people and the amount of respect you show to those in leadership positions over you is a good reflection on your true heart condition to God. How about you? What could people glean from how respectful or disrespectful you are to others in your life? Would they determine that you have a good heart relationship with the Lord or a bad heart relationship with the Lord? (Mark 7:6 – He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.)

SHOWING RESPECT #1

(I Peter 2:13-23)

I Peter 2:15-17 “For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God. Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.”

Adam Clarke said this about this passage “God, as their supreme governor, shows them that it is His will that they should act uprightly and obediently at all times, and thus confound the ignorance of foolish men.”

The word “silence” in verse 15 signifies to muzzle, i.e., stop their mouths, leave them nothing to say; let them assert, but ever be unable to bring proof to support it.

The word “honour” in verse 17 means to fix a high value on, to revere to value with respect. We are to honor and revere and show respect to fellow Christians.

The word “love” in verse 17 is translated from the Greek word “agapao”. We are to love the brethren with a perfect love in a social and moral sense.

INTRODUCTION: We live in a very rude world. And unfortunately, people are becoming ruder by the minute. Common courtesy isn’t so common any more. It seems that respect for people is at an all time low. Our favorite kind of humor today is sarcasm — put down humor. Whether it is one of the many late night comedians who many tune in and listen to, to hear them put down society. Their favorite targets are those in authority, those in leadership; those who should be respected if for no other reason than because of their position.

But the Bible makes it very clear that respect is one of those values that is necessary for life. The Bible is very specific about this. We find that we are to respect parents, people in authority, and church leadership. The Scriptures go on to instruct wives to respect and reverence their husbands and husbands are to respect and reverence their wives. And if we think that someone doesn’t fit the above categories, the Lord tells us that we should respect and honor all men.

I Peter 2:17Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.”

We all want to be respected. We want other people to treat us with dignity. So we are going to begin to look at this missing characteristic. We will consider the why and how of showing respect. In part #1 of this 2 part series we will examine  the “why” and in part #2 the “how”.

4 REASONS WHY WE SHOULD RESPECT – Let’s begin by looking at four reasons why we should respect everybody regardless of their lifestyle, regardless of their decisions, regardless of their behavior or beliefs. The Bible says every person should be treated with respect.

Because God Made Everybody. Psalms 8:4-5 “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.”

  • Everybody is created by God; and God doesn’t make mistakes or make things we can be flippant with or disrespectful with.
  • There are no worthless people. There are people who do worthless things. There are people who do wrong things, but they are all created by and loved by God.
  • Even the most unlovable person is loved by God.
  • Honor and respect doesn’t mean we embrace or endorse what they do or even what they believe, but we respect the individual as a creation of God.
  • God isn’t finished with any of us, is He? (Philippians 3:13-14Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.)
  • We are all a work in progress.
  • So let’s not forget where we came from…let’s remember that we are all made of the same stuff…we are all flesh.

Because Jesus Died For Everyone. I Peter 1:18-19 “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:”

  • We may not think much about somebody, but God does.
  • In fact, He says they are worth dying for. (John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.)
  • The cross shows how much people matter to God.
  • Jesus died for all… people who don’t believe in Him; people who reject Him; people who choose to disobey Him! (Romans 5:8 – But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.)
  • Jesus died for me, but He also died for the world. (John 3:17 – For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.)

Because It Shows We Know God. Being respectful and courteous to people is one of the great evidences that you know God. How you treat people and the amount of respect you show to those in leadership positions over you is a good reflection of your true heart condition toward God.  I John 4:8 “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.”

  • The Bible says that God is love and if I know God then I’m going to fill my life with love.
  • Love always treats people with respect.
  • If you look at the life of Jesus Christ, He treated everyone with respect; the woman at the well, the woman taken in adultery, Nicodemus, even Judas and Peter.
  • If I am a believer, a Christian, then I’m going to treat other people the way Jesus did.
  • I’m going to treat them with value and with dignity. (I Corinthians 13:5 – [Love] Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;)
  • That verse says that love is not rude and selfish.
  • When I’m rude I’m basically saying, “I’m the only one that matters.” So if I treat you with disgust or disrespect – I treat you rudely.

Because of the Law of the Harvest. Galatians 6:7 “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”

  • Whatever goes around comes around. Whatever you give out, you’re going to get back. (Matthew 7:12 Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.)
  • It never pays to be rude. Treat others how you wish to be treated, treat others with respect. The way you treat others, according to God’s Word, will eventually circle back around to you. (Proverbs 11:17 – The merciful man doeth good to his own soul: but he that is cruel troubleth his own flesh.)

IN CONCLUSION: There is no excuse for rude and disrespectful behavior in the life of a believer. We have a responsibility to represent Christ in this world. One important value that we must build our lives upon is the value of showing respect. We need to show respect for ourselves, we need to show respect to our family, we need to show respect to our church family and we need to show respect to the world at large.

Maintaining godly relationships between brethren is of such extreme significance that it will affect our ability to serve and to worship God.  (Matthew 5:23-24Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.) – If you have been guilty of being disrespectful to someone, especially a fellow brother or sister in Christ, the Bible shows us here it will affect our ability to serve and worship Him. We need to set things right, sincerely apologize for the disrespectful action we have taken, seek forgiveness, repent of that action before God, and move on in your service to Him.