I discovered this the day I tried to print a document that had all the titles in a gray border. I tried three times, and every time I got all the black and white but none of the gray. I know that by now some of you have figured out that my color cartridge was out. Correct, though I still cannot figure out why you need a color cartridge for gray. This experience also reminded me that this is how some people think Christianity is.

They believe that we live our lives by some ironclad list of do’s and don’ts. There are people who think that is what the Bible is – a list of rules, everything being black and white. This leads to some wrong assumptions about Christianity. There are those who think they could never follow such a list so why try. Others think the Bible is not relevant because it does not have a black and white list for every situation in today’s world. Then there are those who try living Christianity by a set of rules and just get frustrated because they cannot find the rules or cannot follow the ones they do think they have found.

This is not Christianity. The Bible is not a list of rules. We are not expected to memorize hundreds of rules so we will know what to do in every situation. That would not require any emotion, just a photographic mind and strong willpower. Christianity is a matter of the heart. Yes, Jesus does ask us to live a lifestyle different than the world around us, and he gives us guidelines to know how to do that. Let me share the three most important.

1. Love God with everything you have. Jesus said this was the greatest command.

2. Love your neighbor as yourself. Jesus said this was the second greatest command.

Give Jesus your heart, then follow it.
3. Follow the steps of Jesus. The Bible says Jesus left us an example so we could follow in his steps.

These principles will help you decide what to do in any situation you encounter as a Christian. And these principles are about love. So if you have misunderstood what the Christian life is about, I would enjoy visiting. Write me at steve@hopeforlife.org or join the blog discussion at www.hopeforlife.org.

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