Yesterday, I felt led to blog on “selfish ambition.” Dissensions are another on this list of “acts of the flesh” that we seem to gloss over as ministry and marketplace leaders. I think it is our job to root out dissensions and factions wherever we have influence and create unity and peace with fellow Christ-followers who believe or behave differently than we would like.
"The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God." - Galatians 5:19-21 NIV
Here are some definitions I found:
Here are definitions from the same three sources I used above.
Grasping the definition of this word changed my perspective on the seriousness of the sin of engaging in or promoting factions. I hope it has done the same for you.
Ministry and marketplace leaders must choose words very carefully, for they have a huge impact on followers who study the meaning of their words. The Apostle Paul, through the leadership of the Holy Spirit, gave us Christ-followers some very specific words to inform our thoughts, feelings, and behavior.
Dear Lord, help me and other ministry and marketplace leaders influence outcomes that generate more unity and peace and reduce or eliminate dissensions and factions.
Lord Jesus, we know that this starts at home, with our spouses, family, and friends. Help us to lead by following you and your example. May we be wise as serpents and gentle as doves as we navigate difficult political and social situations. And may we have the character of a person of your peace and love. Amen.
My spirit senses this might be Christ’s reply:
"Child, it grieves me deeply to see so many conflicts among my people. In Heaven, we do not have such problems. My desire is for everyone who follows me to be a person who allows my peace and love to permeate their relationships with all who follow me, and all who don’t."
What do we say to Christ? He wants us to spread peace and love. How can we do that if we are creating dissensions and factions? May we repent of these sins, and may we lead others to do likewise. Amen.
Your aspiring servant, Daniel M.
December 8, 2023
POSTSCRIPT: Dear friends, if this daily, transparent “Conversations with Christ” blesses you, please go to www.SOLIDpastors.org, where you will find these posted, and a repository of all, in English and Spanish. If you ever want to chat, you can reach me at Daniel@SOLIDpastors.org. May Christ bless you richly as you have your own intimate, daily conversations with Christ.