Col 4:5  Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.
Col 4:6  Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.

These words from Paul were written from prison. His ministry had been to the gentile world, the world of pagan beliefs and practices. He reached out to others with the gospel of Jesus Christ, hoping to bring them into the family of God. He had been beaten, thrown in prison, even stoned and yet he survived all this, and returned evil with grace and good.

As we walk on our journey today, how do we act toward others, especially those who are outside the church? Do we yell at people, telling them what terrible sinners they are? Do we treat them with dignity or with curses? Jesus very rarely used harsh words when dealing with people, when He did it was to those who were leaders of the faith. Paul and the others dealt with their world with grace and humility. They were beaten, they were humiliated, killed and yet they, as Christ, did not call upon God to destroy them, but rather to forgive them.

I am sometimes ashamed to be called Christian, not because I am ashamed of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior, but because I am ashamed of the actions of some who call upon His name, and then act out of hatred, instead of love. I know I am not perfect, but I also know that what Paul said to the believers in Colossae was truth. Walk in wisdom toward those who do not know Christ. Be gracious, season your speech with good and answer each person with love in your heart. All persons have sacred worth, and it is their own decisions that will bring them to heaven or hell.

I have learned that God does not condemn, it is we, ourselves, who condemn, it is our decision that decides our fate. We who have become believers, must therefore show our belief, not in anger or hate but with love and wisdom. Love and wisdom are of God, and they are our weapons in any discussion with those who do not know Jesus Christ. Our job is not to condemn, nor to save, our job is to introduce them to our Lord, He will work in their hearts and minds, and we will be his hands and feet and voice in the world. That is our part of the journey. Let us walk it as those who have gone before us, in love and humility.

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