How many of us love someone who’s been bullied? Many of us can recall a time when we were bullied when we were in school! But bullying seems to have taken on a life of its own lately – how many stories have we seen in the news of students committing suicide because they were being relentlessly bullied? It’s a tragedy that ought to break our hearts.
This post will very closely resemble the post I wrote entitled “How Should Christians View the Day of Silence” because the subject matter is so similar. If you’re looking for something focused specifically on Christians and LGBT students, that post might be helpful to read.
There are a few reasons I believe that Christians need to be leading the opposition against bullying.
- Because of the Gospel, every Christian is called to live in a way that is remarkably different. When others hate us, we love. When others offend us, we forgive. When others hurt us, we serve. We don’t do this because God wants us to be “nice, good people.” We need to do this because we are always remembering that this is exactly what Christ did for us. He loved us when we hated him, he forgave us when we offended him, he served us when we hurt him. Romans 5:6-8
- We are called to love our enemies and to pray for those who persecute us. So people mock your faith and try to make you feel like an idiot because you’re a Christian… so what? Jesus explicitly tells us to love those who hate us. If we only love people who love us back then how are we any different? Matthew 5:44
- Christians are a persecuted people. Christians throughout history have been targets for hate-crimes and persecution. More Christians are persecuted and murdered now than at any other time in history (one statistic says 19 Christians are killed for their faith every minute!). In fact, Scripture makes it sound like there’s something wrong with our faith if we aren’t being targeted because of our faith (that doesn’t mean we should hope to be persecuted, just that it’s common and we should expect it). Matthew 5:11-12, John 15:18
- Christians are called to be Agents of Reconciliation. Jesus says “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” Does that describe you… a peacemaker? Too often, Christians get a reputation for being people who instigate arguments… we should get a reputation for being peacemakers and agents of reconciliation instead – Reconciled to God (salvation), and Reconciled to Each Other. Matthew 5:9, 2 Corinthians 5:16-21
Our commitment as “Agents of Reconciliation” flows out of our commitment to the Gospel. Because we have placed our lives in the hands of the One who gave up his rights as God in order to be The Redeemer between God and men we are changed and given a new desire to bring together what has been torn apart. We have been forgiven by God, knowing that HE is the one who paid our punishment so we could be freed from judgment and shame. The Gospel has changed everything for us.
www.StopBullying.gov is a good and useful resource, providing help in determining “What is Bullying,” “Recognizing the Warning Signs,” and “How do I Get Help?” Check it out and pray about how you can become an Agent of Reconciliation.
If you’re aware of any good Christian resources that stand against Bullying and equip believers, please let me know in the comment section below.