D.L. Moody Center president tackles tough questions: How can Christians speak truth without being ‘judgmental?’

‘Christians offer a theological perspective on the world. While we need to be winsome as we do so, we must also be bold and truthful’

August 29, 2022

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — A recent study on American Christianity found that more than half of non-Christians think that believers are “self-righteous,” “hypocritical,” or “judgmental.” The study also saw a “fundamental disconnect” between the ways in which Christians saw themselves and how non-Christians viewed them, with the majority of Christians finding themselves compassionate and loving. With such differing opinions of a biblical worldview, many Christians are left wondering how to preach God’s truth without coming across as “pushy” or “judgmental.”

D. L. Moody Center (moodycenter.org) President James Spencer is well aware of how Christians are perceived — especially regarding important topics such as abortion, marriage, or salvation. Spencer’s recent release, “20 Questions: Christians, Abortion, and the United States,” is a powerful guide designed to help Christians navigate the tricky questions surrounding abortion. The guide provides answers to questions not only specific to the issue of abortion, but also questions about foundational Christian doctrine.

When it comes to Christians being perceived as “judgmental,” Spencer acknowledges the difficulty of preaching the truth in love to a world that is unwilling to hear it.

“There is certainly a way for Christians to be judgmental,” Spencer writes. “It is possible for us to assume a holier-than-thou posture. We would be wise to avoid being judgmental; however, we would be unwise to fail to discern good and evil.

“Christians offer a theological perspective on the world. While we need to be winsome as we do so, we must also be bold and truthful. We cannot call ‘evil good and good evil’ (Isa 5:20), nor should we allow others to do so without correction. That correction, however, does not come from a place of hatred, malice, or even vulnerability. It comes from a place of compassion and love.”

Spencer refers to the Apostle Pauls’ teachings as a guide for speaking the truth in love:

“And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant the repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will” (2 Tim 2:22-26).

20 Questions: Christians, Abortion, and the United States”is offered at no cost from D. L. Moody Center as part of its “Shine Bright 365” initiative. “Shine Bright 365” is a year-long comprehensive campaign designed to encourage believers to shine bright for Christ in a dark world.

Spencer commented, “As Dwight Moody once said, ‘In the place God has put us, he expects us to shine, to be living witnesses, to be a bright and shining light. While we are here, our work is to shine for him.’ We have recently been placed in a post-Roe v. Wade world. Our task now is to shine brightly for Christ in this new world.”

The D. L. Moody Center is also pleased to announce the launch of its new eight-day Bible plan, Useful to God, on the YouVersion app. Drawing on Spencer’s book titled “Useful to God: Eight Lessons from the Life of D. L. Moody,” this Bible plan examines eight characteristics evident in the Scriptures and in the life of D. L. Moody (e.g., surrendered, prayerful, humbled, undistracted, and studious). Thousands have already completed the plan, with hundreds more subscribing daily.

The D.L. Moody Center is an independent non-profit organization located in Northfield, Massachusetts. Dedicated to preserving and advancing the legacy of Dwight Moody, the D. L. Moody Center is a catalyst for spiritual formation in New England and beyond through evangelism and discipleship.   

As a destination for spiritual renewal, the D. L. Moody Center is not a school. Nevertheless, there is much to learn by studying D. L. Moody and what God accomplished through his life which began in New England, at the Northfield, Massachusetts campus, the heart of Moody’s ministry as well as his childhood home.   

Learn more about D. L. Moody Center by visiting moodycenter.org or follow the ministry on Facebook or Twitter

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