Recently, the title of a blog post caught my eye. It was called “The Failed Gospel of Nice.” The author makes a point that “nice” is not always good; nor is nice always true. As Christians we sometimes use “niceness” as an excuse not to preach the whole gospel of Christ, sin and the reality of hell.
Below are some quotes I pulled from the article and at the bottom I’ve posted the link to the entire post.
The desire to be considered “nice”, i.e., considerate, agreeable, sensitive, and pleasing, often serves as an altar upon which we sacrifice things like honesty, spiritual integrity, and worst of all, truth itself.
If a self-identified Christian failed to be nice, it could invite accusations of being inconsiderate, oppositional, bigoted, insensitive, rude, or downright mean. At the very least, not being nice would certainly be seen as not Christlike.
The “gospel of nice” calls for embracing anything lest we be guilty of offending anyone, and the anti-Christian sentiment so prevalent in the culture today is a glaring exhibition of its abject failure to address the root cause of the unrest and violence surrounding us. The Gospel of Jesus Christ, on the other hand, confronts everyone with the truth about sin.
Jesus Himself didn’t always sound winsome and congenial in His reactions, especially with those who were disingenuous. Here are just a few examples:
But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in. Matthew 23:13 (NKJV)
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. Therefore you will receive greater condemnation. Matthew 23:14 (NKJV)
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves.Matthew 23:15 (NKJV)
Serpents, brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell? Matthew 23:33 (NKJV)
What these exchanges do convey is Jesus’ unshakeable passion for truth and honesty regarding spiritual matters and His determination not to allow the desire for public approval to rob that truth of its impact and its power. Putting shackles on a potentially transformational message and confining it within the boundaries of some vague and fluctuating concept of niceness in an effort to avoid personal criticism is nothing short of cowardice.
We are called to overcome lies with truth, evil with genuine goodness, moral and ethical darkness with righteousness and genuine integrity, but in the process of doing that, many will condemn our approach no matter how much niceness we try to wrap around it.
Unfortunately, there are those who will be offended by His message and may accuse the messenger of being mean-spirited, or worse. But may we not sacrifice truth and spiritual integrity in an effort to avoid criticism. The “gospel of nice” may not be offensive, but it’s totally powerless . . . and there’s no “good news” in it at all.
Printed in part from: (https://gallagherspen.com/2020/07/18/the-failed-gospel-of-nice/)
Amen! And some cultures/religions don’t take Christians seriously because they are unwilling (or unable) to defend what the Bible and what they believe.
Your are right—a lot of Christians don’t know what the Bible says because they don’t read it for themselves and it’s not always preached from the pulpit.