Sometimes people accuse Christians of being narrow-minded. They say that followers of Jesus should have a broader view of moral and social issues. They even maintain that Jesus would not be so narrow-minded—that he would share their wider acceptance of liberal thoughts and behaviors. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The Jesus we see in Scripture has some sharply defined views on many issues. One might even call him narrow-minded. Let’s look at some examples.
Jesus has a narrow view of creation. In Mark 10:6 he says, “But at the beginning of creation God made them male and female.” Jesus doesn’t seem to leave room for macro-evolution, the idea that mankind finally emerged as a finished product after billions of years and a series of remarkably fortunate occurrences that saw one-celled creatures finally evolve into the human beings that we are today. Jesus says that we were created by God in the very beginning.
That same verse also shows that Jesus has a very narrow view of gender, at least compared with some of the ideas that are being thrown around today. I recently filled out a medical form that gave me the option of listing myself as male, female or other. I heard of a university that lists 8 different genders that their students can choose from! But Jesus has a limited view of gender—male and female.
Jesus also has a narrow view of marriage. In Mark 10:7 he says, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh.” Here Jesus quotes Genesis 2:24 and reaffirms God’s original definition of marriage—that it is a union between a man and a woman. Many in our society today would take a broader view of marriage, but Jesus does not offer that option.
When it comes to divorce, Jesus once again has a narrow view. When the Pharisees asked him if a man could divorce his wife “for any and every reason”, he answered, “…Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” He went on to say that sexual immorality was the only legitimate grounds for divorce. (Matthew 19:1-9). Our culture mirrors the one that Jesus lived in during the first century, with its wide acceptance of divorce, but Jesus takes a narrow view.
Jesus has a narrow view of discipleship. While some would say it’s an easy thing to be a Christian, Jesus says that if we want to be his disciple we have to deny ourselves and take up our cross and follow him (Mark 8:34).
Jesus has a narrow view of morality. He implored the woman who was caught in adultery to leave her life of sin (John 8:11).
Jesus has a narrow view of membership in his kingdom. In Revelation 22:15 he says, “Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.”
Jesus has a narrow view of salvation. While some insist that there are many ways to God, Jesus proclaims in John 14:6, “…I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
These are just a few of the examples we see in Scripture of how Jesus has a narrow view of what is right and true. So, the next time someone tries to insult you by calling you “narrow-minded” because of your Christian beliefs, be aware that they are unknowingly paying you a great compliment. Let’s all strive to agree with Jesus in all areas of life.