I was going around, visiting the blogs I follow when I happened upon Shawn's blog, Laughing at Life 2 and his Dam Joke. Okay, I had a good laugh, and then I started to think about it. Then I began to want to share what I thought. So, I asked Shawn, and good sport that he is, he said I could share his joke here with my post. So thanks to Shawn, and here's the joke:
"A boy is selling fish on a corner. To get his customers' attention, he is yelling, "Dam fish for sale! Get your dam fish here!" A pastor hears this and asks, "Why are you calling them 'dam fish.'" The boy responds, "Because I caught these fish at the local dam." The pastor buys a couple fish, takes them home to his wife, and asks her to cook the dam fish. The wife responds surprised, "I didn't know it was acceptable for a preacher to speak that way." He explains to her why they are dam fish. Later at the dinner table, he asks his son to pass the dam fish. He responds, "That's the spirit, Dad! Now pass the f*cking potatoes!""
It should be easy to see why I laughed. The preacher was having fun with the play on words. Then his son heard him and instead of being shocked and then laughing with relief when he realized Dad didn't mean what he thought, the son believed his Dad was actually condoning foul language and curse words. It's a funny premise.
Until you begin to think about it. How many times in our day to day life, in our Christian walk, do we "flirt" with the edges of sin? Go right up to the point of sinning and then stop short? Or perhaps we even stick our toe in and test the water! Don't you know, even if we are sure in our hearts WE have not sinned, if we cause someone to believe we have fallen short of the mark, we have failed?! It is true! We are not responsible for only our own actions and whether they are right or not in God's sight, we are responsible for how those around us perceive those actions. If, like the son in the joke, they perceive that we are somehow condoning their improper, impure actions and motives, then we stand guilty.
If on the other hand, we have carried ourselves uprightly in ever way we possibly can and they still mis-perceive and somehow feel justified in their wrong doing, then it is not our fault, but lies with them. The Apostle Paul addressed this issue in regard to the practice of buying and eating meat that had been offered as a sacrifice to idols. Idol worship is wrong. Those who worshiped the idols believed that eating the meat that had been sacrificed to the idol actually brought part of that "god" into the eater. Christians knew there was no power in the idols or the meat. But new converts and those still practicing idol worship did not. In Romans 14, Paul addressed this! He summed it up well in this: Therefore, let us not think like the world, "I know I'm right and if you don't understand who cares." but think like Christ and care about our weaker brothers and sisters. Care about the unsaved around you everywhere! In Luke 17:2&3 Christ Jesus himself says, "
What about it? Do you know you are flirting with sin? Is there some weaker person you are causing to feel justified in their weakness? Will you stand up for Christ and then extend a hand to them?