Have you ever been in a conversation that is more like war than real communication?
A conversation war has the goal of destroying the enemy.
If you are in a conversation war, you are always right, and the opposition is always wrong. Attack!
If used at all, the Bible is used as ammunition to tear down your opponent. “Ha! See, this verse proves you wrong!”
Back and forth it goes until only one man is left standing, and the other is nothing but a slobbering fool left to wallow in their own pitiful ignorance. Victory!
A common weapon in conversation war is the potshot: “You’re a heretic! You can’t even read the Bible! You’re probably not even a Christian!”
Don’t let the enemy know you’ve ever been wrong before. Make sure what you say is seen as flawless, and what they say is seen as garbage.
Conversations between Christians who disagree should not happen with boxing gloves and a furled brow.
Communication in ministry is not a war between two people. It should not end with blood and bruises.
Paul says, “the servant of the Lord must not strive…” (2 Tim 2:24).
In ministry conversation you are not talking to the enemy. You are talking to a prisoner of war.
Your goal is not to destroy, but to aid and rescue. You can show the way, because you were in prison, too. The Bible is not a club, it is the key.
You are not always right. The Bible is always right.
Real ministry communication should happen between two people with an open Bible, both searching it to understand what is right.
There is a doctrinal war to fight. That war has an enemy, but the enemy is not your next door neighbor, your relative, or that stranger online. They are only the captives.
Conversation wars are not edifying. They corrupt real ministry. Real ministry communication takes work, because a search and rescue is harder than a seek and destroy.
“Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” – Ephesians 4:29
For His glory,
Justin “rescue team” Johnson