This morning I’m seeing how my opinions are actually imprisoning walls that contain me and block my acceptance of God’s sovereign move. Opinions are just laws I maintain in my head, and these laws are death.
Opinions are LAW
I’ve not met many people who don’t enforce their opinions like laws. We defend them, evangelize for them, and enact punitive judgments on anyone who has dissenting views. Opinion is just playing God, where we have no business or control.
Much energy is exhausted in the building of the opinions. I have much passion and a force of energy behind them. They are laws after all; I must enforce their rightness. It’s just evil!
I recently heard of a man who went on a tirade because his neighbors weren’t using their porch. He went on and on about how they were wasting the space, as if it were a capital offense. His opinion was that they should be using it…and using it according to his opinion. He knew best! They should appease him and follow the law of his opinion. He was RIGHT and they were WRONG, even with their own stuff!
In My Opinion
I wish this wasn’t common, but we’re all legalists of varying degrees. “He should have…! Why didn’t she…? It would’ve been better if…!” Amazingly, I can have opinions about almost anything, from the minuscule (“They waste a lot of time watching sports,” or “That man should’ve spent more time to put his bumper sticker on straight rather than crooked.”) to something more major (“They can’t even take care of the children they have, they should’ve stopped after two,” or “He’s wasting his life with that job; he should go back to school to make a career.”) I could even tell you how to pump gas or when you should put on your turn signal when making your right turn. It doesn’t contain itself within my area of expertise either; it spills over to everything.
Opinion is the death of trying to be God. I’m no man’s Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God maintains that right in every life. I won’t be the one answering for your choices, unless I have direct authority in your life. And so what I’m talking about here is not the responsibility of authority, but the random assaults of opinions on those I have no influence over.
Where Do My Opinions Come From?
This is one of those lovely parting gifts that we received from the fall in the Garden. Eating from the Tree of Knowledge gave us the delusion that we have the right to our opinions. And the same fruit that rotted inside of Adam and Eve continues to rot within us as we continue to pick and eat it. Our thoughts have to be fed to us from the Tree of Life. The Spirit is the director of our minds. Choosing opinions over the mind of the Spirit is to choose the fruits from the Tree of Knowledge, which is always going to be death.
The long and short of this is that I have a choice of Life or death—opinions or the mind of Christ. It is either-or, not both. By enforcing my opinions, I imprison myself to my simple views and death. And when I see my opinions as the only right view, then I’m prevented from seeing His.
Sadly, if I wish to enforce my right to have opinions over another, I will blind myself to God’s sovereign move and amazing workings in the lives of His creation. God knows we are but dust and He’s able to work together all things for the good of those who love Him. We’re simple sheep, so who can say if my foolish choice isn’t just the right step towards my salvation? God orchestrates my life with the knowledge that I need shepherding – not in spite of that fact. If I receive Him as our all-encompassing Sovereign God, then I’ll have eyes to see His amazing power working miracles in the lives of other needy ones, just like me.
No soldier on service entangleth himself in the affairs of this life; that he may please him who enrolled him as a soldier.
2 Timothy 2:4 ASV
My judgments are the fruit of MY righteousness. And when MY righteousness is my authority I can’t hear or receive anything from God.
Thank you Bruce. Great point.
Thank you, John. You really received a bunch this morning! You bring light, from the Spirit, on things I never thought much about and I’m thankful for your hearing. If you don’t mind, one question: are advice and opinion synonymous? If not, what’s the difference? (okay, two questions)
In the case of this post, opinions would be more akin to judgments. Where as advise is information I am giving you from my experience or knowledge. But what I am learning is that neither of them are worth much of anything if not from the Spirit. There can be cross over if I am giving you advise from my judgements and opinions of how you should do it better. ? Again, without listening to the voice of God my words are worthless. Does this help or confuse?
Thanks, John, it does make sense: just stick with the voice of God — no confusion or flesh or judgment or playing God.
All I can say is you did it again! Hit the nail right on the head.
And you’re a love bug! Thank you for your encouragement! I am so glad you liked the carpentry…
Just yesterday, I gave someone my opinion… Even though I was being “politically correct,” as soon as I hit the SEND button I saw that the banner I was waving over my head was anything but Love… 🙁
Once again He makes it so clear that the choice is either/or and that there is no in between ground and not one single situation is outside of that!! It’s actually scary…
To see this as sin, is to see Him on the throne…
I thank Him for both!
Sharing Him from the heart is always such a blessing! Love you John!!
I don’t know which is worst, doing this in writing or in person. I did a similar thing but live and in person. It didn’t go over well. I was spiritually, morally, and in actuality correct…but it was “me” in my opinion rather than the Spirit in His wisdom. This reminds me of a portion of the poem from William Knox, OH! Why Should the Spirit of Mortal Be Proud. ‘Tis the wink of an eye, ’tis the draught of a breath, From the blossom of health to the paleness of death, From the gilded saloon to the bier and… Read more »
The first Shulamite conference I attended I met a woman – sadly I can’t remember her name, who shared with me that God had her focused on not having an opinion. She was to have NO opinions! I thought that was the coolest thing (my opinion) I’d heard of anyone praying about. I felt led to follow her example and sought the Lord on the matter. It changed the direction of many of my thoughts and I believe it’s lasting. Not that He’s perfected it in me but He still checks me in my spirit when my thoughts head in… Read more »
So good, John and Tammy!
Tammy, you always have complimentary comments, thank you for sharing. You are truly family! Love you and thank you for YOU!
You’ve encouraged me to take up this challenge, Tammy. I see too much of me in this post. Funny, I don’t remember God ever asking for my opinion!
Isn’t that sort of like having a back seat drivers license ☺️? Or what Jesus had to say about it….john 12:49 For I have not spoken on my own authority, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment—what to say and what to speak.
Thank you, John. You laid it right out on the table, and it is plain as day. I never saw it like that, and I repent. Thank You, Jesus
John, such a poignant article…and any pastor who reads this would want to copy it for everyone in his congregation to read. Maybe I’m just too close to it, but it seems to me that church people could be some of the most opinionated people ever…from what color they believe the walls should be painted to their pet doctrines (that are not even founded in the Word of God!)
But alas, as part of Adam’s race, I too am guilty and I thank you for bringing the mirror of God’s Word to my own heart today. Bless you, John!