The short answer to this question is no one. I am a hell-worthy sinner. I have seen the errors of my previous ways; I am sure in the future I will see errors in my current ways. These errors are becoming ever-apparent to me; I judge my own actions first and most harshly. God has seen fit in His mercy and grace to join me to the Church which He has established. I hope to be made worthy of such and one day be counted among the Saints. I have a very long way to go. In all things I look to the Church, not a book that can be misinterpreted, for authority.

Notice that I said I judge my actions, because this is an important distinction. Also note that I state that self-examination for faults is first and foremost. I cannot judge the eternal placement of anyone, including myself. I can definitively say that an action can lead to hell; I cannot tell anyone they are going to hell. I cannot judge anyone’s actions if I am committing the same. If it is an issue that Christ has helped me conquer, I believe that gives me the proper perspective to point it out, for the purpose of correction, to those currently entrenched in said error. However, I don’t believe that I should remain silent of errors which I’ve never been tempted. I don’t judge anyone’s soul. Period. But I am very much going to speak against all sin, whether it be different from mine or not. If it’s mine, I blame myself first.

Sin is ‘natural’ to us due to our fallen nature. Christ came to restore us to a perfect state. Now any argument about what is and isn’t sin along the ‘natural’ lines is void based upon those two sentences. The Law provides us with a very clear cut right and wrong. Christ’s fulfillment of the Law and establishment of the Church allowed for a few changes, all of which are well documented. Right and wrong haven’t changed, no matter how much one wishes it. It’s not a thing of time, so it won’t change with time. For those who wish to argue this using Scripture, I must say two things:

1. Private interpretation of Scriptures is not authoritative according to the Church, and
2. The devil uses Scripture also.

Everything is black and white. Some things are both (grey has varying degrees); some things are either/or. We must use wisdom in discerning what things fall into which categories (as for the areas of grey; the Church is inerrant concerning definite black/white issues) but we cannot sit in indecision. Silence is compliance; I will not be silent or compliant with wrongdoing.

This view of black/white/grey is why I also believe that laws must be moral. Law is about right and wrong, what a society determines to be okay or not okay. What business does an issue have with law if it is not a moral or ethical issue?

So, back to the question of the title; I am no one, but God has called all believers to proclaim the truth. According to Scripture, if an unbeliever is unreceptive to the truth, I am to leave and not return. According to Scripture, if a believer persists in error, you continue attempts at correction for only so long before you leave and not return. In either situation, believer and unbeliever, you show the love of Christ in sharing the truth. With both parties, refusal of the truth has the same end result.

I’ve been told that I am arrogant, harsh and unloving. Some have told be to stop calling myself a Christian because of my hardline views about social issues. Personally, I find that to be far more arrogant. These people expect me to live according to their private interpretation of the Scriptures rather than the Church’s. How, in good conscience, could I do that? God and the Church do not change because the times have.

Love, according to Scripture, does not seek its own interests and does not rejoice in wrongdoing. Holy Scripture and the Apostolic Church agree: doing nothing in the face of clearly-defined wrongdoing is giving approval to that wrongdoing. It is participation in the wrongdoing. Hate is not wrong when what you hate is wrong. I hate sin, all sin, especially my own. Do you?

Joshua Elliott
Managing Director at FreedomSystem.org
Joshua F. Elliott was born an Army brat, and continues his work now to help Veterans. Josh himself went into the service, but was unable to complete basic training due to a knee injury. Josh is married and has two children a son (2006), and a daughter (2012).

Josh has been an integral part of moving FreedomSystem.org forward and is the Managing Director of our organization. He works hard to support his family through faith, love, and understanding. All the while sharing our passion for Veterans and their issues.

Josh is a conservative.