The Bible Edge
Everyone needs an Edge, Believers can have the Bible Edge
I Peter 2:17
Honour all men…
Some individuals are easy to honor. Some are not. But the Bible gives an edge in building and maintaining interpersonal relationships. This edge is found in a three-word commandment found in God’s Holy Word. Succinctly put… Honour all men. The test of this verse in anyone’s life is found in whether or not they honor the dishonorable.
My mom and dad taught me that “Two wrongs do not make a right,” your parents probably taught you the same thing. That little saying applied to this thing of honoring all means that for a person to be dishonorable is one thing, but being dishonorable to the dishonorable is like two wrongs. It doesn’t make not honoring a person right. Another may be dishonorable, but to dishonor another is a violation of this clear teaching found in the Bible. Is not obeying the Bible dishonorable in your view?
Someone may say that one of those things is not equal to the other. A dishonorable person doing dishonorable things is not equal with a person simply disobeying an obscure command of God’s Word. Really? This may be true from our point of view, but how about from God’s point of view?
Honoring everybody is like a lesson I learned in my first few weeks of being a professional salesperson. My manager, who owned the business, was the type of person that whatever he was selling you would want to buy. We made a call on a current customer who was, well frankly, he was weird. After the sales call, back in the privacy of my manager’s very expensive car, he asked me what I thought about the customer. I hesitated, and my boss let me off the hook. He told me that no one liked that man, and few competitors would even call on him. Then he told me this, if you learn to like the unlikable you will do very well in sales. He continued to teach me to not limit my potential customer base only to those who were likeable. Start by calling on the unlikeable, gruff, mean, and otherwise undesirable customers and I would build a strong base that would benefit me greatly.
He was right. Liking the unlikeable is similar to honoring the dishonorable. Do so and you will gain friends, influence people, keep out of trouble, and most importantly please the Lord God.
If ever tempted to show dishonor to another, I remember this verse and the fact that on more than one occasion I have been dishonorable myself. Like the time I chased the choir from the choir loft with the fire extinguisher, but that is another story for another day.
William Howe, Ph.D.