There aren’t many, if any, TV shows on building a brand new house, but there are quite a few about re-modeling and fixing up older homes. People are fascinated by taking a house with a solid structure and bringing it back to life. Even the ugliest, most run-down houses aren’t passed over; they’re renovated into beautiful homes in an amazing transformation. When we encounter people that aren’t pleasing to our eye, do we get excited about building off their solid structure or just move onto the next home?
In the times of Jesus, the Jewish people followed the laws of God; they’d been passed down for thousands of years within the faith. However, Gentiles, people outside the Jewish faith, didn’t know the laws of God. Yet, the Apostle Paul says, “For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them…” (Romans 2:15) This is huge; Paul is telling us that, Christian or not, everyone has the law of God written on their heart, naturally. Unbelievers, like an old, abandoned house, have a God-built structure underneath all the neglect.
In Acts 10, Peter receives a vision to take the Gospel of Jesus outside the Jewish people. “You yourself know how unlawful it is for a Jew to associate with or to visit anyone of another nation, but God has shown me that I should not call any person common or unclean.” (v. 28) This is why Jesus said, “Go into all the world and proclaim the Gospel to the whole creation.” (Mark 16:15) Jesus never told us to look at any person and declare, “What a hopeless wreck, they’re beyond all repair.”
The people committing these random shootings in schools, churches, and crowds – did Christian brothers and sisters pass them by, believing they were just too big of a project? Hebrews 13:2 says, “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” We don’t know what unbelievers, even the worst ones, are capable of if they are exposed to true Christianity. As followers of Jesus, when we choose to shine our lights into darkness and take on a “fixer upper,” improving upon their God-given framework, we may be helping to prevent a complete demolition on Judgment Day.