Tim Keller | March 11, 1990
Examining kindness as something God wants us to have shows it as an action of love, especially towards those going through tough times. The Bible says that real Christians care about the poor, showing a special kind of social responsibility. To really understand kindness, we need to know what it means, what its opposite is, what a fake version looks like, and how we can grow it in our own lives.
1. What is the definition of kindness?
Kindness is about showing our love in practical ways, requiring us to use our resources in a way that reflects how much we value other people. Just like we spend money on our homes because we value them, we should see every person as infinitely precious, driving us to give selflessly for their good. This idea of kindness needs practical action, showing that doing is more important than just feeling.
2. What is the opposite of kindness?
Kindness is about generously meeting needs with actions, not just nice words. All problems come from sin, as we see in the story of Adam and Eve, which led to their separation from God and problems in their relationships. We need to take care of both spiritual and physical needs, as kindness, a fruit of the Spirit, proves the realness of our faith.
3. What is the counterfeit of kindness?
Real kindness isn’t just feeling sorry or trying to control others, but it involves making sacrifices and changing our lifestyle. It’s about carrying each other’s loads, even if it limits our own choices. We need to actively look for the best ways to use our resources to help those who are struggling more than us, stopping them from falling into extreme poverty.
4. How do we cultivate kindness in our lives?
Understanding the gospel changes how we see those in need, moving from feeling superior to feeling empathy, as we realize we’re all sinners saved by God’s grace. The gospel’s impact reaches deep into our hearts, growing kindness regardless of political views, as grace inspires us to be generous to others. Highlighting the importance of giving freely and generously, just like Jesus did, helps grow kindness in our hearts.
February Book Offer
In his book Counterfeit Gods, Tim Keller shows us how a proper understanding of the Bible reveals the truth about societal ideals and our own hearts — and that there is only one God who can wholly satisfy our cravings and fulfill our hopes.
February Book Offer