Pastor and best-selling Christian author Francis Chan is asking believers to reflect on their relationship with God to see if it aligns with His teachings.
In an article for Relevant Magazine, Chan opens up about his own mistakes and admits to making errors of judgment that were an "abomination" to Him.
"I am guilty of having sowed discord. Even now, as I study all these passages about division, I am embarrassed by my lack of remorse," Chan wrote. "Only a redemptive God with grace beyond comprehension could be this patient with me and still use me to teach about unity. I have spent most of my Christian life wishing that certain pockets of Christians did not exist. I even had the audacity to pray for the deaths of certain people because I thought their removal would benefit His Kingdom on earth."
He continued, "I was not just a run-of-the-mill arrogant person. That's next-level stuff! Think about the pride it requires to come before an omniscient God to share that kind of idea. I was too quick to label people as false teachers, warning believers to keep their distance from them. While there is a time to warn others about false teachers, there is also a time to do your homework. By being too quick to judge, I have made costly mistakes," Chan reveals. "I jumped on bandwagons that were popular in my theological circle, attacking men and women whom I now know to be God's beloved children. Proverbs paints this as more than a 'mistake.' All of that was an 'abomination' to Him."
Chan explains God is omnipresent and knows when His children sin against one another, even when the defamation is concealed.
"Maybe I was cunning enough to refrain from openly slandering them in public, but I'm sure my heart attitude spilled out of my mouth," he wrote. "None of us are as good at faking love as we think. Besides, just because my statements weren't made in public doesn't mean God hated it less. Every unkind word spoken in private about one of His children was heard by Him.
Chan added, "It really wasn't private, and I doubt I would have said those things if I had been aware of their Dad's presence in the room. Sometimes the secret conversations are the most dangerous. They seed deeper-rooted division in a person, who then passes on the slander. That's unholy discipleship. God hates it."
He reminds the reader that God loves everyone and "created us to not only walk with Him but in Him." Jesus died on the cross for our sins and it's never too late to seek salvation.
"All of my abominable acts were placed on Jesus at the cross. Jesus died to pay for our divisiveness and to lead us toward unity," Chan concluded.