In the context of boxing, split decisions occur when judges view a contest from opposing points of view. Unlike unanimous decisions where there is a clear victor, contestants may sway judges by a great comeback or regaining control of a fight. While modern technology and social media use round by round scorecards today, no one knows what the judges think until the final results are announced at the end of each bout.
Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand, Matthew 12:25.
Throughout the course of each day, arguments tend to result in split decisions depending upon your worldview. These disagreements can create divisive debates that divide rather than unite. After President Trump’s comments last Friday in Alabama about National Football players kneeling during the national anthem, professional athletes, owners and most of the media created a firestorm. After these attacks went viral, citizens from the heartland, Nascar and veterans chimed in to support their president. A week later, a split decision still exists, with convincing arguments on both sides.
And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges, Matthew 12:27.
During the first century, another controversy began to brew. The Pharisees felt like Jesus was making a power play, introducing a new concept to Judaism. This teaching was heresy in the eyes of religious leaders. Jealous of Jesus’ ability to heal, a rumor spread about Jesus working behind the scenes with the Devil to fool everyone. Using logic, Jesus began to poke holes in their theory, responding with the two passages above. These words remind me of today’s current debate over standing or kneeling during the playing of the National Anthem. In the end, if America doesn’t come to a point where people agree to disagree, the end will be in sight. Therefore, the next time you attempt to play the role of judge and jury, take a step back and let God be the ultimate judge.
by Jay Mankus