Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Wrong Division And Subtracting Truth From Church

Those of us who believe in adherence to sound Biblical doctrine frequently endure accusations of divisiveness. We dare not question women leading worship, church growth strategies, contemporary music that lacks theological content, contemplative prayer or replacing Bible Studies with small groups that focus on subjective impressions of how Scripture speaks to each member of the group. Standing for truth, in an increasing number of evangelical churches, means that we cause division.

Yet Paul, who wrote most of the New Testament epistles, saw division very differently than 21st Century evangelicals see it. Consider this quote:
Paul regards divisiveness as those who depart from sound doctrine. Doctrine is not the cause of disunity, departure is. ~Carl Trueman
Responsible reading (not to mention study) of Paul's epistles bear out Trueman's point. The apostle wrote several of his epistles with the purpose of clearing up doctrinal error and preserving correct teaching. He warned church members to reject anyone who deliberately and persistently deviated from the truth.
17 I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. 18 For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. ~~Romans 16:17-18 (ESV)
Notice that the divisions Paul condemns thwart the doctrine that he and the other apostles taught. He never targeted Christians who stood for God's Word in opposition to attempts to dilute or distort it to suit their own agendas. As he saw it, the Body of Christ could only experience true unity by teaching and obeying the doctrines given by the Lord Jesus Christ and His apostles. Those who watered down those doctrines caused disruption in the church. I applaud Carl Trueman for pulling us into proper perspective.

1 comment:

  1. Hi DebbieLynne,
    I love the way you write as much as the content of what you are saying, and have to admit to you the difficulty I have with punctuation and grammar (I often find errors which I correct with editing) while you seem to accomplish such polished works so consistently.

    So true about needing to stand for the right and that it is those who do not that are the divisive ones.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog post! I'd love feedback, as long as you attach a name. Disagreement is fine, as long as it is presented respectfully. Please keep comments confined to a maximum of four short paragraphs. Sorry for making to do the Word Verification, but I've been getting too much spam.

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