Monday, May 25, 2009

IT'S NOT A "NON-ISSUE", THESE ARE NOT ABIBLICAL QUESTIONS

Paul said that Christians who are engaged in spiritual warfare battle and their weapon is the Truth (Eph. 6:10,11,12). Included in the "full armor of God" is the "sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God" (Eph. 6:17). There is no weapon that can replace the inspired word of God.

Truth cannot be negotiated away. The Truth cannot be treated as a "non-issue". It can't be compromised. Yet on many pivotal moral issues, many so called Christians are willing to concede the battle to the enemy.

I wrote previously on a "Weak argument for salvation without Baptism" where a supposed representative of the church, writing anonymously, said that the spiritual condition of the unBaptized is not addressed in the Bible. He wrote:
"However, when it comes to looking for a verse that speaks about the fate of a person that believes in Jesus but hasn’t been baptized, there is no scripture that addresses the subject. The New Testament never considers the situation. It’s not in the bible. It’s abiblical."
The anonymous writer errs by completely ignoring the clear implication from Scripture that the unbaptized are still lost in their sins. On one hand the author said Baptism is commanded and on the other he accepts the unbaptized. Statements by the author shows that he ignores or does not care to know the purpose of Baptism. Of the unbaptized, he wrote,
"I don’t judge them. I don’t reject them. I don’t doubt their faith or their relationship with God. I don’t view them as lost. I don’t hold myself at arm’s length from them. Instead, I call them brothers."
Why does he not doubt the faith of someone who has not obeyed Jesus' command? Even sinless Jesus had to be baptized to fulfill all righteousness. And it says that those who did not receive John's baptism "rejected God's purpose for themselves." So given these things, why does the author accept the unbaptized as brethren when God says He gives forgiveness at Baptism? This is the case of doctrine conforming to pressure from outside.

This kind of hedging on Scripture is seen more and more today. No one denies that it is uncomfortable defending difficult positions. Apparently, some have opted not to defend the Scriptural position on important matters of the day. Here are more examples.

Music in worship. The attached image is from the Quail Springs web-site. Notice that just as the Elders at Quails promised, there is offered two worship services. The early worship includes musical instruments. The late services is a capella. This constitutes the making of two churches: one Eldership over two churches. And set between the two is one Bible class where the two churches pretend to be unified; unable to worship together, but pretending to be unified.

Mark Henderson said the leaders at Quail Springs Church of Christ had for some time treated instrumental music as a "non-issue". Instruments in worship is not a "non-issue". But now they like many others have conceded to those who want entertaining worship. Though God who said they mustn't add to His Word and also said that they "must worship in spirit and truth" with singing, Quail Springs decided to introduce the divisive instrument. They have added to God's word and done a presumptuous thing.

The role of women in the assembly. Many of the greatest servants and examples of Christian living are women. I love my sisters in Christ with a godly love. They are invaluable to us men and to the kingdom of Christ. But there are many who want to concede to the feminists by blurring the roles of men and women, which God ordained, for in and out of the church.
"12 But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. 14 And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression" (1 Tim. 2:12-14).
The instructions by the Apostle Paul in 1 Cor. 14 and 1 Timothy 2 are not limited to cultural concerns, but are more importantly related to God's original design and instructions from the beginning of the creation. There are many liberal teachers who have conceded to the feminist movement by breaking down the distinction of male and female roles which God ordained. Women may not exercise authority over men by teaching and leading over the men. It isn't a "non-issue" for women to take the lead in prayer, preaching, singing, or other areas in the public assembly.

Marriage, divorce, and remarriage. Many large churches have conceded to the world by allowing as many marriages as it takes to get it right. Instead of teaching Jesus' word on the matter, they choose to ignore the matter and permit adulterers to continue in the sin (Mt. 19:9).

Homosexuality. Many denominations have conceded to the modern culture and accept that it is a matter of genetics and an acceptable "alternative lifestyle". Through contortions to the Word of God, the degrading sexual lifestyles are legitimized as long as their is "commitment" and "love". It's not a "non-issue" for men to lie with men or for women to lie with women. There is no hatred here for these individuals and no one is suggesting violence against them. The point here is to address the sin. God created man and woman which is obvious in their design.

Question? What will be the next "non-issue" to the churches following culture? If the church is outlawed, perhaps they will decide that not assembling or partaking of the Lord's Supper is not important. I'm just saying. The hostile culture is leading many religious people to give way on the Truth.

God's truth decides the direction of culture, not the other way around. Jesus came and built a church, His church, the one church. It is evangelistic, uncompromising, and even militant. "We are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ." But since the beginning, men have invented their own churches by distorting the truth. Only by adhering to the Truth, by not adding or taking away from it, can it be the church. Are we imperfect? Certainly, just as the church in the first century was imperfect. But just as there was only one church in the first century, there is only one now. We must adhere to the Truth and not accept the compromises we are seeing in many churches and denominations. Blessings to you.

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