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Contending for the Faith but the truth is hard to “sell” January 28, 2010

Posted by Henry in Contending for the Faith.
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The road of apologetics and biblical discernment can be a very lonely one because often times the truth (i.e., the truth of the Gospel) will be offensive even to professing Christians. In spite of that true Christians have a responsibility to be uncompromising about their faith even if we are going to be ostracized and rejected for doing so. The scriptures say in Jude 1:3 that we should contend earnestly for the faith which was once delivered to the saints. Why? One of the primary reasons for doing so can be found in verse 4 of the said passage:

 4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

 Whilst the “church” was sleeping certain men crept in without notice, men who were ungodly but who cloaked themselves in righteousness with the primary goal of deceiving the flock. These men have created a poison cocktail of biblical truths and half-truths, mixed in with lies and false doctrines which they feed to their undiscerning flock. This is why the work of Christian apologetics and applying biblical discernment is done.

 The reality however is that this work is usually opposed by the very people, the deceived undiscerning masses, it was set out to help to come out of deception. This is not surprising however since Jesus said in Matt 7:13-14 that broad is the way that leads to destruction and many there be that fall there in but narrow is the way that leads to Life but few there be that find it. There are some interesting parallels between Jesus’ own ministry and the work of apologetics and discernment today however.  At the time of Jesus’ ministry on earth the Pharisees and Sadducees were the self-proclaimed spiritual leaders who had replaced the by now defunct Levitical priesthood. But these supposedly righteous holy-men opposed Jesus at every turn. For example, in Mat 9:34 we see the Pharisees accusing Him of casting out demons by the prince of devils without discerning who He really was.

 An even more remarkable example can be found in John 5:38-39 where we see that the Jews did not believe Jesus’ testimony and sought to kill Him. Jesus said to them that they searched the scriptures thinking that in them they would find life but that the said scriptures testify of Himself. In verse 43 Jesus said that if He came in the Father’s name the Jews would not believe Him but if someone else came in their own name him they would believe. Jesus went further to say in verse 46 that if the Jews believed Moses that they would believe Him because Moses wrote of Him. This is no different to what is happening in the church today however. The point though is that if Jesus, the Son of God, who came in the flesh to deliver the Word from the Father, was rejected by those who studied the scriptures, how much more can we lesser mortals expect to be opposed and rejected by professing Christians for seeking to uphold the truth of Christ?

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Comments»

1. glasseyedave - February 23, 2010

The tragedy of tragedies is, many people believe because they are on the narrow path they will enter the narrow gate. Christ says many will seek to but will not be able to. We don’t teach that. We teach only those on the wide path go to hell. People look up and see the organized church as people going to heaven because they are on the narrow path. I look up and see a people who honor the teachers of men over the teachings of God. I see many who will not make it, and they don’t even want to know they won’t.
(Luke 13:24 KJV) Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.

2. Henry - February 24, 2010

Glasseyedave,

I once read an article which was entitled “Lost in Church” and it made me stood up. Now that phrase alone is very powerful. It means that you can be in church, performing the day to day rituals, and attending the various morning, evening and midweek services, and actively working in the church but actually be LOST. Some people however might ask how can one be in church and be lost but Jesus said many will come to Him in that day saying Lord, Lord have we not prophesied and cast out devils in thy name and done many wonderful works but He will reply and say, I never knew you, depart from me you workers of iniquity.

3. glasseyedave - February 25, 2010

Henry,

How do we live in such a way as to show the way?

4. Henry - February 25, 2010

Glasseyedave,

You ask a rather difficult question, I am not going to lie about that one. We can certainly aim to live our lives according to the true Gospel, bringing influence to bear where we can. But when you are not in a position of “authority” in the church not many will countenance you. This blogging format, or writing books or publishing tracts, is certainly one way of trying to get the truth out but in an age when many are seeking teachers to tickle their ears they will reject any doctrine they are not pre-disposed to.

Scripture tells us that in the latter times many shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils (so much for once saved always saved).

However we can certainly aim to live our lives for Christ and continue to promote the truth in whatever way we can and leave the rest up to the Holy Spirit. I don’t think there is anything else we can do really? Any suggestions?


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