Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no deceit!” (John 1:45-47)
We deal with evil most of the time. And the victims of evil. This evil is usually hiding in churches, wearing an “unholy” disguise of holiness. Sometimes (we are tempted to say “often”) the evil is in the pulpit or holds some ruling office in the church. And the typical response of local churches to this evil is also very often evil. Alliances are formed with the abuser while victims are mistreated and rejected.
Now, for myself and I think probably for many of you, all this dealing with counterfeit Christianity can take a toll on us. It can be extremely discouraging to realize that much of what we thought all our lives was the real thing is in fact phoney. We have been fed traditions of men that we were told were God’s truth. We have looked up to people we thought were genuine Christians, only to find out later that they were hypocrites of the worst kind. We have even been rejected by entire churches and even denominations when we called out evil in disguise for what it really is.
Continue reading “Christ’s Remnant – There ARE True Christians”
But if anyone hates his neighbor and lies in wait for him and attacks him and strikes him fatally so that he dies, and he flees into one of these cities, then the elders of his city shall send and take him from there, and hand him over to the avenger of blood, so that he may die. Your eye shall not pity him, but you shall purge the guilt of innocent blood from Israel, so that it may be well with you. (Deuteronomy 19:11-13)
Let me apply this Scripture by paraphrasing it a bit:
If anyone hates his wife and sets traps for her and attacks her and strikes her so that her health is ruined and over time she sees herself dying, and he runs off to another church, the elders of his first church shall contact the elders of the church to which he has fled and he shall be put out of both churches, handed over to the Lord for the destruction of his flesh. You shall not pity him, but you shall purge your church from him, lest your entire church share in the guilt of innocent blood, so that the Lord will bless you and it might be well with you.
You shall not pity him! To pity him is to keep him in your midst, and in doing so everyone in that church stands guilty before the Lord of the wicked man’s evil! How many churches today are guilty then before the Lord? How many have innocent blood on their hands because they are harboring and enabling the wicked?
Continue reading “Do Not Pity the Wicked – Pity is Their Ploy”
Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. (1 John 2:9-10 ESV)
Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. (Colossians 3:9-10)
God’s Word repeatedly instructs (commands) Christians to embrace truth and reject falsehood. Walking in the light of Christ’s truth is the only consistent manner of living for a Christian. Lies characterize the kingdom of darkness whose prince is called the father of lies (John 8). It was by this serpent’s lie that sin and death came into the world (“oh no, you won’t die. In fact, you will be like God”). The Christian’s mind is being renewed: progressively set free from that which is false and led into life-giving, freeing truth. The gospel by which we are saved and which we proclaim is often called “the Word of Truth” in Scripture. We are to speak truth to one another and give up lying. Abuse victims know the power and freedom of truth as they experience its destruction of the lies they have so long believed by which they were held in bondage.
Continue reading “Truth, Lies, Light and Darkness Cannot Co-Exist”