BEST OF TQFG: Is it time for a good termite treatment?

Photo courtesy of Aleksey Gnilenkov.

We hope you enjoy this re-post from December 11, 2013. Be blessed! The Today’s Quote From God Team

Beloved, my whole concern was to write to you in regard to our common salvation. [But] I found it necessary and was impelled to write you and urgently appeal to and exhort [you] to contend for the faith…For certain men have crept in stealthily – Jude 1:3-4, Amplified Bible (AMP)

There is an old saying: “It’s not the woodpeckers from without that destroy the church. It’s the termites from within.” One of the most effective ways to derail God’s people is not to oppose them openly but to corrupt them secretly. When openly opposed and persecuted, the church of Christ thrives, for it is when under attack that the people of God rely on and trust in their Savior. When befriended by their enemies, however, Christians will give place to ways of thinking and doing that they never would have considered in a more confrontational setting. Through daily, subtle conversation, God’s enemies can draw away God’s people through small, daily doses of unholy thinking and unholy living.

It is because of the danger of the infiltrating minions of the Enemy that God (through Jude) felt compelled to shift the focus of the Book of Jude from a discussion of salvation to an exhortation to fight for the faith. By rooting out those pushing false doctrines and by working to rescue those being swayed by false teachers, God (through Jude) admonished the brethren to fight for what is doctrinally right in the church. In our modern-day frenzy not to offend others, we are prone to overlook error for the sake of harmony. But when there are those in the church who hold fast to doctrine that is CLEARLY anti-Christ, then we should firmly attack the error for what it is: blasphemy. For those guilty of blasphemy, we are to do what God (through Paul) showed us to do in the two letters to the Corinthians: send away from the church unrepentant parties, and welcome back with open arms offending parties who have truly repented.

Be careful not to apply God’s message of contention to a friendly dispute over personal preferences or to correcting the doctrinal error of a brother or sister who is in error due to ignorance. In the case of the former, we must understand that when there is no clear doctrine or biblical principle to guide us in a preference, the Holy Spirit, through conscience, may speak to two people very differently on the same matter. In the case of the latter, we should with great gentleness and love replace ignorance with knowledge, just as Priscilla and Aquila did with Apollos. But when it is obvious that we are dealing with, as Jude 1:4 (AMP) says, “ungodly (impious, profane) persons who pervert the grace (the spiritual blessing and favor) of our God into lawlessness and wantonness and immorality, and disown and deny our sole Master and Lord, Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One),” then we should contend for Christ with all of our might by rooting out of the church those who would tear it down from the inside.

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