I hear you typing with your arrogant bravado. Slapping one another on the back with a hearty amen as you mock and ridicule and judge and slay your brothers and sisters in Christ. YOU have theology and doctrine all figured out and tied up in a tight, neat bow, and since their package does not look exactly like yours, they must be wrong, wrong, WRONG!
And I can’t help wondering whether you EVER stop to consider that maybe THEY are right and You are wrong. Or even that you might BOTH be right and you might both be wrong.
You say the Bible clearly says this and clearly says that and I think to myself, Where?
I’m guessing that it is your pastor and your Sunday School teachers and your well worn denominational traditions that clearly say it, not the Bible.
Just this week I’ve come across Christians who feel justified in judging and condemning Rob Bell (with whom I disagree, but whom I do not judge) and mocking and ridiculing Rod Parsley.
Some are so busy calling a spade a spade, that they have not taken the time to really get to know God at all. If they did, they would discover that the One they follow does not scoff or mock or ridicule.
A careful reading of the letters that Jesus dictated to the seven churches, as recorded in Revelation 2 and 3, would show you that He actually considers a lack of love (and by that I mean arrogant judgmentalism) WORSE THAN tolerating false teaching.
Check it out:
Jesus told the church at Ephesus that their hyper vigilance when it came to snuffing out false teaching had stripped them of their love. And without love, their deeds, hard work and perseverance meant nothing. How do I know they meant nothing? Because He told them that if they did not stop and regain their perspective and ask Him to refill their hearts with love, He would take them out of the equation. Remove their lampstand. Make them no longer a church. Because there is no point in a lampstand that doesn’t shine love, since God is love.
So, no love equals no more church.
But, tolerating false teaching does not equal no more church.
There were some in the church in Pergamum who held to false teachings which allowed them to commit sexual immorality and eat food sacrificed to idols. Jesus told them to change. “Otherwise, I will soon come to you and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.”
I will come to you (the church as a whole) and fight against them (those who are following false teaching).
He was going to fight them with Truth.
He wasn’t going to mock them, ridicule them, or destroy them, He was going to set them straight.
He was going to set them straight.
Likewise, some in the church in Thyatira were following the sexually immoral teachings of Jezebel. Jesus warned that since Jezebel was unwilling to repent, He would cast her on a bed of suffering and her children (her followers?) would be killed.
Here’s the thing I want you to hear, dear brothers and sisters:
This is Jesus talking to you:
“Now I say to the rest of you in Thyatira, to you who do not hold to her teaching and have not learned Satan’s so-called deep secrets, ‘I will not impose any other burden on you, except to hold on to what you have until I come.’
‘I will not impose any other burden on you, except to hold on to what you have until I come.’
Did you hear that? Jesus did not put the burden of judging, destroying, shaming, mocking or even setting those false teachers straight on YOU!
It’s not your job.
Your job is to hold on to the truth you have until He comes to set things straight. Your job is to love.
Until Jesus gets here, it’s His Holy Spirit’s job to guide us to the Truth. The Holy Spirit convicts, not us.
So, hold on to what you have, and before you started typing arrogant words, take a new look at God, and at Scripture, and take a look in the mirror, too. Work on getting that log out of your eye, because you really don’t see nearly as clearly as you think you do.