25. REBEL MEAT EATERS?
CONSTANT DEBATE WITH HERETICS IS NOT A GOOD DIET
Did you ever have food poisoning, or eat something that really irritated yours system? Partaking from some spiritual menus in some churches, where the spiritual food is poisoned, spoiled, or moldy, has botulism, etc. can be sickening.
Some have found after a time that the food they have been eating was spoiled... Some who once supported a large ministry, and then the leader is found to be unethical, unholy, defiled, and you have been heeding their interpretation of the Bible, and you feel sick to have partaken of food that was spoiled by the poison of sin...
Getting back to a healthy diet is sometimes scary... is the next pastor going to be for real, or another fake? Will the next television evangelist be pretending health, and giving out another poison menu for you to find out late that it is garbage you are being fed?
Unfortunately, soon many will learn that the food of the ministry they have been following is a sham, a corrupt meal of unspiritual offerings. When that happens what can we do?
Jesus told the disciples to 'beware the leaven of the pharisees'... The leaven made the bread rise, and the disciples traveled with Jesus, on long trips, and needed 'unleavened bread' both literally and spiritually. We need spiritual food that is not spoiled, that will stay edible and consumable without becoming spoiled and tainted.
Jesus offers in the Bible a pablum for saints to grow on... but some of His under-shepherds have added teachings not harmonious with the Bible. The poison is capable of making us vomit the whole meal. Many have turned from Christianity due to vomit-able food served in the churches.
Test all the food you eat at the tables of ministries, test even what I preach... test.. for there is a lot of moldy bread, sour milk, and poison meat in the servings of some ministries. Test... stay healthy ... there is good pablum ... there is tasty meat... eat what you can, mature in the Lord, avoid what will make you vomit in sickness...
If one is on 'pablum' spiritually, and still growing on it, and trying to avoid the 'poisoned food of the devil', then to feed on the debates of discussion boards, is going to make you choke... and maybe vomit it up.
Certain beliefs, whether major doctrine or minor details, become the subject of debates on message boards, or in other gatherings of Christians.
We all do have our own emphasis of Scripture, some taught by denominations, some learned in our walk with the Lord.
These points, minor and major, often are debated vehemently, and constantly on message boards.
Surely, if someone is straying from truth, we are to exhort, encourage, and help lift them up. Yet, some debates go further than that, by far.
As David Wilkerson said, there are even Satanists, witches, who frequent such places to attack, mock, and stir up trouble. They pretend to be righteous saints, and keep debate going.
We are to walk in the faith which we have been given by the Lord. Sometimes that walk is long, and the wait for fulfillment of the promises we cling to, seems never ending.
"But these all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things, declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned, But now they desire a better country, that is an heavenly; wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He hath prepared for them a city."
God is proud and not ashamed to be called our God, if we take the revelations we have and cling to them, even unto death. We want Him to be proud of us, we want to cling to the revealed truths in the Word. Often we have to take a stand on truth, deny the devil, stand in truth. Some may interpret that as us being belligerent with the truths, and shove them down the throats of others. Most of us don't, but rather, some want to take the truth we speak, and shove that truth down our throats.
Our sharing of truth in the Word of God is good, but constant debate, angry attack on all other ideas is not God’s way. Therefore, when I present some truths, and some attack, misconstrue what I am saying, jump all over me and what I have said, I do not even answer them, even though there are good and valid answers to be given. Contending with those who are not in truth, who would stamp on truth if they saw it, will not do any good.
Jesus told the disciples to go from city to city, and if not accepted in one city, leave and go to the next. Adamant resistance to truth makes one unworthy to have it presented over and over, to the neglect of others who would gladly accept it.
Yet, some adamantly argue with those who will never accept it, not even if a gun was held to their heads. So, why attack them? why not find hungry hearts?
God wants the correct living in our lives, and the correct understanding of the true Word of God in our minds. Our lives will exhibit what we truly believe. Present the gospel to hungry hearts, preach the truth to hearers that have ears wanting to hear. Let the Holy Spirit work on those hard hearted ones who reject truth. Even He will give up on some, so let that decision be His, and find some who want to hear what God has shown you.
Because God is vitally concerned with the correctness of our understanding of His message, the devil is at work to attack, pollute, and pervert the true Word of God. The incorrect teaching and living of God's message is called HERESY.
"Now the works of the flesh are manifest... adultery, fornication...etc... heresies... they that do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God."
II Peter 2:1
"There shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies..."
The Bible clearly warns that in the last days [especially] there shall be many false teachers and heretics who teach a perverted gospel. They pervert and distort what the Bible is teaching, and create doctrines that are able to bring damnation to their believers. We are to preach the truth, the vital truths that will bring salvation to hearers if they believe.
While arguing over the correct version, the size of the altar, the wardrobe to wear in church, the length of hair, the size of our offering, how to get a mercedes in your driveway, what food is best to eat, etc... we are neglecting teaching the truths that keep heretics from leading people astray.
We need not debate every item of difference between us and others. Not all error is "heresy."
Some may believe the rapture will occur in the middle of the tribulation, some may believe it will come at the end of the tribulation, and some will believe it will be at the beginning. They can all go to heaven when it does occur, and the groups that are wrong are not heretics. The incorrect understanding of that doctrine will not damn the soul.
Yet, there are other teachings that will damn the soul if believed. These are the ones we call "heresy." "Heresy" is a doctrinal difference that if believed will damn the soul.
Minor disagreements amidst Christians are nothing to stumble over... We need to get into the Word of God, and study to resolve which doctrines are truly taught in the Word.
Paul and Barnabas disputed an idea for a while.
Peter and Paul had a difference of opinion on a doctrinal issue for a time.
The disciples disputed at Antioch on the need for circumcision for a time.
Paul was even called a "heretic" in his time. Yet, he argued that he based all of his doctrines on what was written in the "law and the prophets."
"But this I confess unto thee, that, after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and the prophets."
We may be called heretics for some minor infraction of another’s ideas. That is no big deal... that puts us there in the same boat with Paul.
Forget if some ‘debaters’ want to debate and debate on the correct version of the Bible, the denomination that is best, the best style of gospel music, etc...
Those debates, even if won, do not bring us a crown for best in debate class.
In fact, the Holy Spirit is not the teacher in that class. He is too busy trying to teach us how to win souls, and how to identify the ‘heresies’ that doom souls, not the minor debate-able minor details.
Even some who believe the Word of God correctly [as Paul] will be called "heretics."
It is not what you are called that is important, it is whether you are believing and living the Word of God properly.
Even some of the Christians in Jerusalem could not accept Paul and his teachings...
"...he assayed to join himself to the disciples; but they were all afraid of him and believed not that he was a disciple."
Don't have your mind set on having everyone applaud your life and ministry.
Just be sure to have the proper understanding of the Word of God, and live it!
What God thinks of the minor debates, the judgmental attitudes found on message boards, church vestibules, and fellowship gatherings, is probably not too hard to imagine. What God thinks of the debates, never ending debates, that occupy most of the time of some, is that there is no need to answer every challenge, no need to debate the unconvinceable, no need to get sidetracked from Biblical principles of the debate, to personal insults, and personal animosity.
Paul addresses that problem.
"Him that is weak in the faith, receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations."
Wait, did that tell us not to argue with the ‘weak’ in faith? I think it did. The petty arguments with those who are not as ‘taught’ as you or me, are not to just be argued with. The truth can be presented, and if some want to debate, let them try, but for us, we just keep presenting the truth.
All other debates need moved to a forum called ‘doubtful disputations’, and then we just avoid that thread.
Don't do as the early church did. They argued over what meats they should eat or not eat. They argued over what day was the correct one on which to worship the Lord. They argued over whether they should be vegetarians or not. They argued over who was the best teacher of the Word. The list could go on and on. Today, it is the same. Christians are arguing over many doctrines, and concepts.
On many threads, meant to bring debate on 'food', 'day to worship', 'how to dress and comb your hair', the answer is worthy of one post, with Scripture to back your thoughts, and then exit, and let the debate go on without you. Those debates are most often not even worth the one answer, for sometimes, the debaters are 'ever learning but never able to come to a knowledge of truth'. So, debate there is worthless.
Don't get into those debates. Study the Word, and find what it teaches. Believe that, and live it! Then get out and do the work that God wants done today. Win Souls to the Lord.
Many others will argue and debate the color of the carpet for the church till the rapture happens... and never get to the work that God has saved us to do.
What we do with our lives is going to be judged by the Lord someday.
"But why dost thou judge thy brother? and why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we must all stand before the judgment seat of Christ... everyone of us shall give an account of himself to God..."
What about the ones who are teaching a perverted gospel that is truly "heresy"??? We are to try to teach the heretic twice the correct truth. Then, if the truth is rejected, we are to "reject" the heretic.
"A man that is an heretick, after the first and second admonition reject."
The word "reject" is from the Greek word "paraiteomai" which means to "beg off." It does not mean to be angry and battle... it means to get away from that person and keep a distance from him and his teaching.
Which version of the Bible is best’?, or is pork as good as beef? Or ‘whether you are the best saint on the board, or not? Take these minor issues, worthy of a one word answer is what fills many message boards.
There are some major doctrines and teachings of the Bible for us to teach. Those who oppose those major things, and are unconvinceable, but want to insult, berate, and continue until you leave the truth the Word of God teaches, are not to be entertained, but are to be shunned.
The pablum, milk, and meat that we are here to be consuming is in the Word of God, preached by the servants of God, and discussed civilly by the children of God. The poison of false doctrine, of lies and deceit, are not food for us to feed ourselves. As we do in the kitchen, food goes in the refrigerator, garbage goes in the trash container outside.
Keep preparing good meals to share, uninvite those who bring garbage for the buffet table.