Flee For Your Lives!
Why can't we all get along? There is a long history of theological battles within the visible church. The Lord calls us all to be united in Him (John 17:22). So what's up with all the conflict? The history of theological division is the history of theological rebellion against God's Word. Why is there conflict in the church? Because humans choose to disagree with the apostolic Word. A false teacher is like the bully who continues to batter and bait you, but is offended if you retaliate: "Hey, I really want peace. Can't we just get along?" Yes, the bully thinks you are getting along, just as long as you continue to permit yourself to be bullied without putting up a fight. There would be no conflict in the church if her teachers simply let God's enemies run roughshod over the true faith. The faithful teachers may not permit our enemy to bully them into giving up the divine Word and its faithful teachings. This does not affect only teachers, but it affects also those whom they teach. "Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers" (1 Timothy 4:16).
The persistent teaching of the truth will be the salvation of the hearers. So this is not an optional discipline for church leaders. It is a life and death labor that results in the spiritual security and comfort of God's people. Nor is false teaching just a matter of squabbling about peripheral issues.
First, all false teaching eventually takes glory from Christ, by attributing salvation entirely or partly to human works. Second, if God has revealed His Word to us on the lips of the prophets and Apostles, what gives us the right to reject any Word of God as peripheral or inconsequential? Those who have stumbled into false doctrine or who have been misled by pernicious false teachers should not be shunned, but embraced and led away from these poisonous doctrines, back to the clear waters and green pastures of God's Word.
However, we must flee from irreformable false teachers. We must watch out for the false teaching they try to feed to the faithful and when we detect it, we must avoid such teachers, in the same way we would avoid the playground bully who will not leave off his bullying. But by fleeing false teachers we are fleeing for life; eternal life (1 Timothy 4:16).
*- Dr. Scott Murray
In a Lutheran layman's terms, this is precisely why I needed to escape Evangelicalism.
NOTE: Please understand that I'm not a called and ordained minister of God's Word and Sacraments. I'm a layman or just a regular Christian, Candy-Making, Husband, Father, Friend who lives in the "City of Good Neighbors" here on the East Coast. To be more specific, and relevant to the point I want to make with this disclaimer/note, please understand that I'm also a newly converted Confessional Lutheran who recently escaped American Evangelicalism almost 2 years ago now. That being said, please contact me ASAP if you believe that any of my "old beliefs" seem to have crept their way into any of the material you see published here, and especially if any of the content is inconsistent with our Confessions and Lutheran doctrine (in other words, if it's not consistent with God's Word, which our Confessions merely summarize and repeatedly point us back to over and over again) so that I can correct those errors immediately and not lead any of His little ones astray (James 3:1). Also, please be aware that you might also discover that some of the earlier pieces I wrote for this blog back in 2013 definitely fall into that "Old Evangelical Adam" category since I was a "Lutheran-In-Name-Only" at the time and was completely oblivious to the fact that a Christian "Book of Concord" even existed (Small/Large Catechism? What's that!?!). This knowledge of the Lutheran basics was completely foreign to me even though I was baptized, confirmed, and married in an LCMS church! So, there are some entries that are a little "out there" so-to-speak since the subject matter was also heavy influenced by those old beliefs of mine. I know that now and I'm still learning. Anyway, I decided to leave those published posts up on this website and in cyberspace only because they are not blasphemous/heretical, because we now have this disclaimer, and only to demonstrate the continuing work of Christ and the Holy Spirit in my life (Hebrews 12:2; Philippians 1:6). Most importantly, please know that any time I engage in commenting on and/or interpreting a specific portion of the holy Scriptures, it will always closely follow the verse-by-verse notes from my Lutheran Study Bible and/or include references to the Book of Concord unless otherwise noted. Typically, I defer to what other Lutheran Pastors both past and present have already preached and taught about such passages since they are the called and ordained shepherds of our souls here on earth. Finally, I'm going to apologize ahead of time for the length of most entries (this disclaimer/note is a perfect example of what I mean! haha!). I'm well aware that blogs should be short, sweet, and to the point, but I've never been one to follow the rules when it comes to writing. Besides, this website is more like a "Christian Dude's Diary" in the sense that everything I write about and share publicly isn't always what's "popular" or "#trending" at the time, but is instead all the things that I'm experiencing and/or studying myself at the moment. For better or for worse, these posts tend to be much longer than most blog entries you'll find elsewhere only because I try to pack as much info as possible into a single piece so that I can refer to it again and again over time if I need to (and so that it can be a valuable resource for others -- if possible, a "One-Stop-Shop" of sorts). Thank you for stopping by and thank you in advance for your time, help, and understanding. Feel free to comment/email me at any time. Grace and peace to you and yours!