"The Church of God needs to remember that fellowship with the Father necessitates separation from those who fail to fulfill the responsibility of fellowship in light.  We are not only to yield to love; we are to guard holiness.  It is possible to be led astray from the activity of true love by yielding to a false charity.  At the very center of love is light.  That is not true love which sacrifices doctrine and principle.  God has never acted in love at the expense of light." — William Graham Scroggie

 

Biblical Love:

In Relation To Doctrinal Error

And Those Who Hold It

"It is a serious mistake to presume that the Christian can maintain a neutral or passive attitude toward error.  Contrariwise, we must oppose error as definitely as we embrace truth.  Error is never static or stagnant, but is always aggressive.  For that reason it has never died a natural death, nor can we ignore it to death.

"Error ceaselessly seeks to corrupt, efface, and neutralize the truth, and to destroy all whom it enmeshes in its tentacles.  The grand reason then for opposing error is to retrieve precious souls from its blight, and to deliver them from bondage to freedom, from darkness to marvelous light."—W. D. Miller.

The attitudes above were at the heart of the Apostles' ministry, and should also be found in the mind of every genuine Christian leader who bears the responsibility of being an under-shepherd to the Great Shepherd.

He [under-shepherd] must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.  (Titus 1:9)

However, many of today's Christian leaders are compromised by a combination of the spirit of postmodernism, entanglement with materialism, and most prevalent--the need for adulation ("to be someone") within the religious community.

TRUTH and LOVE - It is our desire and a tenet of withChrist.org to "speak the truth in love".  The Apostle Paul wrote, "Let love be without hypocrisy.  Abhor what is evil.  Cling to what is good."  (Romans 12:9)   Note carefully that contrary to current attitudes, genuine biblical love does not avoid discerning good from evil, nor truth from error, nor making these distinctions in public.  Every epistle of the New Testament, except Philemon, speaks against doctrinal error as well as immoral behavior.  So why is this robust form of love rarely seen or experienced in contemporary society or among so-called Christians and Christian leaders?

DEATH of TRUE LOVE - John Locke is credited as having said, “Whoever defines the word, defines the world.”  Today, the meanings of love and marriage have been hijacked and are being largely redefined for use within a pervasive framework of moral relativism.  This is the satanic ploy and device of our age; redefine the meaning of words, even biblical words.

The Greek word most often translated "love" in the New Testament is agapē.  The essence of agapē is benevolent action rooted in the nature of the lover, without pre-conditions on the part of the object of such love.  But agapē is not "love" devoid of conditions!  Even a casual reading of the NT reveals numerous conditional statements relative to interpersonal relationships and love.

The contemporary world's so-called "love" is a fully amorphous emotion--the consummate "whatever feels good."  It is an emasculated sentiment severed and held in isolation from light, righteousness, justice and truth.  It is a degeneracy which strikes at the very core of human existence. Modern "love" doesn't seek to make distinctions, nor engage in any form of judgment, and is characterized by a misguided form of tolerance.  It is tolerant of all manner of evil and wickedness, and intolerant toward those who would seek to embrace true knowledge and live on higher moral ground.  Thus, when a Bible-based Christian sets forth Scriptural truth with any degree of certainty, they are viewed and falsely labeled as being unloving, abusive, or even guilty of "forcing their views on others."  Of course these critics are finely-honed hypocrites, who more often than not, are haunted by moral guilt.

RELATIVE VALUES - Christians speaking with certainty in the realm of values are often interpreted as: self-assertive, power hungry, and offensive because liberals and progressives hold to the axiom that no opinion regarding values can legitimately claim superiority over any other--except their own of course.  At its root, this is a manifestation of the contemporary crisis in knowledge.  This form of twisted thinking has arisen because the modern mind erects a philosophic wall of separation between scientific knowledge (considered "facts") and moral and religious views (considered subjective "values").  To understand how our society got to this point, read The Roots of Religious Liberalism and Christian Agnosticism.

CULTURE IN CRISIS - For the modern mind, in the context of naturalistic and postmodern dogma, certainty with regard to knowledge applies only to those things which can be scientifically verified, never to moral and religious values.  Thus, a logical philosophical crisis of knowledge and corresponding secular worldview has spread throughout Western societies--along with a cultural of death, not life.  Despite this pervasive crisis, genuine knowledge is available; God has spoken.

SALT NO MORE - Like the world around them, many Christians have unknowingly embraced this new love concept.  They are not practicing true biblical love, but self-righteously practicing redefined notions of love, compassion, and tolerance.

You are the salt of the earth.  But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?  It is no longer good for anything..."  (Matthew 5:13)

This is the verdict; Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.  Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.  But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.  (John 3:19)


“True wisdom is not manifested in trying to see resemblances in things which differ, but in discerning the real difference among those which resemble one another.”  Selected


"Many tender-minded Christians fear to sin against love by daring to inquire into anything that comes wearing the cloak of Christianity and breathing the name of Jesus.  They dare not examine the credentials of the latest prophet to hit their town lest they be guilty of rejecting something which may be of God.  They timidly remember how the Pharisees refused to accept Christ when He came, and they do not want to be caught in the same snare, so they either reserve judgment or shut their eyes and accept everything without question.  This is supposed to indicate a high degree of spirituality.  But in sober fact it indicates no such thing.  It may indeed be evidence of the absence of the Holy Spirit.  Gullibility is not synonymous with spirituality.  Faith is not a mental habit leading its possessor to open his mouth and swallow everything that has about it the color of the supernatural.  Faith keeps its heart open to whatever is of God, and rejects everything that is not of God, however wonderful it may be.  Try the spirits is a command of the Holy Spirit to the Church.  We may sin as certainly by approving the spurious as by rejecting the genuine.  And the current habit of refusing to take sides is not the way to avoid the question.  To appraise things with a heart of love and then to act on the results is an obligation resting upon every Christian in the world.  And the more as we see the day approaching."  A.W.Tozer   

"Then Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked straight at Elymas and said, 'You are a child of the devil and an enemy of everything that is right! You are full of all kinds of deceit and trickery.  Will you never stop perverting the right ways of the Lord?'"  (Acts 13:10), The Apostle Paul -  Champion of Political Correctness and Sensitivity


Also see Is Unconditional Love Biblical? and The True vs. False Teacher

Review of the postmodern diatribe Repenting of Religion: Turning From Judgment to the Love of God.

 

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