Monday, July 16, 2012
Dealing With Sin
Brady Boyd writes, “A man in our church came to me recently with a heavy heart. His daughter was married to a man who had recently been caught in adultery. The couple went to another church here in town and the father contacted their pastor to see if he would confront his son-in-law on this obvious sin. The pastor refused, not seeing it as his duty. What? Not his duty? If we’re really pastors, it’s actually one of our primary responsibilities, especially if we love the people we lead.Now I agree with the sentiment behind this, but not necessarily the details. Let's start with the agreement. People engaged in serious and harmful sin - like adultery, do not need to be banished from the church but they do need to be confronted, if for no other reason that it is harmful for the church. The deception that must ripple out from such a thing harms everybody it touches.
Not surprisingly, fewer and fewer church leaders are willing to go to people who are living in open sin and confront them. Why? Do we lack the courage? Are we ignoring the biblical mandate as leaders to protect the innocent from the harmful?
I watched one particularly ugly situation devolve an entire community into picking sides in the eventual divorce.
But Boyd's underlying posts lists three things that he feels much be confronted:
- Unrepentant Sin
- Divisive Behavior
- Heresy or false teaching
And heresy? - please. That's a recipe for civil war. I don't many people that could properly articulate the doctrine of the Trinity - am I supposed to "confront" all of them? I mean virtually everyone else has some heretical views if I am the judge of of heresy. And since when is heresy a sin? It's not evil to be wrong, it's just wrong - There is a difference.
We need to be very careful confronting sin, bu we do have to confront it.
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