In the name of love …
What are we doing?
We defend false teachers and castigate those who expose them.
What are we doing?
We have redefined the biblical meaning of love.
Let us put the spotlight on the lost for a moment. We are not promised tomorrow so today is the day of salvation. Death waits for no man.
We are not exhibiting Christian love if we are silent when false teachers lead people into soul damning teachings.
We are not exhibiting Christian love to the one who is promoting false teaching if we overlook “in the name of love” the seriously false information that they are propagating. They may themselves one day say “why didn’t more people say something”.
The Scriptures tell us to speak the truth and to do it in love. When we defend those who jeopardize another’s salvation we have crossed over into the enemies territory … the enemy of our souls.
What saith the Scriptures?
Acts 20:29-31 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.
Also of your own selves – From your own church; from those who profess to be Christians.
Speaking perverse things – Crooked, perverted, distracting doctrines …
They would proclaim doctrines tending to distract and divide the church.
The most dangerous enemies which the church has had have been nurtured in its own bosom, and have consisted of those who have perverted the true doctrines of the gospel.
The church of Christ would have little to fear from external enemies if it nurtured no foes in its own bosom;
Speaking perverse things; concerning God, and Christ, and the Gospel; distorted things, wresting the Scriptures to their own destruction, and that of others; things that are disagreeable to the word of God, and pernicious to the souls of men:
I ceased not to warn everyone night and day with tears; that is, he was constantly and continually cautioning them against false teachers, and their doctrines, in the most tender and affectionate manner; shedding tears at the thoughts of what mischief would be done, and how many souls would be ruined by them; which gives a lively idea of the apostle, and his ministry, of his affection, zeal, and diligence, very worthy of the imitation of all the preachers of the Gospel.
Matthew Henry Commentary:
Therefore take heed to the flock, and do all you can to establish them in the truth, and to arm them against the insinuations of the false teachers.
Philippians 3:18 (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
For many walk – Many live, the Christian life being often in the Scriptures compared with a journey. In order to induce them to imitate those who were the most holy, the apostle says that there were many, even in the church, whom it would not be safe for them to imitate. He evidently here refers mainly to the church at Philippi, though it may be that he meant to make the declaration general, and to say that the same thing existed in other churches. There has not probably been any time yet in the Christian church when the same thing might not be said.
Of whom I have told you often – When he preached in Philippi. Paul was not afraid to speak of church members when they did wrong, and to warn others not to imitate their example. He did not attempt to cover up or excuse guilt because it was in the church, or to apologize for the defects and errors of those who professed to be Christians. The true way is, to admit that there are those in the church who do not honor their religion, and to warn others against following their example.
And now tell you even weeping – This is the true spirit with which to speak of the errors and faults of Christians. It is not to go and blazon their inconsistencies abroad. It is not to find pleasure in the fact that they are inconsistent. It is not to reproach religion on that account, and to say that all religion is false and hollow, and that all professors are hypocrites. We should rather speak of the fact with tears; for, if there is anything that should make us weep, it is, that there are those in the church who are hypocrites, or who dishonor their profession. We should weep:
(1) because they are in danger of destroying their own souls;
(2) because they are destined to certain disappointment when they come to appear before God; and,
(3) because they injure the cause of religion, and give occasion to the “enemies of the Lord to speak reproachfully.” He who loves religion. will weep over the inconsistencies of its friends;