Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The Bread of Sincerity and Truth

Imported from our Harvest Church Blogs
Original Blog Date: 11-03-2005

I was recently thinking about how we extend grace to others; Those who have fallen or who are in sin. When does sin cross the bounds of grace and then have to be 'rebuked'? I believe that as we grow, we will encouter false prophets, false christians, false doctrines who/that will try to lead us away and break the church apart. I hear church's all the time say we should love people where they are. This is very true. There is another side to this though. Inside the church body, we can not excuse sin, and we can not allow brothers or sisters who wish to remain in sin, simply do so. People must have a desire to change. Do we still love them where they are and just overlook their sin and hope they eventually come around to God's way of thinking?

Check out 1 Corinthians Chapter 5:

1 Corinthians 5:1-13
1 It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that does not occur even among pagans: A man has his father's wife.
2 And you are proud! Shouldn't you rather have been filled with grief and have put out of your fellowship the man who did this?
3 Even though I am not physically present, I am with you in spirit. And I have already passed judgment on the one who did this, just as if I were present.
4 When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present,
5 hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord.
6 Your boasting is not good. Don't you know that a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough?
7 Get rid of the old yeast that you may be a new batch without yeast-- as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed.
8 Therefore let us keep the Festival, not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and wickedness, but with bread without yeast, the bread of sincerity and truth.
9 I have written you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people--
10 not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world.
11 But now I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat.
12 What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside?
13 God will judge those outside. "Expel the wicked man from among you."(NIV)

Here we have immorality going on in the church. The people have just accepted it. It reminds me of the thought that seems to be so prevalent today in that we shouldn't "judge" anyone. As Kelly has already pointed out, there are different types of judgement. I'm not going to go into that, but the point here is, instead of rebuking this fellow from within the church, he was simply accepted.

The problem with this is, that then others can be corrupted through this unwise decision. A little yeast works itself through the whole batch! Paul is saying "get rid of the old" that you may become a "new" lump of dough. Does this sound familiar? Look at Matthew 16:6-12. We must desire the BREAD OF SINCERITY AND TRUTH more than we desire 'getting along with everyone'.

The rest of the chapter is dealing with the difference between those INSIDE the church and those OUTSIDE. Those that are INSIDE, are called to a high standard, and we are to judge those that are in the body of believers. If we allow a little leaven, it wont be long and we'll be an entire corrupt pile of dough that gives NO glory to God at all and in fact is a stench in his nostrils.

We are still in this world, and we therefore must be amongst all the sin that goes on, but inside the church, God has created a place where He wants us to be accountable to Him and each other.

Jesus, in Revelation 2:14-16 has this to say to the church of Pergamos (Pergamum):

14 Nevertheless, I have a few things against you: You have people there who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin by eating food sacrificed to idols and by committing sexual immorality.
15 Likewise you also have those who hold to the teaching of the Nicolaitans.
16 Repent therefore! Otherwise, I will soon come to you and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.(NIV)

So, you see. We will be judged by what we allow to happen within the church. I realize this may be obvious, but there really is a false movement going on in America which says "we don't judge anyone, anywhere, anytime, for any reason". Don't believe it. God will hold us all accountable.

Restoration is what God desires, but there is a point where a person makes up his or her mind, that He or She will NOT be restored and will do WHAT THEY WANT, WHEN THEY WANT.

Yes, we will LOVE everyone where they are, we will strive for Restoration, but there is a boundary that can't be crossed within the body of Christ. Let's desire the Bread of Sincerity and Truth.

May the Truth of God's word always guide us. God bless,


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