LOOKING TO PRAISE AND WORSHIP JESUS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. 18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Stay in the Corner

As I urged you when I was going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus that you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine,
(1 Timothy 1:3 – ESV)

Paul was admonishing Timothy to stay in Ephesus and to stay with the scriptures. Paul had already talked to Timothy personally about it, now he puts it in writing. The importance of doctrine cannot be overestimated. Just because it seems that false doctrine is pervasive and truth is scarce and no one is listening or learning doesn’t mean it is time to leave.

Certain persons were overthrowing the faith of many, and it is important that true shepherds and true believers contend for the faith, fight the wolves, correct, rebuke, admonish and exhort one another, rooting out those little pet doctrines that have ingrained themselves into individual lives and spread out unawares to others in the congregation.

What would be the “different doctrine” Paul was warning about? It would be anything not echoed by the New Testament writers, or logically derived from New Testament concepts, something that wasn’t related to the Gospel. Trying to reinvigorate OT types and shadows as offering some sort of new blessing is speculation at best.

Paul’s concern was not primarily that Timothy himself would begin to teach wrong doctrine. His concern was that Timothy would allow others to spread false doctrine. He had to stand firm against difficult people. No wonder he might have felt like leaving Ephesus. He wasn’t to present doctrine as an option; he was to command it like a military officer.

Timothy was to continue in the doctrine as Paul had taught; something new wasn’t something true (2 Corinthians 11:4,12-15 / Galatians 1:6-9). This applies to us just as much today as it did back then. Of course even old doctrines can be new to our ears. We do need to teach the old doctrines in ways that engage our lives today, but they aren’t new truths.

The old paths laid out for us in the bible have all we need for faith and practice. People who are looking for excitement and who are into novelty and those who are overly emotional want to say that to stick with the scriptures is to stay in a rut. Yet it would be a colossal mistake to underestimate what is being said here by Paul and in the New Testament. Paul is saying that there is absolute, unchangeable, spiritual truth, and that the Apostles were preaching it, and that they had a corner on it! We aren’t in a rut; we had best stay stuck right there in Truth Corner.

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10 Comments:

Blogger James Lush said...

Good post and right on and further to that the early church according to scripture, "turned the world upside down." and to think they never even had Microsoft, Adobe Photoshop or Rick Warren LOL

James

October 24, 2007 6:13 AM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

J.D.
Well said. Making disciples for Christ, means teaching and guarding sound doctrine. Paul tells us that the gospel of God comes with power full of grace and truth.

Anytime anyone attempts to water down this grace and truth by denying the POWER of the gospel, we should admonish and rebuke them. While they themselves may be cast in stone with their unsound doctrine, perhaps babes in Christ will be warned to be discerning and do what the Bereans did and check these “new teachings” with the only rule of faith and practice, which is the Holy Bible.

In our secular society intimidation has become a tactic for promoting certain PC causes such as evolution, homosexuality, and global warming. The proponents claim the debate is over and acceptance is the only thing that can be allowed. People who disagree with these PC positions are routinely attacked as radicals and often lose their jobs and positions. We must remain as loving and civil as possible with those who attack sound doctrine and then squeal when we point out their error, but we must never be intimidated into allowing unsound “new teachings” to go unchallenged.

Therefore, I for one have no intention of being intimidated into silence when it comes to core essential doctrines of the faith that includes the POWER of the Holy Spirit in the sanctification of the redeemed.
wayne

October 24, 2007 10:13 AM

 
Blogger mark pierson said...

Excellent post!

Excellent comments!

October 24, 2007 12:20 PM

 
Blogger Even So... said...

I agree excellent comments....this is the first in a series, there is more to these thoughts from 1 Timothy, as we are posting more articles on this for the next few days at voice of vision, and will bring over here to Bluecollar as well.

October 24, 2007 12:50 PM

 
Blogger mark pierson said...

" will bring over here to Bluecollar as well."

Looking forward to it, sir.

October 24, 2007 12:53 PM

 
Blogger Susan said...

Mark,

Where is that post you wrote about rethinking the actual meaning of 2 Cor 13:5 - "Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?--unless indeed you fail to meet the test!" ?

I've been searching the posts of the past few months to find it, but without success. Alas, no search engine on this site? (Not that I could see; perhaps I'm missing it?)

I've heard that verse quoted recently with respect to individuals searching themselves (and by folks "higher up" in the church hierarchy) and I wanted to "examine" the verse more closely. So I wanted to see that post again and read the comments as well. Can you (or someone else) point me to it?

Tah!

Sorry for the diversion from the post topic, but in some way, it does have to do with rightly dividing the word of truth and thusly sound doctrine. (There, "justified" myself. As if I could...)

October 24, 2007 5:52 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Susan,
I did a post on that passage at Jazzycat on 9-14-07:
Test yourself

I am not trying to steal his thunder, but I don't remember Mark doing one!

October 24, 2007 11:03 PM

 
Blogger Susan said...

Jazzy,

Thank you.

I think Mark's was on a different slant - suggesting that the passage had not to do with individual believers examining themselves per se, but it had more to do with false teachers in the Corinthian church - and examining the faith moreso or the evidence of it by the true teaching of Paul versus the false teachers infiltrating that church (if I'm recalling this all correctly).

I'd like to become better versed in that. Of course, I can always go read the Scripture and background for myself, but I thought I had seen it here, and so I was interested in seeing what the comments to Mark's post said. I remember Daniel commenting there and Mark's reply to him - unless I just read this all in an alternate universe somewhere. ;-)

October 24, 2007 11:50 PM

 
Blogger mark pierson said...

Susan, try http://mdpmusings.blogspot.com/2007/08/positions-they-are-changin.html

Mark

October 25, 2007 7:06 AM

 
Blogger Susan said...

Thanks, Mark.
The link cut off at the end of the row, but for anyone else interested, it's "Positions: They are a changin" from August 18 of this year.
I do see that we can't (or I can't) just bring up one post from any given period (must bring up the whole month?). If we ever reformat or change the graphics of this group blog, maybe we could alter that formatting as well? Unless it's just an inability on my part how to navigate my way to individual posts.
Thanks again, Mark. That was most helpful!

October 25, 2007 11:40 AM

 

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