Exhort and Convict Those Who Contradict

In my post on Saturday, I mentioned that part of the problem in the publishing of books by the Christian book industry is a lack conviction on the part of those in leadership of the church. Far too many men who are pastors love to preach, as long as they don’t have to confront anyone.

The problem with this is that the qualifications for elders doesn’t allow such a passive approach in the pulpit or the leadership of the church. Listen again to Paul’s words: For a bishop must be blameless, as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick tempered, not given to win, not violent, not greed for money, but hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled, holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught that he may be able, by sound doctrine, to exhort and convict those who contradict (Titus 1:7-9).

Paul writes that those who are elders have a responsibility to exhort and convict those who contradict. This means that those who are contradicting the gospel, who are putting forth a false gospel, who are misleading the body, who are out for dishonest gain under the guise of the gospel, need to be confronted by our pastors. We cannot remain silent. We must speak the truth. To remain silent and not speak about those who are false teachers is to be disobedient to God’s word, and it shows a lack of love and care for the flock of God.

It is this last reason that I think would shock most pastors who try to be less than controversial. You know these preachers. They speak about things that are true and in general, draw moral principles from the Bible. But they never come out and say something is right or wrong or dangerous. They think they are doing their flock a great favor, but in reality, they are like the parents that let their children play with scorpions.

Pastors should not be so. They need to confront false teaching and false teachers in public because so much of what false teachers do is in public. Many in our congregations want to know the truth. They want to know whether the newest teaching taking the church by storm is biblical or not. They need to know that people channeling Jesus are not biblical, that people who say they have gone to heaven, have not, and those who promise more holiness by returning to Judaism is another gospel all together.

The business of the gospel is serious and those in the pulpits need to treat it as serious. To ignore the reality of false teachers, by never bringing up their falsehoods for the church to know and understand, is a dereliction of duty.

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7 thoughts on “Exhort and Convict Those Who Contradict

  1. Will the next post in this series address the reasons why America’s pulpits are filled with spineless moralizers instead of those who preach, as declared by Paul in 1 Thessalonians 2, “as [men] approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts. For neither at any time did we use flattering words, as you know, nor a cloak for covetousness—God is witness. Nor did we seek glory from men, either from you or from others, when we might have made demands as apostles of Christ. But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children. So, affectionately longing for you, we were well pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God, but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us.”

    Just wondering if the fault lies solely with our seminaries…

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  2. One pitfall is that too often the preacher will lock into something trivial, or even false to defend at all costs. I don’t know how many sermons I’ve heard preached on the “best” version of the Bible, or sermons compromised and derailed by asides attacking excellent versions that the preacher didn’t like. I don’t know how many sermons I’ve suffered through in which the central thread was an ATTACK on anyone who believes that the Bible is true AND the universe is not recently created.

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    1. I’m pretty sure I never said anything about versions of the Bible from the pulpit. If I did, it would have been against the NIV (because they keep changing it without telling anyone and making it gender inclusive). If I were to preach about such a thing, it would probably be against KJV only people.

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      1. Keep in mind that I was in Church the week after I was born. I came of age in a church that was Scofield Reference Bible KJV only. I grew up under some pastors that were *devoutly* Dispensationalist (more Dispensationalist than Christian). I’ve listened to hundreds of hours of seminary lectures. The pastor I was thinking of with the YEC-onlyism was Voddie Baucham.

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