Rebuking A Wayward Christian Is The Most Loving Thing You Can Do

 

repent tom and jerry

James 5:19-20

19 My brothers, if any among you strays from the truth, and someone turns him back, 20 let him know that whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his life from death and cover a multitude of sins.

If a Christian starts abandoning the truth by going in its opposite direction we as a family of believers must bring him or her back to the truth.

Keyword: the truth

You cannot bring a Christian back to the Lord by compromising the truth for the sake of not hurting his/her feelings. The truth has to be at the forefront but it has to be with graciousness and humility.

When a believer is walking away from the truth and you try to show them their errors, even with grace, they will take your action as judgmental and mean spirited. Why? Because the person’s inner-man is severely weakened. Remember, our job is, to tell the truth regardless if it hurts them. You cannot be more loving than when you tell someone the truth and the Holy Spirit will take the truth and start to convict them.

In the Psalms, David talks about this which is found in Psalm 141:5 which says,

5 Let the righteous one strike me
it is an act of faithful love;
let him rebuke me
it is oil for my head;
let me not refuse it.
Even now my prayer is against
the evil acts of the wicked.

Here, we see that the word “rebuke” which gives the meaning of someone striking you and making you feel pain. That’s how it feels when you tell the person the truth. The difference is that the pain they feel is actually healing them because it will make them repent and bring them back to being right with Jesus Christ. Clearly, this verse teaches that rebuke for the sake of the truth is the most loving thing you can do.

Jesus is the truth and He is love. The truth and love cannot be separated and we cannot be people pleasers because to be one you have to compromise the truth.

The word “death” does not refer to spiritual death but physical.

Let us make both, the truth and love a priority, without missing one of them when bringing a believer back to Jesus.

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Is The Truth A Person?

Basic RGB

Some Christians are teaching that “the truth is a person,” Jesus Christ. They say this because of John 14:6 which says, 6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

That term “the truth is a person” translating it like that from the verse above is very bizarre because you will have a lot of inconsistencies using that logic and method when trying to exegete a passage. For an example: Jesus also said in John 10:7 Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. Now, let’s use the same logic and method to interpret that verse, “the gate is a person.” As we can see, that type of logic will keep someone from learning the meaning of scripture. When Jesus in John 14:6 says that He is the truth, He does not say that the truth is a person because when interpreting other passages as you can see, it won’t make any sense using that method. We must let scripture interpret scripture.

John 8:28-32,39-41

26 “I have much to say in judgment of you. But he who sent me is trustworthy, and what I have heard from him I tell the world.”
27 They did not understand that he was telling them about his Father. 28 So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. 29 The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.” 30 Even as he spoke, many believed in him.
31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

39 “Abraham is our father,” they answered.

“If you were Abraham’s children,” said Jesus, “then you would do what Abraham did. 40 As it is, you are looking for a way to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. Abraham did not do such things. 41 You are doing the works of your own father.”

The Truth is associated with the message which is the good news about Jesus Christ.


John 18:37

37 “You are a king, then!” said Pilate.
Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”

Jesus came to testify to The Truth about Himself through His message which is contained in the New Testament and the Old Testament pointed to.

Jesus came to reveal God the Father to the world and His relationship to the Father as God the Son and how a person can get to the Father. Truth also means reality, what is and what will be. Jesus is The Truth and there is no lie found in Him according to John 8:46 which says, Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me?

Jesus is The Truth meaning that His nature, character, and message is The Truth. That He alone is the originator and standard of The Truth and it cannot be obtained anywhere else but through Jesus Christ alone.

The danger in the phrase “the truth is a person” can come about that they will say, “all you need to do is follow Jesus, not the Bible” (since the truth is a person). In a subtle way, the enemy wants to make people drift away from scripture. Once a person drifts away from holy scripture then they start to follow a different Jesus. People naturally speaking don’t like following rules like the Bible because it tells you what to do and what not to do.

All of these phrases are synonyms: Jesus is the Word, the truth, the light, the way and the life. All these words describe the person of Jesus, who really is the only way to heaven who alone can give you eternal life through faith in Him. 

The Truth is found in Jesus Christ through His Word. Jesus and the Word of God are two sides of the same coin. You can’t have one without the other as seen in John 15:7-8 which says, 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

To remain in Jesus is by obeying the Word of God. 

The words that Jesus spoke are the very words of God. Satan is trying to make you separate Jesus from the written Word by making them think, “as long as you have Jesus you don’t need to read or rely on the Bible.”

John 12:49-50

49 For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. 50 I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”

The message of the gospel leads to Jesus Christ who gives eternal life.

Are You A Christian Who Has Yoked Himself With an Unbeliever?

yoked1
Being unequally yoked with an unbeliever will make your spiritual walk with the Lord come to a stop.

2 Corinthians 6:14

14 Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness? What communion has light with darkness?

What’s the danger of being yoked with an unbeliever? The danger lies in the influence or teachings that the person gives you through persuasive arguments to detour you from the truth. Yoking oneself with another is like two people doing toggle war to see which one brings the other into their camp of thinking and philosophy pertaining to life and spirituality. If you’re not strong enough instead of bringing that person to Jesus they will take you out of Jesus. That’s the danger of hanging around the wrong crowd. Yoke in scripture is connected with teaching or learning from a person as seen in Matthew 11:29 which says, 29 Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me. For I am meek and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

As it’s evident being yoked to someone will make you learn his ways. If you hang around with the same person long enough you will start to act, sound like, have the same likes, look like and believe in the same things. 

The real danger is hidden in a false Christian who really is an unbeliever that professes some of the same beliefs but denies Jesus characteristics of deity. That my friend is the ultimate danger because those who get deceived and die in that state will be eternally lost.

Now, will you follow Jesus Christ or an impostor? Whichever you decide to follow is the one you will look like the most. If you follow the Jesus of scripture, you will bring people to the truth because you will live by the truth. If you follow a Jesus that’s unrelated to scripture, an impostor, you will lead people to hell because you will live the lie and deceive them.

Friends Show Love Through Wounds But The Enemy Through Excessive Kisses

The wounds of a friend are trustworthy, but the kisses of an enemy are excessive.

Proverbs 27:6


proverbs-27-6

It hurts to be corrected. Who likes it? If we see a friend doing something that’s harmful or going somewhere that’s dangerous, only a friend will warn him. When I’m driving with my family and my wife tells me that it’s better if you go this way, even though I know in my heart that she has a point but I don’t like the fact that she corrected me even though I’m the driver in the family and think that I know more than her. I lose sight of her intent to help me.

Who does the correcting? Those who care and love you. The enemy, knowing full well of your error is happy to cheer you on that you may continue to your own detriment. I am thankful to all of my brothers in Christ whom I know personally who instructed me that I was headed the wrong way. It takes maturity to humble oneself and take it.

I remember one day a Christian friend of mine named Julio called me up and told me that while being in church the pastor preached that if you have a friend who is Christian and is doing something contrary to the word, boldly tell and confront them. I can’t disclose the details here, it is personal in nature but I dwelt on what he said and I took it that it was a conviction from the Lord and I ended up fixing it.

My friend chose to call me up to warn me because he loves me as a brother but imagine a friend who is devoid of the Holy Spirit. He would actually cheer you on to continue. The enemy will NEVER correct you but will be happy to see you go in the wrong direction hence plenty of kisses and telling you what you want to hear, fattening you up for the slaughter.

Beware my brothers and sisters of the enemy’s kisses because in his eyes you’re never wrong as long as you’re doing his bidding.


Proverbs 28:23

One who rebukes a person will later find more favor than one who flatters with his tongue.

Proverbs 27:5

Better an open reprimand than concealed love.

Proverbs 29:5

A man who flatters his neighbor spreads a net for his feet.

When one is in the wrong but all his friends tells him how right he is, they are digging a pit for his down fall.

A Watchman’s Duty

Ephesians 5:11

11 Don’t participate in the fruitless works of darkness, but instead expose them.

Disclaimer: The last thing I want to be is divisive. We are admonished to expose the deeds of darkness but not to be partakers. Love for the Truth and the brethren compels me to warn. I see the lack of caution in forwarding unreliable articles occuring frequently and therefore has to be addressed. That is the watchman’s duty.


truth-or-lies

3 John 1:11

11 Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil, but what is good. The one who does good is of God; the one who does evil has not seen God.

The Greek word for imitate is mimeomai (mim-eh’-om-ahee) which means to follow, mimic.

The Greek word for evil is kakos which means bad, evil, in the widest sense. (morally i.e) evil i.e. what is contrary to law, either divine or human, wrong, crime

Christians should be careful on what they imitate or follow but discern to see if it agrees with scripture so as not to promote false doctrine.

Doctrine is the message of the good news that was brought forth by Jesus Christ and God’s character, laws, statutes, ordinances, historical facts, essential theological truths revealed in the whole Bible. Any contradiction would be considered false.

I continue to come across professing believers in the blogosphere who are reblogging posts, quotes and anything in between that are from men who either believe in works-based salvation or those who bring confusion to basic terms that Christians in essence are to do, i.e. Convert vs. Disciple. These terms are interchangeable and synonymous, one cannot be a disciple without first being converted and to make a distinction between the two would make it nonsense. To be a disciple and live according to His commands is first through faith in Jesus Christ and be converted (born again) which the Holy Spirit will enable you do God’s will after conversion as seen in Philippians 2:13 that says, 13 For it is God who is working in you, enabling you both to desire and to work out His good purpose.

If the believer immerses himself in God’s Word he will know what would please the Lord through the discernment received from the Holy Spirit who gives understanding of God’s truth in the message of Christ as seen in Philippians 1:9-11 which states, 9 And I pray this: that your love will keep on growing in knowledge and every kind of discernment, 10 so that you can approve the things that are superior and can be pure and blameless in the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God.

Just because a quote or a post seems to be sound on the onset it is a ploy from Satan to introduce people to deception. Satan’s emissaries bait with a sound message on the surface to get the unsuspecting victim’s curiosity to click on the person who originated the quote to intake their false doctrine, thus caught in a snare. Satan twisted God’s Word to deceive Eve and tried but failed to make Jesus sin through false interpretation of the text.

Once you go to the originator of the quote either a dead person or one still alive it doesn’t matter for their message still lives, the deception begins unless it is a mature believer who will immediately disregard it, but for the immature Christian, it would liken unto quicksand and to get out will take much effort. Let’s not become a stumbling block to other Christians by being lazy in researching and vetting who we are reblogging or quoting because at the end, we will give an account to God for what we have done.