I hate to
admit this, but a man once told me he did not like my sermons, and wanted me
to change the subject and content of my preaching. I asked him to identify
my errors, and he said I was preaching the truth, but he was afraid of "what
it might lead to." (I was preaching on the work of the church, and
congregational independence.) I replied that I realized one might make a
"hobby" of truth and "beat to death" a subject (he did not accuse me of
this), but that I could not see how TRUTH, properly balanced, could lead to
anything but that for which it was given, viz., to make men free from error
other side of the coin, we frequently find timid souls who hibernate in
inactivity, and equate doing nothing with soundness in the faith. They may
acknowledge that the work proposed is in keeping with the scriptures, but if
it calls for some unaccustomed activity -- a change from the status quo --
they fear "what it might lead to."
itself is a movement -- we exist in a state of flux -- and direction is
influenced by every facet of life. Change (even in that which is good) will
affect attitudes and viewpoints, and could involve new temptations. BUT
REMAINING AT REST ALSO AFFECTS ATTITUDES AND VIEWPOINTS, AND COULD INVOLVE
NEW TEMPTATIONS. The monastic life is no guarantee of sinlessness. It may
BE sin in itself.
steps twice in the same flowing stream. The stream is moving, and his
second step is into water that was yet above him when the first step was
taken. We may begin to do something in good faith, and with ample
authority; and find later that circumstances are now such as to make the
continuation of our work wrong. It takes a good man to face this, and let
divine authority, rather than his own traditions, guide his life. Many will
let tradition overrule the application of God's word to his life. BUT FEAR
OF WHAT MAY HAPPEN (when no scriptural principle is violated, nor scriptural
warning ignored) MAKES FOR "FALSE SOUNDNESS."
never "leads to" error, and right is not the father of wrong. This is the
and 1 John 3:6-ff.
We sin when we quit following God and follow Satan.
"times change" and new circumstances constantly arise, we have an unchanging
standard, suited to all ages. We are faithful only when we ACT upon its
teachings. The church is the "pillar", not the "pillow" of God's truth
(1 Tim. 3:15).