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 Is anyone willing to stand for truth anymore?

I think I'm beginning to understand where some of my brothers on this website are coming from...

I've been discouraged in the past because I feared we were too divisive...this bothered me because I feared we had lost love in the process. Divisiveness can most certainly be a problem, but the opposite is much more deadly. I am encountering the opposite at seminary...where my professors and colleagues consistently affirm just about anything and everything; where religion (of any and all sorts) is considered a blessing from God; where Islam (etc.) is considered a denomination; where no-one is held responsible for failing to respond to Christ...

In this context orthodox theology is thrown out in favor of soft and affirming theology...it seems to come from a theology of God's love (which I believe is important), but its proponents seem to have made God in their own image. In any case, the results are tragic and I find myself longing for Christians who are willing to stand for orthodox Christianity.

Anyway, these are some thoughts after some deliberation...I look forward to some feedback - if i have confused you I apologize.

God Bless,

Stephen

 2005/5/26 21:57









 Re: Is anyone willing to stand for truth anymore?

Brother Stephen

I think I know your desire.

The greatest question of all time came from a gentile governer saying to Jesus, "What is truth?"

We can only know if one is speaking the truth when one is doing the will of God.

"My doctrine is not mine, but His that sent me.
If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself."

It is difficult to define orthodoxy in a sea of confusion, but one thing is for sure, "my sheep know my voice, and none other shall they follow".

Warmly
Karl

 2005/5/26 22:44
crsschk
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Re: Is anyone willing to stand for truth anymore?

Stephen,

If this isn't what is the cry...
Authenticity. Reality. Honesty. Truth. It all seems to be of the same substance, make that, ought to be.

And the difficulties, the either/or, the forwarding assumptions... '[i]If you believe this, you dis-believe the other[/i]. That it has to be construed to say something [i]else[/i] when at bottom the issue is...

Is it true?

Quote:
I've been discouraged in the past because I feared we were too divisive...this bothered me because I feared we had lost love in the process. Divisiveness can most certainly be a problem, but the opposite is much more deadly.


The mighty struggle, could not agree more especially after what had gone on here some months back, the divisiveness... and the rub, that opposite, even more deadly, certainly have fallen into both of those trap's, is this not the territory of the enemy?

That to care enough for truth it is to invite opposition but it must be so. To care for it will bring all the labeling and misunderstandings of intent and motives, the seemingly quirky sense of being 'unloving' or full of pride or even that one is [i]thought[/i] to feel superior or give that appearance or that because you are being 'shot down' as it were, now you have validated yourself and can go smugly along...
Not the intent, not the motive, not "I don't care what others think", not "I should compromise to be seen in a better light",... Not me, but Him.

And that's just amongst brethren, what of the rest of the world... Made mention of it elsewhere, but doesn't it just seem muddy everywhere? Like your experience now in seminary and even the vast number of churches and all the strange ... muddy, teachings, 'new thing's', blending of psychology and relativism.

One of the amazing truth's about Jesus was how nothing bothered Him, for all that He said and did, the uncanny thing is that it was as if it was never about Himself while it was always about Himself.

This is wonderful brother, truly wonderful, hope it becomes even more of a fruitful discussion. To stand for the truth without any of the baggage or the fear of man or concern for ourselves but all the concern for others, for Him. To be like Him... To not be bothered and to go on and say what needs to be said. To take a stand for the truth of scripture and all it's weight.

Brother think there are some still that will not rest until they find that reality of... Joh 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth:

And then to stand on it, never moved from it, always ready and willing to let go of that which is counter to it, not to what we think is true, but truth itself. And how else but to die to ourselves, maybe then we would be more truly loving because we love the truth.

Long ways to go...


_________________
Mike Balog

 2005/5/27 0:10Profile
Spitfire
Member



Joined: 2004/8/3
Posts: 633


 Re: Now yer talkin'

Oh! My Brothers! This is soooooo it!

Quote:
This is wonderful brother, truly wonderful, hope it becomes even more of a fruitful discussion. To stand for the truth without any of the baggage or the fear of man or concern for ourselves but all the concern for others, for Him. To be like Him... To not be bothered and to go on and say what needs to be said. To take a stand for the truth of scripture and all it's weight.

Quote:
doesn't it just seem muddy everywhere?


This is so hard, guys. I'm wrestling with the pain of it everyday. Just this morning I have cried bitter tears alone with God over the painfullness of it. This place, this huge divide, is right where many turn and go back. God was dealing with me, because I so want to just give up at times. In my prayer time, God was lovingly standing behind me with his hand on my back saying, "don't turn around. I know this is hard, but don't turn around."

Here's the deal. We begin to seek God like a bulldog. His truth begins to shine forth in our hearts and minds. We begin to "see" what's wrong all around us. We begin to speak up. And suddenly there's a mob of opposition. "Who are you!?" "Who died and made you God?" There's this whole mentality of, just live and let live. Don't tell anyone they are wrong. That's judgemental. Oh, it's all so confusing!

Or, you begin to press in in your relationships, being honest, sharing your heart, talking about the hard, difficult things, and Wow! The person begins to back away, I mean, out of sight! That hurts. This is what I was crying about this morning. It seems that, since I've begun to draw close to God, humbling myself, willing to do anything just to know him and be about what He is about, that I find myself more and more alone. It's scary and confusing. I don't have a community of people around me encouraging me like some do. It's just me and God and a sprinkling of folks who seem to know and understand what I am talking about. This morning I told God, "I just need to know if I'm doing right here?" "Is this what you want me to do, or have I done something wrong?" I believe God spoke to me and said, "Don't turn around. You are moving toward me. Many will fall behind. Let them go. Just keep running and press into me." Oh, this is so hard! I'm realizing that my God has been myself and other people. Now that the True and Living God is being enthroned on my heart, my heart is littered with holes which are having to be filled with Him. I always looked to people to approve me. Now, I am learning to look into my Father's eyes.

Let's go up to Zion, the City of Our God! Love, Dian.

 2005/5/27 8:11Profile
roadsign
Member



Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776


 Re: the truth - defending it in love or in pride?

Quote:
Is anyone willing to stand for truth anymore?


I get a little nervous when I see these words, probably because of past experience. I fear that when those words are attached to fallen natures, it leads a battle of minds, power posturing, control, pride etc. And people get hurt. (maybe their egos get bothered)

I suspect that many react to that problem by getting wishy washy as you described. (God forbid that we should make anyone feel badly, so let's embrace everyone's beliefs.)

Albert Einstein said:
"We still do not know one-thousandth of one percent of what nature has revealed to us."

Think of how much more vast the pool of spiritual truth is. We get into power struggles over "truth" when we think we know more than Einstein, or when we feel it is our duty to make someone else "see the light" as we see it. (People hate getting "set straight".)

Truth, knowledge, etc without pure love is as sounding brass. If we get a little brassy, it is because we are normal. We still don't know what we don't know, and we're still in the sanctifying process, needing to get closer to the ground, and needing to grow in love for others.

We don't need to have everybody agree with us in order to benefit from our fellowship. Whey! What a relief! I don't have to try to play God and "fix" up my brother who annoys me. In fact, God may be using him to enlighten me about something.
Meanwhile God is working in him too.
Diane


_________________
Diane

 2005/5/27 8:43Profile
crsschk
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Re: For all it's not...

Dear sister and I do mean dear...

For all this is 'not' here, it is a saving grace and I must be done with equivacating... :-? (What a goofball sentence that is!)

Quote:
It's scary and confusing. I don't have a community of people around me encouraging me like some do. It's just me and God and a sprinkling of folks who seem to know and understand what I am talking about.


Me neither, maybe we need to pray more for each other (all of us here) that the Lord would join us to fellowship of similar burning hearts. For all that comes down to singular dealings with the Lord inwardly, knowing that to Him alone we live and die and move and have our being... Still, we need each other. Oh to be like Paul, going to visit the 'churches' to encourage and uplift the brethren...

Am torn, have been blessed with a gift from some frequent flier miles (My, what has gone on with this fool in the the last 6-8 months!)round trip to almost any destination in the US, but to where? It is certainly fixed (loosely, 'today or tomorrow...James 4:13) in my heart to go visit one of the brethren, far too many to list and even what might be a surprise, if they were to have me, despite whatever misgivings more misunderstanding than anything. Drifting here...

Quote:
This morning I told God, "I just need to know if I'm doing right here?" "Is this what you want me to do, or have I done something wrong?"


Yes, I mean, yes, echo's of a daily sort...
Quote:
Or, you begin to press in in your relationships, being honest, sharing your heart, talking about the hard, difficult things, and Wow! The person begins to back away, I mean, out of sight! That hurts. This is what I was crying about this morning. It seems that, since I've begun to draw close to God, humbling myself, willing to do anything just to know him and be about what He is about, that I find myself more and more alone.



You know sis just went through a similar spell of that same exact thing as early as last week and the puzzlement of why [i]now[/i] is this so bothersome? With everything circumstantially upside down and beyond [i]absurd[/i] over the course of the last year or so and the times of just being carried through it all, the other times of complete heart devastation over so much... The very [u]truth[/u] of [i]Joh 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.[/i] And I hope that is not taking it out of context, but there are just [i]times[/i], perhaps they are but times of development, of trust and faith, [i]despite[/i] it all, in fact doesn't it seem that, that is the exercise?

"Will you trust ME in this?"

And just as well maybe it is to the brethren as well...

"Will [i]you[/i] come alongside your comrade, lift them up not only in your heart, but with your words and encouragement?"

A little personal example. Right towards the end of this quasi, somewhat leaning towards self pity...Ah, it's not that, it just... borders it perhaps, what are we to do, pull up our boot straps, suck it up? Is that being [i][b]true[/b][/i]? Got a phone call as I was just hunkering down to commiserate in bed... "[i]Hello![/i]...('Who's calling at this time of night grumbling to myself, can't they see I am miserable, blah, blah, blah....) It was Jeremy (Hulsey) our brother here. I thought, "Well God bless him and all...but, the timing...". Long story short, an hour later I was praising God for my misery. It was if he could see right through it all, without a word, the exact opposite of the man knocking on the door asking for bread, this time around he came delivering and I didn't even realize how hungry I was for it. That the Lord sent him for just that moment... A bit more irony, the bulk of the bread he brought was of the joy he had of finding fellowship of the same burning heart and what they shared together in person, and I found that extremely encouraging!

Sorry to be taking this somewhat sideways here from Stephens original intent, but perhaps it is but another faucet of truth, being expressed in Jesus words that ...

Joh 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

Despite all the 'appearances' to the contrary when we must stand for the truth... in love.

Quote:
Oh, this is so hard! I'm realizing that my God has been myself and other people. Now that the True and Living God is being enthroned on my heart, my heart is littered with holes which are having to be filled with Him. I always looked to people to approve me. Now, I am learning to look into my Father's eyes.



That some of God's plugs can come along and fill the holes of that wonderful container. You are beloved Diane. We may not be [i]there[/i], where you are physically, but we are [i]here[/i] in this weird cyber kind of way... a wonder is it not?


_________________
Mike Balog

 2005/5/27 9:15Profile









 Re:

"We don't need to have everybody agree with us in order to benefit from our fellowship. Whey! What a relief! I don't have to try to play God and "fix" up my brother who annoys me. In fact, God may be using him to enlighten me about something. Meanwhile God is working in him too. "

Amen Diane, while I've had frequent differences with other SI participants, I've learned very much and feel a kind of kinship with others on this site. What I find here is that we can speak to and listen to that of God in each other and if we do so in a nonjudgemental way we all benefit, as the Spirit moves us.

Bubbaguy

 2005/5/27 11:31









 Re: Is anyone willing to stand for truth anymore?

This is a subject dear to my heart. Thank you all for sharing with heart-rending honesty.

I recognise Stephen's cry, from my earlier days of greater beligerance, when I was challenging social institutions for the most part, defiantly proclaiming the rightness of God.

Now, I understand there is a huge range of 'standing for the truth', from sitting like Mary at the feet of Jesus, to being imprisoned, tortured and eventually dying like Samson, to bring down the house and reputation of the ungodly.

One thing I am learning, is that truth comes with its own hidden double razor-edges. It does not need to be presented loudly. A quiet entreaty can have all the required impact.

Stephen,

Most importantly, not only because you are a Christian, but because your generation needs you to be clear-headed, you must know what is [i]wrong[/i] with the philosophies which form the backdrop to modern 'education' and infiltrate the thinking of church members. The more you can think through how to present your arguments with confidence, the more effectively you will be 'salt'.

You will not be able to do this without God's word. Don't be afraid to return questions and draw discussions onto the ground of truth. In the same way as others may try to insist you prove your 'case' using their language, don't be afraid to ask them to prove theirs, by using yours. Even if you are not certain you have changed minds in the process, never underestimate the word of God to do its own work in hearts. They must then make their own response to the One Who speaks.

One of the biggest lies of the twentieth century in academia, is that it is intellectually untenable to be a Christian. Get used to ignoring this foundational lie and then get on with declaring truth to the world. Take the word [i]to[/i] them and He will give you great joy.

 2005/5/27 11:40
MEEKFLOWER
Member



Joined: 2005/4/12
Posts: 17


 Re:

I believe in U,God and I trust you. The LORD has placed it in my heart to post this here...
Know that I love you all so much.

I come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses;
And the voice I hear, falling on my ear,
The Son of God discloses.
He speaks and the sound of His-Her voice
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there
None other has ever known.

Those who seek quality time with God will learn that He is always ready, (Truth) waiting to meet with them (Truth). Quality time is one of God's great love languages, (Truth) :-)

 2005/5/27 12:09Profile









 Re:

Thanks everyone for your responses.

There seems to be a fine line to walk - and perhaps i'll never figure it out while on this earth...but it seems that somehow we must balance humility and love with a zeal for the truth. The three need not exist in tension (Jesus modelled this balance perfectly) but so often we tend to move to one extreme or another...we either become so zealous for truth that we risk forsaking fellowship with brothers and sisters and even become belligerent and (unnecessarily - because sometimes it is necessary to be divisive) divisive...

OR in an effort to be loving and inclusive we can move in the opposite extreme and fail to call anything wrong - and I think this is a tendency that is all too common today...

Like my brothers and sisters on this site I'm trying to figure all this out. I have been developing a friendship with a well known theologian (proponent of Open Theism and inclusivism) and learning to love and appreciate him while also disagreeing with him most vehemently...its not easy to walk this walk. Sometimes I get so discouraged because so many of my colleagues are moving so far from orthodox theology...however, at other times I get discouraged by name calling etc. And don't get me wrong - I've been guilty of the name calling myself and at times I have been tempted to compromise on theology for "love's" sake...I think I misunderstood love.

Anyway, sorry for being long winded. I am grateful I have this place to vent and more than that I am grateful that this is a place where believers zealously defend the truth!

May God continue to use this site as a vehicle for revival.

Yours in Christ,

Stephen

 2005/5/27 14:31





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