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← Should I Dissociate From a False Christian at My Job? - Ask Pastor Tim

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Showing Revision 4 created 06/08/2018 by Carrie Spradlin.

  1. This is a good one for a certain reason
  2. that I want to try to draw out here.
  3. "I have a guy at my job..."
  4. This is coming from Ty.
  5. "I have a guy at my job
  6. who claimed to be a Christian..."
  7. past tense.
  8. I don't know that he's stopped claiming
  9. to be a Christian.
  10. "I believed him at first
  11. and accepted him as a brother.
  12. I started to see who he really was.
  13. After months, I rebuked him.
  14. His language and actions got worse.
  15. I voiced to him I didn't believe
  16. he was born again."
  17. (incomplete thought)
  18. And he references 1 Corinthians 5
  19. concerning avoiding people.
  20. "Even after this, he continues to try
  21. to converse with me."
  22. So basically, he's taking a
    1 Corinthians 5 position
  23. with this guy not to associate with him.
  24. "How do you handle or
    avoid such a person?"
  25. Now the question I want
    to ask everybody is this:

  26. Does Matthew 18 -
  27. where if somebody sins against me,
  28. I should go to him;
  29. and if they don't hear me,
  30. I should take two or three;
  31. if they don't hear me,
  32. I should take it before the church;
  33. if they don't hear us,
  34. we treat them like a tax collector;
  35. and then 1 Corinthians
  36. where you have somebody that sins -
  37. it's more overt; it's more public -
  38. it doesn't need to be dealt with
  39. in more of a concealed,
  40. slowly-evolving fashion.
  41. It's so public
  42. that you put the person out
    of the church immediately.
  43. Here's my question.
  44. I recognize his question is
  45. how do you avoid a person
  46. that you work with?
  47. We can get to that in a moment.
  48. But the question I would ask is this:
  49. Should we even use Matthew 18
  50. and 1 Corinthians 5 in the workplace?
  51. Is that for the church?
  52. And life in the church?
  53. Should we carry that
    over to the workplace?
  54. Should we carry that over to school?
  55. Should we carry that over to the family?
  56. Should we carry that over to
  57. like the women's Grace House?
  58. Should we do that?
  59. Is that proper?
  60. What do you think?
  61. (from the room)
  62. What's his brother?
  63. Probably somebody who
    is a professing Christian?
  64. (unintelligible)
  65. Tim: Okay, so if we
    think about Matthew 18,
  66. it says specifically,
  67. "if a brother sins against you..."
  68. Then what's the whole point?
  69. Trying to gain your brother.
  70. Specifically - brother.
  71. In 1 Corinthians 5, the idea is
  72. anybody who calls himself a brother.
  73. So, what do you think?
  74. Here's the question I would ask.
  75. Okay, we are on the
    fringes of the Bible belt.
  76. If every single person
  77. who claimed to be a Christian,
  78. but didn't live like one,
  79. if we automatically
    disassociate ourselves -
  80. outside of the church -
  81. Look, if you go to your workplace,
    you go to your school,
  82. you go to the HEB you shop at,
  83. and you just start asking people:
  84. "Are you a Christian?"
  85. And then you start asking
    them about their life,
  86. do you know what you're going
    to find? 99.9% of the time,
  87. their life does not measure up
  88. to true biblical Christianity.
  89. And if you take those principles
  90. and you apply them,
  91. especially in a country like ours,
  92. you know what you're going to do?
  93. You're going to end up disassociating
  94. with all manner of people
  95. that you ought to be evangelizing.
  96. So I think we need to be careful,
  97. because I don't think we
    want to fall into that.
  98. Here's one thing to think about.

  99. The church that we're in -
  100. I'll tell you this, we have an expectation
  101. that people that are within
    the walls of our church
  102. actually are people who have been
  103. exposed to the truth,
  104. and actually do have some idea
  105. about what it is to be a Christian,
  106. to be a brother or a sister in the Lord.
  107. There is massive ignorance out there.
  108. Now, I know this country
  109. is becoming burned over,
  110. and I know atheism (incomplete thought).
  111. But if you ask people
    if they're Christians,
  112. what do you think?
  113. What do you think if you walked
    up and down these streets,
  114. and you just started asking
    people one after another,
  115. "are you Christians?"
  116. What do you think a percentage would be
  117. that would say yes?
  118. Pretty high.
  119. Those are exactly the people
  120. that we should be being lights to.
  121. Those are exactly the people
  122. that what we want to do
  123. is we want to seek to help
  124. bring those people
  125. out of their ignorance
  126. and out of their darkness.
  127. Here's the thing,

  128. the picture of Matthew 18
  129. is kind of like of two brothers
  130. who are close,
  131. in a church,
  132. and we lose a brother,
  133. because isn't that what
    we're trying to do?
  134. Gain our brother?
  135. How do you lose him?
  136. Well, because there's sin
    between the two of you.
  137. But the idea is you've got
    two people that are close
  138. and they're together in the same church,
  139. and they've sinned,
  140. and they're seeking reconciliation.
  141. If you think about the emphasis
  142. there in 1 Corinthians 5,
  143. we don't want the leaven.
  144. We don't want the leaven in the church.
  145. But you see, the truth is,
  146. the guy at work -
  147. we're not allowing him in the church.
  148. See, there's a whole difference here.
  149. It's not like the guy that you work with
  150. shows up and wants to
    talk to James and myself
  151. and he's wanting to join the church.
  152. That's not what's happening.
  153. It's not like we let him into the church
  154. and now this has happened.
  155. These are people that are outside.
  156. And the thing is,

  157. yes, you could say,
  158. you know what?
  159. Leaven.
  160. That's influence.
  161. You could say that somebody
  162. is having an influence on you
  163. that's not good
  164. and you need to avoid them.
  165. But see, I would say that's true
  166. saved or lost.
  167. I mean, when I first got saved,
  168. I thought I could hang out
  169. with my lost buddies
  170. and I really did want to evangelize them.
  171. But you know where I
    was evangelizing them?
  172. In the bars.
  173. You look at that now and you'd laugh.
  174. But coming out of the
    lifestyle that I came out of,
  175. that wasn't laughable.
  176. I mean, that's what we did all the time.
  177. And that's where my friends were.
  178. And I wanted to tell them the truth.
  179. And I would say before the Lord,
  180. Lord, I'm only going to
    have two beers tonight.
  181. And I'd have four.
  182. Well, as much as I drank back then,
  183. that didn't get me drunk,
  184. but you know what? I didn't keep my word.
  185. So I'd come home grieved.
  186. And that happened enough times
  187. where I thought, you know what?
  188. I've talked to these guys
  189. and I'm not being a good
    influence on them.
  190. They're being a bad one on me.
  191. And I'd recognize I'm not capable
  192. of doing this anymore.
  193. But I think that's a big question to ask.
  194. Because that seems to be the issue -
  195. leaven.
  196. It seems to be the issue.
  197. (incomplete thought)
  198. And I think we need to ask that.
  199. Is there a place to do what he did?

  200. You've got somebody telling you
  201. they're a Christian,
  202. and you're looking, watching their life
  203. and it doesn't seem to be very Christian -
  204. to say, "I don't think you're born again"?
  205. Do we have a right to
    judge people like that?
  206. Yeah, you better believe we do.
  207. Scripture says that we do.
  208. Let me ask you this.

  209. Where does it say that we do?
  210. Where is there judgment
    shown in Scripture?
  211. (from the room)
  212. Judge a tree by its fruit.
  213. Tim: That's one place.
  214. Can anybody think of anywhere else?
  215. Or even where Scripture
  216. just dogmatically makes a statement
  217. about somebody?
  218. Now, we might say, that's God's Word
  219. and God has the right to make a statement,
  220. but I mean, the truth is
  221. sometimes it's God's men -
  222. yes, they're under inspiration,
  223. but they're making
    observations about the church
  224. and they're dogmatically
    making statements,
  225. such as... anybody think of any?
  226. (from the room)
  227. They told Simon, "your heart
    is not right before God."
  228. Tim: See, there's a situation right there.
  229. You've got Peter and he comes face-to-face
  230. with a guy who Scripture says
  231. believed and was baptized
  232. under Phillip's preaching.
  233. And Peter comes along and says,
  234. "You're going to perish."
  235. (from the room)
  236. He even said "your heart."
  237. It's like he judges the heart right there.
  238. Tim: Right.
  239. Can you think of anywhere else?
  240. (from the room)
  241. I'm thinking in the sense of Paul
  242. when he went to Galatia.
  243. There were these professing Judaizers.
  244. Tim: Yeah, there's these guys preaching
  245. error to the Galatians, and he's says
  246. some of the strongest things he ever says.
  247. They're talking about circumcision
  248. and he's saying some -
  249. in the vernacular,
  250. it was pretty rough language.
  251. You have John.
  252. He says they went out from us
  253. and they weren't of us.
  254. And he can make that judgment.
  255. He says if they were of us,
  256. they would not have gone out from us.
  257. And you know the reality is,
  258. very, very seldom does anybody
  259. leave our church who's genuine
  260. and goes off to another church.
  261. I mean, they leave because
    they don't like the church,
  262. they don't like the teaching,
    they don't like something.
  263. I'm not talking about a
    transfer or something.
  264. But they leave because they don't
    like something and they go off.
  265. Very seldom are they
    legitimate Christians.
  266. Most of the time, that reality is true.
  267. They went out from us
    because they weren't of us.
  268. You know, we can think of Matt.
  269. He left.
  270. At first, you hope the best,
  271. but as time goes on,
  272. he says he's not saved.
  273. That's what happens.
  274. But Scripture talks this way.
  275. Scripture talks about people
    that make shipwreck.
  276. Scripture talks about people
  277. who are not genuine.
  278. Scripture talks about false brethren.
  279. Scripture talks about those
  280. who are tares.
  281. It talks that way.
  282. And as far as us making
    judgments concerning it,
  283. I mean, look, there's oftentimes
  284. that the writers of
    Scripture are charitable.
  285. They're kind.
  286. I mean, Paul could
    look at the Corinthians,
  287. but he still said you need
    to examine yourselves
  288. whether you're in the faith.
  289. Why? Because some of them
  290. were demonstrating lifestyles
  291. that were questionable at best.
  292. (from the room)

  293. I have a question for you.
  294. Do you think there's a difference
  295. between somebody who
    if you were to ask him
  296. would he call himself a Christian,
  297. but in a workplace wouldn't
    say that they are.
  298. They don't tell other people
    about their Christianity,
  299. versus someone who is very open
  300. about being a Christian
    and yet their lives
  301. don't reflect that?
  302. Tim: Well, I think the big deal with that
  303. is they dishonor Christ.
  304. They dishonor the name of Christianity.
  305. (incomplete thought)
  306. If you've got a genuine
    Christian in the workplace,
  307. and then you've got somebody
  308. who's a false Christian,
  309. and maybe they're even more vocal
  310. about telling people they're a Christian.
  311. I'll tell you this,
  312. we're just focusing down
  313. and narrowing down to the workplace.
  314. But the reality is the world out here
  315. is exactly like that.
  316. And the thing is
  317. that yeah, the world loves to say,
  318. "Aha! You're just like me."
  319. But you know what gets them?
  320. It's the guy over there
    that isn't like them.
  321. And you can go around
  322. finding all the counterfeit
    dollars all day -
  323. don't you have a
    counterfeit dollar in there?
  324. That's a true one.
  325. See, you can have a bunch
    of counterfeit money,
  326. but it doesn't negate the real one.
  327. And that's the problem.
  328. You know what?
  329. You go in a workplace, you go in a school,
  330. you go wherever you go,
  331. if you act the part of the real Christian,
  332. and you walk in the fear of God,
  333. and you're honest
  334. and you show integrity,
  335. you'll stand out.
  336. People see it.
  337. And they know.
  338. And they can mock
  339. and they can carry on
  340. about the false guy,
  341. but you are a thorn in their side,
  342. because they don't like it.
  343. Because it condemns them.
  344. That's the reality.
  345. It condemns them.
  346. When I got saved,
  347. my friends had to come
    up with explanations for it.
  348. Well, you know what they say.
  349. "This isn't going to last long."
  350. "He'll get over this."
  351. It's always something.
  352. (incomplete thought)
  353. The last time I was up there -
  354. one of the last times -
  355. and I had a group of the
    guys gathered around,
  356. I said uh huh... it's been 20 years,
  357. and I'm still following Christ.
  358. And they threw all their theories out.
  359. And I got to preach to them
  360. about being born again.
  361. And the thing is it's like
  362. they've got to come up with
    some kind of explanation.
  363. Because they know -
  364. they know something happened to me.
  365. And if you can't explain that away,
  366. (incomplete thought)
  367. Well, I think I'm okay,
  368. but something happened to him,
  369. and it didn't happen to me.
  370. And if that's the real
    thing, I'm in trouble.
  371. (from the room)

  372. Brother, I had a text
  373. if you don't mind if I share it.
  374. It's 2 John 9, it says,
  375. "Everyone who goes on ahead
  376. and does not abide in
    the teaching of Christ
  377. does not have God.
  378. Whoever abides in the teaching
  379. has both the Father and the Son.
  380. If anyone comes to you
  381. and does not bring this teaching,
  382. do not receive him into your house
  383. or give him any greeting.
  384. For whoever greets him takes part
  385. in his wicked works."
  386. That might be more so teaching,
  387. (unintelligible)
  388. Tim: Well, that definitely is teaching.
  389. They're going on ahead.
  390. What they're doing is
    they're leaving behind
  391. this deposit of faith
  392. that's once been delivered
  393. to the people of God.
  394. And they're moving beyond that.
  395. You don't want to be innovative.
  396. This is the same truth that has been
  397. believed for 2,000 years
  398. and handed down.
  399. What I would say there
  400. is obviously that is the kind of thing
  401. where what you want to be sensitive to
  402. is somehow encouraging them
  403. or applauding them,
  404. somehow sanctioning what they're doing.
  405. If a Jehovah's Witness or a Mormon
  406. comes to my door,
  407. I will not shake their hand.
  408. But, if I had a flat tire
    and a guy pulled over
  409. and I became aware he was a Mormon,
  410. and he helped me fix the tire,
  411. and he wasn't there preaching at me
  412. about his false doctrine,
  413. I would shake his hand when I was done.
  414. Why? Because I'm not encouraging
  415. his false teaching.
  416. I think that's the issue there.
  417. I don't think it means
  418. that if you find out
    somebody's a Catholic,
  419. well, "oh, that's heresy!
  420. That's damnable!
  421. Mary worship!
  422. They believe in works.
  423. I can't shake your hand."
  424. I don't think that that's
  425. what's being called for there,
  426. but I think it's got to do with
  427. directly endorsing or
    encouraging their preaching.
  428. And when they're at your door
  429. wanting to speak it,
  430. assuming the best -
  431. just two days ago,
  432. a preacher showed up at the door.
  433. I saw this guy.
  434. It was strange -
  435. my office is out here on the front.
  436. And I'm looking out the window
  437. and a guy -
  438. now this field over here is contained.
  439. It's got fences all the way around it.
  440. So you don't come out
    of the middle of that field
  441. unless you purposely went out there.
  442. And there's a hill and
    there's trees out there.
  443. And I'm looking and a guy comes out
  444. from underneath the trees.
  445. What's this guy doing?
  446. And then he's making a bee line
  447. straight towards my front door.
  448. So I'm watching him, watching him.
  449. I thought yeah, this
    guy's coming to the door.
  450. So I run down and he's a preacher.
  451. And he was wanting to
    invite me to his church
  452. and I didn't ask him,
  453. what were you doing under the trees?
  454. But I told him we have a
    burden for the East side,
  455. and we go door-to-door
  456. and I got him one of the shocking DVD's
  457. and put it in his hand.
  458. I think I shook his hand.
  459. I don't know what he teaches.
  460. And we didn't really get into it.
  461. But I think there's a
    place for us to be kind.
  462. I don't think that the
    place of the Christian
  463. (incomplete thought)
  464. I don't think it's the place
  465. to come across to the world
  466. like we're sour, dour, mean.
  467. But, if somebody's dishonoring Christ
  468. and teaching another gospel,
  469. don't endorse it.
  470. Don't shake their hands.
  471. There's a place just to speak to them
  472. like Paul spoke
  473. because they're damning souls.
  474. You smile and shake
    the hand of the Mormon,
  475. what they are trying to do
  476. is take your neighbors
    to the pit with them.
  477. They don't believe that,
  478. but that's exactly what it is.
  479. So I would just say this,
  480. look, Christians, we live in the land
  481. of false professions galore.
  482. We need to be light in those situations.
  483. And I would not cut off
    association with people
  484. because somebody's got a false profession,
  485. you being real may be the very thing
  486. that God will use to open their eyes.
  487. And you being mean to them
  488. is not what does it.
  489. I mean, you think about it.
  490. You think about Jesus
  491. and His interaction with like a Pharisee.
  492. He'd go eat at their house.
  493. What was that saying?
  494. Did he know that they held
  495. to some kind of Judaistic error?
  496. Of course He did.
  497. Did He know they were lost? Yes.
  498. And He would even in His
    conversations with them,
  499. after they called Him out,
  500. said He had a devil,
    called Him a Samaritan,
  501. He was still saying,
  502. "I say these things that
    you might be saved."
  503. He's still showing a kindness
  504. and a compassion to them.
  505. He wouldn't endorse their teaching.
  506. Paul wouldn't endorse their teaching.