Friday, November 29, 2002
Some have accused us Pharisees of being such an exclusive group that we don’t even fellowship with one another, let alone members of other denominations. They are correct in stating that we are an exclusive group (narrow is the way and few there be that find it) but they misunderstand why it is important that we continue to remain so.
First of all, our critics miss the point that we are members of the True Church. All other denominations are false churches who preach only a form of the gospel. We alone preach the entire truth of the Word of God free from error. Other churches preach a portion of the truth but they either leave out the rest of the truth or add errors of their own. Both of these faults cause them to be in the wrong.
Second, we should avoid any fellowship with those in error. We run the risk of being contaminated with erroneous doctrine if we ever tolerate the doctrinal impurity of others. At the very least, it shows that we approve of doctrinal error. This is why we not only refuse to fellowship with non-Pharisee churches but we also avoid fellowshipping with Pharisee churches who have strayed even the tiniest bit into error. By maintaining this stance we insure that we will not fall into the same error.
I have had people ask how we can be so sure that we are not the ones in error and that the other churches might be in the right. This absurd accusation fails to take into account the role of the Holy Spirit in leading us into all truth. We are given unction from on high that protects us from error by allowing us to rightly divide the word of truth. Other churches may claim to have the Holy Spirit but only our kind of Pharisee churches truly have the leading of the Spirit.
Others try to convince us that God is not so concerned with what they think are petty details of doctrine. I agree that there are some doctrines, which are ambiguous by nature, and God does not demand absolute agreement on those issues. However, not everyone agrees on what those ambiguous doctrines are. For example, some would try to convince us that a premillennial, pretribulational rapture of the saints is an ambiguous doctrine. This is clear proof that just because someone claims to be led by the Spirit, doesn’t mean they are truly led by the Spirit. The Rapture of the Saints is one of the clearest truths in the Word of God and for anyone to not understand the essential facts of the Tribulation and the Millennium is to leave the Word of God and dwell in error.
Who would think for a minute that Christ would be pleased with someone in error? I know for a fact that Christ would not tolerate for one moment, anyone who held the truth in error. So if Jesus Himself expects us to maintain doctrinal purity, then we should be just as intolerant of error as He is. For us to tolerate error, even if we did not succumb to its allure and follow it, would make us guilty by association. Maintaining doctrinal purity is a way for us to demonstrate our holiness to our brothers and sisters who are following the wrong path and lead them back into Truth by our good examples.
The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know.
I Corinthians 8:2 (NIV)
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