Tuesday, July 22, 2014

AWOL with a Seared Conscience and Shipwrecked Faith

1 Tim 1:18  This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; 19  Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: 20  Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.

Hymenaeus and Alexander could have been members of any church. You have known these guys, served beside them, worshiped with them. They were ushers, trustees, choir members. They changed oil in the cars of single mothers, drove the church van, taught a Jr. boy's Sunday school class, worked in the Awana program. You prayed next to them at the altar, sang a duet with one of them.

Alas, Alexander found a girlfriend who was not a Christian and started missing Sunday nights to be with her instead of with the brethren. Soon, prayer meetings were dropped because that was their gym night. Then, they took a trip together, unchaperoned, out of town for a weekend. Alex hasn't been in church since last Easter and shows no interest since they moved in together.

Hymenaeus took an interest in Reformed theology ever since he took that Greek class on line. He switched out his King James for a more scholarly translation. He became argumentative, even with the pastor on several of the tenets of the church's stated beliefs. He is now holding Bible studies in his home and at the coffee shop in lieu of his church duties. He has made no qualms about his new outlook on all things faith related, bragging that his true fellowship is on the internet where he is much more blessed than in his stagnant church with its ignorant pastor.

And so, forsaking the spiritual food and fellowship of the local church, these guys are set adrift on the sea of their own eclectic faith. From the buffet of radical, unbalanced pet issues (legalism, hyper grace, double inspiration, hyper Calvinism, universalism, amillennialism, post-tribulationalism, universal church, Pentecostalism, and a host of other unorthodox oddities) they have crafted their own freelance faith apart from the pillar and ground of the truth, the Word of God as faithfully taught in the local church.

Alas, they inadvertently find themselves delivered unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh that their spirits might be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. (I Cor 5:5)

Our prayer for Hymie and Alex is that they would learn not to blaspheme the Word and work of the Lord, and for all who once aligned themselves  with the Bride of Jesus, His body, the local church but are now AWOL with seared consciences and shipwrecked faiths.

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