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My Spouse and I Are Divided Over Church. What Should We Do?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
March 4, 2024 4:25 pm

My Spouse and I Are Divided Over Church. What Should We Do?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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March 4, 2024 4:25 pm

Episode 1437 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

Show Notes

CoreChristianity.com

    1. My pastor started preaching that homosexuality isn't sin; what can I do?   2. When a Christian lives contrary to God's law, does that block blessing?   3. Is it wrong to make characters that are analogous to Jesus in novels?   4. My husband doesn't enjoy Sunday worship or fellowship. What should I do?   5. Can a person be saved if they deny the Trinity?     Want to partner with us in our work here at Core Christianity? Consider becoming a member of the Inner Core.   View our latest special offers here or call 1-833-THE-CORE (833-843-2673) to request them by phone.

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My spouse and I are divided over church.

What should we do? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of CORE Christianity. Well, hi there. This is Bill Meyer along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. As we kick off a brand new week, we'd love to hear from you. Here's our phone number.

It's 833-The-Bible. Make a note of that, 833-The-CORE or 1-833-843-2673. You can also post your question on one of our social media sites, including YouTube. You can watch Adriel right now on our YouTube channel and send him your question that way. And of course, you can always feel free to email us at questionsatcorechristianity.com. To start off today, Adriel, I understand we have received a really nice note from one of our listeners named Cheryl. Yeah, I just wanted to open up the broadcast today by sharing this letter that we got from Cheryl. At the end of last month, she says, Dear friends at CORE Christianity, God bless you in the wonderful work you do. I listen every day.

I am learning so much. My heart is hungry for more of Jesus. Pastor Adriel, I pray for you and Bill and the CORE team every day. May God bless you and continue to use this ministry for his honor and glory with love in Christ.

Cheryl from Long Island, New York. Cheryl, thank you so much for your encouragement. I'm so blessed to get to serve you, and I love hearing that you listen to the broadcast every day. May God strengthen you in your faith, and may God give all of us that hunger for more of Jesus. If we can help satisfy that hunger by digging into the scriptures here, that's precisely what we want to do. And so, Cheryl, God bless you and God bless all of our listeners.

That is so wonderful. And you know, I was just thinking of Cheryl being there in New York, where there aren't a lot of evangelical Christians in certain parts of the East Coast. And oftentimes, you know, you're looking for that support and encouragement, maybe looking for a solid church. And so nice to know that Cheryl is listening and growing and being fed through what she hears on the CORE.

Amen. This is CORE Christianity, and our phone lines are open. As we said, if you'd like to give us a call, here's the number, 833-THE-CORE. And let's start off with a voicemail that came in from one of our listeners. This is from Jonathan. I have a question for you.

I got a friend who started a church, and he was very biblically based at first, and his son came out as gay, and my friend is now preaching that homosexuality is not sin. I'm not sure what to do. Thank you.

Hey, boy. Well, heartbreaking situation. And I think that there is a lesson here for all of us. We have the Word of God and what the Word of God clearly teaches, and we have the temptation that we all face to compromise the clear teaching of the Word of God for any number of reasons. And one of the reasons that people oftentimes compromise is because they have a friend or a loved one who gets entrapped in a particular habit or sin or lifestyle, and they think, well, I just have to support this person the way they want to be supported. And many times that looks like affirming them in their sinful lifestyle. And so this is a difficult situation because, you know, it's so heartbreaking, but I think that the Word of God is clear, and I think that, you know, for your part, I think you need to continue to be faithful to what the Scripture says. I think as a friend, you can come alongside of this individual who seems like had a high view of the Word of God at one point but is now drifting away from the truth. And again, Scripture, you know, the Bible is clear about how this really is a temptation for us. I think of what we read in Deuteronomy chapter 13, Moses giving the people of God, you know, these commands for their life in the land. He says, If your brother, the son of your mother, or your son, or your daughter, or the wife you embrace, or your friend who is as your own soul entices you, secretly saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which neither you nor your father have known, some of the gods of the peoples who are around you, whether near you or far from you, from one end of the earth to the other, you shall not yield to him, or listen to him, nor shall your eye pity him.

Moses recognized this is going to be a struggle. You know, if you have a loved one, your spouse, your son, or your daughter, your friend who is like your very own soul, and they say, Hey, you know, I'm starting to believe these other things. I'm starting to embrace this other way of living.

Why don't you come with me? And God says, No, you can't do that. You can't compromise faithfulness to Jesus for something like this. Now, that doesn't mean that, you know, your friend, this pastor, or this guy who started his own church, which I have questions about that, too, you know, that he should stop loving his son or stop pursuing his son. But the right course of action here is not just to affirm him in his sin or to flip on what he thinks that the Bible teaches with regard to this very important subject and embrace essentially the cultural idols of today.

And so God be with you, and God give your friend wisdom and bring about true repentance in this situation. Such a challenge and a good counsel, Adriel, and great to appeal to those words from the Old Testament from Moses, something that all of us need to remember as we consider the choices that we make in this life and in our faith. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Love to hear from you if you have a question about the Bible, the Christian life, doctrine, theology, or something in your church life that you're either confused about or concerned about. Hey, feel free to give us a call at 833-THE-CORE.

Let's go to John calling in from Indiana. John, what's your question for Adriel? Yes, hi Adriel.

It's really cool to be on the show. I wanted to ask you a question. I'm a born-again preacher's son, you know, I'm in my 60s. But when a born-again Christian is living, and this is my own words, I'm not sure if they're proper, but in opposition to the Lord. For instance, committing fornication, which is pretty common in the church, does that necessarily, and I think it does, but does it block the blessings from the Lord to us and our children? That's kind of my question.

Okay. John, excellent question. When a believer is living in open sin and they're not walking in accordance with the word of God, does that block the blessings of the Lord in our lives? Yes, and the first thing I want to say is because God loves us, He disciplines us. If you belong to the Lord, if you're born again in Christ, when you sin, when you commit fornication or whatever the sin is, God doesn't just say, well, I don't care. He disciplines us because He loves us, and that can very much feel like the withdrawal of His fatherly presence.

That doesn't mean that God abandons us, but sometimes we have that sense of having grieved the Holy Spirit because that's precisely what our sins do, according to Paul when he wrote to the Ephesians. This sin in particular, though, fornication is so destructive, and I just want to look at what the Apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 6. They're specifically calling the Corinthians to walk in holiness because they were having serious problems. He says in 1 Corinthians 6, verse 15, Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute?

Never! Or do you not know that he who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For as it is written, the two will become one flesh, but he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Flee from sexual immorality. There's the command for all of us.

Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. This is self-destructive. Or do you not know, again, he continues, that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you whom you have from God. You are not your own, for you were bought with a price, so glorify God in your body.

He couldn't have used stronger words. He's saying, look, you, believer, your body is a temple for the Holy Spirit. Don't go and join your body in this act of fornication. You're sinning against the temple of the Lord. Don't you know this, he's saying. Now, of course, there were people in Corinth who had done this, and this is why he's bringing this up.

And as a result, they did experience discipline. In fact, in the previous chapter, in 1 Corinthians 5, Paul talks about the guy who was in this illicit relationship, and he says, deliver that person over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh so that his body may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. And so, you know, talk about quenching the Spirit. I think what you used, the words that you used were, you know, robbing us of blessings.

Well, in one sense, yeah, we do miss out on that sense of closeness. The blessing and the joy that comes when we're obedient to the Lord. And Paul makes it very clear, you reap what you sow. When you sow to your flesh, you reap according to the flesh corruption.

And so we can't be deceived. And, you know, you asked this question, and you said, we look at the church today, and we see this all over the place. And I think we need to have these kinds of strong warnings that the Apostle Paul gives, but also with hope. And that's the thing, you know, that again and again, you have these strong warnings, but you also have the hope of the free gift of forgiveness and repentance and the fact that God says, look, live as those who have been cleansed and washed. And so may God help each of us as believers to be faithful to Him and to walk in purity and in holiness.

Appreciate the question. God bless. And unfortunately, I think you would agree with this, Adriel, there are a lot of pastors that kind of look the other way when it comes to active sin like that in a congregation that they're aware of. It's like, well, that, you know, wouldn't be nice for me to talk to somebody about that. You know, it was the problem in Corinth. I encourage our listeners to read First Corinthians chapter five, because that's what was happening there. He says, you know, you guys haven't dealt with this issue. You guys are arrogant, proud. It's as if you're thinking, oh, you know, the grace of God just covers everything. Let them do their thing.

He says, no, don't you know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? We have to take sin seriously within the church. We oftentimes talk about the marks of the church. You know, how do you how do you distinguish between a true church and a false church? It's worth reiterating them right now as we're having this discussion. True churches are faithful to the preaching of the word of God, the pure preaching of the gospel.

They administer the ordinances like Jesus gave to the church, baptism in the Lord's Supper, but they also have a high view of the discipline of the church, caring for one another, taking sin seriously within the body. If you don't, well, then, you know, things begin to disintegrate rather quickly. If we're not addressing issues of sin, open sin, then we have a serious problem. And I mean, that's what we were talking about, Bill, with the first question that we answered on the broadcast. You know, a guy who's saying, well, I no longer believe that homosexuality is not sinful. And then here again, you know, people looking the other way with regard to fornication or sexual sin within the church. God help us to hold fast to the word and to seek to be faithful to the Lord as we pursue him in the body of Christ.

So well said. Thanks for that, Adriel. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life or something going on in your own faith walk that's concerning to you here, give us a call at 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. By the way, if you're a regular listener to Core Christianity and you believe in what we do, so much so that maybe you'd consider making a gift, we want to tell you that we don't receive money from a church or denomination. We don't play commercials on this program. We're entirely listener supported. We depend on people just like you to make regular gifts. And we have a special group of people that we call our inner core. Yeah, the inner core is a group of people who support us with a monthly gift of $25 or more. And it's one of the ways that we can partner together to get the word out. I mean, what we want to do here at Core Christianity is help people.

I mean, I got to read that wonderful letter from Cheryl who said, you know, my heart is hungry for more of Jesus. We want to help produce that hunger in people and satisfy that hunger through the word of God. And so if that's you, if you've been encouraged by the work that we're doing, consider joining the inner core. And as a thank you, we'll send you a copy of Mike Horton's book, a wonderful resource called Core Christianity, Finding Yourself in God's Story, which is a walk through the core doctrines of the Christian faith. And so thank you to all of our inner core members. And if you're encouraged by what we do, consider joining the inner core too.

You can do that really easily at our website. Just go to corechristianity.com forward slash inner core. Or if you'd like just to make a one time donation, you can do that as well at corechristianity.com. Just look for the donate link there.

Love to hear from you. And we do appreciate so much those folks that are part of the inner core. Well, we do receive voicemails here at the core. You can call us 24 hours a day and leave your question at 833-THE-CORE. And you still have time to call in live for the next 10 minutes or so if you'd like to give us a call.

833-THE-CORE. Let's go to Brian in Missouri. I'm sorry, Elizabeth in Iowa, who's been holding for a while. We'll get to Brian here in a second. But Elizabeth, what's your question for Adriel?

Yeah, hello. My question is, do you think written slash literary metaphors that are supposed to represent God or Christ break the second commandment or could possibly break the second commandment? And an example would be Aslan the lion from Narnia.

This is an excellent question because it's a little bit different from what we usually get. You know, like, is it ever OK just to pick God with images? And our response here, based on the second commandment that you find in the Old Testament, but other passages as well, is no, we're not supposed to be, you know, drawing images, trying to create pictures of God because we just can't. And there's this danger that we fall into, the danger of idolatry, trying to create God in our image or misrepresenting him. Now, of course, you can do that in all sorts of other ways as well. You can do that through, you know, these more metaphorical pictures that you find in some of these books. But would those also fall under the second commandment?

Great question. I don't necessarily think that they do in the same way, but I do think that you do have to be careful in those situations in particular, where you do have maybe a character, a figure in a story that is supposed to be in one sense representative of the Lord. Or, you know, you're telling this story in a way so as to communicate a gospel truth.

There's still plenty of room for error there. And so we have to be discerning. Of course, throughout Scripture, you have these same kinds of images or metaphors. Even throughout the gospels with the parables, for example, you think of the parable of the prodigal son and the image of the father there who receives his son back. One thing I'll say that's really interesting, Elizabeth, if you look at the early Christian catacombs, you know, in those places you don't have images of God. Because of the second commandment, the Christians were really careful not to depict images of God. But you do have pictures of things like the good shepherd carrying the sheep, or Jonah coming out of the belly of the whale, because it was this sort of picture of resurrection and new life. It did point to Christ, but it wasn't an image of Christ. And so I think that's where we can maybe draw some distinction. But, as always, whether we're talking about the Lord, or using a story or a metaphor to communicate something about the Lord, I do want to be careful that we're representing God as faithfully as we can and as true to his word as we can.

And I do think that we should avoid trying to depict him with images based on what he has revealed in his word. Thank you so much for that question. Just a follow-up question for you.

I'm assuming that you would be okay with C.S. Lewis and Aslan in that depiction? Or am I wrong? Yeah, I do enjoy the Chronicles of Narnia. Even with, I'm currently reading through the Lord of the Rings with my kids at night, when they let me. And we'll sit down and, I mean, there's so much, right?

I mean, just in terms of the storyline, right? I don't think you have to say, well, this person is a picture of Jesus or anything like that. But you can draw lines of analogy to faith and to, you know, the story of Scripture, which is a wonderful thing to do.

And so I'm all for that. But I appreciate Elizabeth's question because I think we do have to be discerning with everything that we do. And especially when we're talking about the Lord, the stakes are so high. And so we want to stick to the scriptures and to the images and metaphors that are given to us there and be sure that we're not twisting things as we seek to talk to others and represent the Lord.

Well said. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Let's go to a voicemail from one of our listeners.

This is Shontay. I'm calling regards to my husband and I going to church with our children. He doesn't like to attend church during worship. He'd rather just attend the sermon only and exclude attending during worship.

I like to come during church in its entirety. He also like to not fellowship with other believers, whereas I like to go to Bible studies throughout the week and bring our children. He also doesn't like to particularly Bible study at home or pray with me or the children. So he says it does make him feel strange that I go to Bible studies at church and he doesn't go. So I'm really not sure what to do.

I was just curious if you had any answers or give me any advice as to what I should do. Thank you. OK. Shontay, you know, you're in a situation that I know many people are in. And let me just say first to you, continue to pursue the Lord and to prioritize your faith in Christ and to seek to raise your children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. Even if your husband doesn't obey the word, doesn't have that same passion for you right now or for the Lord right now that you have, I think continuing to love him, to serve him, to win him over, as it were, by your conduct, by your godly conduct, by your respectful behavior. And to let him know, to be clear, like, man, this is something this is something that I long for, for us and for you. I want you to I want you to lead me and our family in this and in the things of the Lord. And there are many husbands who feel like they're just not equipped to do that or, you know, they don't want to.

And that's a tragedy. And if I could if I could speak to your husband, what I would say to him is, brother, you have an obligation before God to be a man of God and to lead your family in the ways of the Lord. Don't make your wife or your kids beg for that. But take responsibility. Grab the bull by the horns, as they say. And maybe that looks like first humbling yourself and saying, God, I haven't had this desire and honestly, I don't I don't even know what that looks like.

I don't know how to do this. I don't feel equipped. But I think just going to the Lord first and saying, God, help me. Forgive me for not taking responsibility and initiative like I should. And I know I'm speaking to someone right now.

I know that there are husbands listening right now and you're thinking, oh, boy, I know that I haven't done that either. Brother, you need to. God calls you to. I think of what Paul said in Ephesians five and six. He's talking about husbands and wives and how with marriage, at least, you know, there's this picture of the relationship between Christ and the church where Jesus. He sanctified his bride, having cleansed her by washing by the washing of water with the word. Jesus washed us through the word and spirit. Husbands, we ought to be washing our families in the word. Just a little bit later in Ephesians chapter six, verse four, Paul says, fathers do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. Brother, that's something God calls you to.

And it is a great privilege to get to do that. And if you feel like I just don't know how to do that, it begins with humbling yourself before the Lord and being yourself a man of the word, opening up the scriptures, studying the scriptures, taking the initiative and the priority to say, no, we're going to be in church. We're going to worship together.

And that's something that your family needs to see from you. And again, sister, you know, your husband isn't there yet. So continue to pray, continue to encourage him, continue to also set a godly example, but to make it known that this is something that you long for. And may the Lord bring more and more unity. And may the Lord, you know, light a fire in his heart as well to really be passionate about these things and about his own family's growth and grace. And God help all of us, you know, husbands, fathers listening right now to take responsibility and initiative here in raising our children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and washing our family in the water of the word. Well said. This is Core Christianity. Let's go to Brian in Missouri.

Brian, we've just got about a minute left. What's your question for Adriel? My question is this. I used to be what's called Oneness Pentecostal. I was belonging to the United Pentecostal Church.

God started dealing with me about the Trinity of the Godhead. And what really caught my attention is I preached a youth service one night and four guys came in in the back and I went down to meet them after service and found out they were Mormons. They told me in so many words that what the United Pentecostal and Oneness believes is the exact same thing as the Mormons believe. They believe in Mormonism. They believe in the Oneness doctrine as well. My question is if people are oneness and denying the Trinity, are they going to go to heaven when they die?

Great question. And also what an indictment against Mormonism as well. He's basically saying we reject Orthodox Christian doctrine. And the answer is no, you cannot reject the doctrine of God, who God is, and still be saved. He strikes at the vitals of true religion. And so in order to be saved, we have to believe in the true God, Jesus Christ the Lord. We pray for you and be sure to join us next time as we explore the truth of God's word together.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-04 19:01:06 / 2024-03-04 19:11:23 / 10

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