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Grumblers, Fault-finders, and Complainers - 10

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman
The Truth Network Radio
March 19, 2023 7:00 pm

Grumblers, Fault-finders, and Complainers - 10

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman

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March 19, 2023 7:00 pm

Pastor Greg Barkman explains from Jude 16 the five ungodly characteristics of religious hypocrites who infiltrate churches.


Well, today we come to the conclusion of the main section of the epistle of Jude. And you'll notice the change by the change in pronouns. In verse 16, we have the third person, plural pronouns.

These are grumblers, complainers, and so forth. But as we come to verse 17, it changes to second person, but you, beloved, and so forth through the end of the book. And so we notice a change that is coming.

We're to the end of the first section now, and we'll be, Lord willing, entering into the shorter and last section next week. But the primary purpose of the book, as you know, is to warn God's people about religious intruders. Jude said in verse three, Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith, which was once for all delivered to the saints, for certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ. And so he describes in details these religious imposters in the first section that we'll end today in verse 16, and then turns his attention once again, as he did at the beginning of the book, but once again in the end section of the book, addressing true believers and our response to all of this in verses 17 through 25. Thus far, he has described these imposters, these hypocrites, these intruders, these false teachers as ungodly, heretical, immoral, lawless, slanderous, covetous, brash, unfruitful, and slated for divine judgment.

But now we come to the final description in verse 16. These are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts, and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage. Five sinful practices of these people that Jude is warning the church about, and in some ways, these final five may be the most telling of them all. Five ungodly characteristics of religious hypocrites who infiltrate churches.

And what are they? Number one, grumblers. These are grumblers. Depending on what translation you have, it may be translated murmurers, complainers.

I couldn't find this particular word in any of the translations, but some of us would call them grippers. You know what that word means, don't you? And it is categorizing people who find fault with the deeds and words of others, and they mouth their complaints.

They are fault finders. And this complaint that is spoken in conversation arises from an attitude. Many years ago when I was in school, I used to hear the then president of the school say, griping not tolerated, constructive criticism appreciated.

What's the difference? Griping not tolerated, constructive criticism appreciated. Well, of course, there is a right time and place and manner to deal with things that do not appear to be correct. There's nothing ungodly about that if we go about it in the right way. Think about Acts Chapter 6 and the distribution of food at the widow's tables and the reality that there were one class of widows that were not being treated fairly in that situation. Was it a matter of grumbling and complaining and murmuring to bring that to the attention of the apostles, the leaders of the church?

No. That actually was a very godly thing to do, and it was dealt with in a proper and God-honoring way. So it's not that we never notice or never have any way to address things that are wrong or that appear to us to be wrong, but it is that there is a wrong way as well as there is a right way, and most of the time people do it the wrong way, not the right way. Am I right?

I see some heads that are nodding in agreement. In other words, the offense here is talking to the wrong people about that with which you are dissatisfied, talking to family, talking to friends, talking to other church members, rather than, number one, first and foremost, talking to the person with which you have a concern. Isn't that what the Bible tells us to do?

If your brother trespasses against you or if you think your brother has trespassed against you, where do you go? Tell it to others far and wide? Complain to others about what he or she is doing?

No. Tell it to your brother. Go to your brother.

Talk to him about it. And in some cases, that's going to take care of the problem. Not in every case, but in many cases it will, but regardless, that's always the right thing to do, according to the Bible. But instead of taking it to the person with which you have a problem, you tell it to other people who are not part of the solution. That doesn't address the problem. It doesn't help the problem.

It doesn't solve the problem. It magnifies the problem, and that's what Jude is talking about here, the grumblers, who do not take their complaints to the persons with whom they have a problem, nor to spiritual leaders who have a responsibility to deal with problems and concerns in the church, but rather they tell it to all kinds of other people that they ought not to be talking to at all. I was talking about this section of scripture with someone the other day, and their response was, people just love to complain. There's a lot of truth in that, isn't there?

But that doesn't make it right. People love to complain, but that is the first of the final five characteristics of the religious hypocrites, the pretenders, the unsaved infiltrators into the church. Shame that it should be found among those who are truly Christians. Grumblers, murmurers, complainers, grippers to the wrong people. Now, there are often spiritual justifications for why people will do this. Sometimes they express their words of complaint as a matter of spiritual concern.

The only reason I talk to you about this is because I'm concerned about so and so. Well, that sounds spiritual, doesn't it? I'm telling you this to make it a matter of prayer. It's a prayer request.

Please pray for so and so with this problem that I have identified in their life. And so it is justified as a matter of spiritual concern. It is sometimes justified as a matter of spiritual discernment. God has given me a special gift of spiritual discernment. I can see these problems better than other people, and therefore I can tell other people about them better than other people. If you're telling them not to the person that is the problem, as far as you're concerned, or not to the spiritual leaders of the church, then it doesn't matter how much spiritual discernment you may or may not have. I've noticed that a lot of times people who think they have the gift of spiritual discernment in my evaluation display less of it than others. But somehow they have this exalted idea that they have it in a way that others do not have it.

And so that justifies their talking about the problems that they see in others. And many times it is a resort to my superior knowledge. I know more about the Bible than most people. I know more about sound doctrine than most people. I have a better understanding of theology than most people.

So that makes me more able than other people to detect these things. And that gives me, therefore, the privilege of airing these things because I have the superior knowledge. No, the Bible doesn't say that if you have superior knowledge, or think you do, that that gives you the right to handle these things in a different way than what the Bible instructs other people to do in handling them. In fact, doesn't the Bible warn us that knowledge puffs up? Love humbles us. But if we're not careful, if we do have superior knowledge, if we do have the advantages of a superior education, if we have read more widely than others, if we do understand sound theology better than others, we are therefore subject to greater pride than others that we need to guard against even more carefully.

So what is the problem with these grumblers? Well, the problem is they seem to be very good at finding fault with others, but seldom with finding the faults within their own lives. It's the same old moat beam problem that Christ talked about when he said, before you think you are qualified to take the moat, the little speck out of your brother's eye, you better first make sure that you don't have a log in your own eye.

It may be that the log in your eye is distorting your vision so that you're not even seeing what you think is the problem with your brother's eye, the way that you ought to be able to see it. Deal with your own problems first. Acknowledge that you have problems first.

Examine your own heart and life before the Lord. Ask others if they see problems. You're very quick to talk about the problems of other people.

Are you willing to invite other people to tell you what they see as problems in your own life? Oh, no, you would never do that. Pride would keep you from doing that. You see, that's the problem.

Good at finding fault with others, but not at finding sins within your own life. The problem is that this kind of activity undermines God-given authority in the church. The problem with this activity is that it spreads your discontent to others who, until you started talking to them, maybe were perfectly satisfied, but now they're beginning to take up your complaint and their discontent as well. Don't forget, please, the nation of Israel in the wilderness who were guilty of a number of things, idolatry and sexual immorality and a number of sins against God. Do you know what the primary problem was as God identifies it over and over and over of those people in the wilderness after they were redeemed from Egypt?

Do you remember what their primary problem was? Complainers, murmurers, fault finders, exactly what we are reading here about these intruders into the church. That was Israel's primary problem, and that problem unchecked led to these other problems, these other sins which they committed. In other words, in the eyes of God, this complaining activity may in fact be a worse sin than some of the others that we consider to be far greater, because this grumbling and complaining is ultimately against God.

You don't usually think of it that way. The problem is here. The problem is there. The problem is what he said.

The problem is with what she did, but you see, if God is sovereign and He is controlling, restraining what He chooses not to allow, allowing what He chooses to allow for His good and gracious purposes, and you're not content with what God is allowing, then ultimately your complaint is against God. And that begins to put this problem in its proper perspective, and you begin to see the greatness of its proportions and of its sinfulness, grumblers. But the second characteristic of these intruders is complainers. These are grumblers, number one, complainers, number two. Now, obviously, complaining is closely related to grumbling, so much so that some of the commentaries join the two together and only list four characteristics in this text.

But as I have looked at this closely, I have come to understand that there is a distinction between the first two words, number one, grumblers, and number two, complainers, although there's also a lot of overlapping. One translation rather loosely, but I think accurately translated this one, cursing their luck. They are grumblers. They are cursing their luck.

Well, what does that mean? They are specifically discontented with their lot in life. In the first one, people are finding fault with others, picking faults in the words and deeds of what others around them are doing. In the second one, they are complaining about their own circumstances in life with which they are unhappy and talking with others about their discontent, the unfairness that has happened to them. People like this seem to carry with them a perpetual sense of having been wronged.

We have a related idea in our vocabulary today. We talk about people who think they are entitled, and I find that that word can be applied to a lot of different categories of people. Some people apply that to the ones they consider to be privileged and wealthy. They think they're entitled to all of these things. They even have a nickname for women like that.

Have you picked up on that? She's a Karen. She's entitled. She thinks she's entitled to all kinds of privileges, and she flaunts her entitlement. But then, of course, there are others who say, well, look at this other class of people who think they're entitled to support by the government, support by the taxpayers. They think they're entitled to special privileges because of the supposed wrongs that have been done to them in the past and so forth and so on. And before long, it becomes pretty clear that everybody in the world of whatever class or category, from high to low, for whatever race, whatever background, can all find some way to think they are entitled to more than what they have, entitled to better than what they have. And that's the idea here. People who are complaining about their lot in life, they have a victimhood mentality.

They see themselves as victims. As I was coming to church today, I was tuned into the Lutheran Hour, as I often am, because it happens to come on early in the morning. And this morning, the preacher on the Lutheran Hour told about a man in Australia, I think his name, I forget, I think it was Rick, but I may be wrong about that, who was born without arms, without legs, and what a cheerful, buoyant, happy man he was. And it went on to describe all the things that he had learned to do in overcoming these handicaps. He could swim. He could do other things. He was married.

He had a number of children. He had a wonderful attitude toward life, gratitude to God for preserving his life when he would have been expected to die. And most of us would look at him and say, if there's anybody in all the world who has a reason to complain about his lot in life, there he is, but he's chosen another course, and what a difference that has made. What would this complaining, resentful victimhood mentality do for him? What would it do to help him? Nothing.

But taking a different attitude has helped him tremendously. What does anybody's complaining victimhood mentality accomplish in helping them in life? Nothing.

Nothing. The complaining doesn't help a thing. So recognize that and change your attitude. But this is a characteristic of these people, these intruders, who have this victimhood mentality and find little satisfaction in life and want to blame others for the conditions they find in their life that they think are undesirable.

The reason why I have such a hard time is because of this that was done to me by somebody else, and that was done to me by somebody else, and this was done to my ancestors years ago, and this was done by my wife, and this was done by my husband, and this was done by my parents, this was done by my father, this was done by a schoolteacher, this was done by somebody in church, and therefore I've got all these difficult and undesirable circumstances of which other people are responsible, so please take pity upon me and don't expect much from me because after all, I've got all of these handicaps and other people are to blame. And what are some of the root problems in this kind of attitude? Envy, covetousness, hatred, but ultimately the same as the first one, lack of surrender to God's sovereign rule. It's amazing that people sometimes even who are champions of the sovereignty of God still have this same problem, this same attitude. They can talk about the sovereignty of God and even debate with other people about the doctrine of the sovereignty of God and prove from scriptures the doctrine of the sovereignty of God and yet somehow find it impossible to yield their own circumstances into the care of a sovereign God and yield to Him and surrender to Him and trust Him and know the promises that He has given that He will take care of His people.

Can I quote from one of my commentaries, and I didn't write down which commentary, I think it was Michael Green, but can I quote what he put in by someone named Lucian of Cyrene? This goes way back a couple thousand years, but here's what he wrote. You are satisfied by nothing that befalls you. You complain of everything. You don't want what you've got. You long for what you haven't got. In winter, you wish that it were summer.

In summer, that it were winter. You are like the sick folk, hard to please and constantly complaining, end quote. Boy, he hit the nail on the head, didn't he, for some people? That's the remedy. Surrender to God's rule. Accept His choices for your life.

You say that's what you believe. Now apply it to your circumstances. Resist blaming others for the circumstances in your life. God had you born the way that you were born. God had you born where you were born. God had you born into the family where you were born. God has orchestrated the circumstances of your life. And so resist blaming others for your circumstances.

Take them to the Lord and commit these things to Him in humble surrender before Him and cultivate gratitude in the place of discontent. It is a choice, at least for God's people it is. I don't know about these imposters who don't know the Lord. They may not have the spiritual resources that are needed to give them a choice to do otherwise. In their sinful, Adamic nature that has no overriding spiritual power of the new birth within them, they may be stuck in this, but God's people have a choice. And God's people can choose gratitude and thanksgiving instead of grumbling and complaining, right?

We can. And that's why the Bible is so filled with admonitions to be thankful, to do everything with thanksgiving, to learn to cultivate gratitude and thanksgiving to God. That's the remedy for this kind of complaining. But we move on, number three, to pleasure seekers. These are number one grumblers, number two complainers, number three walking according to their own lusts. They live according to fleshly desires, and this has been covered before.

The first two are new, but this one has been covered before. And therefore, in the context of what we have read prior to verse 16, we would understand this living according to fleshly desires as being primarily living in sexual immorality and in materialism, not according to spiritual desires, but rather according to fleshly desires. Now, if you don't have the Spirit of God, if you haven't been born again, if you haven't been made a new creature in Christ, if you are a natural man and not a spiritual man, then you really don't have any spiritual desires that you can live according to. But God's people can. In fact, what we're talking about is a good indicator to separate the true people of God from the pretenders.

You see, it's not only these false teachers that come into the church and spread heresy that are pretenders within the church, but sometimes there are Christians who have made a profession of faith but are, in fact, only pretenders within the church. And it's this kind of activity that manifests their true nature. Living according to fleshly desires, not according to spiritual desires, not out of consideration for others, which is what we are taught as God's people, love our neighbor as ourself, put others above ourselves. Of course, that doesn't come easy.

It does not come easy. It goes against fleshly desires. But it is something that our spiritual nature is capable of. It's something that a born-again child of God who has the Spirit of God within him is very much capable of to suppress our own selfish desires and to elevate our love and concern for others. And so these intruders are walking according to their own lusts, not according to spiritual desires, not out of consideration for others, and ultimately, and here's the bottom line, not according to the Word of God. Instead of being guided and guarded, constrained by the Word of God, which tells those who profess the name of Christ how we are to live, they disregard all that and live not according to God's revealed will, but according to their own fleshly desires. We have a technical name for this. It's called antinomianism.

Anti, against, nomos, law, against the law. Justifying such behavior generally by those who profess to be Christians by distorting Scripture. At the very beginning when Jude talked about these, he said, Men who turn, verse 4, men who turn the grace of our God into lewdness.

Men who turn the grace of God into lewdness. The Bible is very clear that the grace that saves also sanctifies. The grace that saves also teaches us to walk righteously and godly in this present world. But there are those who will take this wonderful truth of the grace of God. We are saved by grace, not by works. God is a gracious God who forgives our sins. Therefore, it doesn't matter how we live. Therefore, we can sin with abundance and always count on the grace of God.

That's a distortion. That is resting Scripture for justification for your own sinfulness. That is ungodly teaching. That is ungodly philosophy. That is ungodly justification.

But it keeps popping up. I hear about it every now and then in some church that is supposed to be a strong evangelical church. Particularly, it often comes about with a change of pastors. The old pastor who was true to the word of God passes off the scene and some young, cool guy comes in. And suddenly he's got a different take on the grace of God and his take is to encourage people to sin because after all, we're saved by grace, not by works.

We're saved by grace, not by law. It's abomination to God. Number four, boasters. Their mouths speak great swelling words. Grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lust, and they mouth great swelling words. Literally, they speak huge words. You might look at that and say, well, they've got an advanced vocabulary. My wife and I greatly enjoy reading the Wall Street Journal, as much of it as we have time for.

There's so much in there. And we laugh at how often we have to look up words in order to figure out what's being said. They use big words in the Wall Street Journal. Sometimes I'm seeing words I've never seen before, but there they are. Good for me to learn and grow and expand my vocabulary. It's good to, in my generation, keep a dictionary close at hand.

In your generation, keep a click-click close at hand so you can check out those words. But that's not the kind of huge words that he's talking about here. He's talking about bombastic speech, great swelling words, in other words, loud, intrusive, noisy. These are people who dominate conversations by their loud and energetic speech that just, as it were, tramples over others in conversation. And in so doing, they call attention to themselves.

That's the offense that he's talking about. Now, he does have this element of pride, though that's not so much found in the actual words that Jude is using here, but that's what underlies it. People do this because they are full of themselves. This is a way of boasting.

And so with their great swelling words, they boast of their activities and accomplishments. In fact, they often exaggerate their abilities and achievements. They have an inflated ego.

And what is the larger issue that underlies this? Well, it's come up before, but they think more of themselves than they do of others, and so they're constantly calling attention to themselves by their great swelling words. They confuse claims and ambitions with accomplishments. If they can talk about what they can do and what they intend to do, then in their minds it's almost as if they've already done it. They're supposed to applaud them for their great accomplishments because of what they plan to do. They're big talkers, however, and small achievers, a little bit like the guy we talked about a week or two ago, the man that's all hat and no cattle.

That's kind of what's going on here with these folks. And if they have any actual accomplishments, which they may, these in their minds are all for self-exaltation, not for the good of others. All right, so you have gained several impressive degrees. You have a good mind, and you've been able to do that, had the privilege of going to school, and you have a master's degree, you have a doctor's degree, you have these degrees.

For what? Is that so you can put these initials after your name and gain honor to yourself because of it? Look at me, I'm a PhD, I'm an MD, I'm a DDS, I'm a, what's the lawyer, LLD, something like that, doctor of law.

I'm all of these things. The question is, what did you acquire that education for? Is it to honor yourself or to enable you to serve others, to enable you to help others, to enable you to do something for other people in this world?

What is the reason for this? Well, if you're a Christian, you should understand that the reason for this is to better equip you to serve Christ and to serve others. But if you are a carnal person, then all of this is only for your own self-glory. Remember, and here's a general rule that I think the scripture teaches us, remember, loud is generally rude, quiet is generally good.

To rhyme with rude. Now, there are times when we need to speak up and speak out, and Christ is an example of this. You'll find him doing that occasionally.

But day after day, week after week, month after month, his general demeanor was one of meekness, quietness. Because loud is generally rude, quiet is generally good. Now, there's times when being quiet is actually wrong, when we should speak up.

So we need to learn these things, of course. But I'm talking about generalizations. And in a general way, if you have a loud bombastic personality, learn to tone it down.

You're being rude without even realizing how rude you are. Loud is generally rude, quiet, quiet conversation, quiet speech, thoughtful speech, not intrusive speech. Listening to others before you speak is a good characteristic. It's a Christ-like characteristic. And we need to cultivate that, not to be boasters whose mouths are speaking great, swelling words.

And we come, number five, to the last one, flatterers. Number five, flattering people to gain advantage. In other words, deception through flattery. Saying things about people, and oftentimes to people, hypocritically. Not because you sincerely believe that, not because it's an honest appreciation for who they are, but because you are calculating to get something from this. You are not telling truth for the good of others, but you are shading truth for the sake of yourself.

That's flattery. And there is a financial angle. It's flattering people to gain advantage. It can be any kind of advantage, a number of different types of advantage, but particularly financial advantage. And some translations include that idea of financial advantage in the translation. And these intruders are people who have come into the church because they think they found a way to use religious position for financial advantage to themselves.

And there are various ways to do this. On the personal, individual level, they will many times cultivate personal relationships with people for the sake of financial advantage. They know how to milk people.

They know how to finesse people. And the sad fact of the matter is that many times wealthy people who have carnal characteristics love that. They love to be milked. They love to be flattered.

They love to be cultivated. They desire this from others. They expect this from others. They expect other people to treat them favorably, to give them special treatment, favorable treatment. And they're happy to do favors in return to gain what they want.

So it's a carnal cycle. It is sinful carnality on the part of the flatterer who's using the wealthy person for their own personal gain. And it's oftentimes sinful enjoyment of the flattery on the part of the wealthy person who's happy to have that and willing to give what he has to the person who will give that to him.

That's individually, publicly. Those who gain positions of leadership in the church publicly preach what people want to hear for financial gain. Whatever will best draw a crowd, that's what they preach. Whatever best produces financial support, that's what they preach. The issue is that these are people who use others for their own purposes. They're using people, not serving them. They're fleecing the flock, not feeding the flock.

And to do that, they use selective teaching and distorted teaching. They select carefully things from the Bible that will further their own purposes, ignoring those things which will not, and many times even distorting the meaning of Scripture in order to advance their purpose. They are teaching not what people need to hear for their own spiritual good, but what people want to hear, which will benefit the one who's telling them what they want to hear. They are those who are not preaching the whole counsel of God. And Paul talked about this characteristic, didn't he, in 2 Timothy chapter 4. And he said, For the time will come when they, people in the church, will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers, and they will turn away their ears from the truth and be turned aside to fables.

Again, it is a reciprocal arrangement. The preachers love to do this because of what they get from the people, that they are flattering in this way. And the people love to be flattered. They love to hear messages. They love to hear Christian doctrine that encourages them in their carnality and never disturbs them in their sinfulness. And they will be happy to support teachers like that because that gives them what they want, and so everybody gets what they want out of this.

Isn't that what is sometimes called a symbiotic relationship? Enablers. So there you have it, five characteristics. Grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts, and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage. Edward Pentecost and his commentary succinctly summarized these five sinful characteristics as follows. Vocally discontented, sinfully self-centered, extravagantly egotistical, and deceptively flattering.

Vocally discontented, sinfully self-centered, extravagantly egotistical, deceptively flattering. Now let me concentrate on two extended applications that I think come from this passage. And the first one has to do with human sinfulness. What we find in Jude verse 16 is fallen human nature on display.

That's what it looks like. And if we are honest and attentive, we will also have noticed that we have some, if not all of these characteristics still lingering within us, even those of us who have been redeemed by the grace of God. All of this hasn't been eradicated, has it? This is sinful nature. This is Adamic sinfulness. This is Adamic depravity and what it looks like. But we're told in this text that these things dominate the character of religious pretenders.

Why? Because they don't have any offsetting spiritual life and godliness and development within them to rein in these sinful characteristics. And therefore we need to recognize these kinds of characteristics so that we are not deceived because we are too easily impressed with personality and with boasted intentions and with pictures of great things that can be accomplished without paying close attention to the real character and characteristics that are being manifested by such people. And we need to realize that one reason why we sometimes fail to recognize these is because of our own lack of godliness. We tend to not recognize the sins in others that are also sins within ourselves that we haven't dealt with. And so we need to recognize these five characteristics within ourselves and ask God to help us to defeat them in our own lives so that we will not be like these false teachers and so that we will be able to recognize them and not be misled by them and so that we will be able to guard against them in the churches of the Lord Jesus Christ. Here's a lesson about human sinfulness that we need to take to heart.

But my second application has to do with grumbling and a critical spirit. Because of the five characteristics, and all of them are things that we have to be on guard against, but of the five characteristics, I think the ones that are most likely to be manifested fairly widely among Christian people are the first two, grumblers and complainers. Two characteristics which are viewed lightly by many people, they're so common that we don't even think about them as sins or at least not big sins. But I remind you again, what was Israel in the wilderness biggest sin against God, their biggest problem? Constant murmuring and complaining.

That was their big one. It's bigger in us in the eyes of God than what we often recognize. This grumbling and critical spirit is rampant among many of God's people.

It's rampant in many churches of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is all too often present in the lives of those who are considered to be mature and are Christian leaders. Therefore, we need to resolve that by the help and grace of God, we are going to nip gossip in the bud. Thank you, Barney Frank, for telling us how to deal with this. Nip it in the bud!

Because that's where it's got to be nipped. Do not engage in grumbling and complaining and a critical spirit yourself. If there is a problem, deal with it the Bible way. Go to the person that you have the problem with.

If you're not willing to do that or you don't think it's large enough that it deserves that kind of treatment, then zip up. Stop talking about it. You don't have permission to talk to others about it.

You don't have God's permission to talk to others about it. Do not engage in it. Do not listen to it from others. Do not encourage it. If someone starts talking to you about what's wrong with so-and-so, what they said, what they did, ask them, have you talked to this person about this?

Well, no, no, I haven't done that. Then if not, I don't want to hear it. I shouldn't be listening to it until you deal with it, until you take it to the person that you're talking about. Don't talk about them. Talk to them.

If not, I don't want to hear it. If you have taken it to them and haven't been able to get a satisfactory response, then I will be happy to go with you to talk to them about it again. That's a biblical response. If you haven't talked to them about it, I don't want to hear it. If you have talked to them about it and they have not responded favorably, then you need somebody else to go with you. I'll volunteer to do that.

I don't want to hear you talk to me about it, but I will help you take it to where it ought to go and try to resolve the problem. And if we would handle this kind of complaining and grumbling and fault-finding this way, I wonder what spiritual renewal it would bring to our churches. I wonder what great joy it would bring to our hearts and to our worship. I wonder what blessings heaven would pour down upon our churches for handling these things in a God-honoring way. May God help us to do so, shall we pray.

Almighty God, we know the day is coming when your Son will return in power and great glory to judge the living and the dead. O Lord, help us to heed the words of Jude and to apply them to our own lives. Help us, Lord, not to be grumblers and complainers. Help us, Lord, not to be walking after our own lust. Help us not to be covetous and materialistic in our attitude toward life. But help us, O Lord, to live with eternity's values in view and with an eye upon that day when Christ shall return and shall judge everyone according to his works. And so help us, O Lord, to honor you with our lives and with our lips as we pray it in Jesus' name. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-22 12:16:24 / 2023-03-22 12:31:56 / 16

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