Share This Episode
Core Christianity Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier Logo

What Do I Do When My Pastor Acts Like a Political Pundit?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
October 13, 2020 1:00 am

What Do I Do When My Pastor Acts Like a Political Pundit?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 1147 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.


October 13, 2020 1:00 am

Episode 552 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

Show Notes

CoreChristianity.com

1. Reading 2 Timothy 2:15, how do I rightly “divide the word” and handle it rightly when it seems so easy to take scripture out of context?

2. I recently have been laid off due to COVID. I realize that God generally promises to save and redeem us and that that does not mean we will live successful and comfortable lives, but when I began the job I was laid off from, it seemed like it was a huge answer to prayer. I really felt that God had me where I was supposed to be, and now that is taken away. I am sure God cares for us in these times but is the only comfort we have that we will be with him in heaven? That is comforting, but it seems like we are on our own as we are looking for work. Do you have any thoughts on this?

3. How do you approach your pastor when he is shifting the message and turns it into a political ad or a hate speech towards people that doesn’t have the same belief as we Christians do?

4. Are Christians today required to pay tithes?

Offers

Request our latest special offers here or call 1-833-THE-CORE (833-843-2673) to request them by phone.

Want to partner with us in our work here at Core Christianity? Consider becoming a member of the Inner Core.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
Matt Slick Live!
Matt Slick
Connect with Skip Heitzig
Skip Heitzig
Truth for Life
Alistair Begg
Renewing Your Mind
R.C. Sproul
Core Christianity
Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
Delight in Grace
Grace Bible Church / Rich Powell

When pastors faithfully preach the scriptures, they're bound to speak against political and cultural idols.

But does that mean that pastors should act and sound like political pundits? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of CORE Christianity. You can call us right now with your question at 833-The-CORE. That's 1-833-843-2673.

And you can email us with your question at questions at corechristianity.com. First up today, if you've been involved in a coronavirus lockdown, did you know that sharing a home with a pet appears to act as a buffer against psychological stress? Yeah, there was a study done at the University of York in England, and it found that having a pet was linked to maintaining better mental health and reducing loneliness during the coronavirus. In fact, about 90% of the 6,000 people who were in the study had at least one pet.

They say the strength of the human-animal bond did not differ significantly between species, with the most common pets being cats and dogs, followed by small mammals and fish. I was going to ask, you know, do goldfish count? Because I feel like that's my kind of pet. I don't know. What about snakes and reptiles? I mean, iguanas?

I just don't know. I just don't think... Now Bill, I know you have Sparky. Yeah, we have a Labradoodle. Has he helped you cope during this time? He's helped me tremendously during this whole coronavirus. The kids and I and my wife, we like to snuggle with Sparky, and he gives us great comfort.

Nice. Let's get to our first question of the day. This one is from Jean, and she emailed us and said, Reading 2 Timothy 2.15, how do I rightly divide the word and handle it rightly when it seems so easy to take scripture out of context?

Hi, Jean. I'm glad you asked this question. It's so important for us to really think about how it is that we're approaching the scriptures. 2 Timothy 2, I'm going to read verses 14 and 15. Paul told Timothy, remind them of these things and charge them before God, not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. It goes on to say in verse 16, but avoid irreverent babble, or it will lead people into more and more ungodliness.

Again, you ask a great question. How is it that we can approach the scriptures to be faithful to God's word and not take them out of context? I remember as a newer Christian, I sort of treated the Bible like a magic book. When I had a question, what I would do is, this is kind of embarrassing, but I would stop and I would take my Bible and I would just sort of open it up at random and stick my index finger in there and read the first thing that I saw. That was a very poor way of reading the scriptures.

Actually, it can be really troubling. I think I've shared this before, but I remember at one point opening my Bible at random and pointing. I didn't even look at the verse that I had pointed at. It turns out I opened up to page 666 and I just thought, oh no, I'm in deep trouble.

This is not good. But that's not how we're meant to read the Bible. I think one of the ways you can protect from reading the Bible out of context is by not treating it like a fortune cookie book.

We've just got all these sayings that we are sort of ripping out of context and we're looking for them in that way. Read the scriptures in context by reading book by book by book. I think that that's really important. Be consistent in your Bible reading. Start a book of the Bible and read through it. As you're reading through it, take notes, ask questions.

That's really helpful. It's really helpful, I think, also to read entire letters like the New Testament letters in one sitting or the Minor Prophets. It really helps you to get this sort of context of the letter instead of just reading one verse here or one chapter there and then forgetting to continue reading or going somewhere else. No, study the Bible in its context and remember that Jesus is central to the whole story. Now you might be thinking, well, how does that make sense? Jesus showed up in the New Testament. What do you mean he's central to the whole story? Where does it talk about Jesus in the Old Testament?

Well, believe it or not, all over the place. Jesus actually rebuked the religious leaders who were unwilling to believe in him in John 5 because he says that they searched the scriptures thinking that in them they had eternal life. He says that these are the very scriptures that testify of me. If you believed Moses, Jesus said, you would believe me because he wrote about me.

You know, there's this amazing scene at the very end of the Gospel of Luke where Jesus is on the road to Emmaus with two of his disciples and they're having a hard time understanding who he is. And he said to them, these are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled. It's really interesting that Jesus cites those three places in the Old Testament, the law of Moses. You think of the Torah, the first five books of the Old Testament, the prophets, they were referred to as the Nevi'im. It was the prophetic writings of the scriptures and the Psalms.

Well, the Psalms, they fit into this other part of the Old Testament that was referred to as the Ketuvim, the writings. Jesus is appealing to each of the major divisions of the Old Testament here, and it's as if he's saying the whole thing, the Torah, the Nevi'im, the prophets, the Ketuvim, the writings, the entire thing points to me. And so we need to understand, Jean, as we're reading the scriptures, that the scriptures are meant to lead us to Jesus, whether you're in the Old Testament or in the New Testament, that all of it is pointing to Jesus. And one last interpretive key for you as you're seeking to read the Bible in its context and to understand it in a way that you're not twisting the scriptures is this. Let the clear passages of scripture interpret the less clear passages of scripture. We all know that there are passages of scripture that are a little bit more difficult. It's harder to understand what exactly the biblical writer was saying. There's more controversy surrounding those passages of scripture, more interpretations. Well, let the clear passages of scripture interpret the less clear ones. Don't let the less clear ones interpret the very clear ones and maybe create a contradiction in your mind. No, we're allowing the scripture to interpret itself because ultimately the only perfect interpreter of the scripture, the only infallible interpreter of the scriptures are the scriptures. God is the only perfect interpreter of his word.

And so we let scripture interpret scripture in order to come to the most faithful understanding. And so, Jean, God bless you as you seek to open up and study the word of God. And I pray that the Lord blesses you as you do so.

Jean, thanks so much for your email. We really appreciate the fact that you are digging into God's word and want to interpret it correctly. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez.

Here's a question that came in from Hannah. She emailed us and said, I've recently been laid off due to COVID. I realize that God generally promises to save and redeem us, and that does not mean we will live successful and comfortable lives. But when I began the job I was laid off from, it seemed like it was a huge answer to prayer. I really felt that God had me where I was supposed to be.

And now that's been taken away. I'm sure God cares for us in these times, but is the only comfort we have is that we'll be with him in heaven? That's comforting, but it seems like we're on our own as we're looking for work.

Do you have any thoughts on this? Yeah, Hannah, well first I just want to say I'm so sorry to hear that you've been laid off. And Bill, let's just take a moment to pray for Hannah and for all of those right now who are suffering because they've lost work, lost hours or been laid off.

And so let's pray. Dear Father, we lift Hannah up to you in this moment of trial where she's trying to figure out where her next paycheck is going to come from and looking to you for provision. We ask, Lord, that you would comfort her after having lost her job, that you would give her a sense of confidence in knowing, Lord, that you love her. You will care for her and provide for her.

Lord, we don't know what that's going to look like. And we know that oftentimes you provide for us in ways that are unexpected. I pray that you would help her to trust you in this time. God, that you would provide for her a new job, one that is a blessing, one that's even better than the one that she had before, Lord. And in whatever it is that happens over the next few days and weeks, God, would she grow in her faith and in her love for you.

In her confidence in your word, in resting in whatever it is that you're teaching her through this. We pray you would be with her and be with all those, Lord, who are suffering and who have lost work because of the pandemic or for whatever reason, Lord. Be with them and through these difficult circumstances, Lord, bring them near to you. We pray in Jesus name.

Amen. Well, Hannah, it isn't that our only comfort is that we're going to be in the presence of the Lord, where all our tears are going to be wiped away. I mean, that is the ultimate comfort that we have. And we praise God for that ultimate comfort. And that's our hope, the hope of all believers throughout the world, especially in the midst of suffering.

This is why the church during times of persecution cried out all the more strongly, Maranatha, come, Lord, we need you. We're suffering. And maybe that's the cry of your heart right now. Lord, just come. I need you.

I need your help. But God also comforts us in other ways. And God does say, I mean, Jesus taught us to pray in the Lord's prayer that he gave to his disciples. Give us this day our daily bread. You think about the children of Israel in the wilderness gathering manna each day, just enough for that day.

Anything that they gathered extra would rot and be not edible. God gave them just enough for that day. He promised to provide for his people. And he calls us to pray and to say, Lord, give us this day, give me this day, my daily bread. I look to you, provide for me. And so God does care about the needs that you have, the physical needs that you have. Now, oftentimes, I think, Hannah, we expect that the Lord will give us or should give us more than we need.

And sometimes he does because he is good. But other times he gives us just what we need. And I don't know what it is that you need, but I think right now coming before the Lord as Jesus taught you and saying, Lord, you know best. Give me this day, my daily bread, provide for me just for another day. Open the doors for me to have that which I need. You remember also what Jesus said there in that same context when he's when he's speaking about these things. He says, don't worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink or what you will put on.

That's what the nations of the world, the Gentiles seek after. Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added to you. Sufficient for the day, Jesus said, is the trouble thereof.

Sister, that's an encouragement for you and for me and for all of us to look to the Lord and to say, God, help me to trust in you to know that you clothe the lilies of the field. God, that you care for your creation, that not one sparrow falls to the ground apart from your will, gracious Father, and so I can trust you. And as difficult as it is right now, Hannah, to trust God because of all the things that have happened, I just want to encourage you, sister, trust him. He's a good father.

We don't know why these things have happened. You don't know what God's plan is in all of this, but you do know that he's good. That he calls you to come to him as your father to say, give me this day my daily bread and to rest in him and to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness. That doesn't mean, you know, don't put in job applications or start looking for another job, but it means that even as you do that, you can rest in knowing that God is going to care for you and does care for you and will provide for what we need day by day. It may not be, again, you know, all that we expect or hope for, but God is good. He gives us just what we need. So God bless you, Hannah, and we pray that the Lord does open up the doors for you to find work again very soon. You're listening to Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and today we have a really cool offer for our listeners.

In fact, we're offering the book that helped launch this program. Yeah, it's Dr. Horton's Core Christianity. My friend Mike Horton wrote this book, and over the years, we've heard from many Christians who have shared their struggle to see how the Bible is relevant for them in the 21st century. But Core Christianity focuses on the essential core doctrines of the Christian faith, and it really brings those doctrines home to us today. How does this doctrine mean anything for me right now, the doctrine of God's word or the incarnation, the God-man, Jesus?

I mean, things that we really should know as Christians, but we often just sort of skip over. And so if you want to grow in your faith and your understanding of the word and of who God is, get a hold of this resource. To take advantage of this offer, just head to corechristianity.com forward slash offers or give us a call at 833-THE-CORE.

Good morning, this is Marcus from Texas. The question today is, how do you approach your pastor when he's shifting the message and turns it into a political ad in speech towards people that don't have the same beliefs as we Christians do? Thank you and God bless. Yeah, Marcus, your question is super important right now, especially with the election coming up and all of the things happening around us. As you say, there are pastors who can turn their sermons into political ads. And so how do you approach your pastor if he's doing that? Now first, why is it a problem for pastors to do this? And I think you understand this, but not everyone does. The job of the pastor is to let God speak, is to be one who proclaims God's word.

Not my personal opinion, not my feelings about politics. That's not what people show up on a Sunday to hear. It shouldn't be what they show up on Sunday to hear. We show up to church on Sunday to hear the word of the living God. And that's precisely what the New Testament says we need. I mean, Paul told Timothy in 2 Timothy chapter 3 verse 16, all scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training and righteousness that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. Many said this to Timothy, I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus who is to judge the living and the dead and by his appearing and his kingdom, preach the word. Be ready in season and out of season, reproof, rebuke, and exhort with complete patience and teaching for the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions. This is a charge, a solemn charge that the apostle Paul gives to Timothy as a young minister of the word to preach God's word. I charge you by the angels, by God, the judge, by Jesus Christ, preach the word.

Why? Because it's God's voice to us. It's what transforms lives.

It's what makes dead hearts live. And so we desperately need pastors who are faithful to the call to preach God's word, not to share with us their own thoughts about the world today or a bunch of great stories about their childhood or whatnot. I'm not saying that illustrations are bad, and I'm not saying that applying God's word to the present circumstances of the day is bad.

Not at all. We preach the word to the church and to the world. We proclaim the gospel. But if ministers are serving as political pundits or getting up there and sharing kind of their own thoughts on politics and why you should vote this way or that way, they've stopped focusing on God and his kingdom and started focusing on this present age, the kingdoms of this world. And they're speaking into something that oftentimes they just don't have the knowledge that they ought to have, because that's just not the job of the pastor to be this political expert. The job of the pastor is to be an expert in God's word, Marcus. One thing I will say here is, as I mentioned, this doesn't mean that we as pastors or pastors shouldn't apply God's word to the present circumstances of the day. We have to be very careful, though, that we're not just applying God's word and in particular, God's law to the culture outside and not preaching to the people within the church. What I mean by that is it's really one of the things that you see is churches, pastors who will talk about all the evils of the world, of society, of this or that political party, and they give people within the church the sense of we really are the righteous, we're God's chosen and everybody out there is so evil, so wicked.

We need to kind of protect this bubble that we have. And at the end of the day, what they end up doing is breeding this sort of pride and self-righteousness that actually doesn't love our neighbors, but instead just demonizes them so that we don't have to serve them. And then we feel really good about ourselves. That's not what I mean by applying God's word to the culture outside of us. No, we have to preach God's word to the church, God's law and God's gospel to nourish people in the truth of scripture, and we apply the truth of scripture to the world around us, to the situations that are happening around us. And that doesn't mean that the world around us dictates what the pastor should be preaching on on a Sunday morning. I think we just preach the text, and as that text relates to and can apply to what's happening, we should apply. I mean, it's a part of, I think, faithful Bible teaching. Now, in terms of, Marcus, having a conversation with your pastor, boy, approach it humbly, prayerfully, not, I would say, accusatory, going to him and saying, how could you?

How dare you? You're not being faithful to 2 Timothy 3. I just think that that would be unhelpful to approach it in that way. But asking questions and maybe saying, hey, I've noticed that especially as as November approaches, your sermons have really become political speeches and not expositions of holy scripture. We need to hear God's word.

I need to hear God's word. Even as a minister of the gospel, we need to hear the law of God that challenges us, that frankly, it kills us, our pride, our self-righteousness, and the gospel of God that lifts us up. Boy, that's what we need more than anything right now, because when we look around us and we look at the sort of political climate, it does feel for a lot of people like, man, it seems hopeless.

And that's how a lot of people feel. Well, we have a hope as Christians that's greater than what this world has to offer and what any political candidate has to offer. His name is Jesus Christ, and he's the one we fix our hope on, and he's the one that the scriptures testify of, and he's the one that pastors should proclaim week by week by week. And so, Marcus, may the Lord give you wisdom, humility, a heart of love for your pastor as you ask these kinds of questions and you approach him on this and just a willingness to listen. God bless you, brother, as you seek to grow in your own understanding of the word and as you seek to be ministered to as well. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We have time for one more question.

This was a Facebook post from Micho. Micho says, Does the Bible actually say that Christians should pay a tithe? Hey, thanks for that question. Yeah, you might think I'm biased because I'm a pastor, you know, so and all pastors say, yeah, definitely you got to pay the tithe. Well, at least in the New Testament, you don't have a clear command for Christians to pay a tithe. I mean, a tithe was a part of the old covenant. It was this temple tax. And I mean, really, when you break everything down, it was actually more than just 10 percent.

There were all these things that were being brought. And so, no, you don't have under the new covenant this law that Christians must pay a tithe. But I don't think that that means that we should not give generously and consistently and in a thought out way to our local churches.

In fact, I think if we if we are not doing that, I think that there's a really serious issue. Jesus had absolutely no problem talking about money. And he talked about money and possessions because he knew that our hearts are so often attached to those things. We tend to make an idol out of money and possessions. That's what Jesus said. You can't serve God and mammon. You can't have two masters. You're either going to love one and hate the other.

You're going to hate the other and love one. It's one of the most strong temptations, I think, that we experience in the West and in the United States is this love of lust for possessions, money. And so I think we ought to challenge ourselves here. And what grips our hearts? Where is your treasure? Jesus said, Where your treasure is, that's where your heart will be also. Paul said in Second Corinthians, Chapter nine. The point is this, whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully, but each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion for God loves a cheerful giver. God is able to make all grace abound to you so that having all sufficiency and all things at all times, you may have balance in every good work as it is written. He is distributed freely. He is given to the poor.

His righteousness endures forever. He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness, and you will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. And there Paul is talking to the Corinthians about generosity, about giving for the good of the church. There's a joy associated with giving.

It shouldn't be done under compulsion. It's being able to say, you know what, money, possessions, those things don't control me. Money is a tool that I use for the good of God's kingdom to care for my family, but it's not the object of my worship. Thanks for listening to Core Christianity. To request your copy of today's special offer, visit us at CoreChristianity.com and click on offers in the menu bar or call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 833-THE-CORE. When you contact us, please let us know how you've been encouraged by this podcast and be sure to join us next time as we explore the truth of God's word together.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-05 04:54:54 / 2024-02-05 05:05:00 / 10

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime