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Has the Church Lost Its Way? With Guest, Dr. Michael Horton

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
September 3, 2021 1:30 pm

Has the Church Lost Its Way? With Guest, Dr. Michael Horton

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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September 3, 2021 1:30 pm

Episode 786 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

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CoreChristianity.com

Questions in this Episode

1. A family member is really into Q’Anon and conspiracy theories. I tried to tell her the truth but she’s very combative, so I chose not to continue responding, even though she is mixing a lot of these theories and ideas with Scripture and even the identity of Jesus and his mission. Should I just delete these kinds of people from my social media feeds even though they are my family members?

2. How do we deal with family members who are emotionally abusive?

3. There is a lot of division and disagreement over issues like masks and vaccines, but very little of it has to do with the Bible and doctrines. Why is the church so caught up in these kinds of things?

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Resources

Recovering Our Sanity: How the Fear of God Conquers the Fears that Divide Us by Dr. Michael Horton

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Has the church in America lost its way. That's just one of the questions will be answering on today's addition of core Christianity hi this is Bill Meyer along with pastor Gabriel Sanchez in this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. You can call us with your question.

At 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673 also post your question on our Facebook, Instagram or twitter accounts and you can email us your question at questions@corechristianitynot.com will believe it or not. Today marks the third anniversary of this program and joining us to celebrate is our founder, theologian, and author Dr. Michael Horton, Mike. Welcome to the program. Thank you. Bill is such a pleasure to be part of the celebration three years. That one is that it did.

I mean, is there a color or a metal metal would be nice, or maybe like a good meal. Yeah, I thought Silvers not go well. What is your thirty-year what is I don't know. It was a single platinum and its ribs and I'm curious Mike and you can you tell our audience. What prompted you to to start this radio program the first place. All well eat so I wrote this book core Christianity thinking I wanted to reach people who really are excited about hearing God's word. But you know don't necessarily know where to start and if heard big terms of the Trinity and the two natures of Christ and how we know that the gospel is true and Jesus rose from the dead, always kind of basic questions people and a lot of times asked me those questions. I wrote core Christianity as sort of an introduction to basic Christian doctrine and then that we just kept talking here at this organization about how we could maybe started another radio program. We had white horse and start another radio program and a drill Sanchez happily said yes and then bill you said yes and Aaron B and his team here have done an amazing job. Unbelievable job of actually making a dream into reality and Silberg were grateful to to a lot of people for being means God is used, to bring this capacity. I'm glad you said that Mike because it's it's easy. I think the people for the audience to to listen to the broadcast every day and take all used a couple guys and are in a room talking but there is a whole team that has really been instrumental in in making this program what it is and I like that you said you know is the realization of a dream because in the early days it seemed like this really is a dream. This is you remember when we had the week we had someone who is like expert I will mention his name, but every people would know his voice at least an expert kind of coach us and he would just pull his hair out and say you know I don't. Good luck guys's but it after a while we really when you we we were in sync and we began to finish each other's sentences and it's really wonderful to see how what you and Bill have been answering people's questions now for three years. Yes, amazing. Praise God now one of the things that our listeners may not know Mike is that you're a theology professor and that Adrian was actually one of your students.

So how did he do in your classes to good question Bill and I'm happy it if you want to talk about that off-line. Yet it is one of the reasons why wanted a drill to to do this if he would because the first rate student and what I like is when you we have the head and the heart together and a passion for reaching people with the good news of Christ and of helping them grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. I have never questioned had any reason to question eight and rules humility and laserlike focus on serving the Lord's people were the Lord's word, and so that that really caught my eye and is just really gracious, humble manner makes makes doctrine.

You know a little more shall we shall we say attractive when people sometimes think that doctrine divides. Yeah, we appreciate his pastoral heart and now it comes through on on this program let's get to one of the questions that we receive from our listeners, and this actually Mike is an email question from Anna and she says this a family member is really into Q1 on and conspiracy theories.

I tried to tell her the truth, but she's very combative so I chose not to continue responding even though she's mixing a lot of these theories and ideas with Scripture, and even the identity of Jesus and his mission. Should I just delete these kind of people for my social media feeds even though their family members.

Wow, that is. That's it. That's quite something. Anna I know that you I wish I could say that you know you're in this very unique situation. I haven't heard this before it's across America right now you have what I call of the Fox Christians and the CNN Christians. The Fox churches in the CNN churches, you know, look, if you have a chess club and they decide they're going to start playing Scrabble then it's not really a chess club anymore.

And if you have a church that gets interested in someone other than Jesus of Nazareth.

It's not a church anymore. It it it makes you might still have a the chess club sweatshirt or the Jesus sweatshirt, but it's not really a church anymore than affinity group, any group of people who agree with you, and we get these silos and listen to the steps peoples who spelled the same stuff we will already believe and that's on the left and that's on the right. But I'll tell you, you know what when you talk to people who were kind of into these conspiracy theories, and you, you enter a labyrinth from which you cannot emerge. I feel like I'm talking to a Jehovah's Witness when I talked to friends or family who are into the source of conspiracy theories at the end of the day. I think you been thinking a lot about this lately. The fear of God drives out the fears that we have, especially of each other right now and we don't have the fear of God and and so our churches are becoming rallying points for someone or something other than Jesus and to the extent that happens, the longer it's no longer the Church of Christ becomes a club is a really helpful agitation.

I think that Timothy gives in second Timothy chapter 2 says flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart like that. So we need to be committed to any says have nothing to do with foolish ignorant controversies you know that they breed quarrels in the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach patiently enduring evil correcting his opponents with gentleness God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth that that magic that sums it up right there is not getting all caught up in these and these controversy writing on these these corals, which it seems like for for many believers. I mean, that's a temptation in our churches is boy just to get sucked into the social media. The news is you said that the Fox news Christian CNN Christians defining ourselves against the other half of America you know that's the problem with conspiracy thinking is that you do you define your whole what you're all about what you're interested in, not by analyzing facts and saying okay will this make sense. This doesn't this has evidence that doesn't have evidence not weighing things yourself but basically taking what your source of information says as true just because it's that source of information over against all the other sources out there. Mike a lot of fear right now you think about the conspiracy data that's one of the reasons why these things are is caught fire is because people are afraid and I just want to give an opportunity plug you have a coming out that beginning of the new year on fear.

Yeah yeah it's it's called recovering our sanity.

How the hell the fear of God drives out the fear of everyone else. And so the it goes through the top 10 fears that we have right now in our culture with no statistical evidence. These are the things that really are. People are afraid of, and then the second part looks at what the Bible says about fear and particularly the fear of God in the last third applies that biblical wisdom to the fears that were really facing today and especially the divisions that we have that work now and is raising right here does like an excellent resource. Looking forward to that, Mike. I'm still very excited about that with the title again recovering our sanity in it's all right you can go if you to aunt the Amazon site and it's it you currently see the picture there and preorder it if you want but yeah it'll be out warbling after the first year beautiful, this is core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez and theologian Michael Horton. Let's go to one of our calls.

This is Melissa from Lee's Summit, Missouri Melissa what your question for a drilling Mike hey Melissa, what's your question, I and my family member is that when you know you and pain that may look cleaner Eli lie about you and really tough situation, so we were thinking about like an abusive relationship ship. Seems in and you're not the only one who has ever we get a lot of calls about this very thing in one of that one of the questions we oftentimes get is, you do have to forgive this person what what is the relationship supposed to look like am I supposed to just keep on enduring this sort of abuse them continuing to lie about me. The first I would say Melissa is that we are called as Christians to forgive those who sin against SME, Jesus makes this very clear throughout the Gospels. I think even in Matthew chapter 6 where he teaches his disciples the Lord's prayer there in the sermon on the Mount, and he talks about forgiveness right forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And then even even goes on to say, what if what if we don't forgive you know there's a huge issue that Ms. it's totally contrary to the heart of the gospel. We who have been forgiven so much have to extend forgiveness from the heart to those who have sinned against us with forgiveness. Melissa is different than reconciliation reconciliation requires 22 parties. It means that your family member or your friend in particular that they're going to have to recognize hate what I'm doing is hurting this person not loving them. I'm breaking God's law and so in order for there to be reconciliation. I think there has to be repentance.

And that's where having a conversation. A very honest conversation about what it is that's going on can be helpful. You are free to say hey, your actions are hurting me and I and this is wrong and and you need to own up to it and really, you can't have wreck and so can forgive but you can have reconciliation to the other person is willing to see the wrong end and admit it and then a step further would be restoration. Now you were called to forgive wheat we pursue reconciliation in so far as its possible especially within the body of Christ, as of the I think is really unfortunate. Oftentimes, you know, even Christians, we can have the sort of forgive and forget mentality all you know things are with AR will tell ourselves we we forgiven this other personal really just try to cut them out of our lives that we forgive we pursue reconciliation if were able, and then restoration is saying look there. The relationship is can it be what it what it always was before.

And sometimes that works at other times is not necessarily a wise thing to to restore the relation are lots of cases in abusive relationships where say well not I have objectively forgiven them for the sake of Christ because that yeah I am called to forgive them and I'm not actually seeking to restore the relationship you and that's the right thing to do.

Sometimes it that's the wise proper godly thing to do to save this.

This is not a relationship that should be restored yet either. The example we oftentimes hear of any and even give you think of an abusive physically abusive marriage.

For example, Ryan. There can be forgiveness there can even be a sense of repentance and reconciliation. That is, and always mean your call to be back in that situation and so you have to exercise wisdom there Melissa. But let me just encourage you to to forgive obviously from from the forgiveness that you received from Jesus me. That's we focus on those that look like you've been so gracious to me. You forgiven me, give me the strength to forgive those who sin against me and then praying for this other person as well that they would recognize what it is that that they're doing so that there could be some repentance. But let me just quickly pray for you Melissa, and this in the situation, gracious father, we thank you for Melissa.

We pray for her and and for this family member that she's dealing with.

We ask Lord God for the peace of your spirit to fill her heart God that you would help her. I we know that forgiveness is not an uneasy thing. When we pray that you would fill it with the grace to to forgive, to be forgiving as she meditates on the gospel of your son, how she's been forgiven and we pretty would be at work in this family member, Lord, helping them to see how their actions are affecting Melissa that they would come to our repentance to to discern to you, Lord, and to honor you and how they live and treat their family members so they with art our sister.

We pray in Jesus name, amen Melissa, thanks so much for your call will continue to be praying for you. This is core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez and our special guest Dr. Michael Horton as we celebrate the third anniversary of the core Christianity radio program and actually the book that started off the show is one the doctor Horton Road. It's called core Christianity and would like to make that available to you today. Yeah, this is a book that we oftentimes offer on the program. My country will be glad to hear that you end up doing this is yeah and if the book honestly, it's a book that I benefited from and also people and in my church have benefited from.

We've used it for for new members for people wanting to be baptized because like you said, it just sort of gets into the. The core doctrines of the Christian faith and one of the things I often say about core Christianity is the people here that they think okay I want to go.I go to the deeper stuffing. I get the doctrine of the Trinity. I get the incarnation. I believe that the Bible is God's word. But the reality is, what were finding is so many people actually don't get that stuff. We do sort of assume that we know it when in reality we we've never studied the doctrine of the Trinity or the doctrine of the incarnation.

So it's really important for us to dig in because not take anything for granted, yet not taken for granted and edits as we know who God is, to his word that we come into a deeper relationship with Evan so we are offering this resource once again core Christianity and Bill, can you give that the details on that. All you have to do is go to our website. Core, Christianity.com/offers and look for Dr. Horton's book core Christianity. We know this will help you grow spiritually and understand the core tenets of the Christian faith. Again, go to core Christianity.com/offers to find it was go to one of our phone lines. This is Matt from Sacramento, California Matt what your question for Israel and Mike wanted a federal court to reopen this area and in doing that for a few years and I did a student actually a few months ago who was struggling through his questions about the charismatic gifts and she found a show on around and was helped a lot by itself. So first off, thank you guys for that blessing onto her into her ministry on my question has to do with just a lot of the division and disagreements that have come up in the church. A lot of the controversy. A lot of the believing in going to different churches and in shifting in this last year has happened over issues like math vaccines politics whenever and in and in very little of it actually has to do with the Bible itself to my question is why are we so caught up in these things and why do we have so few questions and themes about Scripture and our questions primarily just have to do with the politics of our such huge and important question. I mean this is I saw my my heart to Matt. I think we're in a situation right now are the church has to decide whether it's about Christ or it's about something else now it's about the elephant or the donkey. It's about that you will write side of the aisle or the left side of the aisle. The church is about Christ. What's interesting to me is you cannot find anything going on in our society today that wasn't going on in the Roman Empire. That's why Paul mentions what he mentions in the lists when he talks about how the Gentiles are full of immorality and ungodliness. It was very much like our day at the same time. Paul turns his guns, as it were, on fellow Jews and says what eat your in no better shape.

In fact worse because you claim to have the law you claim to have the Judeo-Christian ethic but you live like the Gentiles. So now you have hypocrisy and self-righteousness added on top of that, I think we have that going on today to so we can't just say we have all this immorality going.

We also have the immorality of Christian behavior. Right now, and that is an offense to God. Both of it. It's all an offense to God, but especially Christians who name the name of Christ and blaspheme his name among the Gentiles, that is a serious problem.

How do we get out of this, the fear of God is the beginning of understanding to raise our eyes from America to the celestial city, with angels and archangels singing holy, holy, holy, Lord God of hosts we have to raise our eyes toward heaven, and in day in the book of Daniel. You have that great dream that Nebuchadnezzar king Nebuchadnezzar. This powerful, arrogant, boastful guy has. He's walking on the top of his penthouse suite looking down at this great Babylon, which I have built for my power in my Majesty he has a stream and then is fulfilled, and that ended in the fulfillment of it. It's really tragic guy begins to live like an animal is his hair grows out like a bird's sticky long fingernails curled fingernails.

He he loses his sanity and nieces. Then after those days, I raised my eyes to heaven, and my sanity was restored. Now I realize God is sovereign over all the kingdoms of men and he gives them to whomever he chooses and nothing nothing can hold back his hand. No one can ask what are you doing that is when he said he had his his sanity.

It's insane the waiver living right now because our eyes are focused on this website that website that Guru this goo rule over here that political figure this were focused on ultimate things that these things are important, but they're not ultimate. As Christians we rally around the cross and resurrection of a Jewish Messiah that is our central axis, and if anything else is central in the life of the church in the life of the Christian we dry up, and whether and so a church that preaches Christ, however small, however large a church that preaches Christ and delivers Christ to sinners, including Christians week after week is a beautiful garden growing in the middle of a vast desert but the minute it stops preaching Christ. It withers and eventually becomes part of the desert again that I know that Mike is coming just is devastated by this reality that were singing in all the churches in many of the churches around us were you have these kinds of divisions over mask mandates and and vaccines and so on and so forth. And I think it just it just really highlights Matt defected. As Mike was saying there are focus is in the wrong place and in one sense this is all exposing. I think a great weakness in the church today were not as United around Christ and his gospel as we should be as maybe we thought that we were we were putting too much hope in this world and looking at the problems of this world is as ultimate and the solution is isn't for for many of us the gospel in the hope that Christ gives to us. I love that in the New Testament. Oftentimes Christians are referred to as sojourners and aliens that were part of this world we live in it were called to do good to love our neighbors. Yeah, but we also have this ultimate citizenship in heaven and I wonder sometimes people get caught up in these discussions and everything seems to be so politicized right now. I wonder sometimes if if so many believers in the church today have lost sight of that that that ultimate hope and so appreciate your question, I pray that that your church, the church at your at is clinging to the gospel that you guys are United around the message of Christ that is so sweet to see it when we are there as churches, yet we do experience these these difficulties. Rather people in the church who may disagree on these things, who are coming from to these problems from different perspectives. But what holds us together is the gospel and when the gospel is what binds us together. Then, despite our differences were able to come together to the same table to worship the Lord and we realize that that's ultimate is the blood of Jesus Christ that unites us is the blood of Jesus Christ gives us hope it's the blood of Jesus Christ that keeps us together in the midst of all of the divisions. Thanks for listening to core Christianity request your copy of today's special offer.

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