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Steer Clear! (Part 2 of 2)

Truth for Life / Alistair Begg
The Truth Network Radio
April 4, 2022 4:00 am

Steer Clear! (Part 2 of 2)

Truth for Life / Alistair Begg

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April 4, 2022 4:00 am

You’ve most likely heard the saying “Beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing!” But how do you recognize a “wolf” in disguise? And what should you do if you find one in your congregation? Hear the answers when you listen to Truth For Life with Alistair Begg.


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You've heard people described as wolves in sheep's clothing today on Truth for Life. Alister Bragg teaches us how to recognize a wolf in disguise and what to do if we find one in our congregation is Alister with part two of a message titled steer clear of Kaiser is to flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, and then in verse 23 of two Timothy two.

He has to have nothing to do with foolish ignorant controversies and because he points out in that context because you only know that they breed quarrels and that's no good, because the Lord's servant is not to be quarreling. Paul is not say any kind of controversy is out.

That's why it's important to look carefully in our Bibles and you will notice that the adjective is the thing that keeps us on track. He says I want you to make sure that you avoid foolish controversies. In other words, where theology is replaced with mythology, where biblical convictions are challenged by human concoctions absolutely hopeless and worthless stuff and some people rejoice in that one about the genealogies we are supposed to pay attention to the introduction that we have in the gospel of Luke and in the Gospel of Matthew are they there for our benefit.

Of course they are. Why do we have the genealogies of the genealogies are present. The air in order that the leaders of the might know that Jesus is a very man that is a true man was a real man that this Jesus is the seed of Abraham that Jesus is the great King who sits on David's throne so we read the genealogies in order to discover that Christ is the Redeemer promised in the Old Testament is not what these people were doing. No, they found in the genealogies all kinds of speculative ideas and concepts. They managed to fiddle with them or in such a way as to wrest them to their own destruction. And what about these dissensions and quarrels about the law. I think this is where you need to go back to verse 10 of chapter 1 to help us to discover that this element here is present and it was unsettling folks in Crete noticed there are many who are insubordinate empty talkers and deceivers you see that adjective again the talk a lot of talk but is empty talk. They want to engage in controversy and wanted to get you all tied up in genealogies they want to quarrel about the matters of the law, and especially he says those of the circumcision party so the inference is that these individuals treated the law of God, the look the Old Testament in its entirety. Perhaps the Jewish law, in particular as I can have happy hunting ground for their speculations and pulses to tie just make sure that you don't get embroiled in this stuff make sure that you people don't become masters of this avoid these things. That's what he means.

Why does it matter, he tells us why it matters. The reason it matters because when you have the inventiveness of these false teachers matched by the curiosity of nave listeners it may create the impression that there is a set of meaningful to debate and wonderful discovery being made but no sources Paul because these sort of things are unprofitable and worthless there worse than quiet remedies for physical ailments don't get tired of that stuff on the radio to overhear these people selling everything usually in the middle of the night in the early hours of the morning when all good people should be asleep at work and and and you know I hope you don't buy that stuff, and maybe you do. Maybe a salad that I feel even worse, I suppose, but I always find myself thinking this is followed really expect me to believe this, and especially when he tells me that I will get 1/3 bottle for nothing. You know it's so wonderful that were given the junk away that that's that. But if you rub it whenever not mean that stuff those those quiet remedies for physical ailments.

We can we can handle. We can fiddle with them if they wonder just absolutely useless. They're usually not harmful and discovered anybody growing a second nose with it or having unusual like that. Usually they just write ourselves verifiable or they just get put in the blood in the medicine cabinet.

But what he's saying here is that this kind of stuff is actually harmful. You see, this harms people when people begin to get online said that treats the word of God. The truth of God as some kind of gigantic jigsaw puzzle whereby they can move the pieces around to suit their own satisfaction.

Then they will be chaotic and so these things are to be avoided because they lead nowhere and they settle nothing.

The lead nowhere. They settle secondly if those are the kind of issues to be avoided. Who is the kind of person to be confronted. As for a person who stirs up division. As for the person who stirs up division we need to be careful with this as well.

Dunkley we need to make sure that we aren't are not attributing to others the characteristics on this unique individual. This is not simply the kind of person who asks a lot of difficult questions right. Although we do need to beware of those individuals who constantly are asking questions about things that can never be resolved but even that person is not in view here and fight those difficult questions should be encouraged. Shouldn't because those difficult questions may prove to be a legitimate Avenue from ignorance to faith and obedience. I really find things out. If we don't ask questions.

I really don't make. How do we make progress if we don't take the things about which we are unclear in common as people. What is this meeting as a benefit with that is nobody's talking about.

Clearly not noisy simply talking about the kind of person who opposes the pastoral ministry of Titus, simply because he or she doesn't like him. Calvin, who is not unfamiliar with this kind of opposition notes. It wouldn't be right to condemn those who simply dislike us when we write to condemn those who simply dislike us in your memo. If settle all the way along the part of the challenge of pastoral ministry is going to lead people Artie want to people just like you if you if you if you simply driven by having them like you like you like you then probably adopt a certain posture in order to achieve that as an object and inevitably if you don't there will people who dislike the dislike Paul. The dislike Titus on like a ball is better sunlight see if it's better that's the way it goes.

You can be in pastoral ministry without understanding, but that doesn't give Titus the prerogative to condemn into the darkness.

An individual just doesn't like and who apparently opposes no once again the English language will help us here. As for a person who notice stirs up division stirs up division. In other words, this is an individual who is not only unsettled themselves but who becomes an un-secular of others. Somebody presumably who is deliberately chosen to follow the false teachings and practices that politics referred to in verse nine. It would seem that there is a logical progression of thought.

There isn't.

Avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions balls about the law they are unprofitable and worthless. However, the kind of person who doesn't pay attention to me when I tell you this, and who engages in all of these things is the kind of individual who stirs up division the kind of person who refuses to consent to the truth of God's word and as a result of that separates themselves from the faith, and in turn separates himself from the faithful.

This is not someone who has simply a problem with let's say some area of theological understanding or some disagreement with a theological perspective because every going to hold to the notion of the main things in the plain things in the plain things are the main thing that we have to recognize that in a congregation, such as our own. There will be divergent views on certain areas of theology. Hopefully not in the central verities of the faith, but in relationship to the agent.

Timing of baptism in relationship to the doctrine of eschatology in the nature and timing of the return of Christ and and and other things to soak this individual is not an individual who is just addressing perhaps piecemeal Sunman area, but this individual is the kind of individual whose very theological house if you like has collapsed on itself.

This kind of individual is someone who is not simply bringing a question to bear and he still has within him. The fear of God, therefore, is still open to the instruction and usually is in the Bible. Therefore, he is still if you like reclaimable.

Therefore, he is still teachable. That's not the kind of person that Paul is addressing the ball is describing a different character.

This is a character whose whose theological presuppositions have now collapsed as a result of his commitment to things other than the gospel itself, and this individual is committed to stirring up division do you do understand what I'm saying there.

Remember Jesus is and in the sermon on the Mount, the person who hears my words and puts them into practice is like a man who built his house upon a rock. And when the winds came in the store include everything it stood for the person who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built his house on the sand when the storms came. His house collapsed.

The description here. All of this kind of person is the kind of person who is now built his whole edifice, his entire life. Now crumbles because he hears the words of God and flat out refuses to put them into practice, and he stirs up division and the curries in favor of those who are nave to these things and degrades disruption among the Fellowship. So says Paul, let me tell you how this individual is to be treated. He is to be warned once and then twice. Let's remind ourselves of something, even in this. The Bible tells us asked the question who knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of a man that is in right so when we are confronted by let's say the stirring up of division in a fellowship.

It would be wrong for as I think immediately to go to the 10th and 11th verse of Titus chapter 3 because in the first encounter. How can any of us know where this soul is reclaimable or not, how can we know unless we give to hidden the warnings that are described for us. This is not dissimilar incidentally to that to what Jesus teaches in Matthew chapter 18 concerning the nature of church discipline, and so when we mourn the individual we belong such an individual with a view to his reclamation with a view to his restoration. If you like warning in with static warning and with an embrace were saying, sir, to realize when you are propounding here to realize that that is not true to the Bible and you realized that you are right you are the creator of division amongst the people of God, is that really how you want to spend your life.

We want them a second time, but if he continues to despise God openly.

If he continues to disrupt and to divide if he continues as Calvin says quaintly to go forward in his naughtiness to real word changes over time doesn't. If he continues to go forward in his naughtiness. In other words, here is the individual who hardens his heart to a gentle reproof here is an individual who displays a spirit of bitterness. Here is an individual who shows no fear of God and no signs of repentance. Now that individual, says Paul we may safely assume is warped and sinful standing self condemned by his own actions and by his attitude. Such a person is not a sheet but a wolf and when you think in those terms, you realize that it is not compassion and tenderness which invites the rule in to the presence of the lambs under your care is one to disobey the Bible is to to pretend to be wiser than God, and it it, which is always true when we disobey the Bible and it is three to wreak havoc within the congregation that your sensible people and you're going to have to think this out, but if you remember when Paul leaves the Ephesians that wonderful scene described by Luke and acts chapter 20 when he is going to leave them now. Any and he knows that he will never see their faces again this side of eternity, and they prayed together on the beach and believes that remember what he says them is for all these years for three years I've not hesitated to tell you the whole show I've been teaching you have been preaching to the Army trying to show you how everything fits together in the Lord Jesus Christ and you're going to be fine. No he says I know that after my departure steers fierce rules will come in among and savage, and destroy the four therefore he says elders stay alert stay alert, so that the pastor teacher, the shepherd teacher must have in his voice. The gentleness of welcome to the bruise factor beaten up sheet who are going their own way that gentleness of the welcome that explains that the Lord has laid on his son, Christ the iniquity of us all, so that those who are aware of the fact that there is not just a disgraceful and royal mess that they've turned their backs on God. The welcome the tenderness of that. Welcome is a real welcome so that the gentleness of the voice that welcomes by the shepherd teacher also needs the loudness of the voice that warns and some of us are more prone to lead lien here, and others was more prone to lien here.

That's why Jesus is the perfect shepherd because he always got it right reserving stinging rebukes for religious hypocrites granting forgiveness to the least. In the last left out is finishing this way I'm quoting from Cranmer and Latimer ends Ridley in in the 16th century right in the Anglican church established Church of England, which gives us the Episcopal Church in America. What a long journey from Latimer Ridley and Cranmer to the triennial Gen. convention of the Episcopal Church in Indianapolis. I don't say this in the spirit of judgment, but with deep sadness of heart, that is one of the largest legislative bodies that exists in the world. A thousand of them.

The House of deputies in the House of Bishops gathered together discussing topics like whether to develop funeral rites for dogs and cats. Quote and whether to ratify resolutions condemning genetically modified foods did Cranmer burn for this.

Did Ridley diet the state for this genetically modified foods and burial rights for cats and dogs took second place to the approval of the blessing of same-sex relationships in the renewed antidiscrimination language for transgendered clergy candidates and church members love once read your Bible's think cry out to God, the decisions the convictions that underlay the 16th century in England no longer holds sway the church in Crete that tightens pastor who knows much of the church in Crete today.

Build your house on the solid rock. Stay away from the sending stuff.

Avoid foolish controversies and genealogies dissensions quarrels about the law. Stick with the gospel. Keep the main things the plain things tell people about Jesus. He's saved people he lifesaving people say that you'll save you if you will turn to the Bible gives us a clear warning about the importance of dealing firmly and get compassionately with divisiveness in the church listing the Truth for Life with Alistair Begg. Alastair will be back in just a minute to close with prayer.

Now I hope you started thinking about Easter.

It's just around the corner as you prepare, we will suggest you listen to a brief five message study from Alastair titled journey to the cross in this series Alastair traces the events told in John's Gospel from Jesus arrest to his resurrection and listening to the series is a great way to revisit these important events as you prepare for resurrection Sunday. Again, the title of the series is journey to the cross. You'll find it online the Truth for or you can search the title and listen through the mobile app, the book will recommending today is one that will help you prepare for Easter as well to new release from Sinclair Ferguson. It's titled lessons from the upper room in this book Sinclair explores the events and the dialogue that took place between Jesus and his disciples on the evening before his death. When you read this book, you'll get a close-up look at the scene described in chapters 13 through 17 of John's Gospel, which is often referred to as the upper room discourse.

John is describing an upper room where Jesus told his followers, many things that they struggled to understand Sinclair takes us through this remarkable exchange that includes Jesus washing his disciples feet. Then he explains that during these historic hours, Jesus teaching was personal, intimate and full of grace the whole evening was one of cleansing. He cleansed the disciples feet and then he cleansed their lives by pouring his word into them. You can request your copy of the book lessons from the upper room when you donate today to give click the image you see in the mobile app or visit us online at now, here's Alastair to close with prayer. Gracious God, we thank you for your word. It is a lamp that shines out on our pathway turns again to the wonder of your son. So we pray that the love of the Lord Jesus might draw us to himself piece of the Lord Jesus my garden, keep our hearts and minds of the joy of the Lord Jesus might be our strength so that we might stand the soldiers in the battle of our day holding high the cross of Christ in our prayers of God and let our Christ come unto you, for Jesus sake about the pain. Thanks for listening. Tomorrow will learn how to look for and see God not only in the significant moments of life also in our ordinary daily routine. The Bible teaching of Alistair Begg is furnished by Truth for Life learning from

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