Friday, November 27, 2015

Why Controversy Is Sometimes Necessary

I recently watched as a young mother acted quickly and decisively to end a squabble among two preschool boys. She acted righteously and quite effectively, and then she turned to her two charges and set down the law: “It is never right to fight.”

Sorry, Mom, I understand what you were trying to do, but that moral instruction will not serve those boys well as they grow into maturity. Their challenge will be to learn when it is right to fight, and how, as the Bible commands, to fight the good fight of faith.

What about the church? Is it ever right for Christians and churches to engage in controversy? Of course, the answer is yes—there are times when believers are divided over serious and consequential questions, and controversy is an inevitable result. The only way to avoid all controversy would be to consider nothing we believe important enough to defend and no truth too costly to compromise.

We know that Christ cares deeply about the peace of His church. In His prayer for the church in John 17, Jesus prays that His flock will be protected by the Father and marked by unity. But, as Christ also makes clear, His church is to be united and sanctified in the truth. In other words, there is no genuine unity apart from unity in God’s revealed truth. Read more

No comments: