I have one of those old dictionaries that requires a strong grandson to take it off the shelf because it’s so heavy. I love it because it goes into such detail and that detail enriches the meaning. Today I used it to look up the word “compromise.”
Compromise: (verb) to make liable to danger; endanger the reputation of; make a dishonorable or shameful concession. (Random House Dictionary of the English Language, unabridged edition).
From that definition I deduce that if we compromise doctrine or, more specifically, the Word of God, we are liable to put ourselves in danger. However, I see that there is a more frightening danger at stake: if we make “shameful or dishonorable” concessions (what bone-chilling adjectives those are!) in regards to the Word of God, we risk the danger of compromising the reputation of our Lord and Savior because we are presenting “another Jesus.”
2 For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4 For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted—you may well put up with it!
– 2 Corinthians 11:2-4 (NKJV)
He wants us to be His alone. He does not want to share us with another – He is jealous over us and wants us to be a pure Bride for our Bridegroom. He is clothed in robes of pure white; His priests wore “Holy to the Lord” on their turbans; the angels sing “Holy, Holy,Holy” – we cannot be anything less than pure and holy. We cannot compromise.
“16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the Living God. As God has said: “I will dwell in them and walk among them.I will be their God and they shall be My people.”
17 Therefore “Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you.” “I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.”
– 2 Corinthians 6:16-18 (NKJV)
2Kings 17:29-41 is a classic story of compromise. It contains the telling verses of 29 and 32 that they “worshipped their own gods” and “also worshipped the Lord.” Remember how Jesus commanded us to love Him with our whole heart? Compromise would not allow that to be possible.
I’m going to quote the following from the Lindsell Study Bible for the exact reason that the words used are so forceful when they describe how we are to treat any idols – or errors – we encounter: (The italics are mine because I think the emphasis is justified for the simple reason that emphasis seems to be the exact opposite of compromise).
12 “Be very, very careful never to compromise with the people who live in the land where you going. If you do, you will follow their evil ways and be trapped. 13 Instead, you must break down their heathen altars, smash the obelisks they worship, and cut down their shameful idols. 14 You must worship no other gods, for the Lord, whose very name is Jealous, is a God who claims absolute loyalty and exclusive devotion.
15 “You must not make a peace treaty with the people living in the land, for they are spiritual prostitutes..
– Exodus 34:12-15 (NLT)
NAMING NAMES: IS IT BIBLICAL?
Let me describe a scenario for you. You have just moved to the neighborhood and have young children. I have been there for a long time and know the neighbors very well. We become friends. One day, in love and for the safety of your family, I share with you the news that there is a known sex offender who lives on our street and who, incredibly, goes to our church. Looking at the following verses, can you understand the obligation I would have to name who that person is?
11 But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people.
12 What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13 God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.”
1 Corinthians 5:11-13 (NIV)
14 And if anyone does not obey our word in this epistle, note that person and do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed. 15 Yet do not count him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.
2 Thessalonians 3:14-15 (NKJV)
Paul is talking to his brothers and sisters in the Church at Corinth.The problem resulted in the excommunication of the brother. Harsh as that may seem, it had behind it God’s purpose of repentance. In 2 Corinthians 2:6-9 that purpose was accomplished and the brother was restored to full fellowship. This is a perfect example of correction. Paul’s correction of Peter in Galatians 2:11-21 is another. Correction, if done properly, will result in restoration of the individual to Christ and often reconciliation of individuals of the body at large to each other.
19 My brothers and sisters, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring that person back, 20 remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins.
– James 5:19-20 (NIV)
Next week we’ll cover additional Scriptural precedent for naming names, the reasons why we should expose Biblical Error and what standard we use to judge error.
There is no assignment work this week. If you wish to leave a comment or questions, please click here
I would like to thank my fellow consultants for all their assistance in getting this blog published: Hannah Hall, Michelle Arrington, Ariel Mcgarry, Carol White, J.P.Wilhelm, and Tracy Yoder. Their encouragement and patience have been invaluable to me.
Compromise. In Random House Dictionary of the English Language, unabridged edition. Random House.
The Bible. NKJV, NLT and NIV. http://biblehub.com/. Accessed 21 January 2018.
No Title. Quote by Charles Spurgeon Link to Image