Introduction: The Doctrines That Divide By Erwin Lutzer
September 15, 2018
Almost forty years ago, I accepted Jesus Christ as my LORD and Savior. Since that time, I have been a part of several sects within The Body of Christ. Nevertheless, had I known at the time that the Church of our LORD Jesus Christ was in such disarray, I might have hesitated about becoming part of any church. I cannot change the past and I do not have any desire to do so. Every up and every down, every joy and every tear, and every satisfying and disappointing moment has shaped within me a much-needed ministry gift. Most believers I have known and loved in the many denominations I have attended find the topic of division difficult to discuss. Satan has successfully created schisms in the church at large. The verses of scripture below seem to be the most ignored by modern-day church leaders. Moreover, if the shepherds ignore these things, how much more will the sheep? The Apostle Paul addressed sectarianism in The Body of Christ frequently. He saw and attacked it as if it were an enemy to the faith. Are we somehow under the impression that it is no longer a problem? Alternatively, have we conceded, and decided if we just ignore the problem, it will go away?
Sectarianism Is Sin
1st Cor. 1: 10 “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment”.
Some believers get so strongly entrenched in their view of church doctrine; they have actually used scripture to support divisions or, factions. We need to accept and understand this clearly; a denomination is a faction, and factions are a work of the flesh.
Conduct at the Lord’s Supper
1st Cor. 11:17 “Now in giving these instructions I do not praise you, since you come together not for the better but for the worse. 18 For first of all, when you come together as a church, I hear that there are divisions among you, and in part I believe it. 19 For there must also be factions among you, that those who are approved may be recognized among you. 20 Therefore when you come together in one place, it is not to eat the Lord’s Supper. 21 For in eating, each one takes his own supper ahead of others; and one is hungry and another is drunk. 22 What! Do you not have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the church of God and shame those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you in this? I do not praise you”
Verse 19 has become the go-to passage most used to support denominations. This is why this blog deals with “How to Enjoy Studying Your Bible” so much. Snatching a verse here and another there out of context is like a disease in the Church. If it is our intent to glorify The Son of God, we must stop following the teachings of men. The scripture says in Rom. 3: 4…..let God be true but every man a liar. 1st Cor. 11: 19 is not praise, is fact…it is the exact opposite. Verse 19 is sandwiched between 17 and 22, which both say, “I do not praise you.” The classier Christians thought they should come first, while others took The LORD’S Supper to be an occasion to get drunk. They thought more highly of some above others.
So for the next few weeks, I will be highlighting exerts from Erwin Lutzer’s book “The Doctrines That Divide”. It is comforting just to know that I am not the only one that has observed how men have dismembered Christ TRUE Body. To be continued…