Where was Paul's grace in challenging Peter?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Daniel David, Dec 28, 2002.

  1. Daniel David

    Daniel David
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    Is it right for a Christian to be dogmatic? Yes.

    There is talk about not being divisive, mean-spirited, unChristlike, etc. if you are dogmatic. How can this be? Is this you? This must not be.

    Many who are still immature in the word (Hebrews 5:12-6:3) need to learn as much as they can. What about others though who have hashed out difficulties and embraced a position? Is it "loving" to pretend it doesn't matter? Of course not.

    Do you know that the author of Hebrews said that they were still immature and needed to know the basics of the faith again? Are you aware that he said that three areas are basic truth (salvation, the church and its practices, and end times). If you don't have a position on these issues, you need to study them well. This stuff is just foundational:

    In studying salvation, one needs to study:
    *the exclusivity of Christ
    *justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone
    *God's sovereignty
    *God's means of salvation (proclamation of the gospel)

    In studying the church, one needs to study:
    *when it began
    *the roles of men and women (which are not the same)
    *ordinances
    *ministries

    In studying end times, one needs to study:
    *the differences between the church and Israel
    *the interpretation of O.T. events by Christ and the disciples
    *the reason people have so many different ideas

    This stuff is basic. There was one way to interpret passages for the early church. There was one belief system regarding the above issues (and many more I did not type). Not only is there nothing wrong with being dogmatic with the above basic issues, it is a biblical mandate if you have any authority within the church to teach or preach. If you believe that it doesn't matter, you disagree with the author of Hebrews.

    The true divisive people are those who have departed from sound doctrine, not those who wish for true unity and not a said unity.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Refreshed

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    Agreed! As long as in being dogmatic, you haven't lost charity.
     
  3. Molly

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    I agree. I think those who see dogma as a critical,harsh,and unloving attribute are denying the power of the Word of God,seeing it as up for discussion. Actually those who present Truth in a dogmatic way *are* actually very loving because they look after your souls and prefer soundness in doctrine as opposed to having ears tickled. There are absolutes and we need to know them and live by them. Sometimes truth is not easy to hear,but we should all agree,it is what is best for us spiritually.
     
  4. rlvaughn

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    In the nominal Christian world, one of the greatest sins is for one to be dogmatic. Dogmatism in itself (if you mean holding a position to be the truth and standing for it) is not mean-spirited, nor is it unChristlike. I would say, though, that it is by nature "divisive" in that holding a position to be correct "divides" one from those who do not hold that position. It does not follow that there must be some kind of hatred and evil spirit among those Christians thus divided. But they may not be able to walk together in certain kinds of fellowship. For example, because of my belief concerning baptism, I cannot walk in church fellowship with those with whom I disagree on the issue. This does not mean that I think all paedobaptists are unChristian, or that I must hate them for their belief, or that I cannot have some degree of brotherly fellowship with them. Also be aware that "dogmatism" as used by some (and this can be corroborated by the dictionary) means an arrogant positive assertation of a viewpoint.

    No, love suffers long, is kind, is not arrogant, etc., but never pretends truth doesn't matter - rather rejoices in the truth.

    Unity based on lies is not unity at all.

    We all should be dogmatic about those things we believe to be true. People should not get their feelings hurt and say someone is being mean-spirited just because that someone disagrees with them. But one's dogmatism should be tempered with the knowledge and humility that he most likely is not right about everything. You and I are either wrong on some things or already know everything.
     
  5. Aaron

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    Well said, PTW.
     
  6. Daniel David

    Daniel David
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    In 1 Corinthians 13, Paul says that faith, hope, and love are the greatest and that love is the greatest of these. Have you ever wondered why truth is not included? It is because truth is not a virtue. Truth is absolute and is harsh and loving at the same time. To many, truth further confounds people and to many others, truth clarifies. Truth is rejected by many to create idols. Truth is embraced by many to tear down idols.

    The fact is, not telling the truth no matter how painful it is, is an act of hate, not love.

    You might disagree with what someone is saying. When a person sticks to what they believe inspite of criticism, that is integrity.

    The lazy says there is a lion in the street.
     
  7. Abiyah

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    This is all very true, Preach, and I really appreciate
    your writing it; however, I believe the time comes,
    after a discussion or answer, when one needs to
    wipe the dust off one's feet and move on. There
    are also times when one recognizes that it is a sit-
    uation is one of casting pearls before swine, so
    we do not get started. Again, I believe that there
    are times when one must decide not to cause
    division between our God's family members, so
    we pass on by, keeping our opinions to ourselves.

    When, however, it comes to something other than
    interpretation--it is the straight, profound, clear,
    and declared Word of our God--we must stand our
    ground, unshakable, immovable, maintain His inte-
    grity in our lives and in our words.

    [ December 29, 2002, 03:17 PM: Message edited by: Abiyah ]
     
  8. Daniel David

    Daniel David
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    Let me further add that there are so many who readily admit that they don't know alot and are so dogmatic about other people not being dogmatic.

    Paul rebuked Peter openly, in front of non-apostles, and directly. Either Paul lacked grace (as defined today), or grace forced Paul to do that. Now, I wonder which it was?
     
  9. Caretaker

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    Is not love a two-sided coin, unconditional cherishment on the one side, and discipline/justice on the other? One can love without condition, while still establishing parameters of action and confession which when crossed results in consequences.

    Peter was the one to whom the vision of the unclean foods was given, He was the messenger from God sent to the household of Cornelius, and the event of the gentile pentecost. It was Peter who had violated the salvation message to the gentiles, by supporting the Judiazation mandates. Thus in love Paul stood up and brought the rebuke.

    We are to stand firmly and resolutely for the Word of God, for if one stands for nothing one can fall for anything.

    May God so bless His precious children.

    A servant of Christ,
    Drew

    Psalm 51:10
    Create in me a clean heart, O'God, and renew a right spirit within me.
     
  10. Abiyah

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    Although this post appeared below mine, and I
    have readily and often admitted that my know-
    ledge is laking, I doubt it was point at me, Preach.
    However, just in case it was, in my post that ap-
    peared above it, I was writing of myself, not ano-
    ther, and why I often choose to quit responding
    or to not start responding.
     
  11. Bible-belted

    Bible-belted
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    "In studying salvation, one needs to study:
    *the exclusivity of Christ
    *justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone
    *God's sovereignty
    *God's means of salvation (proclamation of the gospel)

    In studying the church, one needs to study:
    *when it began
    *the roles of men and women (which are not the same)
    *ordinances
    *ministries

    In studying end times, one needs to study:
    *the differences between the church and Israel
    *the interpretation of O.T. events by Christ and the disciples
    *the reason people have so many different ideas"

    As long as it is understood that people can still come to legitmate diffferences on some fo these issues.

    Some will be more vocal, or more univocal, on some of thesepoints than Scripture is. That is a dogmatism that should be avoided.
     
  12. Daniel David

    Daniel David
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    Abiyah, rest assured, that post was not toward you in the slightest way.
     
  13. Abiyah

    Abiyah
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    8o) Thank you, Preach.
     
  14. Singleman

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    We certainly should be dogmatic in those areas where Scripture leaves us in no doubt as to what it is saying. To be dogmatic about our own interpretations (or pet theologies) is another matter, and it is a fallacy to assume that if we only explore far enough, we will understand everything fully. By all means, we should study the Word intently, immersing our minds in it. It is a shame that many Christians today are biblically illiterate. But some things will always be mysterious, and it is no virtue to pretend we have a firm grasp on a topic that is actually open to several interpretations, even after careful examination. We also can never completely escape our own preconceived ideas when studying Scripture. Full objectivity is probably impossible. I only bring up these points to say this (which I have learned from personal experience): There is a balance to be struck between deep passion and true humility, and it is one that many believers never achieve. I do not claim to achieved it yet myself. Nevertheless, speaking the truth in love is exactly what every Christian is called to do. In an age of fuzzy thinking and arbitrary theology, more dogmatism (rightly applied) and less equivocation is surely the proper course to follow.
     
  15. Molly

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    I could not agree more,singleman! Great post!
     
  16. TheOliveBranch

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    So, who is to say what the truth really is? Too many, I have noticed, will be dogmatic on subjects, all the while claiming they are holding to the truth, while others hold to their belief in what is true. Even when the Bible is the text, is it really possible that there are double truths? And I'm not talking about applications. Can scripture be interpreted to mean more than one truth? And was this the intent of the scriptures? To have more that one truth?

    [ January 01, 2003, 05:33 PM: Message edited by: TheOliveBranch ]
     
  17. dwd

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    I couldn't help but notice that dogma is used here in the terms as ,What I say is right and if you disagree than you are cursed. Well there are places in scripture that are opened for challenge. I know that the fundementals of the Bible are pretty clear and dogmatic and surely the Gospel itself is simple and clear. But what I find is sometimes in the splitting of hairs that churches have been wrecked, lives ruined and the mission set before us has been marred.
    Take for instance the one subject on" why do people go to hell" I noticed arrogance in some of the post of disagreements. It seems to me that we need to be more selective in fights and the bottom line should be is God getting glory.
    Here is a quote I noticed on one of the post" Paul rebuked Peter openly, in front of non-apostles, and directly. Either Paul lacked grace (as defined today), or grace forced Paul to do that. Now, I wonder which it was?"
    Well the persons needs to look at why Paul was opposing Peter. It was in the area of Christian
    liberty.
     
  18. Molly

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    Olive Branch,

    I believe there is one interpretation,or purpose,but many applications....all those applications are not right,though. The one intent or purpose of a book in the Bible is right,and these are the things to be dogmatic about,in love and humility,as someone has stated.

    Do you think this is true?
     
  19. Bible-belted

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    It would be inappropriate to confuse people speaking with conviction with theirbeing dogmatic.

    I am quite convinced of what I hold to be true.

    And I am quite willing to let people differ with me on matters where no central truth is at issue. There are, after all. issues to which the Scriptures do not directly speak, or do not seem to speak to in only one way.

    However, I reserve the right (as we all do) to determine what is a central truth.

    And I won't accept just any opinion as valid. It has to be reasonbly argued and reasonably supported using proper methods of interpretation.

    "I think" or "I feel" is not a valid argument.

    I think/feel BECAUSE" followed by supporting evidence well argued grounded in solid hermeneutical principles is just fine.
     
  20. Daniel David

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    What is so amazing is that the attitude of most today is to seek unity at all costs.

    Paul would be seen as a divisive person. He publicly rebuked another Apostle for what many might deem unimportant. Amazing how so many whine about grace when they don't have the first idea what it means.
     

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