“But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ.” ~ Ephesians 4:15
“Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” ~ Colossians 4:6
We’re looking forward to a very special event Bible Baptist Church is hosting, beginning Sunday night, August 26, 2018 from 5:30 – 8:00 PM. Usama Dakdok of The Straight Way of Grace Ministries http://www.thestraightway.org/ will be ministering at our church every night through Saturday night, September 1, 2018. There will be a special Question and Answer session for ministry and community leaders and elected officials on Saturday afternoon.
There have been some who dislike to hear the truth, regardless of what it is about. Even having grown up in the church, when confronted with my sin and selfish lifestyle, I did not like to hear or consider the truth, yet it was absolutely necessary to hear and consider in order to see where I was and where I was going, save for the intervention of Jesus Christ. At the time, the truth angered me, but I will be eternally grateful for those who kept me in prayer and especially for those who had the courage to confront me with the truth.
Considering Usama and the Straight Way of Grace Ministry or other ministries which are boldly proclaiming the truth of God’s word, it is not out of hate for sinners and those lost in various situations, but love for them which spurs us to do what we do. The common misconception is that by speaking out against Islam, we hate Muslims but this is so far from the truth. Muslims, people following the false religion of Islam, are not our enemies, but they are eternally lost if they do not accept the free gift of salvation only available through Jesus Christ.
Many Muslims and many more who know nothing of Islam have never read the Qur’an and know only what they have been told about this “religion.” Brother Usama, whose native language is Arabic has translated an accurate copy of the Qur’an into English, his second language. I have a copy and am attempting to read it, though there seems to be no sense of flow or purpose. It is much, MUCH more difficult to read than the King James Bible (which I prefer to other English translations) though many claim the KJV is so difficult to read. One of the principle founding fathers of our nation, Thomas Jefferson, acquired a Qur’an in order to attempt to understand the enemy during the time frame of the Barbary Wars of 1801-1805 and 1815-1816. (http://www.wnd.com/2016/02/the-real-reason-jefferson-owned-a-quran/ and https://history.state.gov/milestones/1801-1829/barbary-wars) The line in the Marine Corps hymn, “From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli,” is a direct reference to our nation’s involvement there.
Let me offer another illustration or two to the necessity of speaking the truth in love, regardless of how it may be received. My wife and I have been blessed with seven children. Both of us grew up in an era when we were told (as children) that we needed to develop our self-esteem. The idea was that anything that damaged our self-esteem (being a parent/telling us what to do or not to do) was wrong. From my experience as a young man and especially my experience raising seven children, telling them that some things are wrong, that they will or won’t do certain things are the best expression of love. To tell them that certain lifestyles are morally wrong or physically or psychologically harmful is love, not hate.
To withhold the truth that you know from anyone, when you know that the truth will help them, either immediately or “in the long run” is certainly not love. It would be akin to a doctor telling someone on a destructive path that everyhing would be okay, when the truth is that to continue on that path is to hasten their death. To say that a necessary procedure that may cause temporary discomfort or pain in order to prolong their life or save their life is not love.
The bottom line is that in all of these cases, ultimately the individuals make the final decisions themselves. Children may be compelled for a while, but when they become adults they make their own decisions despite any word of warning from their parents. It is imperative that Christians spread the truth of God’s word concerning sin or false teaching. Look at what the prophet Ezekiel said about the duty to warn.
“Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman: If when he seeth the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people; Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head. He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul. But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand. So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me. When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.” ~ Ezekiel 33:1-9.
We are committed to exercise our duty according to what we learn from God’s word through the Prophet Ezekiel and the Apostle Paul.