Sunday, November 19, 2006

Standing for the Truth

Seems that you can't get away from ecumenism and emergent. Not even in one's own family.

Don't get me wrong. I love my relatives. I really do. They know how to make me laugh. And they care very much for the rest of us.

This past week I came to know one relative a bit better, and my prayers are for him. He sang "The Lord's Prayer" at dad's funeral. He has a great voice. But I pray that the Lord will open his eyes.

This past Tuesday night my mom and I sat at the table with two of my cousins. They were joking as usual. It was a great time. But then I made a comment about being happy that I could tell dad everything I wanted to tell him before he went to be with the Lord; Not long after he died, I was looking at his car and talking as if he was there -- then too my pleasure realized that I had indeed said those words to him while he was alive. It gave me a great sense of peace.

Anyway, I told my cousin this, and that is when the tension came. His response was that dad could still hear us and that, indeed, he was there with us watching us. It was stressful because mom was there and she simply wants us all to get along...but on the other hand I know that I can't tolerate bad doctrine.

Now, do I believe dad is interested in us who he left here on Earth? Yes, to some degree. And periodically in my prayer time I have asked the Lord to let my dad know I miss him and love him and am proud of the heritage he left me. One of integrity and character.

My relative's bad doctrine is the result of his being involved in a spiritist church. He's also a mix of United Methodist and Roman Catholic (how one can be a protestant non-protestant, I have no idea but he attends a Roman Catholic church and mixes the two). He also mentioned Mary as intercessor, etcetera. Of course, I had to simply let him know that dad isn't an ominipresent spirit, that he is with the Lord and that he probably is so busy in wonderment over heaven that he's not interested in this place. I added that "we aren't spiritists or Catholics" and "Jesus Christ is my intercessor". Period.

That ended it.

I'm thankful that I was equipped to deal with this. All the stuff he had to say was said with such a convincing "just-so" air. Of course, not one shred of scripture was necessary for any of it.

This past week I have become so aware of people who buy into all the junk religion. Seems like everyone wanted to talk about angels. Surprisingly few wanted to talk about Jesus and what He had done.

Again, I love my relatives. But I love the Lord and His Word more. Did I upset my cousin? I don't know. But if I had it to do over again, I'm not sure I'd change much.

Could have I been more graceful? Maybe. But I was so taken by surprise by what he said and how he said it that I don't blame myself. Besides, I could hear my mom starting to agree with the "Fred is right here with us" theology, and it got my blood pressure up a bit.

So I pray for my cousin that the Lord would help him see the simplicity of the Gospel -- that Jesus Christ died once for all to pay for our debt of sin so we could be adopted into the family of God through the transformation of the Holy Spirit.



Anonymous said...

May God help you to continue to "earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints", Tim. Your cousin has unknowingly been affected (or infected?) by some of the "certain men crept in unawares" and probably doesn't know any better. Maybe the Lord will lead him to consider your words (you narrow minded Christian!) and dig into the Scriptures himself.

Tim Brown said...

Thanks Dan. I hope all is well with you.

There is a bright spot in this past week. A VERY bright one, I believe. One person that my dad had particular affection for is Teddie Renollet, whom is related (second cousin I think). He is a pastor in Arkansas. I met him the first time back in 1988 I believe when my parents were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. Then of course last week I saw him again.

He is a self-trained pastor. I don't recall his entire story but it seems the Lord has His hand on him. He started in St. Louis years ago but is now (I believe) in N.W. Arkansas, south of Branson, Mo.

Here's a link my wife found.