Monday 18 September 2023

The biblical duty of exiting a denomination that tolerates false teachers

In my previous post, "Avoiding false teachers", I noted that the Bible does not simply instruct us to avoid false teaching, but to avoid false teachers.

And this inevitably implies the further duty to exit compromised churches, partnerships and associations. i.e. To depart from denominations or groupings of churches which do not discipline and ultimately excommunicate false teachers. False teachers will arise, but the question is what happens to them when a disciplinary case is lodged.

Believing brethren in, to pick an obvious example, the Church of England, generally seek to avoid false teaching via not teaching it themselves, and teaching against it, and telling them hearers not to go and listen to false teachers. (I've never actually heard of a brother who even tried to lodge a disciplinary case against any of them).

However, the Church of England in general tolerates and propagates false teaching. In a Biblical organisation, this could be dealt with via disciplinary cases against the false teachers - for example, those who deny that Christ's sacrifice on the cross was both penal (a punishment for sins) and substitutionary (a punishment endured in the place of others), those who deny that sin will ultimately be punished through eternal punishment in hell, or those who deny that the Scriptures in their entirety are God's inspired word, without error.

Once an organisation no longer disciplines false teachers, by ejecting them, the only way that remains to obey God by separating oneself from false teachers, is by oneself voluntarily departing.

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