Friday, May 22, 2009

THE ROAD TO DESTRUCTION IS PAVED WITH GOOD INTENTIONS

With a deep sense of love and respect I await the imminent confrontation that must come. I love the Brotherhood and believe that, for the largest part, they are all sincere in their positions, even those whom I believe to be misguided in their teachings. It is with a certain grief that I realize we are on a collision course over this matter of dress and life style standards. I am praying on how to best present and persuade my brothers about the absolute need of being separated from the world. I don't want to injure or destroy anyone, but I do know that there is a real possibility of casualties because of the deep divide we find ourselves in on this matter.
They believe that standards are no more than traditions and customs that hinder us in presenting our truths and winning souls. I recall a ministers meeting where a minister, by conflation of subject, implied that not having a television, and the preaching against worldly entertainment, was nothing more than a custom. To say that his statement surprised and flabbergasted me is an understatement. I neither then nor now comprehended how anyone could make such an assertion about something that even the heathen see as a corrupting force. The consistent diet of public entertainment is murder, violence, sex, immoral, amoral, promiscuous, rebellious, atheistic, humanist, anti-christian, all in the light of being justifiable and noble. I blame the moral decline of our society primarily on the entertainment and news media. How? I asked myself can a man who is a minister in The Body Of Christ say something so convoluted from the obvious? How could anyone who has any comprehension of godliness not realize the filth and degeneracy of this evil force of mind control? To call not being involved with worldly entertainment a custom is appalling.
I bring this up to illustrate and emphasize the great gulf of thinking between us that believe in a separated lifestyle and those who hold that there is no need to be separated. It is akin to the thinking that a minister can commit adultery and remain in the ministry. I continue to love and pray for fallen ministers but I cannot understand how a man can forsake the integrity of his office and retain that office. The liberal thinkers that see every tolerance, whether it be the loss of moral responsibility, or the denying of a separated lifestyle, as an expression of merciful love and patience. If we follow their ideas we will soon be the cage of every foul spirit and unclean bird. The road to destruction is paved with good intentions.
I do not question the integrity or intentions of my well intentioned, kind, and gentle brethren. What I question is their wisdom and judgement. Standards, (measurements of what is right and what is wrong) are not customs they are tools that facilitate the effecting of good works that lead to righteousness, graduating to holiness and concluding into everlasting life. We will not impress the world but the world can make an impression on us.
In brief reply to a certain comment of one of my posts I will say this; standards are not what it is all about but without standards there is nothing to measure what it is all about with. We have never proclaimed that standards are the, as accused, "ONLY" thing that identifies us but we do know that a separated identity demands a recognizable identification. Standards clearly define and pronounce, modesty, chastity, obedience, sacrifice, and servitude. We are also defined by our many teachings that separate us from mainstream religion. If you forsake a separated lifestyle to accommodate the world what will you forsake next. Our doctrines are offensive and shocking to the world, the godhead, hell, the Devil, resurrection of the dead, and many other things will cause people to look at you askew; are you going to deny these things to win some of them. To misuse Paul's words, and as you like to say, become all things to all men so that you may win some, are you willing to nod and quietly defer and not teaching things controversial to them? It is a slippery slope that leads to the compromise of all things dear and true.

1 comment:

shane said...

Bro Dyal with all respect I would like to point out what you said in your post titled “ITS A MATTER OF CONCIENCE AND CONVICTION”. You stated and I quote “It is my firm persuasion that when we give up on the preaching and holding of standards we cease to exist as a viable movement of God and are then reduced to being no more than any other Charismatic Fellowship”. If that is what makes this body a “viable move of God” then you are in fact saying standards is what it is all about. What is really living a separated life style? No other group I have ever seen loves one another like we in the Body of Christ love one another. That along with our doctrine makes us different from any other Pentecostal out there. They dress like the Body, but are they in it? If we are the pinnacle of all Christendom as we say we are, then why would we let dress standards separate us? If we are to be full of charity then why would we split as you have suggested. I say that you suggested that because of in this blog you stated that this collision course we are on will have the possibilities of casualties. If I misunderstood what you meant then I sincerely apologize.

The reason the apostles in Acts 15 were able to reach an agreement on circumcision is because those men had love, respect, and they were spiritual enough to consider one another without their own agendas getting in the way. I’m praying we can be that spiritual and full of love enough two thousand years later. Those men were as far apart on circumcision as we are on dress standards, but the suggestion of causalities and separation were not mentioned.

Please, please understand I have nothing, but love and respect for you. I in no way am trying to be disrespectful by asking these questions.

Sincerely
Bro. Shane Clifford