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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Allegations In The News • Spare Me The Graphic Details

Recently in the news, there have been all sorts of accusations against many people about physical misconduct.
Some are true, and some likely are not.
Some of the reporting seems to be rather salacious and is hardly helpful to those who do not want to put evil into their minds. 
We try to turn off the sound or change to something else when details get graphic in our house.

The news should not be a court where people try people publicly for everything that they are accused of.
Even those that are true do not need a play by play account of what happened broadcasted to the general public.
Yes, deeds of darkness will be exposed by the light of Christ (Ephesians 5:11-15), but that doesn't mean that Christians need to be putting every detail of what is garbage into our minds (even when someone actually has admitted to sin).

Even if we aren't guilty of certain sins, we all have sinned in our hearts.
Thanks to God for forgiveness & spiritual growth even in believers.
The battle against whatever sin tries to steal your affection from God may continue for the rest of your life, and as the desire to be closer to God grows stronger the more you desire to avoid sin & to love Him more.
You may have victory, but you still need to be watchful. 
Christians and Old Testament believers weren't above being tempted or sinning in different ways. 
Remember Abraham (with Hagar), David, Sampson, & Peter (denying God & being influence by Judaizers), etc.
Lust is as bad as adultery and coveting is a sin, so are you perfectly innocent outside of God's forgiveness and imputed righteousness?
The guy who spoke at the church (where I go) this past Sunday mentioned how we tend to judge hypocritically.
God judges righteously.
That doesn't mean that we don't point out that sin is sin.

As another Pastor also rightly taught last Sunday, judgment is an intrinsic thing taught in Scripture.
The government is to judge, Christians should have discernment, and churches need to have discipline. 
Doctrinal error & sin do need to be exposed and confronted.
Of course, we also know that God will judge. 

Part of Christian life is practicing discernment.  You're not intended to be a gullible person who believes everything you're told or to accept every immorality that crosses your path.

People often say, "Judge not" to avoid accountability.
Central behind the Matthew passage is that you will be judged.
(These came from my Twitter notes.)

We should be proclaiming the truth about God & the Gospel which shows evil as being evil, so that people will see their need for Christ. 
Their sin may be shown to be sinful to them. 
If God saves them, His righteousness will be imputed to them, and they will be lights in the world.
Our purpose isn't spreading gossip & slander or graphic speech and photos so as to cause others to sin.
We should know that evil exists and there are some things that actually should be made known for good purposes (rather than things that incite more sin), but we shouldn't dwell on things which should not be mentioned.

Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
Philippians 4:8 NASB

Here is how believers are to behave themselves in conduct:

Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul.  
Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation.
I Peter 2:11-12 NASB

But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints;
Ephesians 5:3 NASB

Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.
But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light.
Ephesian 5:11-13 NASB

Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.
Colossians 3:5 NASB

Some helpful hints for Christians.
Memorize verses that apply to your sin and about resisting sin.
Avoid situations that tempt you when possible.
Spend more time on things that encourage you spiritually (the Bible foremost, then doctrinally sound books, messages & blogs, and other spiritual enterprises).
Seek to serve the Lord instead of feeding fleshly desires.
Try to find a Biblical church that encourages you.

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