Friday, September 04, 2009

War & Peace in the ministry

The great danger for those who engage in polemics is to develop a love for the taste of blood, to delight in the love of conflict. Heresies ought to distress us, just as they did the apostles. But we must watch our own hearts so that the sense of compassion is not displaced and swallowed up by frustration, hardness of heart, bitterness, pride and an absence of grace.

To allow that to happen would represent a departure from the apostolic teaching of 2 Timothy 2:24-26. And that would be all the more tragic if at the same time we heartily confess that our own repentance is not due to our native spiritual responsiveness, but solely to the grace of God applied to us personally by the Holy Spirit. In all honesty, to walk this road of godliness whilst engaging in and not neglecting the demands of theological controversy required of oversees (Titus 1:9), can only be as a result of the supernatural grace of God at work in us.

John "Rabbi" Duncan wrote the following words about the great nineteenth century Scottish theologian William Cunningham:
A good soldier of Jesus Christ, who with wise and tender love for the persons of all men, used mercilessly the might which Christ had given him only against error and sin, pernicious to man as dishonouring to God.
May that be true of us in the ministry of the word of God.

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