Summary: Separation is such an ugly word to many in Christianity today. We want to be inclusive. But have we become so inclusive that we have forgotten that purity in God’s church and God’s people is of more value to God than surrendering standards for some so c
Come Out From Among Them
Griffith Baptist Church – 12/16/07
Text: Psalm 26
1. The Plea for Examination – 26:1-3
2. The Purpose of Separation – 26:4-8
3. The Precedence of Purification – 26:9-12
The main subject we are talking about here is this subject of separation - to set or keep apart; disunite.
1. Separation is not:
A. Stuck up Christianity – thinking we are better than everybody else
i. We are still sinners saved by grace
ii. Some have their heads in the clouds of pride and say
Believe as I believe--no more, no less;
That I am right (and no one else) confess.
Feel as I feel, think only as I think;
Eat what I eat, and drink but what I drink.
Look as I look, do always as I do;
And then--and only then--I’ll fellowship with you.
B. Total non-contact with the world – 1 Corinthians 5:9-13 - for then must ye needs go out of the world.
2. Where do we draw the line?
A. That is a delicate balance
B. It requires spiritual discipline and a keen spiritual awareness of God’s holiness.
There are three facets of separation that need to be considered.
1. Personal Separation from the World
A. Key Texts – 1st John 2:15-17; 2nd Cor. 6:15-7:1
B. Turn to 2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1
C. What is the World?
i. World System – unregenerate people governed by Satan and his ungodly philosophy
ii. Worldliness – friendship toward, a desire for, and wish to be recognized or participate in the world system. This attitude will lead to indulgence in acts which may not be wrong in themselves but which will identify one with the world system and thus hinder his love for God, his spiritual growth, and his Christian testimony.
D. What does it mean to be separate from the world? (14-16a)
i. We are not to have any close ties or fellowship with those in the world (unequal yoke)
ii. No fellowship – sharing, partnership
iii. No communion – joint fellowship and close participation
iv. No concord – a sounding together, an agreement that is in harmony, sympathy, unison
v. No part – an assigned part, a portion, a share
vi. No agreement – covenant, contract
E. Why are we told to be separate from the world? (16b)
i. We are the temple of God – worship
ii. We are God’s people - holiness
F. What is the result of separation from the world? (17-7:1)
i. Purity is required in the presence of God (17)
ii. A close relationship with our heavenly Father (18)
iii. To have our holiness preserved and keep our spiritual integrity intact (7:1)
2. Ecclesiastical Separation from False Doctrine and False - Teachers
A. Key Texts – Gal. 1:8-9; 2nd John 9-11; Rom. 16:17-18; 1st Tim. 6:20-21
B. Romans 16:17-18 – 17Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. 18For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.
C. A false teacher is one who professes to being a Christian but endeavors to mislead by teaching and preaching false doctrine.
D. SIDENOTE: Why denominations? Because of Biblical standards and theology
E. How far do we take this? (this takes spiritual discernment) It is better to take the high road than take a chance!
i. In some things we can have differences of opinion that does not affect fellowship:
a. Church government
b. Church ordinances
ii. In fundamental areas, there is no room for compromise
a. The full inspiration, inerrancy and authority of the Bible
b. The virgin birth of Christ
c. Christ’s deity and perfect humanity
d. Christ’s absolute Sinlessness
e. Salvation only by the atoning death of Christ on the cross
f. The blood of Christ
g. His resurrection
h. His personal return
i. The reality of heaven and hell
F. Turn to 2nd Peter 2
G. Why avoid false teachers?
i. The doctrinal integrity of the church must be maintained (1st Tim. 4:6)
ii. To protect God’s people from error (Acts 20:28; 2nd Pet. 2:1-2)
3. Spiritual Separation from Disobedient Christians
A. Key Texts – 1st Cor. 5:1-13; 2nd Thes. 3:6, 14-15; Matt. 18:15-18; Tit. 3:9-10
B. Disobedient Christian – a professing Christian who intentionally refuses to modify some aspect of his/her conduct to conform to the clear teaching of Scripture. Willful sinning that is continual even if confronted.
C. Turn to 2nd Thessalonians 3:6, 14-15
D. Key elements in this type of separation:
i. Every effort must be made to restore and revive a rebellious Christian
ii. We are never to stop loving a rebellious Christian (not an enemy)