Summary: Some people are weak in sense, period. Others are strong in some areas, but weak in the spiritual realm because, down deep, they really don’t believe things like doctrine matter. Paul attempts to shake-up both types of people who are inappropriately tole
When Tolerance Is Silly
2 Corinthians 11:1-4, 19-20
1. Does it really matter what you believe?
2. From UPI: CAIRO, Sept. 29 (UPI) -- A conservative cleric in the constituent assembly drafting the new Egyptian constitution has argued the country should allow girls to marry at 14.
Yassir Barhami, in a television debate Thursday, said Islam allows marriage at even younger ages, Bikya Masr reported.
He said the Koran permits marriage as soon as girls are capable of conceiving children.
"It is permissible for the girl at the age of 9 or 10 to marry," Barhami said.
Barhami is a Salafist, a member of the ultra-conservative wing of Islam.
3. The point is clear: belief affects live, morals, and choices.
4. Yet, as Americans, we are being sold of bill of goods called tolerance.
5. What is proper and improper tolerance? [not equally valid]
Main Idea: Some people are weak in sense, period. Others are strong in some areas, but weak in the spiritual realm because, down deep, they really don’t believe things like doctrine matter. Paul attempts to shake-up both types of people who are inappropriately tolerant.
I. Spiritual GULLIBILITY is Dangerous (1-3)
Gullibility: Gullibility is a failure of social intelligence in which a person is easily tricked or manipulated into an ill-advised course of action. It is closely related to credulity, which is the tendency to believe unlikely propositions that are unsupported by evidence. [Wikipedia]
A. FAITHFULNESS is our goal (1-2)
B. DECEPTION is our danger (3)
1. Paul’s Midrash on the Fall of Genesis 3:1-6
Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made.
He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.
2. The command was simple: do not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil
3. The problem is a matter of sincerity…
4. People are often led away not because of low intelligence, but insincerity
5. They want to please others, go along with society, or hold on to memories
C. Christians who are gullible just don’t think CONTENT is important
• Like Eve, they are open to interpretations other than God’s Word
• Like Adam, they follow others into wrong with open eyes
D. Rather than seeking TRUTH, some want a religion to follow
• We can’t compete with religion as religion; we are about a relationship with God through his Son, not controlling God with mumbo jumbo; God has reached down to us… we accept his gift
• When people seek religion but not a transformed heart, we have nothing
Some people are weak in sense, period. Others are strong in some areas, but weak in the spiritual realm because, down deep, they really don’t believe things like doctrine matter. Paul attempts to shake-up both types of people who are inappropriately tolerant.
II. Being Tolerant of Professing Believers Who Deny the ESSENTIALS is Mindless (4, 19-20)
A. The context is YOUR church, not SOCIETY
I was talking to a gal (Lola) who was a Catholic and big time into astrology; she also said Buddhism had much to offer; she had a friend who was Buddhist & very spiritual….how did I answer that?
B. Using the same words but changing meaning is DECEPTION (4)
C. God does not call us to be spiritual DOORMATS (19-20)
• When Paul confronted them, they labeled him as un-christlike; when false teachers did worse, that was okay…
• The issue was who and what the people wanted to believe vs. truth
D. Underneath this call to firmness is a caring HEART
1. Turkeys do not have sense to get out of the rain
2. A young man talking to us out in the rain
3. Paul is trying to train us to get out the rain for our own good…
4. Control freaks try to control society, but godly Christians expect a measure of control within the church; the church is not a public forum, it does not and should not give equal time to those who oppose what the church believes.
5. The church is a family, and its family members are out to protect and develop one another…