Having just finished ‘Lead: 12 Gospel Principles for Leadership in the Church’ by Philadelphia pastor Paul David Tripp, I want to do some soul searching and be a Berean.
Much of what Tripp has to say I readily agree with – not because he said it, but because it is sound and Biblically clear-cut and incontrovertible.
Unfortunately, also in the mix is a brand of woke Christianity designed to subtly but surely strip us of what the theological and political Left calls patriarchy, toxic masculinity, sexism, racism, xenophobia, et cetera.
This brings me to a question my neighbor recently asked me.
“…Where is the line, or points where we say ‘Yeah, we may agree with them on some biblical points, but they are too far in error on these other unbiblical points, to where we cannot recommend anything they have to say?'”
JP asks a good and necessary question, and the answer to it may not be easy. But one thing we must know is that the Bereans in Acts are held up as an example for us.
We know that we are warned throughout the New Testament to teach only what accords with sound doctrine, and to keep watch over our doctrine – and I believe that extends even indirectly to the teachers we recommend to others as reliable.
Similarly, we are told to contend for the faith, and to confront those who are undermining the gospel of Jesus Christ which was delivered once for all. And we are charged to guard against deceptions and diversions which would fundamentally transform that gospel into something contrary to God’s character, promises, and commands.
“ Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”1 Peter 5:8 (ESV)
The Apostle Paul’s confrontation of Peter over his catering to the Judaizers at Antioch is also relevant here. Substitute Woke Christians for Judaizers, and you will catch my drift.
Perhaps also the disagreement between Paul and Barnabas over what to do with John Mark should be instructive.
All that said, I would only recommend reading the works and listening to the words of Christian leaders on the Woke side of the fault line to mature, discerning Christians. And even there, I would strongly advise viewer discretion.
Otherwise, impressionable brothers and sisters may be taken in by virtue-signaling missives like this one from Paul Tripp published almost a year ago.
One final thought: If someone handed you a pan of brownies and you knew there was a turd hidden somewhere amidst the chocolate morsels, you might study it. But you would not consume it uncritically if you valued your health.
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