Words of Worth

“Get a Moving Buddy”

October 15, 2017

 

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Moving Buddy

I’m a huge fan of animated and live short films, those films that range in length from 6 to 36 minutes. Every February, a few friends and I go to the movie theater and watch the Oscar nominated short films in these two categories, animated and live, and then make our predictions as to the winners.

This specific pastime, gave birth to the idea of teaching a Bible study this Fall, which I have entitled, “BIBLE SHORTS”. So I am teaching those books of the Bible that are one or two chapters in length and may take less than 36 minutes to read-Philemon, Jude, 2 John, 3 John, Obadiah, and Haggai. While they are short on verses and chapters, they are certainly not short on Biblical principles and truth.

Last week I finished teaching the Book of Jude which contains 25 verses of packed principles. Jude, the half-brother of Jesus, wrote a letter appealing to Jewish Christians to contend for the faith-the truth of the gospel – “that was once for all delivered to the saints”, because false teachers have crept unnoticed into their churches. These were the false teachers that Peter, the apostle, had warned about ten years or so earlier. And they were teachers who would add deception to the faith and give license to sin. Now Jude was saying, “Peter was right!”

Jude spent many words, in his letter, describing these false teachers, their lies, their immorality, and their unbelief (Jude 5-16). However, as Jude neared the end of his letter, he suggested:

17 But you must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. 18 They said to you, “In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions.” 19 It is these who cause divisions, worldly people, devoid of the Spirit. 20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life.22 And have mercy on those who doubt; 23 save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.

Jude reminds us, in these verses, that we are to keep ourselves in the love of God, and wait for the return of Christ. However, we cannot only be concerned with our own spiritual welfare. Sometimes our friends flirt with false teaching or become misled by terrible doctrine. We are to have compassion on them and be concerned for their salvation.

Even more severely, there are times we may have to strongly confront others, who are slipping towards significant error, in fear and humility, and pull them out of the fire by helping them with accountability and reproving them if necessary.

How can we be the kind of Christians who show compassion and strong reproof, when necessary, to others? One way is to know the truth of the Word, to study it, so we can have discernment about false teaching and thinking.

Another way is to have, what Woody said in Toy Story, a moving buddy! To have that person in our lives, or to be that person in someone’s life, that can speak the truth of God’s Word into the life of that person who has gone astray, has followed wrong thinking, or is participating in harmful behaviors. We all need those friends in our lives, who will encourage us to move away from the false teaching which can easily creep into our minds unnoticed, and to move into the battle to contend for the faith that was “once for all delivered to the saints.”

If you don’t have a moving buddy, get one!”

-Woody, from Toy Story

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