Jim Wilson is the retired director of Community Christian Ministries in Moscow, Idaho. He will be posting regularly, so check back in soon!

Monday, April 09, 2007

A Gentle Answer

He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it. (Titus 1:9 NIV)

This sentence is part of a list of the qualifications for elders in a church in a town in Crete. The elder is to “encourage” and “refute.” In order to do this properly the elders must hold firmly to the message.

We find other qualifications in 1Timothy 3:2 like “gentle” and “not quarrelsome.” The reason I bring this up is the requirement to refute the opposition and yet not be quarrelsome. We see a statement in 2 Timothy 2:4 which confirms this teaching, “and the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Those who oppose him, he must gently instruct…”

There is increasing opposition today to sound doctrine and to Christians. Christians must refute those in opposition, but they must do it gently, kindly, and without quarreling.

(An excerpt from On Being a Christian by Jim Wilson)

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