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"by their fruit"

Discussion in 'Christian Theology Forum' started by Rach1370, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    Why on earth would a 'Christian' gloat over another's sin? Why would a Christian take another's pain, heartache and struggles and use them for social fodder?
    I can only think of one reason, and it has to do with rotten fruit.

    So, thoughts anyone? What should we do? Gloat, ridicule, go in for the kill to make ourselves look more righteous? Or should we comfort, encourage, support and help back up to their feet?
     
  2. Prentis

    Prentis New Member

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    We are to be brothers, submitted to each other in Christ. We treat each other in love, seeking to edify, not destroy. :)
     
  3. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    Well that depends... I would probably confess my own sin to them so they didn't feel alone... I definitely wouldn't tell them they needed to become perfect to be saved... as that correctly would seem impossible to them in that state and they would feel condemned... so I would just relate to them as a sinner and tell them about Jesus... help them to understand that Christ loved them so much that He died for their sins... and I would encourage them in how much God loved them. Once they accept Jesus I trust He will work in them.

    The harder one is the religious man... they want no accountability because they've convinced themselves that they're righteous... usually based on creating a false perception of themselves among a group... and then feeling righteous by living in that false perception of themselves in the people he's surrounded himself with. This is the scariest place to be for a human seeking God... since they not only hate the light because it might reveal the truth about them. They can also get so rapped up the false perception they've created about themselves that they've forgotten what they looked like in the truth.

    That's the scariest place they can be because they might actually forget just what sinners they really are... and in that they might forget why Christ had to die for them on the cross...
     
  4. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    Amen!

    Agreed!

    Well, here I differ somewhat. "Religious"...if the man/woman is indeed a religious person, they probably do believe their righteous. But if the person is a Christian, they are probably very aware of their sinful need for Jesus and for repentance. If that's the case then it's a whole different animal. Now granted, some Christians are also 'religious', convinced that they can earn their way into heaven by behaving well, but I think generally most born again people are very concious of their desperate need for grace, and of their nature to sin....maybe not the specific sins, but of their tendency to sin. What do we do then, seeing such a brother or sister stumble? My sister struggled after her marriage broke up (she was married to an abusive man)...she was so desperate to be loved as she was, she made several foolish choices with men. She knew it was wrong, but in those moments, when faced with that immediate temptation of being 'loved', she stumbled...and I know she regretted it, I know it hurt her more. What should my actions have been then? Would it have been loving of me to announce her shame to our bible study group? Would it have been Christ like of me to criticise her behaviour, her mistakes? I most certainly shouldn't have encouraged her..."you're on the right track...keep going and you'll find love"....but if I had torn her down, how would she have felt and reacted? Would she have accepted my hand, and let me help her back up? Would she have seen Jesus in my behaviour? Seen the glory of God reflected in what I had said and done? Nope.
    Here's the thing....as people (and not God) we can only see the result of a behaviour...sin. We cannot know what led them there. We cannot see the struggle, the heartache, the reason they went down the road they did. We cannot know if they did such a thing in haughty self righteousness. We cannot know if they acted in a belief they had a right or an excuse to do so. And so we should not judge them, make a call on their hearts, when only God can know their hearts. Only God knows if they are truly repentant, only God can know if they tripped and stumbled or if they willingly went down that road. So we should comfort, support and lead them back to God...just as we can wish they would do for us should (and when) we stumble! It is indeed all about Jesus and His sacrifice on the cross...not just in how we receive His gift of grace, but how we reflect it to others!
    I know you're about love and not judging Robbie, so I lovingly caution you on this.
     
  5. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    See... I come from a different place... my Mom was a heroin addict and an alcoholic... as long as she was able to live in darkness about it she could perpetuate.her situation... darkness is an enabler... once she was fully in the light about her sin... that's when she got free...

    I know it pisses off people that are living in it... I had this one friend that I called out back in the day for cocaine addiction... he got so mad at me that if he could of he probably would have beat me up... haha... but instead he didn't talk to me for months... after all was said and done he came up to me and said thank you for being a real friend.

    I have no bad intentions... at least I try not to...
     
  6. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    It's not a bad thing to quietly pull a believer aside and rebuke them if you truly believe they need that wake up call. But how do you think your friend would have reacted had you talked to him in front of others, and then used negative things to make him not only recognise his sin, but feel terrible about it. If you, under the guise of friendship and Christianity actually told him what a loser he was, that he was sinful trash and he better shape up? I bet that years later he wouldn't have thanked you at all...he may still have your photo on his dash board with a 'do not brake for' sign near it!
    I think my point is this...if we are going to be pointing out others sins, we need to be absolutely sure it's the right thing to do...ie it needs to be from a true loving concern over that person and their actions, not because you need to point out that that person stuffed up. We need to prayerfully consider what the best way to do it is...certainly in private, and in most cases in a loving 'I've been where you are, let me help you out' kind of way. I do understand the need to get it out there. John tells us that if we are Jesus', we cannot and should not attempt to be in the darkness. We need that light of Jesus to shine away our sins. But confronting a person, shining that light onto their mistakes and stumbles, is always done best with the love and compassion that Jesus showed. Hurt and humiliation will only make anyone want to scurry into the darkness to hide, not walk confidently into that light, blessed by the knowledge that they have the support of not only Christ, but his brothers and sisters in Christ.
     
  7. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    I did call him out in public... as a matter of fact I clowned him for being so into coke... and I wasn't a christian yet... I believed in God because I knew my mom couldn't still be alive and sober apart from a power greater than herself... and I believed Jesus was God... but I hadn't yet been affiliated myself with christianity...
     
  8. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    I definitely had loving concern for aspen after he said he was all about Prentis when Prentis had basically just said the cross and the blood of Christ wasn't enough to save us... so yeah... my intentions were good... I actually had to reject the voice of fear in my head when I was doing it... there was totally this voice in my head saying aspen was going to hate me and everyone was going to think I was a bad person... but I decided just to be honest... and I know to some that might seem evil... but even right now my hope is that it all comes to light... and that the light destroys the darkness and aspen get's free... and that his marriage is reconnected and blessed with amazing love...

    If I didn't think the truth could help him I wouldn't have said anything... I mean if it's not working change it... and living in darkness don't work...

    The hardest truth I ever had to fess up to was when I had to tell my wife a while back that I still struggled with looking at porn... haha... that was hard to do... but thank God I did... because after that it made me accountable and free from the fear of what might be.
     
  9. Insight

    Insight New Member

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    Robbie

    You are a brave Christian. But even brave Christians can misuse the tongue, misuse trust and confidence and sometimes misplace our friends. I am an outsider, a stranger to you all and in all honesty no nothing about recent discussions. This above post is the first I have read in full and quite frankly prefer it was deleted; but that’s not my place in this forum.

    You will know that Matt 18 is all about gaining a brother, its about recovering the lost, hurt and the sad of heart and the sinner from themselves (James 5:20). The Master said "Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. Matthew 18:15.

    I pray you can recover a brother if in fact you have lost one?

    The global forum challenges the divine process set out in Matthew 18, although it is benefical for us all to be remindered of its wisdom.

    I pray these thoughts will rest on you gently.

    In the Masters Service

    Insight
     
  10. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    I'm not really sure what you're referring to about the whole Prentis/Aspen deal, but Robbie, just because you feel brave enough to admit to a porn addiction, really doesn't mean you should have aired that stuff about Aspen's marriage above. If you worry about Aspen, and have true concern for him, then dude, your first stop should have been to PM him. Despite what happened, be it sin or just bad circumstances, having marriage trouble is painful. It hurts. Despite your desire to 'get it all out there'...did you consider Aspen's feelings in all of this? Did you consider the wisdom in splashing his pain over a very public forum? Despite you good intentions, I can't help but feel it was very unwise of you, and really not your call to make. Aspen could have told everyone if and when the Holy Spirit had pushed him to it. As Insight said, Matthew 18:15 goes into how we should deal with such matters...told to us by Jesus Himself. The only problem I see with this passage in this situation, is it's dealing with how we should act if a brother sins against us. Aspens troubles at the moment can have no direct relation to you. As friends we should support and encourage him...and part of that is keeping confidence if he has trusted us with something. Let me ask you a question Robbie...even though you thought you had a duty to bring someone else's sin into the light, do you suppose that Aspen feels totally betrayed by your actions?? Do you suppose he has the right to? Jesus stresses that we should be trustworthy.

    I'm very glad you felt you could tell your wife about his weakness, it can be tough fessing up. But can I ask you something else...and I'm asking because I care. Did the freedom you felt once you had brought this up lead to a decreased addiction? Because if you still struggle the same amount, I fear that all you've done is released your guilt over it, but are still enslaved to it. Does that make sense?? I do pray that having struggled to bring it into the light that this is not the case, and that the Holy Spirit is unceasingly working in you about this!
     
  11. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    It's not admitting to a porn addiction... haha... it's just being real about our male desires. You know how many of my friends watch porn and don't even feel bad about it? They just talk openly about, "Yep... got a new porn movie"

    You see Rach... that's why I quite going to church back in the day. Because it was so fake. It was like I knew the truth of just how far from righteous people were there and every Sunday I'd go an watch them all play the hypocrite with each other while pretending they were better than they were all the while thanks to their pride being puffed up by their false sense of self righteousness... they'd look down their noses and focus on the sins of everyone else...

    Then they also put that on me... when I first came to Jesus I was so thankful to have been set free from so much... I would just talk openly about all the things I was grateful that the Lord set me free from. Then the pastor told me to stop talking about it... and why? Because everyone knew I was doing that stuff with his kids... haha

    Also it wasn't about bringing Aspen to the light... it was about calling him on his hypocrisy because he was telling me I had to become a better person in order to be saved... I mean Paul did the same thing to Peter openly... it's like, "Yo dude... don't play righteous with me... because you have just as much cake on your face as I do"

    But whatever... I just really feel like christianity isn't for me... I hate hanging out with a bunch of people that are all pretending to be more righteous than they are... give me all my friends who might sin more than the religious man... but at least they live in the truth of who they are...

    And it wasn't hard fessing up to my wife thanks to the fact that we're surrounded by people who live in the truth of who we are. So she knew there wasn't something wrong with me... because she knew all my guy friends struggle with the same desires.

    Late
     
  12. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    One last thing about this... you know the first bible study me and my friends ever had back in the day... it was some of my guy friends and a bunch of girls. These girls who had known each other for years... gone to the same church.... stayed the night at each others house... etc... at the beginning of the night were all talking about how they were saving themselves for marriage and how they were all virgins. Some of my guy friends were also claiming the same and I called one of them out... I was like, "Yeah right dude... you aint a virgin" and he was a lil offended but I was over him playing the hypocrite in front of me... haha... Then we started talking about our struggles with not fornicating, then other people started admitting their struggles and all of a sudden those girls that were all playing goody2shoes with each other all eventually confessed one by one that none of them were virgins. They were all tripping out on each other that they were all living a lie with each other because they were afraid of the other person finding out what they all were guilty of. After we got all that truth into the open we were able to discuss in the light the struggles and the victories we were having with sexuality.

    You see hypochristianity puts an expectation of righteousness on people that they can't live up to and because of that you have a bunch of people living in false perceptions with each other that are created by illusions of self righteousness... for me... I see that as worthless... since if I don't know the truth about someone... my relationship isn't with them... it's with an illusion...
     
  13. aspen

    aspen “"The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few

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    It is interesting, because what you believe is so noble - pantsing people that you are intimidated by - is called leveling. Which means exactly what it sounds like - in order to feel comfortable or accepted by others, you have to level the playing field. Everyone must play your game or they are hypocrites or christian snobs or goody2shoes. It is not noble - in fact, it is a mark of insecurity.

    BTW - a hypocrite is a person with standards. That is all. No one lives up to their standards all the time. The alternative is to give up all standards. I choose hypocrisy every time. Anyone claiming not to be a hypocrite is a liar or a person with no standards.
     
  14. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    Robbie my friend, your logic is dizzying.
    Okay, obviously you're on your own path and happy with it, despite it not really making any sense. Sorry, but truly it doesn't. Admitting to looking at porn is okay, because it's just being honest about your male desires? Let's just take a step back here...remember the fall...remember sin? Now how about the fact that you're married, but instead of solely using your 'normal male desires' in the wonderful covenant of marriage, you look at naked women...strange woman. Nothing wrong about that at all...completely normal. And I suppose you then think that if anyone just comes clean and open about their 'natures' it's all okay?? How about the paedophile?
    Robbie man, I'm so worried about you. Yes, the church is full of hypocrites...it's full of sinners. You know what we had to do to become Christians? We had to stick up our hands and say "I suck so bad there is no way I can save myself...Jesus, I need you". None of us are perfect, and yes, some 'Christians' are false and a terrible testament to Jesus...it's shameful. But that's on them, not on Jesus, and the Church that he tells us is his bride. There are so many genuine Christians out there, all struggling, all striving to put sin to death. We're not perfect either, but we love Jesus and we love our brothers and sisters in Christ....and I'm so concerned for you that having hit a group of 'religious' Christians, you've chosen the world over the Church. Yes, you're friend are probably very free with their 'natural urges'...but that will not save them....in fact Jesus tells us that in a way, in their 'freedom', they're actually enslaved to various Idols...sex, money...mateship. It can be anything. If you value 'being honest to the point of sin' then you are worshipping that, not Jesus. Jesus wants you to be honest, but he wants you to put sin to death....and dude, porn fits squarely in the 'sexual immorality' drawer. Anything sexual outside of marriage is sin...
    You probably don't want to hear this word, but I'm worried for you. Lately you've been getting so fired up...over nothing sometimes. We are you at Robbie? Do you really follow Jesus...and I'm talking all of what Jesus taught...not just the bits that make you feel good and free. Jesus said sexual immorality is sin...you say its normal. Where are you really at Robbie? Am praying for you.
     
  15. THE Gypsy

    THE Gypsy New Member

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    What are you talking about?
     
  16. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    haha...None of us are perfect... yet we're supposed to pretend like we are? and not talk about it if we aren't?

    You know what I find really pathetic... is how much gossip I've seen perpetuated on here against celebrities, pastors, etc... and that's totally cool... but whatever you do... don't talk about one of us...

    That so christian... and exactly why every day christianity become more and more of a joke to me... realizing how Jesus and truth has pretty much nothing to do with christianity...

    It's all about appearing outwardly righteous to each other... which to me is so cheap... but it makes sense since it's already been said by some that the blood of Christ isn't enough to save us and it's our own righteousness... so I guess that's why it's important to create false perceptions of our self righteousness with each other...

    No thanks... I'm over whitewashed tombs...
     
  17. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    Pretending like we're perfect? Not talk about our sins and problems? I've suddenly had a break through Robbie!!! You obviously need to get out of California! Maybe you should come to Australia....I know so many Christians here who are just wonderfully human! We struggle, we're open about it, and it's wonderful to be able to talk about where we struggle.
    I agree, we should talk about it, we shouldn't pretend Jesus made us perfect when he saved us. We're not all like that Robbie....look around some more! Don't give up on the church that Jesus died for and will come again for! We are his bride....surely you must know that not all of us are jerks!
     
  18. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    By the way... the conversation went down like this...

    First off it was in the Topic about whether you really think you live up to the righteousness of Christ...

    I said "haha... some sin? people that think they only have some sin must not know Jesus... because in the light of Jesus we see clearly how far from sinless we truly are... in our own righteousness..."

    To which Aspen replied, "I sorry to hear this. "

    To which I replied, " Why are you sorry Aspen? Remember the time you got wasted and said weird stuff to me on my facebook? I had no judgment against you because I thought you knew you were saved by grace... and I had grace for you blowing it. Are you seriously not able to see how far you are from the righteousness of Christ? And how being clothed in His righteousness is the only righteousness that can save you?"

    Then He got bummer so I said to him,

    "Aspen dude... I didn't know you were hiding the truth about yourself from everyone... doesn't it feel good to have it all in the open now? Now you're free from the fear of the light... it's all gonna be out in the open one day anyways... was the truth as bad as you thought? I sure don't judge you... I've gotten wasted plenty of times and acted in ways I wish I wouldn't have. I don't care who knows it... and forget any self righteous christians that want to condemn me for it.... if you're afraid to live in the truth about your struggles because you're afraid of being judged stop hanging out with people who are judgmental... if you have a problem with alcohol and you can't talk about it among christians stop hanging out with christians and go to AA where people have grace because they know they're guilty of the same things as you... otherwise you'll never have victory. We'll never have victory as long as we live in darkness about our sins... and we'll never feel safe to live in the light about our sins when we're trying to impress and live up to the standards of self righteous hypocrites.

    So feel free to be honest... so what if you're an alcoholic... I'm just as much of a sinner as you... trust me... my mom's a recovered alcoholic and a heroin addict and she's the best person I know... and Jesus covers her sins... you're a great person to... whether you struggle or not.


    I'm really sorry to hear about your wife... I'm glad this has given you the ability to live in the light about what's going on... I pray the Lord fills her with grace towards you... and reestablishes your relationship with each other... may the Lord solidify your relationship for always...

    And dude... seriously... I have almost 2000 friends on facebook... if I got wasted and said weird stuff to someone.... and they posted it on my facebook page I wouldn't give a ish... because I'm not perfect and everyone knows it... if you seriously feel like you have to live a lie to the point where me mentioning something on a christian message board freaks you out that much... you need to get away from the people that are putting so much pressure on you... to where you feel like you have to live a lie...

    Trying to hide everything to make things right... how was that working for you? Doesn't sound like it went very well... maybe this is your opportunity to get free... to live in the light... so He can forgive you and cleanse you... I sure as heck forgive you.. there's nothing you're guilty of that I'm not... so forget it... live in the truth about where you're at... we both have cake on our face... thanks to Jesus who washes us clean.

    I love you brother... but quit living a lie so you can play christian... and if christianity makes you feel judged to the point where you have to live a lie... get away from it... just know you can always live in the light of what a sinner you are with Jesus... and those who realize they to are just like you... like me.


    Just so you know aspen... I could give a care what anyone here thinks about me... it's the Lord who justifies... and I suggest you try and get to a place where you feel the same... "

    If you see that as unloving gloating over someone's sins I really don't know what to say...
     
  19. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    Haven't you ever come across someone who is basically gossiping about another Christian? Gleefully recounting sin? Is it right for a person to go to half the church or study group or friends and tell them about another's mistake...breaking confidence to do so...using that information to hurt? Even if the other had in fact sinned, as Christians, do we kick them while they're down, or do we help them up? If the other person is already aware of their mistake, how do we see the benefit of revelling in that mistake, making it fodder for gossip and our own self righteousness..."look how bad they are, thank goodness I'm not like them"? If the person repents and moves on, shouldn't we too?
    I just think we see it too often, is all. Haven't you seen it?

    Robbie...I didn't read you're last post....simply because I don't believe that any of that should be public. Man, you just did it again! Why do you feel you have the right to make someone else's business public??? If you feel so strongly about it, go ahead, blog your entire life, every sin...that's fine. But you're applying your belief to someone else, without their permission. That's just wrong. And I think everyone feels that way. The Bible tells us to air our OWN sins, it does not give us permission to do so to others. You're in the wrong here man.
     
  20. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

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    So you've formed an opinion of what I said without even reading what I said?

    hahahaha... christianity is so lame...

    Just delete everything I said... sorry aspen that people know the truth about you now...

    I'm over religion... so worthless... no wonder priests get away with molesting kids...

    Let's all live in lala land together... we'll gossip about all the sins of the people in the world... and live in darkness about our own... it's all such a joke...

    Thank God my foundation is Jesus and not some worthless fake dead religion...

    You definitely know a tree by it's fruit... and christianity bares the fruit of people feeling pressured into living a lie... so worthless...
     
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