Giving & Receiving Criticism: Proverbs 29
If you have read this blog for any amount of time, you know that I spent 5 years of my life on staff at a word of faith church. You may also know that I think that the Word of Faith movement is an example of what the Bible defines as being a false doctrine. my blog is primarily about my journey away from that false teaching and towards one that is true to what Jesus and the Apostles taught.
With nine months of blogging under my belt thus far, I’ve tried my very best to be as respectful as I possibly can to the people I used to fellowship with. I’ve never mentioned the name of my former church; haven’t mentioned the names of any specific people. I strive to maintain as pleasant of a tone as possible in describing the things I’ve experienced.
The fact of the matter is that I am not offended by any of the people from my former church. I simply decided early on in this journey that there was an entire world out there full of Christians who were being led astray by this form of false teaching, and that doing my part in helping fix that was far more important than keeping quiet for the sake of rubbing a few people the wrong way. This has not been an easy process for me, but I do believe with everything in me that it is the right thing to do.
This isn’t something that I chose to become passionate about. I didn’t just wake up one day and decide that I was going to criticize Word of Faith teaching. I simply got serious about Jesus to the point where I had absolutely nothing to lose and this is where it led me. Everyone who reads the Bible and takes it seriously ends up on a journey of some sort. You will have no choice but to offend certain people because Jesus offended people. From the very beginning of His ministry, Jesus began making enemies (people who claimed to believe in the Scriptures, to be exact) because of the things He was teaching… and He promised the same treatment for those who would choose to follow Him.
At the end of the day, I am either right or wrong about the way I am interpreting the Scriptures. If I am wrong, then God will deal with me accordingly. I am firm enough in my convictions to be at peace about that. But what if I am right?
I want anyone who reads this blog to know that my ultimate goal is to lead people to study the Bible for themselves. Don’t just take my word for it. Read the Bible yourself and take what it says seriously. Ask yourself tough questions about the things that Jesus said. Always accept criticism from others with humility and take those things to God in prayer and by studying the Bible.
You’ll likely discover that there were things that you thought you knew about Jesus that you really didn’t… and that is okay. The question is this: How will you handle that criticism? And if you discover that you are wrong about something, will you be willing to walk away from those things and run towards Jesus?
Originally published January 29, 2013.