God's Word NEVER Changes Interpretations Twist The Scripture To Prove A Belief

Adapted from Twisted Scriptures by Carl Ketcherside
by Randolph Dunn - The BibleWay Publisher
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Twisting the Scriptures

Table of Contents

Amos 3:3 - Accept you be agreed
Galatians 1:6 - Preach another Gospel
Mark 16:15-16 - Preach the Gospel
Romans 15:5 1 Corinthians 1:10- Live in Harmony
Romans 16:17 - Mark those
2 Thessalonians 3:6 - Withdraw yourselves
1 John 1:7 - Walk in the light
2 John 10, 11 - Receive him not
Jude 3 - One faith
1 Corinthians 1:7-9 - Fellowship

Introduction

"The right to be wrong is matters of religious belief must be accorded, otherwise we produce hypocrites instead of persons with enlightened belief that is fully their own. If the truth be might and God all-powerful, His children need not fear that disaster will follow freedom of thought" - Francois De Fenelon, Archbishop of Cambrai.

When God speaks He either provides facts, requires one to perform some action or to refrain from performing some action. When He has not spoken one must make a judgment decision based upon his understanding of what God desires. He may be flawed in his understanding due to lack of study, human weakness, some type of bias or by putting his self-interest, fame, fortune and honor ahead of a desire to please God.

The more one studies the greater the probability he or she will revise, alter or change to some extent a previous understanding, such is the nature of the acquisition of knowledge. As one's knowledge increases so should his faith. The apostles warned that a time would come when people would turn away from sound doctrine and follow their own desires. This was evident by John's letters to the churches of Asia as recorded in Revelation.

Does the lack of any Bible instruction provide for or prohibit any practices or teachings? "Tertullian taught that "anything not taught in the Bible could not be practiced." Luther espoused - "What is not against Scripture is for Scripture, and Scripture for it." Zwingli maintained that anything "not enjoined or taught in the New Testament should be unconditionally rejected" and others taught anything not forbidden could be practiced." thebiblewayonline.com/Gods Word/ Appendix 4.html

Each lesson provides scriptures quoted from different Bible translations, comments from Ketcherside, several well-known Bible scholars and ends with my comments.

Several things contribute to wresting or twisting of scripture; e.g.,
Ignoring the context
    2 John 9-10
    1. If any man come and bring another doctrine (teaching) receiving him not neither bid him God's speed Some use this to require agreement of their interpretation of a doctrinal teaching, otherwise it is "other doctrine". But, the teaching that Christ did not come in the flesh was the "other doctrine" just discussed.
    2. Revelation written to Christians undergoing severe persecution were to remind them physical life was temporary while spiritual life is eternal, that God is in control and would destroy their persecutors - Rome and Emperor worship
Altering the Vocabulary and use of archaic words
  1. We have great joy and consolation in thy love, because the bowels of the saints are refreshed by thee, brother. Phil. 7
  2. Minister as commonly used today is a professional pulpit preacher rather than a servant (diakonos) of the 1st century,
  3. Many consider the assembly room of a church building a holy place (a sanctuary)
Disrespect of Authority
  1. Many change unity in Christ to be uniformity of opinion and understanding
  2. "Therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you … With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;" Ephesians 4:1-4
Lexicons and Dictionaries

Lexicons and dictionaries were developed, probably in the 1500 to1600's as the Bible became available in languages other than Greek. Meaning of Greek words reflected actions and practices of Catholic and Angelicin churches. For instance, before the time of Christ episkopos meant sentinel, guardian, watchman, visitation, inspection, watching over something (overseeing). Lexicons and dictionaries regularly added a current meaning without indicating the time the new meaning came into use. Observe: meaning at the time of the apostles for episkopos could not have been Officer of church as the church was not established until after Christ's resurrection and ascension.

  • Strong's - superintendent, officer in charge of a church
  • Thayer's - an overseer, a man charged with the duty of seeing that things to be done by others are done rightly, any curator, guardian, or superintendent

Amos 3:3

Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

Background

Following Solomon's death ten tribes seceded and set up the Kingdom of Israel under Jeroboam. He introduced calf-worship in Dan and Bethel and ceased the worship of Jehovah God. For 150 to 200 years God waited patiently for their repentance and return but they continued not to walk in the Jehovah's way. Then God sent Amos from Judah to them asking how God and Israel could walk together since they chose not to do so.

What does "except they be agreed" mean to us today?
  1. Christians must have complete agreement in all teachings.
  2. People agree to meet at a place and go somewhere together.
  3. To be in companionship and fellowship Christians must agree that Jesus of Nazareth was God in human form who offered Himself to God, The Father, as the only blood sacrifice to atone for man's sins, God accepted His offering by raising Him from the dead, resurrection of the Messiah, The Christ, He returned to Heaven as the mediator between God and Man.

How other Bibles translate the passage.

  1. Do two walk together unless they have agreed to do so? - NIV
  2. Can two people walk together without agreeing on the direction? - NLT
  3. Do two walk together, unless they have agreed to meet? - ESV
  4. Do two men walk together unless they have made an appointment? - New American Standard Bible
  5. Can two walk together, except they be agreed? - KJV
  6. Do two people ever walk together without meeting first?-GWT
  7. Will two walk together, Except they have agreed? - JPS Tanakh 1917
  8. Do two walk together if they have not met? - YLT

Interlinear

Be agreed - OT:3259 ya`ad
o Strong's Numbers and Concordance - to meet at a stated time
o Thayer's - to meet by appointment
o Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew - meet at an appointed place

Comments:

Ketcherside:

When men respond to the good news about Jesus by their acknowledgment of the proposition that Jesus, the Christ, is the anointed One, the Son of God, and by being baptized as an acknowledgment of His Lordship over our lives, we receive them, for it is upon this basis God receives them. We no more assent to all of their opinions, ideas or concepts than God does. We do not receive them because of the number of things upon which they are right, but because they have been set right with God, being justified by faith."

Adam Clarke's Commentary

While ye loved and served me, I dwelt in you and walked among you. Now ye are become alienated from me, your nature and mine are totally opposite. I am holy, ye are unholy. We are no longer agreed, and can no longer walk together. I can no longer hold communion with you. I must cast you out.

Barnes' Notes

It is an appeal at once to the conscience which feels itself parted from its God; "so neither will God be with thee, unless thou art agreed and of one mind with God. Think not to have God with thee, unless thou art with God;" as He saith, 'I will not go up in the midst of thee, for thou art a stiff-necked people, lest I consume thee in the way' (Ex 33:3); and, 'if ye walk contrary unto Me, then will I also walk contrary unto you, and will punish you yet seven times for your sins' (Lev 26:23,4). And on the other hand, 'They shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy' (Rev 3:4).

Keil and Delitzsch Commentary

The first clause, "Do two men walk together, without having agreed as to their meeting?" (noo'ad, to betake one's self to a place, to meet together at an appointed place or an appointed time; compare Job 2:11; Josh 11:5; Neh. 6:2; not merely to agree together), contains something more than the trivial truth, that two persons do not take a walk together without a previous arrangement.

Bible Knowledge Commentary

These verses show that Israel's punishment was inevitable. Much as there is often an inseparable link between two events in ordinary life, so there was an inseparable link between God's revelation to Amos and the inevitable appearance of judgment. Two do not walk together along a road unless they have first met, chatted, and agreed to continue on together.

My comments

God through Amos tells Judah and Israel that by worshipping other gods they have chosen not to walk together with Him in His pathway any longer. If those who left Him wish to return they must meet Him where they left Him.

Assuming this is a shadow of Christ's Kingdom one must first be put into Christ's Body by God, remain in Christ or return seeking forgiveness and continue to walk in His pathway unto salvation.

Galatians 1:6

I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:

Background

Paul with a physical condition proclaimed the Christ - His life, death, resurrection and ascension - in Galatia. Paul was not gone from the region very long until disturbing reports reached him. Judaizing teachers had entered the area and were spreading the propaganda that one could not be justified by faith in Jesus but must also be circumcised and come under the law or be lost.

How other Bibles translate the passage.
  1. I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel - NIV
  2. I am shocked that you are turning away so soon from God, who called you to himself through the loving mercy of Christ. You are following a different way that pretends to be the Good News - NLT
  3. I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel - ESV
  4. I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: - King James
  5. I marvel how quickly you have been turned away from The Messiah, he who called you by his grace, unto another gospel Aramaic Bible
  6. I'm surprised that you're so quickly deserting Christ, who called you in his kindness, to follow a different kind of good news. - GOD'S WORD®
  7. I wonder that ye are so quickly removed from Him who did call you in the grace of Christ to another good news; YLT

Interlinear

Gospel - NT:2098 - euaggelion
o Strong's Numbers and Concordance - good message, glad tidings of the kingdom of God
o Thayer's - As the Messianic rank of Jesus was proved by his words, deeds, and death, came to be called euangelion.

Comments

Ketcherside

There was the mistaken concept that we are still under law rather than grace. This false concept, foundation, is the undermining of the real purpose of the New Covenant which is unity is in Christ. Today many confuse "the gospel of Christ with the apostolic doctrine. Many forget that the gospel was the good news of what God had done for men in Christ Jesus, while the apostles doctrine consisted of instruction as to what those in Christ Jesus must do to walk worthy of their vocation.

Eventually "the gospel" became the equivalent of the whole of the New Covenant scriptures and one who held a divergent view about any passage was adjudged as being unfaithful to the gospel."

Adam Clarke's Commentary

[Another gospel] It is certain that in the very earliest ages of the Christian church there were several spurious gospels in circulation, and it was the multitude of these false or inaccurate relations that induced Luke to write his own. See Luke 1:1. We have the names of more than seventy of these spurious narratives still on record, and in ancient writers many fragments of them remain; these have been collected and published by Fabricius, in his account of the apocryphal books of the New Testament, 3 vols. 8 vo. In some of these gospels, the necessity of circumcision, and subjection to the Mosaic law in unity with the Gospel, were strongly inculcated.

Barnes' Notes

[Unto another gospel] A gospel which destroys the grace of Christ; which proclaims salvation on other terms than simple dependence on the merits of the Lord Jesus; and which has introduced the Jewish rites and ceremonies as essential, in order to obtain salvation. The apostle calls that scheme the "gospel," because it pretended to be; it was preached by those who claimed to be preachers of the gospel; who alleged that they had come direct from the apostles at Jerusalem, and who pretended to declare the method of salvation. It claimed to be the gospel, and yet it was essentially unlike the plan which he had preached as constituting the gospel. That which he preached, inculcated the entire dependence of the sinner on the merits and grace of Christ; that system had introduced dependence on the observance of the rites of the Mosaic system, as necessary to salvation.

Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown

Another, [heteron , 'heterogeneous'] - 'a different kind of gospel;' i.e., a so-called gospel, different altogether from the only true Gospel

Bible Knowledge Commentary

The departure was not simply from a system of theology but from God Himself, the One who had called them by the grace of Christ (the dominant theme of the epistle). In exchange they were embracing a different gospel, one that was false. Paul insisted that a gospel of legalism which adds work

to faith is not the same kind of gospel that he preached and by which they were saved. It was actually an attempt to pervert the gospel of Christ.
My Comments
What is "another gospel"
a) one must come under the Law of Moses,
b) the entire Bible,
c) the New Testament, facts about Christ and His Apostles teachings
d) Christ and His atoning sacrifice
e) Jesus was not God in flesh but a phantom?

The gospel of Christ is Christ, His offering of his physical body as the only sin offering acceptable to God. God accepted His offering by raising him from the dead. His and the apostles teaching are instructing those who were cleansed by their burial into Christ's blood how to live acceptably before God.

Mark 16:15

Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Background

Following Jesus' resurrection, He appeared to Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, two men on road to Emmaus and the apostles and disciples. Forty days after his resurrection Jesus led His disciples to the mount where He would ascend back to be with the Father. It was here He gave instructions to them to proclaim (preach) the good news (gospel), make disciples, baptize them, and teach those baptized to observe all thing I have commanded you.

How other Bibles translate the passage.
  1. He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. New International Version
  2. And he said to them, "Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. - English Standard Version
  3. And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. - King James Bible
  4. and he said to them, 'Having gone to all the world, proclaim the good news to all the creation; -Young's Literal Translation

Interlinear

A good message - NT:2098 euaggelion
o Strong's Numbers and Concordance - the gospel:
o Thayer's - The glad tidings of the kingdom of God soon to be set up, and subsequently also of Jesus, the Messiah, the founder of this kingdom:
o Vine's - In the NT it denotes the "good tidings" of the kingdom of God and of salvation through Christ, to be received by faith, on the basis of His expiatory death, His burial, resurrection, and ascension,

Comments

Ketcherside

There is confusion about what constitutes the gospel and apostles' teachings. The gospel; e.g., good news that salvation is available to be proclaimed to all mankind, and apostolic doctrine (teaching) to be taught to those in Christ how to live pleasing to God. "It is an outstanding achievement of divine wisdom that salvation is made contingent upon belief on facts incorporated in news, rather than upon knowledge of abstract reasoning or deductions drawn from doctrinal truths."

"Any attempt to secure unity on the basis of uniformity of knowledge or conformity in deductive or inferential processes (i.e., doctrinal interpretation) is doomed before it begins."

Adam Clarke's Commentary

Proclaim the glad tidings - of Christ crucified, and raised from the dead-to all the creation, - to the Gentile world.

Barnes' Notes

[Preach] Proclaim; make known; offer. To do this to every creature is to offer pardon and eternal life to him on the terms of the plan of mercy-through repentance [a changed life (rd)], and faith, [obedience (rd)] in the Lord Jesus. [The gospel] The good news. The tidings of salvation. The assurance that the Messiah has come, and that sin may be forgiven and the soul saved.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

What is the summary of the gospel they are to preach; "Set before the world life and death, good and evil. Tell the children of men that they are all in a state of misery and danger, condemned by their prince, and conquered and enslaved by their enemies." This is supposed in their being saved, which they would not need to be if they were not lost. "Now go and tell them," "That if they believe the gospel, and give up themselves to be Christ's disciples; if they renounce the devil, the world, and the flesh, and be devoted to Christ as their prophet, priest, and king, and to God in Christ as their God in covenant, and evidence by their constant adherence to this covenant their sincerity herein, they shall be saved from the guilt and power of sin, it shall not rule them, it shall not ruin them.

My comments

Any teaching other than the fact that Jesus was God in Human flesh, lived a sinless life, offered His earthly body as the only sacrifice (death by crucifixion) that could remove sin, that God accepted His offering by resurrecting Him from death and the grave and His ascension back to God is not the Gospel.

Romans 15:5

Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus:

1 Corinthians 1:10

Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.

Background

Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome about the question of eating of meat and observance of feast days, thereby dividing the Body into separate factions. Likewise, in Corinth the church was divided into a Pauline party, a Cephasite clan, an Apollosite auxiliary and a Christite cult. Both of these matters were a matter of fellowship and communion.

How other Bibles translate the passage.

(Romans 15:5)
  1. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had - NIV
  2. Now may the God of endurance and encouragement grant you harmony with one another in Christ Jesus - Berean Study Bible
  3. Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus - NASB
  4. Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: -KJV
  5. Now may the God of endurance and comfort give you unity with one another in accordance with Christ Jesus - NET Bible
  6. The God of patience and comfort grant you that you may value one another with equality in Yeshua, The Messiah - Aramaic Bible
  7. And may the God of the endurance, and of the exhortation, give to you to have the same mind toward one another, according to Christ Jesus - YLT
(1 Corinthians 1:10)
  1. I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought. - NIV
  2. I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose. - NLT
  3. I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. - English Standard Version
  4. Now I exhort you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and there be no divisions among you, but you may be having been knit together in the same mind and in the same judgment. - Berean Literal
  5. Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. - KJV
  6. Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no schisms among you; but that you be perfect in the same mind, and in the same judgment. - Douay-Rheims
  7. Now I entreat you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to cultivate a spirit of harmony--all of you--and that there be no divisions among you, but rather a perfect union through your having one mind and one judgement. -Weymouth
  8. And I call upon you, brethren, through the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that the same thing ye may all say, and there may not be divisions among you, and ye may be perfected in the same mind, and in the same judgment, - YLT

Interlinear

Likeminded - NT:3661 homothumadon {Romans 15:5}
o Strong's Numbers and Concordance - unanimously:
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon - with one mind, of one accord
o Vine's Expository Dictionary - with one accord
Same Mind - NT:3563 nous {1 Corinthians 1:10}
o Strong's - the intellect, i.e. mind (divine or human; in thought, feeling, or will);
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon - reason the faculty of perceiving divine things, of recognizing goodness and of hating evil:

Comments

Ketcherside

Likeminded, same mind and same judgment (unity) is in the person Jesus, the Christ, not in personal opinion. "The entire chapter (Romans 14) is given over to showing that man should respect and treat each other as brethren in spite of differing personal convictions upon these issues." … "The theme is that brotherhood is a relationship created when God receives us (verse 3) and we need not agree with each other upon everything either to become brothers or to continue as such."

Harmony with one another and accord with Christ Jesus are not contingent upon on the understanding level or seeing everything alike, but of welcoming one another on the faith level.

"It is the faith of the gospel which produces our oneness of thought and speech, not faith in our understanding, opinion or interpretation of doctrine or dogma."

Adam Clarke's Commentary

On every essential doctrine of the Gospel all genuine Christians agree: why then need religious communion be interrupted? This general agreement is all that the apostle can have in view; for it cannot be expected that any number of men should in every respect perfectly coincide in their views of all the minor points, on which an exact conformity in sentiment is impossible to minds so variously constituted as those of the human race. 1 Corinthians 1:10

Barnes' Notes

To "speak the same thing" stands opposed to speaking different and conflicting things; or to controversy, and although PERFECT uniformity of opinion cannot be expected among people on the subject of religion any more than on other subjects, yet on the great and fundamental doctrines of Christianity, Christians may be agreed; on all points in which they differ they may evince a good spirit; and on all subjects they may EXPRESS their sentiments in the language of the Bible, and thus "speak the same thing." [And that there be no divisions among you] Greek, [schismata], "schisms." No divisions into contending parties and sects. The church was to be regarded as one and indivisible, and not to be rent into different factions. 1 Corinthians 1:10

To think the same thing; that is, to be united, to keep from divisions and strifes. Romans 15:5

Matthew Henry's Commentary

The foundation of Christian love and peace is laid in like-mindedness, a consent in judgment as far as you have attained, or at least a concord and agreement in affection -to mind the same thing, all occasions of difference removed, and all quarrels laid aside. Romans 15:5-6

Speak all the same thing; avoid divisions or schisms (as the original is), "that is, all alienation of affection from each other. Be perfectly joined together in the same mind, as far as you can. In the great things of religion be of a mind: but, when there is not a unity of sentiment, let there be a union of affections. The consideration of being agreed in greater things should extinguish all feuds and divisions about minor ones." 1 Corinthians 1:10-13

My comments

Unity must be in the resurrection of Christ as it is the only way unto salvation. Unity is not that all Christians have the same knowledge and understanding as the scholars or that they are all illiterate.

Romans 16:17

Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.

Background

The church in Rome had been taught the gospel by someone other than Paul as he had not been to Rome. Somehow, he had heard about conflicts between brethren as in chapter 14:1 he states [do not] "quarrel over opinions" and in vs 13 [do] "not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother." This implies some were attempting to force their opinion on others in order for all to be in fellowship which caused division.

How other Bibles translate the passage.

  1. I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. - NIV
  2. I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. - ESV
  3. Now I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and obstacles that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Turn away from them. - Berean Study Bible
  4. Now I exhort you, brothers, to consider those causing divisions and obstacles contrary to the teaching that you have learned, and turn away from them. - Berean Literal Bible
  5. Now I urge you, brethren, keep your eye on those who cause dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which you learned, and turn away from them. - NASB
  6. Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. - King James Bible
  7. But I beg of you my brethren, beware of those who are causing division and subversion outside of the doctrine which you have learned, that you should stay away from them. - Aramaic Bible
  8. Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them that are causing the divisions and occasions of stumbling, contrary to the doctrine which ye learned: and turn away from them. - ASV
  9. But I beseech you, brethren, to consider those who create divisions and occasions of falling, contrary to the doctrine which ye have learnt, and turn away from them. - Darby Bible
  10. But I beseech you, brethren, to keep a watch on those who are causing the divisions among you, and are leading others into sin, in defiance of the instruction which you have received; and habitually to shun them. - Weymouth New Testament
  11. And I call upon you, brethren, to mark those who the divisions and the stumbling-blocks, contrary to the teaching that ye did learn, are causing, and turn ye away from them; - YLT

Interlinear

Mark - NT:4648 skopeo
o Strong's Numbers and Concordance - to take aim at (spy)
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon - to look at, observe, contemplate. to mark, to fix one's eyes upon, direct one's attention to:

Comments

Ketcherside

"What is the doctrine you have learned? … The entire frame of reference is the context both adjacent and remote, shows it was the teaching that division among brethren is a sin. … The basis of the teaching is 'Let us therefore follow after things which make peace, and things wherewith one may edify another (14:19). Anyone who disregards this doctrine and insist upon making test of fellowship where God has not made them (i.e., over days, meats, etc.) should be observed and isolated so his factional attitude cannot divide the body into rival camps over such issues."

"There will be differences among the members. Past environment, the present degree of knowledge, various temperaments, and other factors, will enter in to make adjustments difficult. … A man weak in the faith is to be welcomed" [e.g., accept one not well grounded in knowledge of God's will without demanding he agree to your opinion (rd)].

"The brotherly relationship must be more important to me than anything upon which we disagree. … Under no condition am I to allow any opinion, scruple or personal conviction to destroy a brother for whom Christ died (15)."

"Those who disregard the teaching about preserving peace and insist upon having their own way, regardless of the consequences … are to be observed, watched and avoided."

Barnes' Notes

Observe attentively, cautiously, and faithfully (Phil 3:17); be on your guard against them. Ascertain "who are" the real causes of the divisions that spring up, and avoid them.

Adam Clarke's Commentary

Look sharply after them; let them have no kiss of charity nor peace, because they strive to make divisions, and thus set the flock of Christ at variance among themselves; and from these divisions, offences (skandala, scandals) are produced; and this is contrary to that doctrine of peace, unity, and brotherly love which you have learned. Look sharply after such that they do you no evil, and avoid them - i.e. give them no countenance, and have no religious fellowship with them.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Mark those who cause divisions and offences. Our Master had himself foretold that divisions and offences would come, but had entailed a woe on those by whom they come (Matt 18:7), and against such we are here cautioned. Those who burden the church with dividing and offending impositions, who uphold and enforce those impositions, who introduce and propagate dividing and offending notions, which are erroneous or justly suspected, who out of pride, ambition, affectation of novelty, or the like, causelessly separate from their brethren, and by perverse disputes, censures, and evil surmisings, alienate the affections of Christians one from another-these cause divisions and offences, contrary to, or different from the doctrine which we have learned.

My Comments

"Mark them" has acquired different meanings over time as well as being interpreted differently. In Greek time as Thayer's Greek Lexicon states that Homer provides its probable original meaning - to look at, observe, contemplate, fix eyes upon, direct one's attention and scrutinize. The more recent Bibles have more accurately translated it; e.g., "keep eye on", "observe", "beware of" thereby avoiding much mis-understanding that one is to be considered as no longer a brother in Christ by having a different interpretation. He must be warned not to attempt to create a following, sect, thereby creating division and dividing the Body into separate groups.

2 Thessalonians 3:6

Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.

Background

Thessalonica was a free self-governing city not subject to an administrator appointed by Rome or armed Roman guards. The local magistrates held power of life and death over its citizenry. This afforded the citizens much time for leisure and the opportunity for listening to various philosophers. Many of the men degenerated into lazy and irresponsible louts and loungers, ready for excitement which might be aroused to offset monotony.

How other Bibles translate the passage.

  1. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command you, brothers and sisters, to keep away from every believer who is idle and disruptive and does not live according to the teaching you received from us. - NIV
  2. Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us. - ESV
  3. Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to keep away from any brother who leads an undisciplined life that is not in keeping with the tradition you received from us. - Berean Study Bible
  4. Now we warn you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, you are to withdraw from every brother walking idly and not according to the tradition that you received from us. Berean Literal Bible
  5. Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from every brother who leads an unruly life and not according to the tradition which you received from us. - NASB
  6. Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us. - King James Bible
  7. Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to keep away from every brother who walks irresponsibly and not according to the tradition received from us. - Holman Christian Standard Bible
  8. In the name of our Lord Jesus, the Messiah, we command you, brothers, to keep away from every brother who is living in idleness and not living according to the tradition that they received from us. - ISV
  9. But we command you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to keep away from any brother who lives an undisciplined life and not according to the tradition they received from us. - NET Bible
  10. But we command you, my brethren, in the name of our Lord Yeshua The Messiah, that you will be separate from every brother who walks wickedly and not according to the commandments that they received from us. - Aramaic Bible
  11. Brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ we order you not to associate with any believer who doesn't live a disciplined life and doesn't follow the tradition you received from us. - GOD'S WORD® Translation
  12. Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep aloof from every brother who leads an unruly life and not according to the tradition which you received from us. - NAS 1977
  13. Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which they received of us. - American Standard Version
  14. And we charge you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves from every brother walking disorderly, and not according to the tradition which they have received of us. - Douay-Rheims
  15. But, by the authority of the Lord, we command you, brethren, to stand aloof from every brother whose life is disorderly and not in accordance with the teaching which all received from us. Weymouth New Testament
  16. And we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to withdraw yourselves from every brother disorderly walking, and not after the deliverance that ye received from us, Young's Literal Translation

Interlinear

Withdraw yourselves - NT:2476 stello

o Strong's Numbers and Concordance
abstain from associating with, avoid
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon
to set, place, set in order, arrange; to fit out, to prepare, to
bring together, contract, shorten:
o Vine's Expository Dictionary
to take care against a thing, avoid, to shrink from a person

Comments

Ketcherside

The expression "withdraw fellowship" is not found in the sacred scriptures. Fellowship is from the Greek word koinoonia, meaning fellowship, association, community, communion, contact, joint participation (Thayer's). No man or group of men can receive one into fellowship. No man or group of men can withdraw it. We are called into fellowship of Jesus Christ by the Father Himself.

This passage does not teach "withdrawal of fellowship" by a congregation, nothing about writing out charges and demanding public acknowledgment of guilt. It is not even related to a mistaken view of some scriptural teaching. The context has to do with the term "disorderly" a specific application to do with daily conduct and behavior. The context clearly shows that Paul used it to designate the idleness into which the brethren had drifted, or lapsed. They were living off the other brethren, even prying into their personal affairs and becoming busybodies.

The other brethren were commanded to:

  1. Keep away, shun, hold aloof every Christian brother who falls into idle habits.
  2. Refrain from extending hospitality [free food (rd)]
  3. Encourage them to get a job
  4. Have no company with them, that they may be ashamed
  5. Not count them as enemies but admonish them as brothers
Adam Clarke's Commentary

Have no fellowship with those who will not submit to proper discipline; who do not keep their place; ataktoos, such as are out of their rank, and act according to their own wills and caprices; and particularly such as are idle and busybodies.

Bible Knowledge Commentary

Paul wrote the church earlier, he told them to "warn those who are idle." Apparently, this warning had not been heeded. Now Paul prescribed harsher discipline. Second-degree discipline involved the orderly separating of themselves from the lazy and the disorderly.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

There were among them some idle persons and busy-bodies, v. 11. This the apostle was so credibly informed of that he had sufficient reason to give commands and directions with relation to such persons, how they ought to behave, and how the church should act towards them. (1.) There were some among them who were idle, not working at all, or doing nothing. It does not appear that they were gluttons or drunkards, but idle, and therefore disorderly people. It is not enough for any to say they do no hurt; for it is required of all persons that they do good in the places and relations in which Providence has placed them. It is probable that these persons had a notion (by misunderstanding some passages in the former epistle) concerning the near approach of the coming of Christ, which served them for a pretense to leave off the work of their callings, and live in idleness.

Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown

To furl the sails: to steer clear of (cf. 2 Thess 3:14). Some had given up labour, as though the Lord was immediately coming. He had enjoined mild censure of such in 1 Thess 5:14, "Warn them that are unruly." Now that the mischief had become more confirmed, he enjoins stricter discipline-namely, withdrawal from their company (cf. 1 Cor 5:5,11; 2 John 10-11); not a formal excommunication, such as was subsequently passed on more heinous offenders.

1 John 1:7

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin

.

Background

The Gnostics had infiltrated and disturbed many congregations in the Greek world. These philosophic cultists pretended to have special insights and claimed to have knowledge of the mystical and elemental structure of the universe. They basically believed that all matter was essentially evil. Therefore, God could not have personally and directly created the world because He could have no contact or relationship with evil. Thus, Jesus was either a phantom or born of a natural union of Joseph and Mary and elevated to Sonship with God by baptism by John. Jesus was not deity manifested in a body of flesh and there was no such thing as a stage of fellowship between God and man.

How other Bibles translate the passage.

  1. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. - New International Version
  2. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. - ESV
  3. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. - King James Bible
  4. But if we keep living in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.-International Standard Version
  5. But if we walk in The Light as he is in The Light, we have communion with each other and the blood of Yeshua his Son purges us from all of our sins. - Aramaic Bible in Plain English
  6. But if we live in the light in the same way that God is in the light, we have a relationship with each other. And the blood of his Son Jesus cleanses us from every sin. - GOD'S WORD®
  7. And if in the light we may walk, as He is in the light -- we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son doth cleanse us from every sin. - YLT

Interlinear

Fellowship - NT:2842 - koinonia

o Strong's Numbers and Concordance
partnership, participation, or social intercourse, benefaction:
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon
fellowship, association, community, communion, joint participation, contact, fellowship, intimacy:
o Vine's Expository Dictionary
communion, fellowship, sharing in common"

Comments

Ketcherside

In light of the background, John begins by affirming that eternal life, which was with God in the beginning, was manifested and made visible unto man, and that he was one of the selected witnesses - "We have seen it, and bear witness, and show unto you that eternal life." John and the other Apostles examination of eternal life personified in the flesh was audible, visual and manual, "We have heard we have seen with our eyes, we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the word of life." Eternal life became incarnate in Jesus, and when Jesus took up his abode in them, eternal life became incarnate in them.

Fellowship is not by word but by walk. It is not the testimony of the lips but of the life involving experience and sharing of thought. "God is light and in him is no darkness at all." To walk in the light cannot mean either to perfectly understand God's will or to perfectly do it. It is that active and energetic good will, never passive but apprehended in its demonstration which is always outreaching and outpouring.

"'God sent his only begotton Son into the world that we might live through Him' (4:9). 'Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren'" (3:16). We must possess love, if we walk in the light as he is the light there can be none of the opposite effect in us. Love is not something to be achieved rather than something to be experienced. The manifestation of love is contingent upon the will of the individual who is completely surrendered and committed to God. The Word must become flesh in us it is love not a written code.

Adam Clarke's Commentary

If, having received the principle of holiness from him, we live a holy and righteous life, deriving continual light, power, and life from him, then we have fellowship one with another; that is, we have communion with God, and God condescends to hold communion with us. This appears to be the intention of the apostle; and so he was understood by some versions and MSS., which, instead of met' alleeloon, with each other, have met' autou, with him. Those who are deeply experienced in divine things converse with God, and God with them. What John says is no figure; God and a holy heart are in continual correspondence.

Barnes' Notes
Walking in the light may include the three following things:
  1. Leading lives of holiness and purity; that is, the Christian must be characteristically a holy man, a light in the world, by his example.
  2. Walking in the truth; that is, embracing the truth in opposition to all error of paganism and infidelity, and having clear, spiritual views of truth, such as the unrenewed never have. See 2 Cor 4:6; 1 Cor 2:9-15; Eph 1:18.
  3. Enjoying the comforts of religion; that is, having the joy which religion is fitted to impart, and which it does impart to its true friends,
Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary

God IS (essentially, in His very nature, as "light," 1 John 1:5) in the light.' WALKING in the light, the element in which God IS, is the test of fellowship with Him. Christ, like us, walked in the light (1 John 2:6). Alford, 'Walking in the light, as He is in the light, is no mere imitation of God, but an identity in the essential element of our daily walk with the essential element of God's being.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

A message from the Word of life, from the eternal Word, we should gladly receive: and the present one is this (relating to the nature of God whom we are to serve, and with whom we should covet all indulged communion)-That God is light, and in him is no darkness at all, v. 5. This report asserts the excellency of the divine nature. He is all that beauty and perfection that can be represented to us by light. He is a self-active uncompounded spirituality, purity, wisdom, holiness, and glory. And then the absoluteness and fulness of that excellency and perfection. There is no defect or imperfection, no mixture of anything alien or contrary to absolute excellency, no mutability nor capacity of any decay in him: In him is no darkness at all.

My comments

Unfortunately, some in Christ begin to focus on the "light" as God's word, including the Apostles' teaching as they understood it, rather than on God's love shown through Christ. Gradually they begin to have little or no tolerance for anyone who did not share their interpretation and concluded - you are not walking in the light. Therefore, you have no fellowship with us. This is the same attitude the Gnostics had. By their "special knowledge" they set acquisition of knowledge the requirement for fellowship rather than God's light, His love. God put into His fellowship those He put into Christ's Body and He alone can remove them from His fellowship.

2 John 10, 11

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:

Background

Many people pretending to be Christians, John call them deceivers, were going to assemblies and to homes of Christians stating that Christ could not possibly have come in the form of a human but was just a phantom. This teaching or doctrine was based partly on the Greek philosophy of the dualism of man - knowledge was good and flesh evil. This doctrine being taught is also known as Gnosticism. So, if Christ came in the human body of Jesus like man, then He would also have been evil not deity.

How other Bibles translate the passage.

  1. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take them into your house or welcome them. - NIV
  2. If anyone comes to your meeting and does not teach the truth about Christ, don't invite that person into your home or give any kind of encouragement. - New Living Translation
  3. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting. - ESV
  4. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: - KJB
  5. If a man comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into the house and you shall not say to him, "You are welcome." - Aramaic Bible in Plain English
  6. If any man come to you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him, God speed you. - Douay-Rheims Bible
  7. If anyone cometh to you, and bringeth not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither wish him happiness: Webster's Bible
  8. If anyone who comes to you does not bring this teaching, do not receive him under your roof nor bid him Farewell. Weymouth
  9. if anyone doth come unto you, and this teaching doth not bear, receive him not into the house, and say not to him, 'Hail!' -YLT

Interlinear

Receive NT:2983 lambano

o Strong's Numbers and Concordance
to get hold of;
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon
to take with the hand, lay hold of, Matt 26:26
to take in order to carry away: without the notion of violence
to take what is one's own, to take to oneself, to make one's own to take with the hand, lay hold of, any person or thing in order to use it.
Comments
Ketcherside

To what did John mean by "this doctrine"? Who were the wandering teachers who were to be refused entrance when they applied for hospitality? What conditions existed at the time which made it imperative that "the elect lady and her children" refrain from giving a greeting to certain teachers? Who were those who "went beyond" and did not remain in the doctrine of Christ? What they denied must have been related to the very fundamental and essential facts upon which the faith was predicated to require such drastic measures to preserve it inviolate. Every reputable scholar known to us believes that John was writing to counteract the pernicious effects of Gnosticism.

The Gnostics believed that all matter was inherently evil and only spirit was good. These spiritual aristocracy taught that all men were not equipped to be endowed with special inside knowledge. One group held that since matter was evil Jesus was simply an ethereal person, a mere phantom, that he never had a real flesh and blood body. John attacked this speculation by affirming that the apostles had heard, seen, scrutinized and handled Jesus with their hands. Gnostics held that it was not Jesus who came to be baptized but Christ, not Jesus who was crucified but Christ.

These Gnostics claimed they had a source of knowledge which made them superior in wisdom, philosophic aristocrats with ability to go beyond and penetrate the veil of true learning. So, some were respected and received by many, even accepted as prophets. They travelled from place to place and depended upon each community to extend to them hospitality by providing them food and lodging. They were separatists and schismatics that had abandoned the body of saints to create their own sect.

John labeled them as "antichrists" stating "many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. But, it is those who face up to the fact of His divine Sonship in the flesh will be rewarded with fellowship face to face in the future, is we abide in Him.

What is the "doctrine of Christ"? Whatever it was one who did not abide in it has not God. The "doctrine of Christ" is identified by John as essential to having the Father and the Son and that no one who denies the Son has the Father. This is the foundation of the community of saints, the colony of heaven on earth - Jesus is the Christ. This is the only confession we may scripturally require of any penitent seeking admission to the fellowship of the redeemed.

So, if there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine (that the human person of Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ) receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed; for he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. Any application to any other teaching goes beyond the text and contest of this passage.

Adam Clarke's Commentary

Give him no entertainment as an evangelical teacher. Let him not preach under your roof.

Barnes' Notes

This cannot mean that no acts of kindness, in any circumstances, were to be shown to such persons; but that there was to be nothing done which could be fairly construed as encouraging or countenancing them as "religious teachers."

Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary

This is not said of those always aliens from the Church, but of those who wish to be esteemed brethren, and subvert true doctrine (Grotius). The greeting forbidden in the case of such is that usual among Christian brethren: not a mere formality, but a token of Christian brotherhood.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Upon due warning given concerning seducers, the apostle gives direction concerning the treatment of such. So as not to be sharers in the iniquities of others, they are not to

  1. Entertain as the ministers of Christ.
  2. Support them not: If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine
  3. Receive him not into your house. These deceivers might possibly expect the same reception with others, or with the best who came there (as the blind are often bold enough), but the apostle allows it not:
  4. Welcome them into your family."
  5. Or bid them God speed.
My Comments

Christians are not to support or encourage anyone who claims to be in Christ but denies by their teachings and actions that Jesus was born of woman by actions of the Holy Spirt.

Anyone who uses this text to support any doctrine or teaching other than that Jesus of Nazareth was God in human form is not true to text or context.

Jude 3

Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.

Background

At the time of this writing the church was enveloped in what appears to be gnostic teaching - the denial that Jesus was Lord and Savior, but just a phantom and that it was acceptable to live a lifestyle in the manner of the pagans - not necessary to live a godly life. Basically, the Greek philosophy of the dualism of man.

How other Bibles translate the passage.

  1. Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God's holy people. - New International Version
  2. Dear friends, I had been eagerly planning to write to you about the salvation we all share. But now I find that I must write about something else, urging you to defend the faith that God has entrusted once for all time to his holy people. - NLT
  3. Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. - English Standard Version
  4. Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. - King James Bible
  5. Dear friends, although I was eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I found it necessary to write to you and urge you to continue your vigorous defense of the faith that was passed down to the saints once and for all. - ISV
  6. Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you and exhort you that ye should earnestly persevere in the faith which was given once unto the saints. - Jubilee Bible 2000
  7. Dear friends, since I am eager to begin a letter to you on the subject of our common salvation, I find myself constrained to write and cheer you on to the vigorous defense of the faith delivered once for all to God's people. - Weymouth's
  8. Beloved, all diligence using to write to you concerning the common salvation, I had necessity to write to you, exhorting to agonize for the faith once delivered to the saints. - YLT

Interlinear

Contend - NT:1864 - epagonizomai:

o Strong's Numbers and Concordance
to struggle for, strive, struggle
o Vine's Expository Dictionary
Signifies "to contend about a thing, as a combatant"

Comments

Ketcherside

The advent of Jesus marked the beginning of a great change. The cross is the "great Divide" in human history. "Christ is the end of the law for justification" (Romans 10:4). The law was our custodian until Christ came … we are no longer under a custodian" (Galatians 3:24, 25). Law was supplemented by faith, but faith is neither law nor a custodian. If it is either, then Christ died in vain. "For we hold that a man justified by faith apart from works of law" (Romans 3:28) "But now that faith has come we are no longer under a custodian" (Galatians3:25).

Our relationship is founded upon faith that Jesus of Nazareth was God in flesh. In Christ we are justified by faith (Romans 5:1). We walk by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7). We live by faith (Galatians 2:20). We receive the promise of the Holy Spirit by faith (Galatians 3:14).

The faith by which we are justified was fully proclaimed on the first Pentecost following the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. The faith which justifies is "the faith of the gospel" (Phil.1:27).

In the early days of the Way, the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priest became obedient to the faith.

If the apostolic epistles constituted the one faith, no congregation of saints on earth, during the time of the apostles could possibly have known the faith in its fulness. Nor could have any apostle except John the last writer.

The one faith is not a compendium of moral principles, a code of ethics, or a compilation of laws. It is not a collection of letters, even though divinely authorized and produced by agency of the spirit. It is the firm conviction that Jesus of Nazareth is the Son of God and that He was "put to death for our trespasses and raised for our justification" (Romans 4:25). The very statement is "Therefore, since we are justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Upon no other basis of justification can such peace be secured.

Both the gospel (Good News) which brings us into affinity with eternal life and the apostolic doctrine which sustains us, are the word of God. The apostolic letters do not constitute the new covenant. The new covenant is an individual and personal agreement by which one commits himself to, and adopted by God into His family, as a child. Those who heard the Good News on Pentecost and accepted its implications for their lives entered into the new covenant relationship as fully as any other person ever did since that time.

Adam Clarke's Commentary

"Beloved brethren, when I saw it necessary to write to you concerning the common salvation, my mind being deeply affected with the dangers to which the church is exposed from the false teachers that are gone out into the world, I found it extremely necessary to write and exhort you to hold fast the truth which you had received, and strenuously to contend for that only faith which, by our Lord and his apostles, has been delivered to the Christians."

"Some think that Jude intimates that he had at first planned to write to the church at large, on the nature and design of the Gospel; but seeing the dangers to which the churches were exposed, because of the false teachers, he changed his mind, and wrote pointedly against those false doctrines [gnostic doctrine (rd)], exhorting them strenuously to contend for the faith."

Barnes' Notes

"The word here rendered "earnestly contend" - epagoonizesthai - is one of those words used by the sacred writers which have allusion to the Grecian games. Compare the notes, 1 Cor 9:24, following This word does not elsewhere occur in the New Testament. It means "to contend upon" - i.e., "for or about" anything; and would be applicable to the earnest effort put forth in those games to obtain the prize. The reference here, of course, is only to contention by argument, by reasoning, by holding fast the principles of religion, and maintaining them against all opposers. It would not justify "contention" by arms, by violence, or by persecution; because:

  1. that is contrary to the spirit of true religion, and to the requirements of the gospel elsewhere revealed;
  2. it is not demanded by the proper meaning of the word, all that fairly implies being the effort to maintain truth by argument and by a steady life;
  3. it is not the most effectual way to keep up truth in the world to attempt to do it by force and arms."
Matthew Henry's Commentary

"The design of the apostle in writing this epistle to the lately converted Jews and Gentiles; namely, to establish them in the Christian faith, and a practice and conversation truly consonant and conformable thereunto, and in an open and bold profession thereof, especially in times of notorious opposition, whether by artful seduction or violent and inhuman persecution. But then we must see to it very carefully that it be really the Christian faith that we believe, profess, propagate, and contend for; not the discriminating badges of this or the other party, not any thing of later date than the inspired writings of the holy evangelists and apostles. Here observe, the gospel salvation is a common salvation, that is, in a most sincere offer and tender of it to all mankind to whom the notice of it."

My Comments

The Christians to whom Jude wrote must have known what 'the faith" meant for which they were to contend - declare, assert or attest.

One can only contend or attest to a fact or object not an opinion. Therefore, "the faith" must have been Jesus of Nazareth, Christ's life, death, burial, resurrection and ascension- the person of Jesus. It is very doubtful for it to have been the apostles' epistles for even if some were written copies they would not been readily available. They were to defend against the gnostic teaching that Jesus was not a human but a phantom.

1 Corinthians 1:7-9

Wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will sustain you to the end, guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Romans 14:3-4

Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls.

Romans 15:1,2

We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.

Romans 15:5-7

Live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.

Background

All history and experience prove that not all men will respect their vows, covenants, pledges or commitments. In the social realm some will begin well but turn into criminals. In the political realm, there will be traitors. In the economic realm there will be crooks. In the military realm there will be deserter. There is no societal relationship composed of human beings which will not be undermined and suffer tragedy because of the irresponsible. God ordained the home and marital relationship on a covenantal basis and yet the land is strewn with wreckage of broken homes.

The community of believers, composed of strangers and pilgrims who are men and women in the flesh, must expect that from among themselves "men will arise speaking perverse things to draw away disciples after them." Many of the congregations during the lifetime of the apostles were faced with serious problems created by those who had known Christ but who returned to their former state to walk after the flesh. Not a few of the letters addressed o congregations and individuals were written to deal with such situations.

How other Bibles translate these passages.

1 Corinthians 1:7-9

  1. God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. - New International Version
  2. God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. - ESV
  3. God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. - KJB
  4. Faithful is God, through whom ye were called to the fellowship of His Son Jesus Christ our Lord. - YLT

Romans 15:5-7

  1. Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. - New International Version
  2. Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God. - English Standard Version
  3. Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God. - King James Bible
  4. Wherefore receive ye one another, according as also the Christ did receive us, to the glory of God. - YLT

Romans 14:3-4

  1. The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. - New International Version
  2. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. - ESV
  3. Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him. - King James Bible
  4. Let not him who is eating despise him who is not eating: and let not him who is not eating judge him who is eating, for God did receive him. - Young's Literal Translation

Romans 15:1,2

  1. We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. - NIV
  2. We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. - ESV
  3. We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. - King James Bible
  4. And we ought -- we who are strong -- to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. - YLT

Interlinear

Receive - NT:4355 proslambano

o Strong's Numbers and Concordance
receive, take, admit to friendship or hospitality
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon,
to take as one's companion
to take by the hand in order to lead aside
to receive into one's home, with the idea of kindness:
to grant one access to one's heart; into friendship

Bear - NT:941 bastazo

o Strong's Numbers and Concordance
to take up in order to carry, to lift, endure, declare, sustain, receive,
o Thayer's Greek Lexicon
to take away or remove by curing
o Vine's Expository Dictionary
to bear" a burden, whether physically or metaphorically in respect of sufferings endured in the cause of Christ
o Robertson's Word Pictures
fellowship or intimacy

Comments

Ketcherside

We are called as individuals, we respond as individuals, and we are received as individuals. But we are not simply called out of a worldly sinful life, we are also called together in fellowship with Christ. We are not joined to Jesus because we are joined to others, but we joined to others because we are Joined to Christ.

Jesus plainly taught that individuals could assemble with a church which was dead and whose works were not perfect before God, and still walk with him in white because they were worthy.

One must never violate his personal conviction by sharing in any view or act which appears to him to be contrary to the will of God. Our fellowship with God is not conditioned upon seeing everything alike or upon doing everything in the same fashion but upon receiving Jesus as the Messiah. So long as two persons exalt their relationship with the Lord above their differences they can keep both their differences and one another. The only basis of koinonia (sharing in a common life) is the relationship with the Son created by faith in Him.

    There is only one door into the kingdom. One enters by believing, trusting and obeying Christ message of reconciliation, the gospel, and goes out by denying Him which occurs in:

    1. Denial of the Gospel Facts
    1. The historical facts of the gospel - the life, death, burial, resurrection, ascension, coronation and glorification of Jesus.
    2. Jesus is the anointed, the Son of God.
    3. Blaspheme - deny Jesus was the Christ; e.g., Hymenaeus and Alexander. Such are false teachers and the antichrist.
    4. One who denies the facts about Jesus which are essential to enter into fellowship with God, cannot be retained in a community founded upon affirmation of those facts.
    2. Moral Turpitude
    1. To follow Jesus is not merely to embrace a way of life, but to share in the way of life.
    2. But there are those in whom the spirit of self reigns - slaves of corruption. Peter declares it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness than, after they have known it to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them (2 Peter 2:21).
    3. When those in Christ dethrone Him in their hearts and deliberately choose to walk according to the course of this world, enthroning the spirit which work in the children of disobedience, they forfeit the right of association with those who are filled with the fulness of God.
    4. The apostles include along with fornicators, the covetous, the idolater, the railer, the drunkard and the extortioner.
      1) The fornicator appropriates for gratification his lust the body of another
      2) The covetous feels an inordinate desire for what belongs to another
      3) The idolater bestows devotion upon something which belongs to another
      4) A railer reviles in harsh, abusive language and thus destroys the peace and dignity of another
      5) A drunkard makes himself obnoxious by his irrationally which destroys communion with others
      6) An extortioner obtains by force, illegality or ingenuity the property of another.
    5. In the community of the saints each must esteem others better than self.
    3. The factional Spirit
    1. Paul instructs that an individual who exhibits the schismatic spirit should be rejected (avoided) after having been given at least two admonitory warnings.
    2. One is not factional merely because he does not agree with the status quo. It is not sinful to entertain even cherish an opinion which runs counter to the orthodox position. It is not wrong to express one's opinion to others in the proper spirit. None of this is schismatical or heretical. It only becomes so when one solicits adherents to his view for the purpose of building up a party to propagate and defend it, thus causing a cleavage among the saints.
    3. A sectarian spirit is not related to the validity of the ideas expressed. It is always exclusivistic and it creates exclusive sects.
    4. Only when a man sets out to gather a clan or clique composed of those who would separate themselves in order to preserve and perpetuate an interpretation, opinion or deduction should be given warning. If he persists in his divisive action he should be rejected as inimical of the unity of the Spirit. Even then, he must never be rejected because he holds a deduction arrived at by human judgment, but only because of his deliberate attempt to form a party around it. It is just as essential to protect the freedom of an individual to think for himself as it is to protect a congregation of saints from one who tries to think for everyone else.

Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish is the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life (Philippians 2:14-16).

Adam Clarke's Commentary

Eiskoinoonian, Into the communion or participation of Christ, in the graces of his Spirit and the glories of his future kingdom. God will continue to uphold and save you, if you entrust your bodies and souls to him. But can it be said that God will keep what is either not entrusted to him; or, after being entrusted, is taken away? 1 Corinthians 1:9

Barnes' Notes

To participate with his Son Jesus Christ; to be partakers.

My Comments

Before Jesus returned to Heaven He prayed for unity of believers. Unity involves trust, harmony, fellowship, love and social intimacy. They recognize and feel the others pain, sorrow, hope, happiness and do not judge their motives.

Christian fellowship begins when one puts their trust and obedience in Christ's call and accepts His offer of forgiveness through His message of reconciliation, the gospel. This new relationship is then extended to all others in Christ. Man cannot remove another from fellowship with God, but sometimes it is necessary to avoid another when their actions cause disunity.