Accessory to Sin?

Are You an Accessory to Sin?

Within the legal code of the various states within the U.S.A., one may be found guilty of being an accessory to a particular crime. If one supplies a murderer with a weapon knowing what the intent of the murderer is, then one will be found guilty of being an accessory to murder. If a person drives the get away car for a bank robbery, then he will be found guilty of being an accessory to the crime of robbery. There is also the crime of aiding and abetting a known felon that in essence is a crime of accessory. The law clearly makes provision to punish those who may have not committed the actual crime itself, but are involved to such a degree that the crime could not happen without their influence. Such a person is called an accessory to the crime and is held accountable and often punished for helping another do something that is wrong.

Are you an accessory to behavior's against God? A partner in crime of sin.

Are you an accessory to behavior’s against God? A partner in crime of sin.

As Christians, the crimes that we are concerned about avoiding are not merely against men, but against God. Such crimes against God are referred to in the Bible as sin. Isaiah states that sin separates man from God (Isaiah 59:2). James writes that sin when it is full-grown brings death (James 1:15). And Paul states that the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23). The Holy Spirit makes it clear through these inspired men that sin leads to eternal separation from God and that sin is, therefore, serious and deadly business. Just as being an accessory to a crime is in itself a crime, so also being an accessory to sin is in itself a sin.

How does the Bible say that we can be an accessory to sin? One of the first passages that comes to mind is 2 John 10 and 11. In this passage, John writes to a Christian woman telling her not to receive false teachers into her house. There was nothing wrong with receiving strangers into one’s house to care for them as they were traveling through town. In fact, Hebrews 13:2 states that when Christian’s practice such they are acting in a way approved by the Holy Spirit. However, when receiving a false teacher into one’s home, the situation is different. John states in verse 11 that when one does this, one is partaking of that false teacher’s evil deeds. There is a difference between doing something that is right to support that which is right and doing something that would otherwise be right to support that which is wrong. The Holy Spirit says that the latter is sin. When we give aid and comfort to false teachers, that is being an accessory to sin.

A Christian can also be an accessory to sin by approving that which is wrong. We read in 1 Corinthians 5:1 that there was fornication among the church at Corinth. The response of the members of the church at Corinth was not to condemn that which was wrong, but to be proud about it (1 Corinthians 5:2). In other words, the church at Corinth was, through their attitude of pride concerning the fornicator, approving his action of fornication. Paul wrote in verse 6 that their “glorying” was not good. It was evil and they should not have been doing this. No doubt, many of the Corinthian Christians who were “glorying” in this man’s sin were not committing that sin themselves. Yet, because they were “glorying” in it, they were committing sin themselves: the sin of approving of something that is evil. Paul states in Romans 1:32 that not only are those who practice evil worthy of death due to their sin, but those who approve of such things are equally worthy of death due to their sin of approval.

Finally, a Christian can also be an accessory to sin by providing service to that which is sinful. John writes in 1 John 2:10 “He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him.” The one who loves will not provide an occasion of stumbling in another. The opposite is also true, the one who sets forth an occasion of stumbling before another does not love him. And, when one does not love his neighbor, he violates what Jesus calls the second command, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 22:39).

Providing service to that which is sinful is of itself a sin. It would be a sin to give an idol to the idolater though you yourself may not worship it. It would be a sin to provide a fornicator a prostitute, though you yourself may not commit fornication. It would be a sin to give drugs to an addict, though you yourself may not do drugs. It would be a sin to serve alcohol to a drunkard, though you yourself may not drink at all. It would be a sin to take a gambler to a slot machine, though you yourself may not gamble. At the least, a person who acted in such a way would be a hypocrite. Paul writes in Romans 12:9, “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.” When we act out of a non-hypocritical love toward our fellow man, we will not encourage him to engage in sinfulness by providing the means of his sin. Instead, we will abhor what is evil. Abhorring something means that we put it as far away from us as possible. If we serve evil, we fail to abhor evil.

At the most, the person who serves those who sin, while not actually performing the evil act himself, is participating in the evil act through his influence. In the first part of the book of Revelation, Jesus speaks directly to the seven churches of Asia through John. To the church at Pergamos Jesus said, “But I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit fornication” (Revelation 2:14). Jesus had something “against” this church. They were guilty of the doctrine of Balaam. What was that doctrine? The verse says that he “taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the children of Israel.” Balaam’s sin was not that he worshipped idols or committed fornication, but that encouraged others to do this through his influence. The incident to which this verse is referring is found in Numbers 25:1-7. An interesting fact in this regard is that Balaam had already left the proverbial “scene of the crime.” In Numbers 24:25 we read, “Then Balaam rose and departed and returned to his place:.” Yet, although Balaam was not present during the activities of Numbers 25, we see later that he was killed with the sword because of his transgression (Numbers 31:8) and that Moses held him personally responsible for the evil that had come upon the children of Israel (Numbers 31:16). Jesus stated to the church at Pergamos that Balaam was guilty of sin purely because he used his influence for evil and that the church at Pergamos was guilty as well because they taught his doctrine. How can we say that we are pure when we use our influence for evil? Jesus directly condemns such thinking.

Let us resolve not to be an accessory to sin whether we are supporting a false teacher, approving that which is wrong, or providing service to that which is sinful. Our end will be no different than those who practice the sin itself.

Posted in Kevin Cauley | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Accessory to Sin?

Musica Cristiana en Casa

¿PUEDO EN MI CASA ESCUCHAR MUSICA CON LETRA QUE HABLEN DE CRISTO Y QUE TENGA INSTRUMENTOS MUSICALES?

Alguien explicó en una ocasión que Dios nos ha dado una boca para hablar menos y dos oídos para escuchar mejor. De una manera acertada este autor anónimo recalca el hecho importante de escuchar. Santiago en 1:19 exhorta a la hermandad a estar prestos o listos para escuchar. Jesús enseña sobre la importancia de escuchar en Mateo 7:24 y la lista de pasajes sigue y sigue pero el punto es: ¿Cual es la razón  específica por la que hay que prestar atención a lo que escuchamos?. Médicamente hablando el oido es el órgano que convierte los sonidos en impulsos eléctricos para enviar la información captada al cerebro. Poniéndolo de otra forma amigo lector es importante lo que escuchamos ya que esa información que nuestro cerebro recibe  muchas veces actuará en base a tal información. Entonces tanto las canciones del mundo como las canciones con música instrumental y letra que hable de Cristo, tarde o temprano terminarán haciendo un efecto al subconsciente del cerebro y usted terminará actuando de la manera en la que lo expresa tales canciones aún muchas veces sin darse cuenta. El hermano Willie Alvarenga de una manera acertada sobre este tema propone 8 preguntas  basadas en Fil. 4:8 que debemos hacernos al escuchar una canción y sacar nuestra propia conclusión si somos honestos observe: 

 ¿Sabe usted cual es el origen de los instrumentos musicales?

¿Sabe usted cual es el origen de los instrumentos musicales?

1. La canción que estoy escuchando o que tengo planes de escuchar, ¿Es algo verdadero?
2. La canción que estoy escuchando, ¿Es algo honesto?
3. La canción que estoy escuchando, ¿Es algo justo?
4. La canción que estoy escuchando, ¿Es algo puro?
5. La canción que estoy escuchando, ¿Es algo amable?
6. La canción que estoy escuchando, ¿Tiene buen nombre?
7. La canción que estoy escuchando, ¿Tiene virtud alguna?
8. La canción que estoy escuchando, ¿Tiene algo digno de alabanza?
ORIGEN 
Regresando a la pregunta original sobre la música “cristiana” con instrumentos. ¿Sabe usted cual es el origen de los instrumentos musicales?. Recientemente  escuchaba a alguien decir que Dios fue quién los hizo y por lo tanto El se agrada de ellos. Sin entrar a fondo sobre el uso de  de los instrumentos musicales en la adoración que es un tema separado, rápidamente analicemos esto como buenos estudiantes. No hay otro mejor libro para buscar respuestas que el Genesis el libro de los principios, de todos y de todo. En 4:21 Moises bajo inspiración divina deja en registro que Jubal fue quién dio inicio al arte de los instrumentos musicales, amigo mío no se deje engañar ¡NO FUE DIOS!. Mientras el tiempo de la historia humana avanzaba se le fue dando diferentes tipos de uso a estos instrumentos.
  1. En las fiestas familiares (Gen 31:27).
  2. En ocasiones de Duelo (2Cr. 35:25; Mt. 9:23).
  3. En acompañamiento a profetas (1 S. 10:5; 16:16, 2R. 3:15).
  4. Como diversión en las cortes y en casa de gentes ricas (2S. 19:35, Ec. 2:8, Is.5:12).
  5. En la liturgia Judia (Sal. 137:3, 2 S. 19:35, 2Cr. 35:25, Ec. 2:8).
En cada uno de estos casos usted puede notar un patrón en común, y es el hecho de que se utilizaba para producir sentimientos o satisfacción  a las personas. En el A.T David fue el primero que toma ventaja de esto y con corazón sincero utiliza instrumentos musicales para dirigirlos a Dios y esta práctica fue quedando. Sin embargo hay que entender aunque Dios los aprobó, al inicio EL nunca los mandó. En la actualidad en propósito de la música sigue siendo el mismo, producir satisfacción propia al ser humano. La llamada “música cristiana” apela a las emociones de las personas y trae satisfacción propia eso y solo eso.
DIOS HOY
En la adoración adoramos a Dios mientras nos exhortamos a nosotros mismos (Colo 3:16). El canto a Dios debe de llevar exhortación para llevar a cabo el “Exhortandoos unos a otros”. Dios quiere melodía que provenga del corazón  del ser humano y que esté en armonía con su palabra y no de un artefacto. Dios quiere que todos en la asamblea de la Iglesia utilicemos un instrumento que El especificó y no que solamente dos o tres usen un instrumento al frente. Estas verdades recaen varios pasajes como Hechos 16:25, Col. 3:16 y por supuesto Ef. 5:19. En este último pasaje Dios aclara que el instrumento a utilizar, no instrumentoS en plural sino uno solo en singular, iba a ser el corazón. Algunos preguntan ¿Bueno y donde, que pasaje prohibe la Biblia el NO utilizarlos?. Es obvio que quién formula esta pregunta está esperando que la respuesta suya y mía sea “En ningún pasaje”. Sin embargo cada vez que se me pregunta tal cosa, esa no ha sido mi respuesta y más bien les ha hecho enojar a casi todos los casos sin excepción, porque la Biblia sí los prohibe y no una, sino muchas veces en el Nuevo Testamento. Lo que la gente necesita aprender con urgencia es que Dios habla de dos manera Explícitamente e Implícitamente. En ambos casos la voz de Dios es igual de importante y tiene la misma autoridad.El silencio de Dios necesita ser interpretado adecuadamente. Cuando Dios especifica que hay que adorarlo con Himnos, cánticos espirituales cantando (NO tocando) con gozo en vuestros corazones, amigo automáticamente o por implicación Dios está prohibiendo el uso de instrumentos musicales en su adoración, así que este versículo es uno de los que sí Prohibe en el Nuevo Testamento los artefactos mecánicos como medio de adoración.
Ciertamente su infinita sabiduría se pone en evidencia; que aunque el cristiano sea el más pobre y no tenga dinero para comprar una guitarra, o como yo, no sepa nada sobre acordes y símbolos musicales, aunque se encuentre en una selva perdido solo y sin una batería o un órgano por ejemplo, siempre iba a poder utilizar este instrumento que es tan precioso para el Señor… a saber el corazón ¡Gloria a Dios por su sabiduría! ¡Gloria a Dios por incluirnos a todos y no solo a los músicos o a la banda de la Iglesia! !Gloria a Dios por su sencillez y hacer esto fácil para que sea al mismo tiempo algo genuino, único, puro y de corazón!. 
Con todo esto en mente, entonces ¿Como se siente usted  escuchando “canciones cristianas con instrumentos”) al saber cual es el plan de Dios para su iglesia gloriosa ya en el N.T, en un mucho mejor pacto, en un pacto espiritual? 
¿QUE ESPERA DIOS DE NOSOTROS?
Obviamente EL ha sido Claro de que es lo quiere que hagamos.  Hay emisoras al menos en Costa Rica tal como faro del caribe, radio Fides entre otras que se dedican las 24 horas del día a tener este tipo de programación y poner en circulación este tipo de música religiosa la pregunta en el titulo es ¿Puedo escuchar música cristiana con instrumentos? Es como preguntar ¿ Puedo escuchar chistes obsenos? ó ¿Puedo escuchar un programa Ateo donde maldicen a Dios? las respuestas están basadas en el mismo hecho… Lo que Dios desaprueba en su palabra. De escuchar, sí puede escuchar, pero en realidad ¿Quiere usted estar escuchando todas es cosas antes mencionadas, cuando usted sabe que Dios ve con desagrado esto? El hecho que mencionen a Cristo o lo hagan por una buena causa No no hace Correcto.  No depende del hombre su camino, ni de quien anda el ordenar sus pasos (Je. 10:23) Es Dios quien establece la manera correcta de hacerlo y los motivos correctos en su palabra, recuerde usted siempre esto.Personalmente mi conciencia se ve gravemente lastimada cuando algo así ocurre y no es bueno herir su conciencia. En nuestros hogares fuera del Domingo y del Miércoles o de cualquier reunión de la Iglesia Dios NO espera que usted encienda el radio para escuchar algo lo cual el no aprueba ¿ O sí?. La siguiente pregunta entonces sería ¿ Hermano es pecado?  yo solamente le invitaría a analizar este pasaje Bíblico con migo para ver que es lo que Dios espera y de ahí usted mismo tendrá que determinar con el pasaje en la mano sí es o no pecado. Santiago 5:13 “¿Está alguno entre vosotros afligido? Haga oración. ¿Está alguno alegre? Cante alabanzas.”. Hermano, hermana sea honesto con sigo mismo y este versículo  y responda a la siguiente pregunta. Esto es lo que Dios establece en el N.T hay que hacer, El se complace cuando lo hacemos, Pablo y Silas hicieron lo que Santiago enseña en Hechos 16:25, entonces ¿Hace usted lo mismo?. Yo espero que usted pueda tomar las mejores decisiones y hacer los cambios necesarios para que con su vida Glorifique a Dios y no a usted mismo.
Posted in Heiner Montealto | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Musica Cristiana en Casa

Country Club Church

Country Club Church

They had works.
They labored.
They showed patience.
They could not bear those who were evil.
They were able to detect false teachers.
They demonstrated perseverance.
They labored for the name of Christ and had not become weary.
And yet, according to Jesus Christ—the Great Physician, Who is able to accurately diagnose the heart, this group of Christians in Ephesus had left their first love. (Revelation 2:2-4)

What treatment plan did Jesus give this group of people? He first told them to “remember from where you have fallen.” In other words, reflect back to why they came together—go back and look at what your original priorities were. Spend time reflecting on the true mission of the church. Then He commands them, “repent.” Too often, Christians who have been baptized look at the word “repentance” as a step of salvation. Yet, Jesus here was addressing Christians—telling this sick church that if it wanted to get better then they needed to repent. Lastly, He tells them to do the first works. This group of people was busy working and laboring, but they had moved away from the things that were truly important.

The Great Physician then revealed what their fate would be if they did not follow his medical treatment: “or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent” (Revelation 2:5).

I suspect this exact same diagnosis could be given to hundreds of congregations across our nation today. We are busy with works. We are laboring. We don’t bear with those who are evil. We can identify false teachers. And yet, we have left our first love. Our focus is no longer on Christ and what He has done for us, but rather, our focus is on the next big program or event—in order to please the masses and get numbers up. We’ve detached ourselves so far away from our sin that we don’t spend much time actually reflecting on where we would be without Christ and the cross.

What many modern congregations have actually done is created vast “social clubs” or “country clubs” full of people who want to be surrounded by moral people of the same socio-economic status. We want to feel like we are doing good, involved in lots of works, and have someone to go to lunch with on Sunday. Sure we love God, but deep down we have grown comfortable. We have built massive buildings, all the while we are surrounded by thousands who are lost and hurting—yet, these people will never hear the Gospel because our social club is too busy with internal programs. Our mentality has become, “We will build bigger buildings and they will come to us.”

Don’t believe me? Take a moment to consider how much time, energy, sacrifice, and money are spent actually going out into your local community. Now compare that to how much time, energy, sacrifice, and money are spent on “internal” programs—programs for people who already know about the saving blood of Christ. We wave the banner of “edification” broadly, as justification for these programs, but the reality is in most cases these programs are simply tools that keep the church convinced they are busy and active. A serious look reveals a much deeper problem—Christians who have lost their first love, and no longer desire to “go” and reach the lost.

I have probably heard every excuse in the book: “Door knocking doesn’t work anymore.” “We don’t think advertising in the local paper will work.” “We don’t really know how to reach the lost in this technological age.” Etc. So instead of trying something, we add a few more internal programs and comfort our guilty consciousness. Or maybe we justify it by saying: “We stream or record our services for everyone on the internet” as if there are thousands of people sitting by their computers or televisions who will stumble across our site with the intention of learning the Truth.

Yes, in too many cases we have become country club churches. It’s with tears in my eyes that I point out this truth. I love the church. I love the people who make up the church. But the truth is we are comfortable. We are busy in the building. But we are about to have our lampstand removed. It is time leaders and members repent and get busy doing what God really expects us to do. It is time we return to our first love. It is time we get out of our comfort zones and do the hard things.

As for me and my house? We’re tired of social club church. We desperately want to serve. We want leaders to blaze a trail into our community. We want to stop wasting money on frivolous internal programs. We want to roll up our sleeves and get our hands dirty. We want the waters in our baptistery to be rippling every week—rather than growing stagnant. We want to return to our first love. And that, my friend, is what we shall do. As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

Posted in Brad Harrub | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Country Club Church