What good is having a blog if you can’t use it to rant just a little? 🙂 I have been in a discussion on another site with someone who is arguing against the grace and love of God by telling believers they should be focused on sin and condemnation. It is frustrating, time consuming, and fruitless to get into these arguments.
You know the people I mean. They just can’t stop. Their logic is stretched and their words are cutting. These guys pull out verses and claim certain Greek skills and ignore any real challenges to their ideas.
Paul met these folks, probably much more often than you or I do. His advice?
9 But avoid foolish disputes, genealogies, contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and useless. 10 Reject a divisive man after the first and second admonition, 11 knowing that such a person is warped and sinning, being self-condemned. Titus 3:9-11
17 Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. Romans 16:17
Avoid them! Don’t let them suck you into their traps. It’s hard. I find that I want to speak out against their lies and errors. But it is a trap. It distracts you, upsets you, and you don’t win. They will have the last word, no matter how stupid it is.
Yes, sometimes I do speak up. I seem to think that I can get a word in as a teacher. But I have learned that it will be unfruitful. The best I can do is help others see the foolishness of the other’s position and statements. I confess that I almost always come away feeling used and dirty somehow.
In the discussion I have been in this morning, the arguer referred to the pain and struggles of those who have come out of legalism as “dog poop” and “dog piles.” I shouldn’t have been surprised. When logic fails, be prepared for the jabs and depersonalization. Like the narcissist, the legalist will use whatever means he can to “shut you up” so it can look like he has won.
Then, if you ever do manage to paint him into a corner, he cowers and cries and wonders why you are so mean. He ignores his own attacks and cruelties and projects that on you. By trying to counter his statements, you are hurting him. And, again, he wins.
So Paul says to avoid them. That makes a lot of sense to me.