This teaching, by pastor Barry Forder, was recorded at Calvary Chapel Portsmouth on 14th July 2019 as part of our verse-by-verse study of Paul’s 2nd letter to Timothy.
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good” 2 Tim 3:1-3
It is amazing how this list, written by Paul almost 2000 years ago, reads like a newspaper headline today!.
Yet if we dare to speak out against society’s accepted norm, we are immediately shot down and told we are not being tolerant and branded as a fundamentalist! Since 9:11 a fundamentalist is seen as an extremist, completely intolerant of other people’s views.
However, the dictionary defines Fundamentalism as:
1a) a belief in the literal truth of the Bible
1b) a movement in 20th century Protestantism emphasising such belief
1c) adherence to such a belief
2a) a movement or attitude stressing strict and literal adherence to a set of basic principles
Therefore, by definition 2a, almost all people are, to some degree, fundamentalists. The football referee who strictly adheres to the rules and basic principles of the game is a fundamentalist. The businessman who strictly adheres to legal and ethical codes of practice is also a fundamentalist. The school maths teacher who teaches the rules of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division stresses a literal adherence to the basic principles that are non-negotiable. If the people in these examples did not strictly adhere to the basic principles on the grounds that they did not want to be dogmatic or offensive, they would soon be looking for alternative employment!
The fundamentals that Christians stick to are to ‘Love the LORD our God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength, and to love our neighbour as ourselves! But love cannot be detached from truth and justice! We are to speak the truth in love!
Society at large has rejected God and does not want to hear the truth if it offends their blinkered sensibilities. We are now reaping the consequences. The only remedy is that men and women turn to Jesus Christ while there is still time.
May you be blessed, challenged and encouraged by this study!