Vol.II No.I Pg.2
February 1965

"Innocent" Error

Robert F. Turner


Liberal and "Middle-of-the-road churches today are filled with a host of good" people, innocent in error." They accept without question your sermons of generalities --- about the Authority of Christ, Congregational Independence, "Bible Things in Bible Ways etc. (they love slogans, and "Church of Christ terminology falls like gentle rain upon their upturned, smiling faces.) But make specific application of Bible principles to current practices in the church, and the smile is erased, and they are "hurt."'

The cold facts are that many nominal members of the church are untaught concerning some of the most basic characteristics of the N. T. church. Further, their "innocence" is fallacious--it does not justify their error. They refuse opportunity to study issues in the light of God's word, or to believe in the completeness of the divine pattern. They lack nobleness (Acts 17,11) and in a real sense are willingly ignorant." (2Pet. 3:5) Neither their zeal nor their generosity alone will save them. What is to be our attitude toward these people? Certainly not hate, nor vindictiveness. We do not wish to hurt -- in fact we are hurt to learn that our brethren react so violently to suggestions that we study God's word together. Our "heart's desire and prayer to God is that they may be saved. (Rom. 10:1-3) We do not believe we are perfect, nor set ourselves as the rule for judging others; but the TRUTH must be taught, and we must remain free to teach and practice what we believe to be the truth. And God shall judge us all. (Rom.l4: l2)