Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity

"We Don't Go Along With Them, But...."

J. David Tant

Occasionally we run across members of the church who are alarmed and concerned about the unscriptural, liberal and denominational practices sweeping through the church today. But these particular members of whom we are writing still attend these digressive churches.

We have come upon such in various places — Texas, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Georgia, etc. — and the response we get can be succinctly stated in these words: "we don't go along with them, but...." then comes the various reasonings supposedly supporting their fellowship with error. The owners of a store in Abilene, Texas, (for whom this writer worked during high school and college) never failed to condemn the many innovations arising in the churches there. As the issues developed, and a congregation in Abilene took an open stand for the truth, these people were urged to join themselves with the truth, These "urgings" have been going on now for some six or seven years, and all the while these people are drifting further and further, whether they realize it or not. Their excuse was that their business would suffer if they changed their membership.

Others complain that the distance is too far to drive to a sound congregation, or that they hate to leave friends and become a stranger in another place, or that they have no place else to go, or this, that and the other. They hasten to add that they "don't go along," and they "wish things were different but....," but as a matter of fact, they are "going along!" It is like the man standing on the railroad tracks as a train speeds in his direction. He may protest loudly that he is not going along with the train, but he will either go along with the train or get off the tracks! Those who are in the road to apostasy with the churches "on the march" may not go along happily or without protest, but they are going along.

They go along with that which they verbally condemn by attending the services, thereby encouraging others to come and build up that particular work. They go along by contributing their money, thus helping finance that which they believe to be wrong. Christians are not allowed to make "mental reservations" as Catholics are. And Christians are warned that they cannot expect to remain unaffected by such fraternization with error. (1 Cor. 15:33)

A good example of this "going along" even without realizing it is the case of a man in New York City who lost his hearing some years ago. He continued to attend the assemblies and do what he could for the Lord, although he could not hear what was going on. Then in recent years he regained his hearing, and was amazed at the preaching that was being done and at many of the practices that were spoken of and announced in the pulpit. His friends had gradually drifted away, but he remained where he had been when he lost his hearing, and had quite a battle to restore the ancient order of things. But things had gone so far that he was largely unsuccessful. The church had drifted, and the members "went along" without realizing it. Evidently, the attitude had developed among the members that prevented them from a continual re-examination of the scriptures to see "whether these things were so." (Acts 17:11)

There are some who remain in liberal churches with a view to saving as many as possible. Where there are sufficient numbers working, it may be a case of saving the whole church from digression. Usually, though, there are just a few who will work for the truth. While their goals are admirable, even these individuals must realize that there comes a time when they must "get off the tracks." When their objections to unscriptural practices are time and time again disregarded, when they have little or no influence in teaching others the truth, and when they are butting their heads against a stone wall, It is time to get out, before they wait too long and are caught in the current. Many small groups of faithful brethren could be greatly strengthened if such brethren who are having no success where they are would join together with these small groups. They would do more for the cause of the Lord by such action than by remaining where they accomplish nil.

And in all matters, we must remember that it does not behoove man to say "I don't go along, but — ," but rather to remember the words of the Lord: "come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord...." (2 Cor. 6:17)

2622 Snapfinger Road, Decatur, Georgia