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Scripture Reading: 1 Thessalonians 1:5-10
1. Some scoff at the belief (gospel teaching) that Christians can be united in doctrine: "What is your criteria for determining unity and fellowship?"
a. Must we write a creed to determine truth and error in order to define soundness and the parameters of fellowship?
b. Must we catalog every Biblical truth before brethren will agree that God expects us to "have no fellowship" with sin (Eph. 5:11)?
c. Are we able to know and properly apply the word of God? (Eph. 5:17)
2. Sound (hygiaino): “to be sound, to be well, to be in good health” (Thayer); “to be sound or free from error, be correct” (BDAG), Lk. 5:31; 3 Jno. 2; 1 Tim. 6:3 (“wholesome” NKJV).
3. The Lord expects each Christian to be spiritually sound, and He expects every church to be sound, Rev. 3:1-3, 4.
I. CHRISTIANS ARE EXPECTED TO BE SPIRITUALLY SOUND.
A. Sound in the Faith, Titus 1:13 (Jude 3; 2 Tim. 3:16-17).
1. Sound doctrine, 1 Tim. 1:10; Tit. 2:7.
2. Wholesome words...the words of Jesus Christ, 1 Tim. 6:3.
a. Apostles sent – Hear them, Jno. 13:20; 1 Cor. 14:37.
b. Pattern of sound words, 2 Tim. 1:13 (Tit. 2:7):
1) hupotuposis (compound of hupo, under and tupos, imprint: hence, a pattern put under so as to match it).
2) The pattern in conformity to which a thing must be made.
B. Sound in Personal Faith, Titus 2:2.
-Life of faith in and obedience to the Lord, 2 Pet. 1:3-7.
C. Sound in Speech, Titus 2:8; cf. Col. 4:6; Jas. 1:26.
D. In Moral Conduct, 1 Tim. 1:9-11; 6:3; Eph. 5:3-7; Tit. 2:11-12.
II. DIAGNOSING SPIRITUAL ILLNESS.
A. Recognize, Accept and Use God’s Standard to Define Soundness: The Inspired Scriptures, 2 Tim. 3:16-17 (Col. 3:17; 2 Pet. 1:3).
1. Study to know truth,
2 Tim. 2:15;
2. We can correctly understand Scripture, Jno. 8:31-32; Eph 5:17.
-It is not as one young Christian said when asked if he was going to a sound church: “Sound according to who? The Mt. Baker church? Probably not. But, it is sound according to God.” What criteria does he use? If he is accurate, then we are in sin and unsound; vice versa.
a. Test church: 1 Thess. 1:5-10 (cf. churches of Asia)
b. Examine (test) self in light of truth, 2 Cor. 13:5.
B. We Must Know the Cause of Spiritual Illness: Sin, Rom. 6:23; 1 Jno. 5:17.
1. Teaching doctrinal error is spiritual disease (sin), Gal. 1:8-9; 1 Tim. 4:1-3; Gal. 1:6-9; 2 Jno. 9-11.
2. Following doctrinal error is spiritual disease (sin), 2 Tim. 2:16-18.
3. Failure to obey the truth is spiritual disease (sin), 2 Pet. 1:8-9 (Jas. 4:17).
III. IS IT POSSIBLE TO BE SPIRITUALLY SOUND? (Yes it is possible.)
A. We are Commanded to be Sound, Eph. 6:10.
B. We have Examples of Soundness we are to Follow, Phil. 3:16-17.
C. The Purpose of Gospel Preaching is our Spiritual Soundness, Col. 1:28.
D. The Reward of Soundness is Heaven, 1 Tim. 4:8.
E. Our Determination is to be Sound: Examine every Doctrine, Attitude and Practice in the Light of the Apostles’ Doctrine, 1 Jno. 4:1, 6; Rev. 2:2-3.
1. Those who quibble that we do not have a standard to measure doctrinal soundness are often some of the same ones who argue for and justify tolerance and acceptance of doctrinal differences and moral uncertainties (spiritual illness), 2 Tim. 4:3.
2. Will you be sound in the faith? If so, then walk in truth.
By: Joe R. Price
Posted: September 08, 2016