Lloyd-Jones on Heresy

Mar 14, 2019 by

by Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch:

I came upon a great quote by the great Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones today, and so I did a quick hunt for where it originally appeared. It did not take long to find the relevant volume. Given that anything by the Doctor is always worth running with and sharing far and wide, when I found the piece I figured it was well worth turning into an article.

The quote itself is this: “The great concern of the New Testament Epistles is not about the size of the Church, it is about the purity of the Church.” That in itself is a terrific line and certainly worth promoting. But the entire surrounding context is also great stuff, so let me share more of it with you.

It comes from his 8-volume collection of sermons on the book of Ephesians. In his volume The Christian Warfare he expounds upon Eph. 6:10-13. And this quote comes from chapter 8, “Heresies,” (found on pp. 108-120). In it he is commenting on a portion of Eph. 6:11: “Put on the whole armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”

Needless to say, the entire chapter is important reading, but let me offer portions of it here. He begins by noting how we err in underestimating the reality of a personal devil. This malevolent being is not just some vague and generic ‘principle of evil.’ Instead, says Lloyd-Jones:

A principle cannot be subtle. It is only a person who can be subtle. ‘The wiles of the devil!’ The Apostle’s whole object is to tell us that we are not fighting merely against flesh and blood, merely against some principle, or absence of principle, which is within us as flesh and blood, as men and women. He goes out of his way to say that it is quite otherwise. In other words what he says is the exact opposite of what is being taught commonly at the present time.

He continues in this vein for a bit, saying this “digression is important,” and then he goes on to look at some of the strategies of the devil. One general strategy is for people to flee from reality and eschew the “negative”. He says that many folks during the last great war who just “wanted to be happy and to enjoy themselves, and dismissed the man who kept on warning us as a ‘warmonger’, a ‘difficult person’ with whom nobody could work…” He then says:

Read here


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