I certainly do not disagree with his conclusion. However I would suggest that in many cases there is nothing a particular pastor or church can do to bring a false teacher back into the fold. Some false teachers are not accountable to a healthy local church. Some operate with such autonomy that there is no realistic hope of trying to urge him or her toward repentance. Others are, to a certain degree, unreachable because of distance and the insulation of fame. The first job of pastors and elders is to protect the flock from wolves. If the wolf can be converted then so much the better and we certainly ought to pray toward that end. But because of the reach of false teachers, pastors and elders are responsible to warn God's people against their damning errors. For a pastor or elder to do less is to fail in his calling.
Saturday, March 24, 2012
On Naming Names
Aaron Armstrong has written a helpful post on whether or not we should publicly name false teachers. The only thing I would push back against is in this two-fold conclusion where he writes, "So, is it appropriate for Christians to name names? Yes, if it is to the benefit of our congregations and that our desire is to see those false teachers return the fold as faithful followers of Jesus Christ."