Metaphorically speaking, my professor did enjoy chocolate chip cookies, but he hated Liquid Drano and he hated the adverse effects of the poison upon the church. Frankly, he loved me enough to disrupt my enjoyment of Liquid Drano cookies and he was courageous enough to criticize those who baked these corrupted cookies for me, even though these actions would earn him the stigma as being unloving, nitpicky, and an anti-cookie grouch.Honestly, I believe that what we need most in the church today is more anti-chocolate chip cookie grouches, for there are indeed a lot of individuals cooking up and distributing Liquid Drano cookies in our post-modern pluralistic context. Furthermore, I believe that it is truly dangerous and foolish when we rationalize in our minds that a little poison won’t hurt anyone and when we attempt to preserve tranquility within a community by applying ad hominem stigmas to those who are attempting to expose stealthy poison.
Pastor Matt Richard at Steadfast Lutherans has a great piece on Liquid Drano in chocolate-chip cookies, and why the people who refuse them are valuable to the purity of Christian doctrine.
He begins with a personal anecdote detailing how he thought a seminary professor was unloving because of the professor’s harsh critique of theological errors in Rick Warrens Purpose Driven Life. Using the “we are all on the same team” approach, Pastor Matt did not come to see the professor’s brilliance until a youth conference where the main speaker baked chocolate-chip cookies with Liquid Drano in them. It’s not as creepy as it sounds, read the article for the rest of the details.
In a Chestertonian way, Pastor Matt realizes the value of speaking out against false teaching, bringing in examples of Martin Luther and semi-Pelagianism. False teaching in the church should be condemned not because the teachings are new, but precisely because they are old.
Reacting harshly against someone critiquing false teaching misses the point completely. Had Paul just “let it go,” we wouldn’t have Romans through Philemon. If Twitter had been around, could you imagine the “Bro, your harsh words are being unhelpful. Be loving” replies Paul would’ve received after penning Galatians?
I’ll let Pastor Matt tie it all together: