The Peril of Omission!
During my recent reading of Proverbs 6:16-19; the seven sins that are abominable to God, the sins which stood out from the rest of the text were the sins of “lying” and “false witnessing” (vv. 17,19). As I contemplated heavily on these particular sins, I then realized just how easily they flow out of our mouths. Lies or to proclaim false witness is when a person openly declares a falsehood or presents false testimony. But, as I ruminated on these iniquities, what struck me as equally evil, is the “omission” of a truth, particularly biblical truth and especially when proclaiming the Gospel. “Omission” is when a person deliberately and purposely conceals the whole truth and presents only part of it. An unidentified Puritan wrote: “You can recognize a false teacher, not by what they say; but rather, what they don’t say”. And Pastor John MacArthur stated: “A half-truth presented as a whole-truth, is not a truth at all; it’s a lie”. In other words, someone who willfully withholds proclaiming God’s full truth; this is omission and a form of lying.
Many of today’s evangelical preacher’s teach solely on God’s loving attributes, while intentionally omitting other attributes of God such as; wrath, justice, holiness, especially when they present the Gospel. Some preachers commit this sin because they fear men, desiring approval rather than fearing God- enough. Therefore, they craft powerless, ineffectual, and crippled sermons, designed to “tickle” the ears of the hearer, condemning them to hell. In other words, they preach what their congregations desire to hear, rather than what they need to hear (1Tim. 4:16). In fact, Scripture prophesies that people will have an ever-increasing penchant for a water-downed message, and will ardently seek molly-coddling preaching and surround themselves with compromising preachers. (2 Timothy 4:3-4).
Furthermore, some teachers omit saying the word “Hell” in a sermon while only declaring “Heaven”. Please don’t misunderstand me, preaching about God’s love and the glories of heaven are definitely important aspects of total Gospel message. But, equally imperative is teaching people about being born into sin, God’s just wrath against sin, His divine justice, yet providing mercy and grace by sending His Son, our Savior Jesus Christ to save those who are called and will receive eternal life. Others who have not heard the full Gospel will die with un-forgiven sins, condemned to hell. Incidentally, the word “Gospel” means “good news”. I ask; if pastors preach merely God’s love and the glories of heaven, then why would anyone need “good news” presented to them? Might people deem Jesus’ death on the cross insignificant? Might they ignorantly inquire “Why was Christ crucified; wasn’t it superfluous”? They could be oblivious to the very reason why they need to repent, or why Christ bore God’s full wrath; as His shed blood was the only atonement propitiatory to God, for the sins of all who would believe on Him (Romans 3:22-26). This is essential to the complete saving Gospel message! Never omit one Word from Scripture. Amen!