Martyn Lloyd-Jones on the Question of Secession
In a 1947 address Lloyd-Jones was given the subject “The Position of Evangelicals in their Churches” and was asked to make reference to the question of secession. For all those presently in mixed denominations or associations, his questions for both those inclined to go and those inclined to stay are well worth considering and committing to prayer.
Those who are contemplating withdrawal or secession should ask themselves continually:
1. Am I absolutely certain that Christ’s honour is really involved, or that my basic Christian liberties are threatened?
2. Am I going out because it is easier, and am I following the line of least resistance?
3. Am I going out because I am impatient?
4. Am I going out because I am an egotist and cannot endure being a ‘Brother of the common lot’ with its disadvantages as well as its spiritual advantages?
Those who are staying in their Church should ask themselves:
1. Am I staying in and not joining others who may be fighting the Lord’s battle because I am a coward?
2. Am I staying in because I am trying to persuade myself that I am a man of peace and because peace seems to be worth any price?
3. Am I staying in because I am just a vacillator or at a very low spiritual ebb?
4. Am I swayed by some self-interest or any monetary consideration?
We must all pray without ceasing both for those who trouble us and for our own spiritual betterment. We must seek in prayer and with patience that we may by all means save some. We must flee ‘the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees’. We must shun all merely party spirit. ‘The servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth’ (2 Tim. 2:24, 25). (Iain H. Murray, D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones The Fight of Faith 1939-1981, 184)