Yes, Jesus Would

L. L. (Don) Veinot Jr.

Holy confrontation has become a lost art, in part because we misinterpret 2 John 1:10–11: “If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take them into your house or welcome them. Anyone who welcomes them shares in their wicked work.”

Some Christians use this verse as a reason to not invite Mormons into their homes. But this stance ignores the passage’s context. In the early church, churches met in homes. When Christian teachers arrived in a community, they looked for the home in which the faithful met. The Lord instructed the disciples to do this. In today’s language, we would write, “Do not take them into your pulpit.” It is a warning to not let false teachers into authority where they could mislead the unwary.

As a missionary to members of cults and new religions, I reach out to those who are not Christians and know they are not Christians (atheists, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews); those who think they are Christians because they go to church; and those who are not Christians but are in pseudo-Christian groups (Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses).

People in this last category use the Bible and Christian terms but with different definitions. An aspect of proclaiming the gospel is exposing these differences. That is our task in confronting—not to shame, embarrass, or manipulate.

Paul gives excellent guidance on how to sanctify confrontation in 2 Timothy 2:24–25. First, never be quarrelsome. Apologists and defenders of the faith must take this advice to heart. We should not be ready to argue at the drop of a hat.

Second, offer kindness to everyone. Demonstrate a generous demeanor. The individual on the ...

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