Churches Of Christ/early church father


what do you make of this??

"...there are sins too ruinous, and too serious to receive pardon. Such are murder, idolatry, fraud, denial of Christ, blasphemy, and of course adultery and fornication...Christ will no more intercede for those: he who has been born of God will never commit them: if he has committed them he will not be a son of God." ?? Tertullian AD 200

its hard to believe.

Hi Josh

Taken on its face, Tertullian is wrong as a reading of at least 1Cor 6.9-11 will show. Some of Paul's readers were guilty of these things and yet he says they have been washed.

John tells us that Christians sin, and does not qualify levels of sin.
Tertullian though is writing in another time.

He is likely speaking about such folks being in the visible (or institutional) church. It seems correct that the church of AD 200+ frowned upon admitting people who had committed serious sin. They could be inthe community but not baptized.

Those same folks could seek God and be forgiven, but not be "in the church."
At this same time, the church would use an initiate process thatrequired evidence of a changed life prior to baptism. The penitent's character was paramount.

So, Tertullian was writing in this environment and we need to read him with that in mind.

Even so, his views are incorrect and are at odds with Paul and John. Given such a conflict, I'm going with the Apostles.

Hope that helps.


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Hoyt Roberson


I can answer just about any doctrinal, relational, or Scriptural question from a "traditional" church of Christ perspective, and from perspectives of somewhat more progressive congregations. If you want an answer from a particular perspective, let me know that up front, and I'll respond in that vein. If you want to peg me on the liberal-conservative spectrum, I would suggest a bit left of center. Depending on the question though, I might be far left, or perhaps rather toward the right.


I have fifty years as a member of Churches of Christ. Over those five decades, I have taught teen classes, adult classes, served as a deacon and congregational administrator, Lay Leader at two military congregations, and finally as a shepherd of a 500 member congregation. Most of the congregations I have been a member of have been "mainline" congregations, but I am quite familiar with more conservative and more liberal congregations and views as well. I read and subscribe to various books and periodicals for churches of Christ, and have discussed a variety of topics with representatives of our various groups both in person, and via mail. One of my Masters degrees is from Pepperdine, so let that guide your understanding of my formal training.

Christian Association for Psychological Studies, American Association of Christian Counselors, and the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.


I hold a Masters of Ministry degree from Pepperdine University, as well as a Masters of Counseling degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Phoenix.

Awards and Honors
The greatest temporal honor I have had is to be an elder for ten years. The next greatest temporal honor is having been asked to preach for our current congregation.

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