There is such a thing as a false gospel, a cancer which must be cut out of Christ’s body. But there is also such a thing as having a sense of proportion, and if we expect anyone to believe us when we need to sound the alarm about genuine heresy, then we need to stop crying wolf all the time.
Christ only has one body, and the gospel of grace tells us that all our brothers are a part of it. Even when the argument is about the gospel, if we respond to every piddling difference by carving off major parts of the Body, how are we defending the gospel that brings us together? If you get a carving knife and flay off every freckle and skin blemish because it might be cancer, are you helping your body, or hurting it?
So the charge is to do what Paul did. Tell the truth, and tell it as starkly as it needs to be told. Then go to meet your erring brothers and have it out. This will cost you—money, time, energy, pain, everything. Keep at it until you all come to one mind. If they throw you out, that just puts the process on hold for a while. Maybe a week, maybe a decade or a century or even longer. Keep working anyway, however God gives opportunity. The prize is worth it.
Christ will build His church, and the whole body will come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. On that day, we will no longer be children, and the whole body will have grown up in all things into Christ our Head.
This is the prize. Christ purchased it; He calls us to live worthy of it. It is worth what it will cost us to serve Christ in this. So look to your own connections with this in mind, and pray for me as I attend to mine this coming week.