In our postmodern intellectual climate, it is now hard to find a Christian, pastor or missionary who is not affected by it. For instance, where did it come from that: we need to be nice and kind and not criticize? Neither Jesus, nor Paul and other NT personalities tolerated false teaching.
Are there false teachers in our world? If your answer is “yes”, then can you answer this one: Who are the false teachers, what do they look like, what is false about their teaching?
False teachers are charming, they know the Bible well, they have great stories, and have a wide following. They quote the scriptures and many of them speak of success stories.
In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. (II Peter 2:3)
Believe me, I have first hand experience with many who fabricate stories. I have been there myself and know how and why it happens. We exaggerate a little and get away with it then we exaggerate a little more and more until our stories do not resemble the original except in some basic facts. We begin to believe our own lies.
O how we have to be careful not to believe every spirit!
Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. (I John 4:1)
If this was true in the first century, is it any better now?
How do we discern false teaching? Ask these questions:
Is the Cross preached? Many today preach Jesus but not the cross. The only Jesus we must preach is the crucified Christ:
but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, (I Corinthians 1:23)
For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. (I Corinthians 2:2)
Is the church held in honor?
Is there a call to repentance?
ALL FALSE TEACHING COMES FROM A LOW VIEW OF CHRIST AND HIS CHURCH (WEAK CHRISTOLOGY AND ECCLESIOLOGY)
Do the stories you read or hear have an ending whereby people say nice things like asking for a Bible, saying that they have changed, that this teaching was helpful etc?
Or do they testify to being convicted of sin and repenting and accepting Christ as Savior and Lord above all others? If stories do not end with people coming to Christ through repentance and joining a local church, all our actions may be good but not good enough for the gospel.
It is so hard these days to discern truth from falsehood.
Do not judge by externals, charm, great stories or by good intentions. Look for the cross among all the talk.