Monday, July 30, 2007

Don't Be Fooled

Colossians 2:8 exhorts followers of Christ not to be fooled by arguments that may sound reasonable, but aren’t based on biblical truths. This advice is especially relevant today.

Don’t let anyone fool you by using senseless arguments. These arguments may sound wise, but they are only human teachings. They come from the powers of this world and not from Christ. (CEV)

Today we are bombarded with all kinds of arguments and rationalizations for doing things that are contrary to biblical teachings. On the surface they sound reasonable, and maybe even biblical, but they aren’t. As far as I’m concerned, the Bible supersedes logic and rationalizations – we are to obey what God tells us in the Bible, not what the world tells us, alluring as it may sound. We see such warnings against false teachings in many other places in the Bible. For example, we see a strong warning in 2 Peter 2:1-3:

But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive opinions. They will even deny the Master who bought them — bringing swift destruction on themselves. Even so, many will follow their licentious ways, and because of these teachers the way of truth will be maligned. And in their greed they will exploit you with deceptive words. NRSV

I encourage you to not listen to the world, which gives us and our children messages that are contrary to biblical teachings, and will lead us down wrong paths. Be careful even whom you listen to when it comes to preachers. Colossians 2:18-19 exhorts followers of Christ not to be taken in by deceptive people who preach false doctrines.

Don’t be cheated by people who make a show of acting humble and who worship angels. They brag about seeing visions. But it is all nonsense, because their minds are filled with selfish desires. They are no longer part of Christ, who is the head of the whole body. Christ gives the body its strength, and he uses its joints and muscles to hold it together, as it grows by the power of God. CEV

False teachers are certainly a problem in our day and age. There is no shortage of false teachers who claim to be preaching the Gospel, but are really distorting it. There are false teachers on TV masquerading as ministers of the Gospel, who are misleading people and relieving many people of their money as well.

I encourage you to be discerning in whom you listen to, whether it is on TV, on the radio, or in a church. Pray for discernment so that you will know when to turn off a preacher and not end up filled with false doctrine. I also encourage you to build up your knowledge and faith by regular worship, Bible study, and prayer, so that you are properly equipped.

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