There are a lot of false teachings out there. There are books (sadly some are on best seller’s lists) with what I believe to be questionable theology (compared with the traditional understanding of various doctrines). There are sermons and TV programs which either distort or water down the Gospel. There are so-called preachers whose goal it is to relieve you of as much of your money as they can by giving you false teachings and empty promises.
Some of these false teachers say that certain parts of the Gospel were added on later, that they weren’t part of the “original” writings but were later inventions. Yet we have very early manuscripts, and they all include these “add-ons.” Like it or not, we have to take the Bible as we find it, not add to or subtract from it. We have to believe that the Bible was inspired by the Holy Spirit – which doesn’t necessarily mean we have to take the Bible literally in all cases, but believe that it contains God’s truth, without error. We have to accept what we read – even those parts we might not care for – and then deal with them with the help of the Holy Spirit.
We should protect ourselves against such false teachings, against buying into the lies of this world, and against being diverted from God’s truth. We can inoculate ourselves against deceptions and temptations by understanding the teachings of the Bible, by our strong faith in Jesus Christ, by living according to biblical principles, and by testing anything we hear using the methods given to us in the Bible.
When you read the New Testament, you see a lot of warnings about false prophets, erroneous teachings, and deception from Satan. With so many warnings, I think we should take them seriously. In this series of posts I’m going to let the Bible do most of the teaching, because it gives us clear directions in this matter. I hope you will take them seriously.
More on this important topic in a future post.