Thursday, April 22, 2010

Defining False Doctrine: Part One

What is false doctrine? The typical cliched, high school speech would begin something like this...
"False doctrine. What is it? Well, Webster and his dictionary cronies define it as..."

Ahhhhh, bad high school speeches and essays. One reason I like them is the job security they give this English teacher.

However, let's not use Webster or any of his verbose companions. Instead let's go straight to God's infallible Word for a proper definition.

Galatians 2:4-5
This matter arose because some false brothers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves. We did not give in to them for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might remain with you.

Galatians 5:7-9
You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? 8This persuasion is not from him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. For context of this passage check out Kretzman's commentary on this verse.

2 Thessalonians 2:15
So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the teachings we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter.

2 Timothy 1:13-14
What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus. Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.

2 Peter 2:1-3
But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute. In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping.

1 Timothy 4:6-7
If you point these things out to the brothers, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, brought up in the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed. Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives' tales; rather, train yourself to be godly.

This last is my favorite because God reveals our duty. Could verse 7 be any clearer? "Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wive's tales; rather train yourself to be godly." Nothing means nothing. It doesn't mean seek them out. It doesn't mean subject people to their ideas. It means, at the risk of sounding like a simpleton, nothing.

So while God's Word tells us to "have nothing to do" with false doctrine, many embrace it, act as if they can use it for good, act as if they don't need to heed God's warning.

Why should we all heed God's warning? That's part two.

3 comments:

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