Monday, June 26, 2006

The Christians at Ephesus, Heretic Hunters Extraordinaire

Nowadays there is much contempt for those Christians who would examine the teachings of others who would name the name of Christ. “Touch not the Lord’s anointed”, is the cry and justification for allowing so called Christian Pastors and Teachers to say anything they wish without one shred of accountability. Another popular accusation to those who examine others teachings is that he or she is “fault finding”. Is examining the teachings of those who call themselves Christian Leaders Biblical?

Firstly, before I answer the question… notice the word “examine”. I too am against “fault finding”. When I speak of examining the teachings of those who are “representatives” of Christianity, I mean simply confirming whether or not their teachings line up with scripture or not. I am against listening to folks with the intention of finding something wrong. As we will see, the Bereans examined Paul’s teachings (Acts 17:10-12) and this is completely different than “fault finding”.

So, is examining the teachings of those who call themselves Christian Leaders Biblical?

Revelation 2
[2] I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:

Jesus here is speaking to the Christians at Ephesus. He is COMMENDING them for trying, proving or examining the teachings of those who claim to be apostles and actually are not. This is also said of the Bereans in Acts 17.

Acts 17
[10] And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.
[11] These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
[12] Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few.

The Bereans searched the scriptures to see if what Paul and Silas were teaching was true! This is not fault finding, this is allowing the Word of God to be our final authority. Yet many so-called teachers today are unwilling to be scrutinized in such a way. When one questions the teachings of many so-called Christian Leaders today, simply in the same way that the Bereans and Ephesians did, this person is met with accusations of “fault finding” or “touching the Lord’s anointed”.

Why would anyone who is claiming to speak in the name of Jesus not want to or be willing to have their teachings tested for agreement with the Word of God? What could this person be afraid of? When any man has set himself up above being examined, he has started a cult. A situation where the “leader” is followed and what the “leader” says is gospel, regardless of whether or not it agrees with the scriptures.

I encourage people to examine anything written here and see whether or not it lines up with the scriptures. You may not agree and may want to tell me. That is fine, just be ready to defend any opposing positions with scripture and scripture alone.

Finally, it certainly is Biblical and perfectly normal to be zealous for doctrinal purity. I encourage everyone to examine the teachers who are “above them in the Lord”. The only warning I have is not to allow simple examinations to turn into what is legitimately called “fault finding”. When we are learning from others we are not to be purposely looking for error. Also, many times the Holy Spirit will give us a warning in our hearts as to when something is unbiblical; however, this is always to be confirmed with scripture. Stick with scripture my friends and you won’t go wrong.

Romans 16:17!!!


Blogger Joe said...

{Stick with scripture my friends and you won’t go wrong.}

Amen! Amen! Amen!

Love, Joe

6:36 AM  
Blogger Joe said...

{Stick with scripture my friends and you won’t go wrong.}

Amen! Amen! Amen!

Love, Joe

6:37 AM  

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