Today, let’s examine some of the more common false teachings gaining popularity or accepted as truth in the Church today. These are definitely not exhaustive, but are some of the dangerous teachings gaining ground in the Church today, and we will do well to learn what the Word teaches about them, so as not to fall prey to them….
Tit. 1:9 – “Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.”
The New Age Movement – A belief system from the East that emphasizes that God is inside everyone, regardless of whether they have accepted Jesus or not, and that each person is their own god.
Universalism – This is the idea that all religions serve the same God in different forms, and that everyone will eventually get saved. By this logic, religions that have only one God (monotheistic) serve the same God. This is what gave birth to inter-faith dialogues, Chrislam, and other merging of faiths.
The Prosperity Gospel – This is the belief that God’s primary concern is the prosperity and welfare of believers. If Christians are sick or poor, it is most likely as a result of sin or a lack of faith.
Hyper-grace – This is the extreme ideology that a Christian is saved for all eternity by grace, regardless of lifestyle.
Legalism – This is the opposite extreme of the hyper-grace doctrine, and teaches that the law as described in scripture must be kept to be or to remain saved. Legalism holds people to subjective standards of holiness, rather than getting believers to imitate Christ.
The Emerging Church – This is a new movement that tries to adapt Christianity to a post-modern culture. It employs more inclusive belief systems and structures, and downplays the reality of hell, judgment or need for forgiveness.
Behind all these doctrines is the message that the Bible is not infallible, and that its truths may simply change with the times. How are we to respond to such doctrines? We preach Christ, we reinforce biblical doctrines, basing it on the most secure foundation – the Word of God. We examine every doctrine in the light of God’s Word, and then we hold and propagate that true position. To the new agers, there is only one sovereign God (Isa. 43:11); to the universalists, we know that there is only one way to get to God, and that is through Jesus Christ (John 14:6, Acts 4:12); to the proponents of the prosperity gospel, Jesus’ death does not make us immune from any kind of adversity, but He has promised to be with us through all conditions of life (John 16:33, Rom. 8:37); concerning hyper-grace, God has freed us from the bondage of sin through grace, and now we have a responsibility to walk according to that freedom (Gal. 5:16, Heb. 10:26-29); to the legalists, if we could have obtained righteousness by the Law, then Christ wouldn’t have needed to die (Gal. 2:21); to the emerging church believers, a gospel diluted is no longer good news. It’s truth must remain in its entirety, couched in love (Gal. 1:8-9, 1 Cor. 15:1-4).
Dear brothers and sisters, let us equip ourselves with the Word of God. Many of these devilish doctrines can appear quite innocuous and harmless on the surface, but with a sound understanding of the Word of God, we can know for certain what is truth, and discern which is a false doctrine. We must also be able to and choose to speak the truth in love to people who hold to these false beliefs, so that they may also be saved and reconciled to the truth of the gospel.
…to be continued tomorrow.
Have a blessed day – Carl Erinle