SOUND DOCTRINE - P5 - Berean Lamp Devotional 180 - (Mar 9-16)
“But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons” (1 Timothy 4:1).
Paul’s message to Timothy, here, is that doctrine (teaching) is important. Why? Because not only are men running around spreading false doctrine, but there are also spiritual powers influencing us that are far more crafty, intelligent, and persuasive than man. They spread their doctrines in our minds.
This was why Paul was concerned that, “as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ. For if one comes and preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully” (2 Cor. 11:3-4). Paul warned us to watch for people who teach different core doctrines: “If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness, he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions, and constant friction between men of depraved mind and deprived of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain” (1 Tim. 6:3-5). “Do not be carried away by varied and strange teachings” (Heb. 13:9a). And “instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines” (1 Tim. 1:3b). “For this reason reprove them severely so that they may be sound in the faith, not paying attention to Jewish myths and commandments of men who turn away from the truth. To the pure, all things are pure; but to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure, but both their mind and their conscience are defiled. They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him, being detestable and disobedient and worthless for any good deed” (Titus 1:13b-16).
This is why a correct understanding of the core doctrines of Scripture and the simplicity of the Gospel is so crucial. Because, if you have that core down, life will flow from that core into the rest of the Word as you seek to understand it and this will defend your thoughts from deceitful doctrines of spirits and demons tempting your mind or speaking through other men. None of this would be possible without the salvation that comes by believing on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, for we receive the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, Who teaches us and brings to our minds the truth that Jesus has said. Yes, “the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you” (John 14:26). “As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming” (Eph. 4:14).
On the contrary, we are to be like a man “holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict” (Titus 1:9). “In pointing out these things to the brethren, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, constantly nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound doctrine which you have been following” (1 Tim. 4:6). “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15), “examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things [are] so” (Acts 17:11). Amen.