In a bible study last year, we were talking about Ebenezers (or Remembrance Stones) and performed an exercise where we prayed, asking God to reveal to us a verse of Scripture that we could use on an Ebenezer . . . something He would like us to remember.
The Scripture the Lord impressed upon me was Titus 2:1 “But you must speak what is consistent with sound teaching. HCSB” This revelation made me sit up with a jolt. I had just finished telling a story to the group that was extra-biblical. The circumstances had happened to me and I identified them with God or being Godly, but there was no foundation for them in the Bible.
This was significant to me because I’m a true believer in the Bible. I have a friend who makes fun of me because I don’t believe everything she considers biblical when there just isn’t any basis for it in the Bible. It doesn’t bother me that she laughs at me, I decided a long time ago that I was only going to go toe to toe with people over salvation issues.
In Acts 17:11, when Paul and Silas had traveled to Berea, it says: “Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. NIV” We don’t seem to do this anymore. We listen to people say any such silly thing and we believe. If they say it, it must be true. Especially if the person is a pastor!
A friend of mine is in a Bible study group going through a book by a pastor from the Bethel church (Redding, CA). While he was telling me what he was learning, I thought I was listening to the writings of Shirley MacLaine. That’s how “out there” this pastor is … very new-agey. He didn’t call it the astral plane, but he has a notion that our spirits fly all over the place while we’re sleeping. I asked my friend to find biblical support for what the gentleman was teaching and he said he’d look into it. I’m fairly certain he won’t find any.
The writer of Hebrews said: “Do not be led astray by diverse and strange teachings … Heb 13:9a ESV.” Please be wary of what you’re hearing and reading. Regardless if it comes from a local bible study leader, a friend, or a well-known pastor … does it fit within the teachings of the Bible? That is the only question that must be answered.
Believe only the truth.