In Acts 20: 29,30 Paul warned the people of “fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them.”
Twisted things. A friend of mine asked me recently how a group of believers could follow after twisted things and leave the Truth of God’s word behind.
Twisted teachings are often subtle and designed to pull people away from the Faith. Jude wrote of “certain people who crept in unnoticed.” False teachers appeal to our desire to be justified in our actions. The people Jude wrote about probably spoke the Truth-but only part of the Truth. Like the original false teacher in the Garden, who asked “Did God actually say, You shall not eat of any tree in the garden?”, these people plant a seed of doubt helping people rationalize their actions. “Didn’t Jesus say to judge not? How then can you say that any way of living is offensive to God? What’s the harm in telling part of the truth to someone to make them think more highly of you?” What’s the harm? Really.
How can we as followers of Christ do anything that contradicts the Truth? Paul, Peter and Jude all warned of keeping the Faith pure.
How can we recognized the ones from among us speaking twisted things?
Paul wrote to Timothy saying:
“…evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3: 13-17 (ESV)
Study the Scriptures. Is the person on the radio or in the church or in the ABF saying something that compromises the Truth even though it sounds good or desirable or even reasonable? Take a few minutes to read 2 Timothy 3. It will challenge your thinking.
Two in two days? You’re picking up speed on me; but, of course, I’m barely getting two in a week myself anymore. As far as “twisted things”, I came to the place long ago where I don’t even trust my own thinking. I’m hard-headed in my own thinking, but well recognize the guy in the mirror. You know where I stand, though: “Grace” is just another word for the Holy Ghost. He defines it unto me, fulfills it within me, and hopefully is able to serve it through me unto others. Likewise, amidst all these “twisted things” that are out there, that same Grace leads me, with His rod and staff, in the stumble as I go.
Don’t recall seeing you Sunday morning. I enjoyed Exley, but the high point for me was my favorite singer’s serving of “Because of Who You Are”….
Thanks for the comments. I am teaching a series on Jude so I’ll have some additional thoughts
I was around in the background on Sunday. Maybe I’ll see you tomorrow.