Timothy is a Christian who enjoys creating visual art and writing. He has a B.S. in psychology.
There are a lot of churches scattered throughout the United States and the world. Each Sunday and maybe others times throughout the week the congregations come together to hear sermons, sing hymns, fellowship and pray. Each of these churches has a doctrine they use as their basis for teaching the Word of God.
While a good majority of churches teach the truth contained in the Bible there are are a lot of churches which don't teach the whole truth or teach a variation of the truth. When attending a church how is a Christian supposed to know what they are listening to is sound doctrine?
2 Timothy 4:3-4 “For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.”
1 Thessalonians 5:21-22, “instructs Christian to always be discerning when it comes to hearing the Word and living life for the Lord. Paul says : " to examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil." There is a similar warning by the, Apostle John, “Do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world," in (1 John 4:1).
There are three keys for discerning the truth.
The first key, to discerning the truth is quite simple. You need remember God is the one who speaks the absolute truth by which all other messages of hope and salvation must be measured. True discernment is measuring what we hear against what the Bible says then and only then will you know the truth.
The second key to discerning the truth is knowledge. The Bible says in Proverbs 30.5, “Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.” Every Christian, new and old needs to, as Paul says later in Timothy, “to show themselves to be approved workmen,” by reading and studying the Word of God each days.
It is only by knowing the truth that we, as believers, are enabled to discern the truth from the lies. False teachings raise more questions then answers and is not for edification. Also teachings which cause disputes in the church pull downs the church rather than build it up
The third key to discerning the truth is trusting in the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the inner witness who helps to guide all who have placed their faith in Jesus. The key to letting the Holy Spirit is listening to Him and not overriding the Holy Spirit's guidance. The Holy Spirit knows better than we do what we need and to think we know better then He does, will only lead to trouble.
Here's to becoming a people who diligently seek the truth through reading God's Word and listening to the guidance of Holy Spirit.
© 2021 Timothy Whitt