Saturday, February 23, 2008

One of These Things is Not Like the Other

Stare at the picture above and find which donut is not like the others. "Take your time…good job I knew you could do it!" That, my friend, is called discernment. Some of you might not have been able to be discerning because you did not want to pass judgment on the donuts. Maybe you feel that it is not your place to say if there is any difference between the donuts and that it is for God to judge. For those that believe we are called to be discerning, you followed a simple process. You put the suspecting donut to the test. From across the room everything looks fine but as you come closer you start to see some differences. You just distinguished between a Krispy Kreme donut and a McDonald's cheeseburger, which was pretty tricky since they are the same size and shape. But, you know enough about Krispy Kreme donuts to sniff out a copycat.

The world we live in is becoming one ecumenical lazy river of religion. Where religious deception abounds, how can we possibly discern the true from the false? So many churches, so many preachers. Here is a simple strategy for seeing clearly. Study the Word of God verse by verse. It is the measuring stick for testing all preaching and teaching. The more you know the truth, the easier it will be to identify or expose a false teaching.

Why is it so important? It was the apostle Paul who wrote, "...... but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed." (Gal. 1:7-9).

The Apostle Paul was pretty clear with his continued warnings.

"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." (2 Timothy 2:15).

Having discernment means that you can separate truth from error. You examine teaching; you don't believe everything you hear, but you test the teachings. Even the Bereans tested Paul's teaching to see if it was in harmony with the Word of God.

You will never notice the counterfeit unless you know what the original looks like. The Bible is clear that there is only one true gospel and MANY false gospels. Don't be afraid to contend for the faith. No one is above being tested against scripture, not even the angels. Test, evaluate, and examine the teacher and the message.

Discernment is your responsibility. Use your brain to reason what you hear against scripture. It should become a life's discipline.

1 John 4:1-6 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them. We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.

An article written by Ray Baumann posted on Christian Worldview Network

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