There is a lot of confusion out there in terms of what our faith teaches us. People are being confused daily because of false doctrine. The warning of our Lord Jesus Christ about false prophets (Matthew 24:4-5) is coming to pass and many of us are still too complacent about it. I just watched a video where a preacher was trying to prove that anyone who greets another person with the word “Hello” will go to hell. Her proof? The word “Hello” is formed with a combination of “Hell” and “o”. This is just one example of the confusion out there. These have led to too many Christians struggling with what they believe. In fact, there seems to be many who still do not understand precisely what they believe in. It is our responsibilities as followers of Christ to make sure that the good news is spread undiluted and unadulterated. Therefore, every Christian must make sure that they are well discipled. What we hear on Sundays in many Churches is just not enough. Studying with other brethren offers the opportunity to discuss and ask questions about your faith. This is the place where we get clarity when brethren jointly look at different life topics and their significance to our faith and our lives.
It is also important that a Christian has someone to look up to. Someone to ask questions about the Word. Someone who can help lead them to maturity. The Word of God in Ephesians 4:13 states that we all need to be built up “until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.” The idea, as the same chapter states in verse 14-15, is so that “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; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ….”
There was a story I heard a while ago about a snake handling Preacher in Kentucky, who was killed due to snake bites he received during a Worship Service. The Pastor belongs to a sect where they routinely handled serpents during their Worship Service. Their belief that the serpents will do them no harm is based on Psalm 91 where it is stated in verse 13 that “You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.” The Pastor and the Church members believe that if they have “God’s power”, the snakes can do them no harm. They also believe that if they worship without the snakes, then they are not following the Word of God. I am not really sure about this belief of theirs, but I would think that if these people know the Lord they serve, and if they know the Christ they believe in, they will understand that this same Psalm that they quote for their foolishness is the same one that Satan quoted when he decided to tempt the Lord Jesus Christ. If they had learnt just a few things about the Jesus Christ they are supposed to believe in, they will know of His answer to Satan in Luke 4:12 where He said, “it is said, you shall not put the Lord your God to the test.” One wonders if these people know their actions in handing snakes amounts to nothing but testing the Lord? I think they spend so much time perfecting their tricks with the snakes that they do not even have time to study the Word of God. Incredibly, their leader, the Pastor, died from snake bites! What message does this then send to the believers?
There are different doctrines out there in the World today. Many of them do not even have any basis in the Word of God, a lot of them seek to turn the Word of God on its head, and there are also many that try to stretch the Word of God too far. We need to be prepared by studying the Word of God. Let us prepare ourselves by making time to study His Word. Gather with the brethren and study. The idea is to make sure that in unity of faith we do not get tossed around by waves or winds of doctrines that are out there; and to make sure that we live our lives in His Will because when we are discipled, we can turn around and disciple others with the right message.
January 16, 2022 – Pastor Simbo Odunaiya