Greetings brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus –
As we walk together in this New Year, preparing our hearts and minds to serve and build up the body of Christ, I want to take a moment and expose a threat that will always try to work its way into our assembly, the spirit of error. It is my conviction that the Word of God and only His Word will enable us to see this menacing strongman and take action against it.
“We are from God; he who knows God listens to us; he who is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error” (I John 4:6).
Error finds its way into the church and operates successfully there when there is and ignorance of God’s Word. It is not my position or thought that people desire to follow a false religion; I believe they get caught up in one because they cannot discern the truth of the Gospel and then just follow along in a wave of deception without even realizing it.
Confronting a spirit of error can only begin with prayer and submission to the Spirit’s authority. This can be accomplished more effectively when a plurality of like minded believers who operate under the authority of Scripture gather in unity to call out to God to bind the spirit of error in the name of Jesus Christ.
A commitment to the Word: from the pulpit and the classrooms is where this battle against error is fought. A strong eldership that adheres to the command to guard the flock against false teaching is another dynamic that works in tandem with the teaching of the Word.
Allowing the Word to put the body in action and encouraging each other in the kingdom’s purpose(s) also thwarts the strongman of error. The importance is to allow the Word to grow the body so that when a false doctrine does show up everyone can identify it immediately and with the power of Christ exterminate it!
It is a wonderful thing to live in unity under the authority of Scripture and it is most essential in the body of Christ. The Word corrects us, rebukes us, instructs us and edifies us to a place where the unity of faith and Spirit keeps us all on the narrow path of Truth. “Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own steadfastness” (2 Peter 3:17). Submission to the Word protects us from potential offenses that occur. We who live under the Words authority hear the wisdom from a brother or sister who points out our shortcomings in love and compassion when we most need it. “Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins” (James 5:19-20).
The Word of God is our only foundation. As the Scripture says, “study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15); proving there is a right and a wrong way to interpret Scripture. Gathering around the precept that God is always right and Scripture does not contradict Scripture the body submitted to this truth will always be protected from error; it will prosper in knowledge and grow in grace.
“Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18).