One of the major marks of spiritual maturity is to be able to discern between good and evil Hebrews 5:14. This discernment (a clear distinguishing and discrimination) applies to things presented to our minds directly by satanic forces as well as indirectly through others in the way of false teachings. In 2 Timothy 3 and 4 Paul by the Spirit of God in writing to his son in the faith Timothy tells us that satan’s deception will enter in among the ranks of the professing Church through a simple doorway. We don’t have to guess about it because he tells us in 2 Timothy 4:3 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts (desires) shall they heap to themselves (accumulate further/seek additionally) teachers, having itching ears. And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables (speech, conversation, myth, legend, untrue stories and tales).” In the Last Days, called perilous times (2 Timothy 3:1), there will be a rise of false doctrine so BEWARE.
Doctrine is teaching, instruction, and that which is taught. Many Christians feel doctrine is boring, dry, and doesn’t meet their emotional needs but it is really the anchor that their emotions need because that is the realm deception always operates in. Satan’s deception, that penetrates the mind and emotions, enters through the door of false doctrine or teaching which the Bible warns us about for the Last Days. In contrast, sound doctrine penetrates to the spirit of a man and makes it strong and dominant. From 2 Timothy 3:16, 17 to 2 Timothy 4:1-4 we can detect that:
- SOUND DOCTRINE is from the ALL Scripture or the Word of God 2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 4:2.
- SOUND DOCTRINE mentions coming judgment and future things 2 Timothy 4:1.
- SOUND DOCTRINE may be in season or out of season with the way people are living 2 Timothy 4:2 (or it may be convenient or inconvenient to hear).
- SOUND DOCTRINE includes reproof, rebuke, and exhortation 2 Timothy 4:2.
- SOUND DOCTRINE has elements of truth in it you may have to endure, bear up under and tolerate 2 Timothy 4:3.
- SOUND DOCTRINE has Biblical truths that some will turn their ears away from and wander off toward manmade tales, legends, myths and fables 2 Timothy 4:4.
If you are going to a church and you never hear teachings that include these things you may not be getting sound doctrine. It is time to search the Scriptures daily to see if what we are being taught is in the Bible Acts 17:11, “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” Thank God for the objective standard of God’s Word (2 Timothy 3:16, 17) and thank God for the anointing of the Holy Ghost to help us (John 16:13; 1 John 2:20, 27).