Isaiah 8:19 And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead? 20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.
This passage of scripture teaches us of the simple method of differentiating between right and wrong, truth and error, and the method consists in referencing everything, and every doctrine through the word of God. The Bible must have the final word in both our estimations and in our conclusions, if we desire to be kept from the multitude of erroneous teachings that are being peddled across the land.
Whatever we may hear, whether it be in any church, by secular folk, or from fellow Christians, the scripture must of necessity be consulted, so that the right conclusions may be adopted. This is the one and only way we can be shielded from the many assaults of the devil, who is hell-bent on misinterpreting and misrepresenting the sacred textto vulnerable or deluded minds. Let's read:
2nd Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
The problem is that many of us may not know what the scriptures teach on a particular point of controverted doctrine, and because of this, many sincere Christians and secular folk become gullible to the doctrines and teachings that are specifically designed to soothe itching ears. Case in point is the fatal sophistry which teaches its adherents that faith in God releases us all from obedience to His law, and this false doctrine sounds good to many minds, because it promises us the freedom to do as we please, whilst claiming to love and serve The Lord.
But such a teaching would cause the apostles to turn in their graves, for it is nowhere taught in the Bible that grace relieves us of our sacred duty to abide by the laws of God. To do so would be to unravel the entire plan of salvation, thus rendering Christ and His great sacrifice on our behalf, both obsolete and non-essential. Let's read:
Romans 3:31 Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.
Romans 6:1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
Whenever any teaching of a spiritual nature is brought to our attention, let us then bring the word of God to bear directly on the point in question, for by so doing, we will always have a clear path before our faces, not being pulled in many directions by every wind of doctrine that may blow our way. We therefore end with two passages of scripture which teach us to receive the word with a ready mind, but also to double check for ourselves, both the accuracy, and soundness of the interpretation, for this responsibility cannot be transferred to another, except it be at the risk of eternal loss. Let's read:
Isaiah 28:9 Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? ... 10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little.
Acts 17:1 Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews: 4 And some of them believed, and consorted with Paul and Silas; and of the devout Greeks a great multitude, and of the chief women not a few. 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.
May the Lord add His blessing to the study and practice of His every word. God bless!