Whole in Your Doctrine
“Hold fast the pattern of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.” II Timothy 1:13
One translation of the Greek word for whole is sound. When something is sound it is “stable, sturdy, firm, flawless, thorough, entire.” God wants our understanding of Him to be correct. God wants our understanding of the things of His Holy Spirit to be solid. God wants us to genuinely know Him.
To be a Christian who is whole, we need a thorough and complete understanding of God’s Word. This is a reason why it is important for believers to read through the entire Bible for themselves. We should pursue teaching that is comprehensive, guarding against false doctrine that overemphasizes one fraction of truth and leaves out other crucial information about our walk of faith.
We also need to guard against doctrine that contains error. Not every church or ministry is going to be right about everything; however, there are places where there is error that will cause damage to ones that embrace it. Sometimes the error is obvious, but other times the error is hidden in doctrine that is mostly truth. It’s like a poisoned meatloaf- the meatloaf is good; it’s the element of the poison that will kill you. Sometimes people will swallow a harmful teaching, tricked into receiving it by the good it is hidden in.
The Bible says in II Timothy 4:3-4 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.” If we truly love God, we will stay true to Him and His Word.
God is good and He has people in churches that are genuine and trustworthy. However, not everyone in every church is healthy, so you need to be careful. Satan targets people who are vulnerable. He goes after the young. He goes after the ones that haven’t been discipled. He goes after the hurting. He goes after those who are so hungry that would swallow whatever was placed in front of them. Find a local church that teaches the whole counsel of God’s Word and follows the leading of the Holy Spirit. Learn the truth so that you will recognize and reject unsound doctrine. God is able to keep you on the right track.
Application: If you have been hurt in a church, realize that God never wanted that to happen. He loves you and wants to restore you.
By Melanie Stone