ODJ: timely advice
September 9, 2013
READ: Jude 1:17-25
You . . . must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life (vv.20-21).
I saw a group interacting with others outside my train station—sharing Scriptures with anyone who would listen. A group member approached and asked me to take a survey. One question referred to Revelation 22:17. She asked, “Who do you think is the ‘bride’?” I said, “The church.” She replied, “Read the text carefully. It’s God, the Mother.”
How should we respond in an age when false teaching is prevalent (there’s no teaching of God as mother in Scripture) and not all Bible teachers can be trusted? Jude gave us some timely advice.
Firstly, we’re to remember the words of the apostles who wrote down much of the Word of God in the New Testament (Jude 1:17). They correctly predicted that false teaching would occur. So we shouldn’t be unduly discouraged or fearful when we see false teaching creep into the church. It’s a reality.
Secondly, we’re to grow in our understanding of God’s Word (v.20), for the Holy Scriptures are fully authoritative and totally sufficient. Someone said, “The safest Christian is the one who has a desire to grow in the truth of the Christian faith.”
Thirdly, Jude exhorts us to live a life of dependence on God and to live in the sphere of God’s love for us—to dwell on it, to delight in it, to draw on it and to be cheered on by it (vv.20-21). A person who is full of God’s love won’t be vulnerable to a false teacher’s sales pitch. We can respond to wrong teaching with grace and truth—reaching out with true compassion and godly wisdom (vv.22-23).
Last, but not least, we can rest in the power of God, who will keep us from falling away and to present us faultless (v.24). These truths can help us resist what is false! —Poh Fang Chia
Matthew 25:1-30 ‹
Read Acts 20:29-30, 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 and 2 John 7 to see what the apostles said about false teaching.
How can you strengthen your knowledge of God’s Word so you can recognise false teaching? What measurable goals should you set?