#DailyDevotion There Is No Love In False Doctrine
Read Jer 23:21–40
Jer 23:29-32 Is not my word like fire, declares the LORD, and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces? (30) Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, declares the LORD, who steal my words from one another. (31) Behold, I am against the prophets, declares the LORD, who use their tongues and declare, ‘declares the LORD.’ (32) Behold, I am against those who prophesy lying dreams, declares the LORD, and who tell them and lead my people astray by their lies and their recklessness, when I did not send them or charge them. So they do not profit this people at all, declares the LORD…37 Thus you shall say to the prophet, ‘What has the LORD answered you?’ or ‘What has the LORD spoken?’ (38) But if you say, ‘The burden of the LORD,’ thus says the LORD, ‘Because you have said these words, “The burden of the LORD,” when I sent to you, saying, “You shall not say, ‘The burden of the LORD,'” (39) therefore, behold, I will surely lift you up and cast you away from my presence, you and the city that I gave to you and your fathers. (40) And I will bring upon you everlasting reproach and perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.'”
Satan has a nice little trick up his sleeve lately, well maybe not so lately as Jeremiah is 500 years before Christ. It’s not enough that he tries to deceive people into worshipping false gods. No, he has to pervert God’s Word. That is what is going on in today’s lesson. While the people of Judah were worshipping false gods, they also worshipped YHWH (the LORD). There were priest and prophets of the Lord but they were false prophets. They did not speak the truth of the Lord’s Word. They preached what the people wanted to hear and what sounded “reasonable” to them.
Today there are all sort of pansies in the Christian Church who faint if anyone doesn’t get along particularly when one Christian is calling out another one for false doctrine. Love, Love, Love is their mantra. But there is no love in false doctrine. Satan infuses himself into the Church, confuses people and tries to make it look like those who are teaching the truth are unloving, schismatic and are lying. Well his children will believe that. Those who get all upset about pointing out those who teach false doctrine forget what St. Paul says. Rom 16:17-18 I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. (18) For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. Jesus says, Mat 7:15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.” Even Peter speaks about it, 2Pe 2:1-3 “But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. (2) And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. (3) And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.”
So what should we do? 1Jn 4:1 “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” The spiritual life isn’t McDonald’s or Burger King. You have to work at keeping your faith pure. You are responsible for what your ears hear and eyes read. You, yes you, are responsible to test everyone’s teaching and make sure that not only is what they say “in” God’s Word, but they are using that Word as God spoke it. We have this promise, Mat 16:18 “And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
Lord Jesus Christ, you have promised your Church will prevail. Give us discerning hearts that we may always be able to discern your voice and turn away from false teachers. Amen.