Unfortunately, many people are not opening their Bibles to see if what they are being taught is actually the truth. The Bible says that when the apostle Paul was preaching, the Berean Jews were of more noble character because they examined the scriptures daily to be sure that what Paul was teaching them was true.
Regardless of what any church leader, pastor, or anyone else says... your final authority should be: "What does the Bible say?"
Paul taught that some things he was teaching are hard to understand, "which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction." 2 Pet 3:16
The Apostle Paul also warned that in the last days, not every minister would be teaching the truth of God's Word. "For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. They will reject the truth and chase after myths." 2 Tim 4:3-4
"I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments." Col 2:4
Most of us are engaged in some type of secular social media platform, but where do we go online to connect with fellow believers on issues of faith? How are we fed and by whom? We know that when we stand before the Lord Almighty, the opinions or teachings of any person will have no value. The only thing that is going to stand is God's Word.
Our desire is for the body of Christ to be strengthened, challenged and encouraged through Bible-based discipleship with fellow believers and Christian leaders who are firmly rooted in the Truth.
Deception is running rampant throughout the Church today.
The gospel has been watered down to be pleasing to the "itching" ears of the listeners, so as not to offend. But, Jesus warned that there would be a great deception within His Church in the last days and He cautioned us not to be deceived. The only way we can avoid being deceived is by truly knowing what the Bible says. Otherwise, you will be lured into fine-sounding teachings by influential leaders that lead people straight to hell. "There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death." (Prov 14:12) The apostle Paul affirmed, in 2 Tim 3:13, that “evil men and imposters will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived." So not only do they deceive others these false teachers themselves are deceived. "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Tim 3:16-17)
The Word of God was not given to us as a mere tool for crafting a great self-help message. "As you, therefore, have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ." (Col 2:6-8)
A regenerated heart will desire to please the Lord by obeying what the Lord has commanded. The very call of Jesus was the call to love Him. And the proof of this love would best be evident through obedience to His commands. Jesus said "He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me...” (John 14:21) Salvation is a free gift based on nothing more than our faith in Christ but the authenticity of this genuine transformation is evidenced by our fruit. James emphatically states, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says” (James 1:22). The Apostle John reiterated obedience to God as evidence of our love for God (1 John 5:2-3). He also cites obedience as a confirmation of our very salvation: “We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands” (1 John 2:3). Jesus made the point of saying, “Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them” (John 13:17).
Nowhere in the Bible are we instructed to pray a prayer or walk an aisle for our salvation. There is nothing wrong with a prayer but it is not "the prayer" that saves you.
John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."
John 3: 36 says, "And anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life. Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment.” (NLT)
Some translations do not use the word obey, however, the Greek word used here is APEITHEO which means to disobey, rebel, disloyal, or to refuse conformity.
We cannot cherry-pick scripture. Read this book (the Bible).