Doctrine is useless if it is not accompanied by a holy life. It is worse than useless; it does positive harm. Something of ‘the image of Christ’ must be seen and observed by others in our private life, and habits, and character, and doings.
At a time when people are encouraged to “find your truth,” the church is called to hold fast to the enduring truth of the Christian faith. At the core of our community is not a shared hobby, political view, or culture. It is a shared commitment to and belief in the truth of the Christian faith. A bound set of doctrines that we as Christians confess and submit to as authoritative for our lives. In fact, Jesus reminds us that he is the way, truth, and life. We do not define truth but find it in the person and work of Christ.
I’m not satisfied when somebody tells me, ‘I just know in my heart that this is the right answer.’ We have to line up our beliefs with what the Bible actually says. If the Bible says I’m supposed to do something, then I’m supposed to do it. If the Bible says, I’m supposed to believe something, I’m supposed to believe it. If the Bible says act or think this way, then that’s how I should act and think. And so, I will not write off verses because I don’t like them, or they don’t suit the way I see the world.
When does heresy become orthodoxy? When we believe a lie long enough that it becomes so natural that it seems like the truth.
If I profess with loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except precisely that little point which the world and the devil are at the moment attacking, I am not a confessing Christian.
I think our focus should not be on trying to figure out if another person’s doctrine places too much emphasis on grace or places too much emphasis on meeting a certain moral standard. I think our focus should be on living our own lives in a remarkable way, by selflessly blessing those around us through our hearts of compassion, by our sacrificial actions, and by our Christ-driven attitudes. In the same way that survivors often vow to live their lives in an honourable way to honour the one who saved them from a fire, or on the battlefield, let’s live our lives in a way that honours the ONE who gave up His life so we could live.
It is the duty of the pulpit to say the same things over and over and over again. They must be clothed in different phraseology, and illumined by fresh illustration, and approached by a new line of thought; but the things that are really worth saying must be said repeatedly.
Every false teacher who has divided the Church, has had, “it is written” on which to hang his doctrine.
Many people think that the mark of an authentic Christian is doctrinal purity; if a person’s beliefs are biblical and doctrinally orthodox, then he is a Christian. People who equate orthodoxy with authenticity find it hard to even consider the possibility that, despite the correctness of all their doctrinal positions, they may have missed the deepest reality of the authentic Christian life. But we must never forget that true Christianity is more than teaching – it is a way of life. In fact, it is life itself. “He who has the Son has life,” remember? When we talk about life, we are talking about something that is far more than mere morality, far more than doctrinal accuracy.