Be sure you continue to follow the teaching you heard from the beginning. If you continue to follow what you heard from the beginning, you will stay in the Son and in the Father. And this is what the Son promised to us—life forever. I am writing this letter about those people who are trying to lead you the wrong way. Christ gave you a special gift that is still in you, so you do not need any other teacher. His gift teaches you about everything, and it is true, not false, so continue to live in Christ, as his gift taught you.
1 John 2:24-27
John warned against false teachers. Many powerful speakers claim to have important ideas for Christians to hear. Some present special angles on church doctrine; others go off on extreme tangents. How do we discern between the off-center but benign ideas that often are tacked onto the gospel, and the serious, much-to-be-avoided false teaching?
Follow these principles as you evaluate teaching:
1. Use condemnation sparingly. An off-center idea may be way out but not necessarily heresy. A sincere but misguided teacher may not be a “false” teacher. No one understands God perfectly, so be generous and helpful long before you condemn and cast someone out.
2. Pay attention to the teacher’s ethical and moral behavior. The Bible stresses that false teachers will have immorality in their lives. Watch how they treat people and money. Don’t excuse or cover up bad behavior.
3. Choose your church carefully. Is the living Christ at the center of your church’s ministry? Do leaders pray? Is the Bible honored and taught? Is God at work there? “False” churches may be very busy, but their teachings reveal the void when Christ and the Bible are pushed to the side. If that is the case, go somewhere else.
The special gift refers to the Holy Spirit in each believer’s life. That anointing is in true Spirit filled believers; Christ remains in them through the Holy Spirit. This means that believers place their total trust in him, rely on him for guidance and strength, and live as he directs. It implies a personal, life-giving relationship.
Does the Holy Spirit dwell in you? Have you received Him? If not, why?
Jesus died on the cross the you might be saved and He sent the Holy Spirit that you might be filled. Invite to come into your life today.