Give the Test

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Test the spirits to see whether they are from God

1 John 4:1


Years ago I struggled with a popular TV preacher, primarily because the scriptures didn’t quite line up with his message, even though he had charisma and encouragement. Many times there were slight variances that were easy to dismiss. Yet I struggled to the point that I didn’t want to hear him anymore, even if other Christians enjoyed his messages. It was several years later that he was exposed as a criminal. I didn’t feel vindicated as much as sick from knowing how many people trusted in him.

It was the test of Scriptures that first made me aware of his false teachings. There is a test that every believer needs to be ready to administer—it’s testing to the spirits to see if they are from God or not. While some of us may be hesitant to call out Satan’s attempt to deceive, he doesn’t waste time in his deception in any way he can, even using the Bible.

The devil can make any person look good, smart, trustworthy, and dependable. If we aren’t savvy and discerning in the word of God, any one of us can be fooled. Satan is depending on our lack of motivation in knowing the Scriptures and our willingness to embrace false teaching if it appeals to our human nature.

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The primary way to test the spirits is knowing the correct use of Scripture and sound doctrine. This is more than just a rudimentary scan of the Bible. It’s intimate knowledge of the Scriptures for our hearts and minds. We aren’t judging the messenger–but we have every right to judge the message. Anything that doesn’t line up with the sound teachings of the Bible should be cast aside.

Prayer

Dear Lord, give me the discernment I need to recognize a false teacher. I pray Your hand over me to protect me from the evil spirits that seek to deceive. Amen.

In His Service,

Crystal McDowell Signature

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