Is What They Teach Better Than What God Said?

Is what they teach (i.e., the pastor or teacher) better than what God said? Do you realize you are saying God’s Word is not important and that their message means more to you? As an example, even though God only required that the Israelites pay tithes. You pay tithes because your pastor or teacher tells you to. So please take 8 minutes to find out more.

Revised: Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Is What They Teach Better Than What God Said?

Pimping in the name of Jesus

STM Bible Lesson

Lesson focus: 2 Peter 2:1-3. Bible lesson background 2 Peter 2:1-3: Peter warns us about false teachers and their deceptive teachings. As we see today, they often have large congregations, aka mega-churches. They will cause many unbelievers to not trust in God. Most of all, he warned that they are greedy money-lovers. Typical of today’s pastors, who “live large” in huge homes and own luxurious things, including private jets, etc. Beware of false teachers!

False teachers

2 Peter 2:1-3 [read 2 Peter 2:1-3]
In the past, there were false prophets among God’s people. It is the same now. You will have some false teachers in your group. They will teach things that are wrong—ideas that will cause people to be lost.
And they will teach in a way that will be hard for you to see that they are wrong. They will even refuse to follow the Master who bought their freedom. And so they will quickly destroy themselves.
2 Many people will follow them in the morally wrong things they do. And because of them, others will say bad things about the way of truth we follow. 3 These false teachers only want your money.
So they will use you by telling you things that are not true. But the judgment against these false teachers has been ready for a long time. And they will not escape God who will destroy them. (ERV)
KJV: But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. 3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.

Warning: pay attention to what they teach as well as what they don’t teach

Beware of “the Bible says” preachers and teachers. Especially if they do not mention the specific Bible reference for their quote or paraphrase. Good teachers give you references; false teachers don’t.
In fact, the best teachers will make sure you know the book, chapter, and verse or verses, as well as the translation. Without this information, it is difficult to verify what they teach.
1 Thessalonians 5:20-21 [read 1 Thessalonians 5:12-22 (20-21)]
Do not make little of the words of the prophets [those who speak for God]; 21 Let all things [i.e., speakers and their messages] be tested [examined]; keep to what is good; (BBE)
KJV: Despise not prophesyings. 21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.

Feel-good preachers are nothing more than motivational speakers

Your primary reason for attending services should be to learn how to live to please God. If your pastor is not doing this, then you are in the wrong place. Pastoring is more than making people feel good.
2 Timothy 4:3-4 [read 2 Timothy 4:1-5 (3-4)]
The time is coming [my note: has come] when people won’t listen to good teaching. Instead, they will look for teachers who will please them by telling them only what they are itching to hear. 4 They will turn from the truth and eagerly listen to senseless stories. (CEV)
KJV: For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

The deceit of human wisdom

Is what they teach about the right and wrong ways to live, talk, and treat others?
Colossians 2:8 [read Colossians 2:1-10 (8)]
Be careful that you do not believe any false teachers. The ideas that they teach may seem clever. But they really want to deceive you. They are ideas that have come from the human minds of our ancestors. Or ideas that come from spirits that belong to this world. They are not the true message about Christ. (EASY)
KJV: Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

Your comfort zone

The right teaching will sometimes cause discomfort, aka conviction and guilt. If it never occurs, find a different place to worship.

2 Corinthians 7:8-9 [read 2 Corinthians 7:2-12 (8-9)]
If my letter made you uncomfortable [sad], I’m not sorry. But since my letter did make you uncomfortable for a while, I was sorry. 9 But I’m happy now, not because I made you uncomfortable, but because the distress I caused you has led you to change the way you think and act. You were distressed in a godly way, so we haven’t done you any harm. (GW)
KJV: For though I made you sorry with a letter, I do not repent, though I did repent: for I perceive that the same epistle hath made you sorry, though it were but for a season. 9 Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing.

The Holy Spirit convicts concerning sin

John 16:8 [read John 16:5-15 (8)]
And He, when He [the Helper] comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment; (NASB1995)
KJV: And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

Your pastor’s teaching should also

Titus 1:9 [read Titus 1:5-9 (9)]
An overseer must faithfully follow the truth just as we teach it. He must be able to help people by using true and right teaching. And
he must be able to show those who are against the true teaching that they are wrong. (ICB)
KJV: Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.

Invest in your salvation; study your Bible

Are their teachings correctly supported by the Bible? Don’t blindly accept what they teach; verify it by studying the Word yourself.
Acts 17:11 [read Acts 17:11 (11)]
The Berean Jews were very glad to receive Paul’s message. They studied the Scriptures carefully every day. They wanted to see if what Paul said was true. So they were more noble than the Thessalonian Jews. (NIRV)
KJV: These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

Be Aware of What They Teach

2 Peter 3:17 [read 2 Peter 3:14-18 (17)]
[Therefore] Dear friends [Beloved], since you already know [are forewarned] about this, be careful [on guard]. Do not let those evil [lawless; unprincipled] people lead you away by the wrong they do [or by their deception; or into error].
Be careful [on guard] so you will not fall from your own strong faith
[stability; firm position]. (EXB)
KJV: Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.

Keep doing the right things

Philippians 2:12-13 [read Philippians 2:12-18 (12-13)]
So then, my dear ones, just as you people were always obedient [to my teaching] when I was there with you, so now, in my absence [also], be [obedient] all the more. [Continue to] complete your own salvation [i.e., by living faithfully to the end. [See Romans 13:11-12] with fear and trembling [i.e., with a reverent and submissive spirit], 13 for it is God who is at work in you, both to motivate the desire and to carry out what pleases Him. (AUV)
KJV: Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

Regardless of what they teach, you should be sure you are doing what God wants: continuing to work out your salvation. After all, God’s message is always better than what they say! Thank you for taking the time to read this Bible lesson. I urge you to make full use of it. Blessings to you and your loved ones— Tim. ☺

Related studies, lessons, and snacks for further spiritual growth:

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