- Episode blog post: What does the Bible say about false teachers?
- Podcast introduction: Yabo Obien
- Logo design: Jeff Lyons at Light & Story
- Original music: Makeup and Vanity Set
- Kindle version of Precious Remedies against Satan’s Devices by John Hendryx at Monergism.com
- Text for Precious Remedies provided by GraceGems.org
What’s the big deal about false teachers? Why should we learn to know the true shepherds from the wolves? That’s what we’ll find out this time.
Welcome back to the Theodio Podcast, I’m your host Dan Kassis.
We’re walking though the book Precious Remedies against Satan’s Devices by Thomas Brooks. Along with a segment of our original audio production of the book, we provide commentary and fresh insight, bringing this work of classic theology to life for you.
Only four episodes to go in season 1. One episode each from chapter 7 and 8, and then the conclusion of Precious Remedies. Last time we concluded a five-part series on the devil’s tactics against unbelievers. This time we’re going to discuss all of chapter 7, about 11 & 1/2 minutes from our original audio production.
Speaking of which … would you like to know when that audiobook releases? Sign up for our email newsletter on the homepage at Theodio.com. We’ll send you an announcement about the release, along with a special offer I think you’ll like. All we need for now is your email address. And be sure to check your email account for the confirmation we’ll send you. Expect to have our original audio production of Precious Remedies some time this summer.
In chapter 7, Thomas Brooks warns us about false teachers. He states Satan uses such wielders of error to “deceive, delude, and undo” his victims.
According to the Bible, false teachers are a deadly menace, not just an annoyance or distraction. Such wicked messengers attacked the Israelites, drawing them away from God’s law. Jesus warned his followers about them, calling them “wolves in sheep’s clothing.” And the apostles confirmed and clarified the Lord’s warnings, labeling false teachers “dogs” and “evil workers.”
Such strong language reveals the mortal peril of prophetic error. Truth is the Christian’s life blood. Knowing it sets us free. So, if we fall prey to Satan’s lies from the mouths of the liars he employs, we cut ourselves off from life-giving, freedom-winning truth.
Maintaining biblical balance
We’ve talked about the “two ditches” analogy before. It’s the idea that there are two equal but opposite errors on either side of a biblical truth. It’s easy to steer into one or the other without realizing it.
For example, you might think it’s okay to sin because repentance is easy. Or, you might avoid repenting of sin because you fear the difficulty of returning to God. The better, safer way is to stay in your lane. Be forgiven, but don’t go on sinning (Jn. 8).
This analogy applies to false teachers as well. One “ditch” into which you can drive is heresy hunting, finding error in every teacher and arguing over every minor doctrinal point. The other ditch is turning off your spiritual discernment and embracing any teacher in the name of peace and unity.
But we Christians cannot, should not unite over that which the Bible calls us to divide. Similarly, we should not cause division over non-essential matters. Staying in the driving lane requires the right mix of discernment and discretion.
The mature Christian calls out false teachings and teachers when they pose a true spiritual threat, but remains watchfully silent over issues of personal preference or stylistic difference.
Thomas Brooks was a good pastor who loved his flock. His care for his readers emanates from his text. Here in chapter 7 he provides seven characteristics of false teachers. Brooks beckons his readers inside the protective fence of spiritual discernment, wisdom, and truth.
Let’s hear from Brooks now.
We hope you have a healthy understanding of false teachers, how to avoid them and remain focused on the truth.
Next time will be our only episode from the final chapter of Precious Remedies. Brooks shares six propositions concerning the devil and his schemes. After spending many pages pinpointing specific tactics, our author will zoom back out again and look at the big picture. It’s a good way to bookend this journey we’ve been on.
Please come back and listen again.