Many times, I hear preachers stating that all we need is love and not to get involved in any theological or doctrinal discussion. They view theology and doctrine as divisive… all we need is love. The problem is that when we take theology and doctrine out of the equation, we are open for manipulation of Scripture and opinions of men. We remove absolutes and water down the truth and the gospel all together.
Sound doctrine is the foundation for everything. Paul tells Titus, “But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine.” (ESV) To Timothy Paul also instruct tells the following: “Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, 10 the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.” (ESV)
Sound doctrine is the foundation of everything: any ministry, our marriages, church leadership, our relationship with our children, fatherhood, motherhood, how to relate to our supervisors at work, how to relate to our governmental leaders, how to approach Christian counseling, our enemies, how to deal with problems, our gifts, even in the songs we sing… everything MUST flow out of SOUND DOCTRINE. If the doctrine is crooked everything else will be.
A resistance to sound doctrine and theology is a lazy, liberal, and irresponsible approach to God. We are encouraged to study God’s Word (2 Timothy 2:15). Get in the Word, have a prayer life, look at the Scripture in the original language, take notes and ask questions.
Jesus tells us, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” John 5:39 (KJV) Many preachers find it offensive if somebody questions what they are preaching and teaching, but Acts 17:11 tells us, “Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” (NIV)
You get this? They did not just receive Paul’s message automatically and blindly just because Paul was an Apostle. They obviously respected Paul, but they also examined the Scriptures every day to confirm that what Paul was saying was true. Very different to what we see today; many folks do not study the Scripture and take what the preacher said as true.
Some leaders feel disrespected if somebody dares to question them. The greater issue is that the service, as it is, is not even open to question anything. This open doors to all kinds of false doctrines and manipulations. You can thank Constantine for that! He gave the church the current formula of service where you just sit there and watch the show that is controlled by the Worship Leader first, and then the Senior Pastor. Beloved, this should not be, we must be like the Berean Jews, they were of 1) excited about hearing the Word, but 2) they examine the Scriptures daily to make sure that what was told to them was of God. For this approach, these Berean Jews were not considered rebellious or lacking respect or a sense of submission to authority The Bible describes them as having Noble Character. Oh, how far we have gone from the original church!