Discern Good Theology

So far in our study of Galatians 1, we have discovered that in order to stay focused on following Jesus, you need to:

1. Know God’s Voice

2.  Have Mentors and Let Them Speak Into Your Life.

Today, we discover that you also need to be discerning.

3.  Double Check What You Hear

Don’t blindly follow anyone. Everyone who isn’t God is fallible. If 20th and 21st Century living has taught us anything, it is that even the most connected, upright people can be royal screw ups.

Seriously, even double check yourself. Sometimes we can come up with really great theology because we went on a carb binge – then, when we bring it to the light of day and a good scripture reflection, we discover it is total rubbish.

Paul knew this. He said “But even is we… should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you.” Don’t forget to include yourself in the people whose doctrine you are double checking.

Where do you think bad theologies come from? Many of them come from (usually) wonderful people who love God, and experienced Him dramatically (either in a positive or negative situation), and want everyone else to do so as well. They then “discern” a theology based on their experience, thereby letting their experience speak to scripture, instead of letting scripture speak to their experience. We call this “experiential theology”.

When your focus become how you have experienced God, instead of God himself, you begin to miss God little by little until you have missed Him entirely.

So, spend time with God, listening to Him (reading His Word and praying), have mentors who speak into your life, and let scripture be your guide.


2 Responses to “Discern Good Theology”

  1. Rosie Flathers Says:

    The mentor thing is hard for me. I have a hard time trusting people. I think as Jesus said that I have to remember to trust myself to no one but God. So trust is not the issue. Mentors can make me accountable for when I am off base. Mentors can shed new light on scripture I have read before. They can encourage me to a deeper level of relationship with God.
    As I walk closer to God, it is Him I put my trust in but it is the Christian community that encourages me to stay on the path.

  2. Jeanine Vaughan Says:

    Yes, we should trust nobody fully, except God. However good, ‘biblically-solid” friends are a real help! When you have studied God’s Word together with good Christian friends, you get to know how they think, and how they relate to others and toward God. Then when one of you is struggling through a situation or concept, you can go to each other for advice on how to apply God’s Word to the situation. This “iron-sharpening-iron” relationship can be soooo beneficial – and supportive!

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