Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2
From time to time I get asked my thoughts about books or classes or seminars. I appreciate the question and the humility it takes to ask another’s opinion. There is so much thrown at us – options, opinions, strategies, perspectives, approaches, books, sermons, podcasts, YouTube, Facebook, etc. it is often difficult to discern what is true, valuable, and right and what is not.
It’s not the obvious error that trips us up but things that are close to the truth but have subtle differences that may seem insignificant. Satan is a conniver, deceiver and liar. He is subtle and pretends to be that which he is not. (…even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light[i]) His primary weapon, if not sole weapon, is deception. From the Garden to the present he is making every effort to distract us, and lead us away from truth.
Our culture – even in some churches – has grown more and more person-centered, self-centered. I believe we have subtly shifted from Biblical course by many other things that may be good but are distracting us from Best.
How do we avoid being led astray?
We need to stay anchored to the Gospel. The more deeply we know and embrace truth the easier it will be to discern error. It is important for us to stay Gospel-centered. Run everything, e…v…e…r…y…t…h…i…n…g, through the Gospel-grid to see if it passes the Gospel-test.
So much of what we hear and see, SOUNDS good, SOUNDS right, MAKES SENSE to our human brain but IS IT? IS IT GOOD? IS IT RIGHT? DOES IT ALIGN WITH THE GOSPEL?
The Bereans searched the Scriptures for discernment.
Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.[ii](underlining mine)
Are we first and foremost committed to the Gospel, above all else?
It is also good to ask a godly, wise older person how they see our perspective lining up with Scripture. I don’t necessarily recommend asking a peer. This could end up with the blind leading the blind.
Are we open to correction if we drift from Gospel-Center? This is a good indicator if we are truly committed to the Gospel or not.
This is an excellent reason for daily Bible reading and prayer. Not so we can check it off our to-do list or to earn points with God but to continually be reorienting our minds to Gospel-Center.
[i] 2 Cor 11:14
[ii] Acts 17:11
Written By Diane Hunt: Diane Hunt serves on the board of America’s Keswick and provides ministry support from her home in North Carolina. She is also a biblical counselor and women’s event speaker. For more information about having Diane speak at your next event please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.