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Toxic Theology

Series: Gospel Shaped Church

Week 1 9/6/20 1 Timothy 1:1-11 Additional Scripture: Acts 20:29-30 Hebrews 6:17-19 Galatians 3:24 Romans 7:7 Ephesians 2:1-10

1 Timothy 1:5 “The goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart, a good conscience and a sincere faith.”

It is also then, important to expose false teaching. We can do this without condemning the people doing the teaching. They won’t like being exposed for certain, but dealing with the teaching itself is the way to stick to the facts and help prevent accusations of being judgmental.

Exposing false doctrines, strange doctrines, speculation, comes with the theological territory. Be warned - the less people are informed accurately and the more they are deceived, the angrier they will be when exposed.

How many have your theology down pat?

This is why we need to remind ourselves constantly of what core, Gospel centered beliefs are and what they are NOT. And when erroneous beliefs come along to be able to recognize them and not go with their flow. One example of this is BLM. Too many can’t explain the differences between Black Lives Matter doctrines and its intent as compared to the gospel and its intent - or between the movement itself and caring for all black lives. So you just go along with it because you’re afraid of being called a racist. It is the nuclear bomb of arguments these days.

There are plenty of movements that do not start with or have at their center, the gospel. Let them be.

Renew your thoughts. Strengthen your own doctrinal beliefs. Guard your soul. What we need is to be Gospel shaped and not culture shaped.

I just heard of a little test to give to theories called the DO THE MATH formula. So when you want to test a theory or a belief, do the math! As in… Addition – does it add on to the word of God? Subtraction – does it take away from deity of Christ? Or any other core beliefs? Multiply - does it multiply the requirements for salvation, or acceptance by God? Division – does it wrongly divide the body of Christ?

I would add: Does it accurately identify problems and offer gospel solutions? Does giving money to “the cause” win you points? Is integrity important to the cause?

One of our greatest needs is indeed right doctrine. It is in the end, it is the guard rail that keeps us on the path we need to be on.

“The goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart, a good conscience and a sincere faith.”

When we break down this profound verse we get at what’s at the heart of the person trying to live a life conformed to the image of Christ. We do this not by getting in touch with our feelings, but by getting in touch with God’s truth, and aligning our lives with it.

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