“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”
There are a lot of people who don’t want sound doctrine. Paul warned Timothy about those with “itching ears.” What does that mean? It means these people turn away from the truth; they don’t want sound doctrine. Do you know what the word sound means? Sound is the word we get the word hygiene from. They don’t want spiritual hygiene. They don’t want sound doctrine. They want to hear a more convenient message, one that is customized to their desires and wishes. They want a preacher to tickle their ears, to scratch their ears, and tell them what they want to hear.
There’s a whole movement of church growth in America today that says, “Don’t stand up on Sunday morning and tell people they’re sinners. They won’t come back. Scratch and tickle their ears and say smooth things to them, and you’ll build a crowd.” So what? Jesus won’t be your best friend until He becomes your Savior and you’re born again. No, it’s not fun to stand up and tell people they’re lost. It’s not fun to preach the Word of God, but it is the truth that will set you free. (See John 8:32.)
Talk to a trusted friend and ask if there is any area in which you have itching ears to hear only what you want.