How can I know who to listen to?
1 John 4:1 reads, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
The Bible tells us exactly what to look for in a person who is expressing truth. The message of a false teacher can be identified with the following tests.
- Source Test: What is the basis of his teaching? Does he have revelation other than the Bible, or is He fully committed to God’s Word?
- Savior Test: Does he believe that Jesus Christ is the virgin-born Son of God, the Messiah?
- Subject Test: Is the primary source of his teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ?
- Salvation Test: Does he teach salvation by grace or does he try to mix works or baptism or anything else into salvation?
- Sanctification Test: Does he teach, and endeavor to live, a holy life?
The more you read your Bible, the easier it will be to distinguish truth from lies. Listen first and foremost to God and His Word. Then, surround yourself with people who pass these tests and express truth.