Truth found in the Bible is as right as right can get because it is inspired by the Holy God's Spirit. Jesus said truth would set man free. However, a significant portion of the Truth I hear about isn't total Bible Truth but a favored portion of the one(s) marking another as false.
A stern and accusing voice does not a truthful man make. The Pharisees were all about truth and they killed Jesus (the Truth) because he was marked by them as a false teacher. Stephen was stoned to death because he was marked by the same batch of believers as a false teacher. Saul of Tarsus was a religiously stern and accusing sort out of control because he had the truth.
Even Jesus disciples who ate and walked with him did not catch the significance of the truthful things he was teaching. Get this: they didn't get it. We don't get it; me included. We religious leaders are an embarrassing foolish mess much of the time. We parade our pet doctrines as the whole of Truth when I am convinced by this age we are more clueless than clued.
Here are some things I found myself teaching falsely over the years:
- We (whoever "we" are) are the only ones right with God.
- The Holy Spirit is active from the Word only.
- Silence of the scriptures is a God-authorized doctrine.
- Women cannot pray with men.
- Those who raise their hands in worship are ungodly Pentecostal types.
- The Lord's Supper can only be observed on Sundays.
- The sermon is the main part of church.
- My convictions make me right.
- To be selectively biased regarding scripture is permissible.
- It is all right to judge others for I see better/am more sincere than they.
- False teachers are always someone else; but never myself....ever.
- It is permissible to have church with no praise of God but simply check off the list of do's and don'ts during that hour and be satisfied in my self-righteousness.
My point is I have taught many things wrong. I've been wrong. I'm sure that as the Lord grows me I'll discover even more areas where I misunderstood His Word. This doesn't bother me in the least. I am a learner. I want to know. What bothers me is that those bellowing charges of false teachers never seem to consider they are as well....in some areas....which they, too, will discover as they continue to learn.
I'll say it again. Church leaders are guilty of talking a very big talk while the world has no idea we are around. This simply does not reflect the abundant life of Jesus. And remember, he was such a false teacher (in the authoritarian religious leaders' convictions) they nailed him....and didn't care.....for they were....right, of course.
Some are so burdened about being right because they refuse God's righteousness that they are absolutely miserable in the church. Truth has become their idol. Jesus has seemingly taken a back seat to our faith but will surely be handy at the Judgment....we hope.