I recently watched a documentary on TV about Jim Jones, founder of The Peoples Temple, and the horrific tragedy in Guyana years ago. As I watched it, I found it impossible to believe that people could follow such a person. Anyone with even a basic knowledge of Scripture should have been able to see him for what he was – a false prophet. There are many warnings in the Bible about the rise of false teachers and false prophets, especially in the last days. So many warnings in fact, that it should make us think twice about it. Is it really that easy to be drawn away and deceived by someone? The only way to know a lie when you hear it is to know what the truth is. And the truth is found on the pages of your Bible! Have you ever heard a preacher say something and it “just didn’t set right”? That is the Holy Spirit doing His job! As a student of the Word, you may not remember chapter and verse of everything you’ve learned, but the Holy Spirit will cause it to rise up from your spirit and remind you of everything Jesus taught. He is warning you – “You better check that out against the Word!” Any good preacher/teacher will encourage you to verify what they preach against God’s Word. And don’t let signs and wonders fool you either. They are not a foolproof indicator of God’s chosen servants, as the Bible also warns. The Word of God is your only standard! Jesus is the Word made flesh. From Genesis to Revelation, scripture points to Jesus. If a message or a messenger doesn’t point to Jesus, beware!
26 But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you. John 14:26 (NLT)
24 For false messiahs and false prophets will rise up and perform great signs and wonders so as to deceive, if possible, even God’s chosen ones. Matthew 24:24 (NLT)
14 So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son. John 1:14 (NLT)
1 But there were also false prophets in Israel, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will cleverly teach destructive heresies and even deny the Master who bought them. In this way, they will bring sudden destruction on themselves. 2 Peter 2:1 (NLT)
3 For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will reject the truth and chase after myths. 2 Timothy 4:3-4 (NLT)