This is what the LORD Almighty says: “Do not listen to what the prophets are prophesying to you; they fill you with false hopes. They speak visions from their own minds, not from the mouth of the LORD.“
Correct and sound doctrine is crucial to salvation and growth in spiritual maturity. It comes as no surprise that God warns us many times in Scripture to be aware of false teaching. Christians need to be able to recognize false teachers in order to know when they are being led down a path that God did not intend. A false teacher is one who knows the truth but deliberately lies for some purpose. Jesus said in Matthew 7:16, “You will recognize them by their fruits.” We can know whether someone is founded on Jesus’ doctrine by that person’s “fruits”– by what he teaches. Is he teaching the same things Jesus taught? Is his doctrine the doctrine of Jesus Christ? Or is he twisting words and taking verses out of context to suit his own belief or benefit? This is why it’s important for us to read the Bible ourselves. It’s also important that we find a church that teaches directly from the Bible. Although, even then we still shouldn’t only rely on the church for instruction. In 2 Timothy 4:3-4 it states, “For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.” Let us pray for the gift of discernment to recognize when others try to lead us astray.