April 12, 2018
April 12, 2018
This weekend’s reading: John 20:24-29
While the “antichrist” is sometimes associated with apocalyptic literature in the Bible (such as in the book of Revelation), here in 1 John 2:18-25, the writer is specifically talking about false teachers—literally, those who deny Christ.
How does a Christian know what is good and right teaching and what is not? The first place to turn is always scripture. In scripture, we have God’s narrative of salvation for his people foretold in the Old Testament and fulfilled in Jesus in the New Testament. John Wesley taught that the people called Methodists should always be people of “one book;” scripture is primary.
A second source of authority is the tradition of the church. We learn from the earliest apostles, through the creedal affirmations of faith (like the Apostle’s Creed or the Nicene Creed), and through the men and women of faith that have nurtured and taught the church even to our own day. Finally, we can test right teaching with our reasoning and with the affirmation of the Holy Spirit in accordance with scripture.
Every day we experience “false gospels”—consumerism teaches us to love things more than God; greed pretends that wealth is all that can save us. These are our “antichrists.” But with reliance on right teaching from scripture, we have the freedom and power from God to resist evil in whatever forms it presents itself.
QUESTIONS FOR THE FIELD
- What false teaching has been most powerful in your life?
FAMILY FIELD TALK
- Discuss how we know something is good or bad for us.
- How does God help us figure it out?
God, we repent of the times that we have believed in false teachings that have led us to believe you are not enough for us. Save us from the powers of this world and free us for obedience to you. Amen.