Fact a Day: February 18th - Ankerberg Theological Research Institute, John Ankerberg Show

Fact a Day: February 18th

The Facts on The Faith Movement (Harvest House, 1993) pp. 12-13

Why is doctrine important?

Many Christians today have the unfortunate notion that they don’t really need to study the Bible for themselves. This idea is spiritually harmful because it prevents Christians from maturing in the faith and makes them susceptible to false teachings or worldly lifestyles. Nevertheless, the Bible is replete with admonitions for believers to study the truths of their faith. Indeed, individual study “is a bare minimum for Christian competency. It is not an option for Christian maturity, it is a requirement. We cannot become mature Christians without studying. Studying is necessary…. each one of us has an obligation before the Lord to study his word and to prepare ourselves for our own growth….”*

This is why God tells every believer in 2 Timothy 2:15, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the word of truth.” The implication is that if we are not diligent in accurately learning the Bible, then we should be ashamed! (cf. Rom. 16:17; 2 Tim. 4:2-3; Titus 2:1)

Look again at these verses. No one can deny that God Himself teaches us that doctrine is important. If we think otherwise, who then are we listening to? Unfortunately, many Faith teachers have publicly vilified doctrine as spiritually unproductive or even dangerous: “Don’t give me doctrine!” “Doctrine divides us; it’s a waste of time.” Kenneth Copeland implies that doctrine can’t even answer the important questions that most Christians have.*

But if doctrine is nothing more than the systematic study of what the Bible teaches on various subjects, is it so unexpected that God would honor and bless those who know it well?

*For full documentation, please see The Facts on The Faith Movement.


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