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We have a natural tendency to avoid sound doctrine

2 Tm 4:3,4 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.

We saw above that in his first letter to Timothy Paul told Timothy that Satan has got his demons to go about spreading false doctrine. In Paul’s second letter to Timothy he says that many people will cooperate with Satan and will welcome such teachings (2 Tm 4:3, 4). This means that Satan will be successful in deceiving many people.

Do you think that you might be one of the people Paul was talking about when he said ‘they will not endure sound doctrine’? We tend to think that we already have sound doctrine. But do we really? Unless you have yourself checked all Scripture concerning everything you believe (and not just the Scripture shown to you) and learnt how to get sound doctrine there is a very high chance that you are deceived.

Paul says in 2 Tm 4:3, 4 that the time will come (not may come, but will come) when people will not endure sound doctrine. Our natural tendency is to discard sound doctrine instead of enduring it. It is important to realize this because otherwise we will not even recognize sound doctrine when we stumble across it. Sound doctrine does not tickle our ears. It is not often pleasant to hear because it exposes the truth about ourselves – things that we are embarrassed about, things that we would rather hide. Paul tells us that we all have the tendency to listen to those who say things that sound pleasing to us instead of those who tell us the truth.

It is easy to preach things that don’t upset the congregation but the prophets of old were never like that. They spoke the truth even though it made them unpopular and sometimes even cost them their lives. How many of us get a chance today to hear messages that tell us the truth about ourselves rather than tickle our ears? There are many who preach things that tickle the ears of their hearers, letting the hearers hear what they desire. If we want sound doctrine we should seek to hear preachers who preach the truth about God and ourselves.

Here is something to ponder on: could it be that you are thoroughly deceived about some very fundamental Christian doctrines? Now think about that!

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