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So that we don’t persecute those who do have sound doctrine

When you don’t have sound doctrine you can really, really, mess up. Big time. Consider the following verses.

Jn 8:37 "I know that you are Abraham’s descendants; yet you seek to kill Me, because My word has no place in you."

Jn 15:21 "But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know the One who sent Me."

Jn 16:2, 3 "They will make you outcasts from the synagogue, but an hour is coming for everyone who kills you to think that he is offering service to God. These things they will do because they have not known the Father or Me."

What is the depth of deception? It is to think that you are really serving God when actually you are killing the messengers of God. Such a thing happens because of a lack of sound doctrine. That is why it is important to know the Scriptures and be saved from deception.

The Pharisees thought that their doctrine was sound. They thought that Jesus was the deceiver and that His apostles were deceivers. Therefore, they killed Jesus and persecuted the apostles. All this happened because they thought their doctrine was sound when it wasn’t.

What else can we learn from Jn 16:2 and the Pharisees? We learn to be careful about how we handle those whom we consider to be heretics. While we judge their doctrine and warn others about them we should be careful not to cause them physical harm. We should let God deal with them, even if means the sacrifice of our lives.

Jesus is our best example here. He knew that the Pharisees had the false doctrine. But He did not kill them. He let them kill Him. He was content to let God deal with them. In letting God deal with the true heretics we ensure that just in case we are the ones who are wrong we do not really put our foot in our mouth by harming those who are correct.

To summarize, the effect of unsound doctrine is ineffective worship, falling away from our own steadfastness, and even falling away from our faith. Worst of all, false doctrine can cause people to kill the true messengers of God.

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