Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them (Romans 16:17).
Today’s Morsel: Doctrine serves two purposes. First: To ensure compliance to established regulations and publications written by higher headquarters; and Second: To ensure standards are enforced and maintained. During my Army days, when I conducted military inspections upon units, when I walked into the unit, the first thing I asked for was to see their doctrine. In other words, I wanted to see all the regulations and publications for the area I was inspecting. If a unit had outdated regulations or publications or they were missing some, they always received a failing mark in that area and other areas, unless they had them on order and they had not arrived at the unit yet. I knew there was no way the unit could be ensuring and enforcing the standard if they didn't have the proper regulations or publications, because the standard is set forth by higher headquarters based on doctrine.
I was once asked by a man in the church that I pastored which Bible is the right Bible to usd. My reply to him was that I use the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible, because that was what I had always used, and that was what I used to determine and set the standards for the church. To me, the KJV is Biblical doctrine. Jesus and the apostles enforced doctrine. Jesus said to the religious leaders, “My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me. If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself. He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him. Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill me?” (John 7:16-19. Notice, Jesus said His doctrine was from higher headquarters and they weren’t enforcing it. Thus, Jesus was giving them a failing grade. This scenario that Jesus mentioned here was the same way in the military. When units received a failing grade for not enforcing the standard, they always became angry and wanted to kill the inspector for their own lack of compliance. Paul told Timothy, “As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine” (1 Timothy 1:3). They were to teach no other doctrine. He said that “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Paul said that the scriptures were given by inspiration of God, (they came from Higher Headquarters; Heaven) and is profitable for use in ensuring compliance and enforcing the standards in the church. The fivefold ministry ( mentioned in Ephesians 4:11) was for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine (Ephesians 4:12-15). So I ask you today, do you get upset and angry when someone tells you what to do in the church that you attend? Do you see the standards as being too hard? Let me encourage you, before you walk away from a church because of its stand of holiness and requiring you to separate yourself from the ways of the world, you may want ask the pastor what Bible is he is using to enforce his standards. And then, you read your Bible to see if what they are saying and teaching is true. You just might be surprised by what you find. Inspection day is coming, and God forbid the soul that is not in compliance with God’s word.
Sing: Show me Your ways that I may walk with You. Show me Your ways, I put my hope in You. The cry of my heart is to love You more, to live with the touch of Your hand, stronger each day, show me Your ways.