I am very concerned for the Church in these times that we are living in. I see things happening all around me that let me know that we are living in days that both Jesus and Paul warned about. It is evident by what people write and by what people say. It is true that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, and with Social Media, out of the abundance of the heart the fingers type.
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers…” 2 Timothy 4:3 NKJV
Merriam Webster defines Endure as – to continue in the same state, or to remain firm under suffering or misfortune without yielding.
Dictionary.com defines Endure as – to hold out against, to sustain without impairment or yielding.
Notice in this verse Paul is warning of a time when people would not Endure (continue in the same state, remain firm, sustain without impairment) Sound Doctrine. A Word Study from the Greek shows us that Sound Doctrine refers to: Christians whose opinions are free from any mixture of error in their teaching. So Paul is saying that a time is coming in the church where people would not remain strong on what is true.
My Brother and Sister, sadly we are there in that day now. Paul went on to say that they would heap up for themselves teachers that would tell them what they want to hear. The days of the absolutes of Sound Doctrine are gone in much of those that name the name of Christ. They propagate things that are diametrically opposed to the clear teaching of the Sacred Scriptures, justifying their actions with logic like it is an outdated book or it is not inerrant.
But Paul was not the only one to give such a warning, Jesus did too. When asked what it would be like at the end of the age before His return, he replied:
“And Jesus answered and said to them: ‘Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, I am the Christ, and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places…For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand.’” Matthew 24: 4-7 & 24-25 NKJV
Notice Jesus said, ‘See I have told you before.’ He knew this day would come. He knew that if it were possible, even the very elect would be deceived…and we are there now as many who are Not Enduring Sound Doctrine are Being Deceived. We really should not be surprised because Jesus said it was coming…but it is still sad nonetheless.
Paul gave his Spiritual Son Timothy another warning in his first epistle to him right along this same line:
“Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.” 1 Timothy 4:1 NKJV
We are here too. Some have departed the Faith! Do a study sometime on the Phrase “The Faith” in the Epistles. It refers to our whole orthodoxy or belief system. Paul said in the latter times…or at the same time frame Jesus referred to in Matthew 24…some would depart…or not Endure Sound Doctrine…because they are giving heed to…or listening to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.
My Brother and Sister, you must exercise discernment these days. Who you listen to really does matter. Some of the things being propagated in the name of Christ that are so far from New Testament teaching need to be avoided like a plague, and boldly, doctrinally refuted. Your eternity could lie in the balance. Don’t be a casualty of modern day error and be one of the ones that Jesus and Paul warned about…rather make up your heart and your mind that you will Endure Sound Doctrine!