EXERCISINGDISCERNMENT IS A COMMAND
There is an old story which is not biblical but certainly illustrates the point. There are 6 blind men feeling an elephant, one said as he felt the side this is a wall. another blind man feeling the tail said this is a rope, another felt his leg and said this is a tree. yet another felt the air from his flapping ear and said this is a huge fan. another touched the trunk and said it was a boa constrictor snake. Another blind man touched the tusks and said he is a spear.
Who was right? Well obviously none of them. We are all in some ways like these blind
men unable to see clearly, we all have our own opinions about things. But when it comes to
spiritual matters we have a written code to help our blindness , so that their is no
guesswork. You may have one opinion and I may have another, but if we go to the creators
manual it should shed light on any matters that are in the shadows.
Jesus in John 7:24 says: "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment." Jesus is saying to judge, but without malice having the facts.
Heb. 5:13-14 "For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of fall age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil,"
A person who is able to judge between good and evil shows spiritual maturity. Those who do not exercise this ability are not trained by the word and are open to being led astray. Experience is not able to be the test of truth. Truth cannot be felt from error, it is to objectively tested not subjectively experienced. Those detect something is amiss are discouraged today to follow their doubts and their first instincts. If one notices contradictions from what is being taught or practiced they should in all good conscience follow the directive of the Spirit which will lead us into all truth. There is nothing wrong with doubting something that seems wrong.It is not a lack of faith. We should pursue our doubts for the sake of our conscience and to be watchful over our own soul.
When the Pharisees disputed Jesus over his claims he pointed them to the word. When Paul reasoned with the Bereans they contested what he said at first. They went to the word as their source to see if what he was saying was truth. He called them of better blood than their brethren they were of nobility, of a better stock because they tested his statements. To honestly investigate truth actually shows someone has integrity and is willing to believe god and not man. If we detect a flaw that arrests our attention it just may be the H. Spirit giving us insight. There is nothing wrong with doubting experiences, what we cannot do is doubt Gods word. Not all doubt is from the enemy, God can give us doubt so we can test to see if something else might be in operation. 1Cor.2:15 to discern or appraise anakrino there are place the bible commands us to judge and their are places we are not to. In this scripture it tells us he who is spiritual is to judge all things.Just as Heb.5:13 explains it is the spiritual person who will test things.
EX. A diamond may look to have no flaws at first glance, but if we were to bring it to a jeweler, an appraiser someone who is trained to inspect it. He then takes out his magnifying glass to see how it was cut and find the flaws and imperfections. They have been trained to recognize what is not right. Thus a full examination is the safest course for a believer. Only those who are not teaching or practicing Christianity will object to being tested by the word. Darkness will always run from the light, never light from darkness.
If we find in scripture saying something is wrong that isnt you or I judging its God judging. He has his law written so he has already judged. When people persist to teach erroneous and false doctrines (on the gospel, scripture , Christ , morality) they are to be named and removed from leadership to protect the sheep.
Paul warned to watch out of certain people. They were named because they went against the apostles teaching. Its always pride that makes one participate in false doctrine. This is why he warned of the leaven of the Pharisees. Arrogance & pride. Jeremiah in chpt.28 rebuked the prophet saying,"you made Gods people trust in a lie Hananiah." The devil will use scripture, he's too clever to tell a Christian something outside the Bible. He did this with Adam and Eve by having them question what God said, giving them a new interpretation. Those who are unsaved have no standard he can use whatever he wants, but with believers he distorts the word.
The law of Moses solution was to stone them to remove them permanently Deut.18. The law of liberty says they should be removed to be called to back to repentance. To allow them to continue is to join in rebellion and falsehood with them.
There are places the scripture tells to judge and other places not to. When you hear those say not to judge them, they are violating scriptures that say to judge their teachings and actions. They want to do anything they want and not be accountable to any one but only God! Well that will be so, whether they like it or not. The NT teaching is not judgment for condemnation but always for restoration.
Keeping spoiled milk from babes can be prevented but once they drink it they can like it. They need to be kept from continuing to drink the only milk they know and dispensing sour milk to others.
For more on discernment click here> go to article on Guides for Testing