Healing the People Superficially

Text: Jeremiah 6:14

Jeremiah was warning of destruction that was coming because of the people’s sin. They needed to repent but would not listen. Why? The false prophets convinced them of “peace” so they felt no guilt for their sins. The same is true today. False teachers have convinced people that they are saved, even though they are still in jeopardy of receiving divine punishment for their sins.

How Do False Teachers Heal the People Superficially Today?

They Say: “You’re Saved by Grace Alone”

  • A lot of error has a bit of truth to it – this makes it easier for people to accept
  • We are certainly saved by grace (Ephesians 2:8) – salvation is a “free gift” (Romans 6:23), meaning we cannot earn it
  • But nowhere does the Bible ever say we are saved by grace alone – grace appeared to all men (Titus 2:11), but not all will be saved (Matthew 7:13-14)
  • Is this a contradiction? … No – God saves us by His grace conditionally (Titus 2:11-14; Ephesians 2:8-10)

They Say: “You’re Saved by Faith Alone”

  • Again, we’re certainly saved by faith (Romans 5:1; Hebrews 11:6)
  • But the Bible never says we are saved by faith alone – phrase only used once & it refutes the “faith alone” doctrine (James 2:24)
  • Faith is an obedient trust in God – so faith & works are not exclusive, but they go together (James 2:14-26)
  • Claiming Jesus as Lord is meaningless is we don’t obey Him (Luke 6:46; Matthew 7:21-23)

They Say: “Once You’re Saved, You’re Always Saved”

  • This is a comforting doctrine – it means one doesn’t have to worry about losing his soul later, or about loved ones who have fallen away
  • But just because something is a comforting thought, that doesn’t make it true
  • The Scriptures teach that a child of God can fall away and be lost (Galatians 5:4; Hebrews 4:1, 11; 1 Corinthians 9:24-27)
  • We must finish the race (Hebrews 12:1-2; 2 Timothy 4:7-8) – be faithful until death (Revelation 2:10)

They Say: “Join the Church of Your Choice”

  • This is a popular idea – the thought behind it is that one church is as good as another
  • Jesus only promised to build one church (Matthew 16:18) – He is the Savior of this church (Ephesians 5:23), so we must be part of this body if we wish to be saved
  • How do we become a part of this church? … God adds us when we obey the gospel (Acts 2:37-38, 40-41, 47)
  • We do not join the church of our choice – we must be part of the church of God’s choice

They Say: “Come As You Are”

  • In one sense this might be true – God is willing to accept anyone (Acts 10:34-35)
  • But He does not accept us in our sin (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)
  • If we come to Him, we must put away sin & continually strive to walk in the light (1 John 1:5-7; Romans 6:3-7)

Conclusion

  • How can we be healed of our sickness of sin? … Not by the words of the false prophets/teachers
  • We must “ask for the ancient paths” (Jeremiah 6:16) – the way that God has revealed
  • We can all be saved – but only when we follow God’s instructions and do His will

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