From the beginning of time, God has been revealing His will to man through His spoken Word. Evidently man is susceptible to the lies of the devil and failed to remain in obedience to what God had said. Nevertheless, God determined to destroy all the works of the devil including its deceptions. Therefore, God commanded His prophets to put His Word in writing. As a result, the Scripture, the written Word of God, the Bible, has become the infallible Word of God.
God articulated Himself in His written Word. It is necessary for Him to put in writing the works of His hands, His wisdom, His principles, His plans and purposes, His dealings with man and His ways. The Scripture, the written Word of God is the revelation of God, the revelation of His kingdom, the revelation of the Church, and of the Everlasting Life.
The devil has been lying since the beginning. Obviously in this present age, the deceptions from false teachers and false prophets are not new. False prophets and false teachers will not come to you wearing a big sign on their forehead that reads: LIARS. They will suit up just like a regular and typical pastor of a local church, or a devoted missionary worker, or an outstanding teacher, or a faithful church worker, or an explosive preacher, and so forth. They have to keep their cover as an angel of light to complete their goal, and that is to deceive the Body of Christ.
They act and talk almost like a normal Christian. However, they were influenced by the foul spirit. They have no hesitation to tell you that God has been speaking to them regarding anything under the sun. And they will boldly declare any futuristic events that may or may not materialize either. But they have all the explanations in their arsenal.
A believer who is not established in the Scripture, the written Word of God, is an easy target. A believer who is not founded on the Scripture has no clue or has no idea what is in the Scripture. He has no foundation of the basic doctrine of Christ and of basic doctrine of man, and of the Church. And how do we protect the Body of Christ from being deceived by this foul spirit? Praise God that the Apostle Paul has the answer!
During the Apostle Paul’s time, deceptions were rampant just as in our present time. The Holy Spirit through Paul has declared that the Scripture, the written Word of God, is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness.
The Scripture is the only existing and infallible standard of the whole Counsel of God wherein the Body of Christ has to adhere to. Any declaration claiming to be from God, but not written in the Scripture is false and erroneous. All unscriptural claims have no authority in the face of God’s creation. Any claim that is not supported by the Scripture is just a claim made by an ordinary man. It has no foundation of authority. It is bogus. Only a deceived may follow suit.
The Scripture is profitable for doctrine. It means that no man shall create any doctrine at all. The Word of God has the existing doctrine already set for the Body of Christ, and it is written in the scripture, the Bible. You don’t need to create new stuff. You only have to draw from the Scripture what God has already set for us since eternity. God’s doctrine is already there even before the beginning of time. And it is profitable. It is profitable because it yields increase and gives advantageous return. God’s doctrine is beneficial to those who follow and heed to God’s principles of the Scripture.
You see, doctrine shall not be a designed by man. It shall not be man-made. Any doctrine that comes from man will surely fail, and it shall not profit those who follow it. It is true that you can sincerely believe at a doctrine, but if it is not from the Scripture you will fail and be a failure at the end. The amazing truth about the doctrine from the Word of God, the Scripture, is always profitable.
It is profitable in the sense that a believer has the evidence of spiritual growth. There is prosperity in his life because it begins from the inside out (3 John 2).
The Scripture is profitable for reproof. Dictionary defines reproof as criticism for a fault or rebuke. The Bible is written for us for doing this job. Only the Scripture has the authority to rebuke or criticize those who are in need of reproof. No one has the authority to criticize or rebuke you outside of the Scripture. And you cannot be criticized or rebuked by anyone based on his/her personal standard. The truth is no one has the authority to rebuke anyone outside of the written Word of God.
Reproof can only be profitable if the subject acknowledge the responsibility and accepts the criticism or rebuke with a right attitude. Otherwise, he may hold his grudge against the person whom the Spirit of the Lord has used.
It is sad that some people enjoy rebuking others, even criticizing those who are not at fault, just because they don’t measure up to their likes and dislikes. You don’t measure someone’s behavior or attitude according to your likes and dislikes. Again, only the Word of God is the measure of standard of our attitude, behavior, and spirituality.
It is the Scripture that rebukes the error not you. Therefore, do not use the word of a dead philosopher, or the word of the bestselling author of a self help book to reproof someone. Use the Scripture instead. When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, He used the written Word of God to resist, refute, and to overcome Satan. Jesus said, “It is written …” repeatedly three times. And the devil left Him alone.
The Scripture is profitable for correction. The Scripture will put you back in the right tract if you get lost along the pathways of faith. If you are misguided, for whatever reason, the Scripture is there to guide you into all truth. The Scripture is our guide. The Scripture is our light. The Scripture is the standard of measure of our faith and of our spiritual temperature.
If you don’t spend quality time with the Scripture, there is a tendency that you will be deceived by the teaching and doctrines that are not according to the Scripture. The teachings and preaching you hear may sound very spiritual, but they may not scriptural. Be warned: A deceived never knows that he was deceived. It takes the hand of God to intervene in the life of a deceived individual to bring him back into the truth. Remember also that God will always use the Scripture to correct someone.
The Scripture is for instruction in righteousness. Righteousness is right standing with God. It is the ability of a believer to stand in the presence of God without guilt, without any sense of sin consciousness. Righteousness is also the legal rights of a believer as a child of God who lives in the kingdom of God.
Only the Scripture has the authority to give such an enormous revelation of the blessedness of a believer in Christ. A believer who mastered the instruction of the Scripture regarding righteousness is a powerhouse in the kingdom of God. He shall not be moved at all.
So the next time you hear someone is talking the talk of God, if it is not according to the Scripture, leave.