Let me begin by assuring you that I have nothing against discernment ministries and blogs that call out false teachers. Especially when those discernment ministries and blogs balance their critiques with clear Biblical teaching. Elizabeth Prata serves as one of the best examples of Biblical discernment ministry precisely because she emphasizes Scripture and doesn’t write about false teachers unless she has reason. Justin Peters, though famous for exposing false teachers, always maintains his purpose of proclaiming the true Gospel. Other trustworthy discernment leaders include Chris Rosebrough, Steve Kozar, Amy Spreeman and Michelle Lesley.
When people call out false teachers for the purpose of leading others to sound doctrine and therefore pure devotion to the Lord Jesus Christ, it’s a good work they do. So much of the evangelical world falls for deception because they don’t receive solid instruction in the Word of God. Consequently, the need for discernment ministries has mushroomed in recent decades. Young and poorly taught Christians often need to hear the truth about popular teachers on the evangelical landscape.
The Bible commands us to be aware of false teachers to the point of calling them out.
17 Now I urge you, brethren, keep your eye on those who cause dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which you learned, and turn away from them. 18 For such men are slaves, not of our Lord Christ but of their own appetites; and by their smooth and flattering speech they deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting. 19 For the report of your obedience has reached to all; therefore I am rejoicing over you, but I want you to be wise in what is good and innocent in what is evil. ~~Romans 16:17-19 (NASB95)
Having established the necessity of exposing false teachers, I would now like to repeat my conviction that discernment ministry is so much more than simply naming names. I’ve been approaching this discernment blog by emphasizing good doctrine that should help you recognize false teaching when you hear it. For example, when you hear Beth Moore claim that Jesus took her on a date to the zoo, you should be equipped to know why her claim diminishes the Lord and contradicts Scripture. A good foundation in God’s Word gives discernment regarding teachings that float through evangelical circles.
To be truthful, since I’ve taken this approach to discernment blogging, I haven’t really kept up on the latest false teachers. Nor do I want to keep up with them. Doing so reminds me of playing Whack A Mole — just as I get one nailed down, two more pop up. Researching them can consume quite a chunk of time, and my physical condition has placed limits on the time I have to conduct such research. Others have more time, energy and patience for this kind of work, and I gladly leave it in their capable hands. I might not have whacked my last mole, but I definitely can’t wield that mallet as frequently as I once did.
Hopefully I serve as a complement to discernment bloggers who remain in the Whack A Mole trenches. I miss the comradeship of being in the trenches with them. and I miss having a popular blog (controversy and exposure of false teachers is a sure way to bump up my stats). But I believe supplementing their work of calling out false teachers with articles that focus on Scripture can help women cultivate a fuller type of discernment. And isn’t that what God wants?