Resolved to avoid made-up teachings and not share them as if they came directly from my Lord.
“But in vain do they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the precepts of men.” Mark 7:7
“You can’t go out to eat on Sunday!” I remember this being taught one time at a conference that I attended. The man who was sharing this was pretty serious. You could see it in the fact that his face got really red with anger. I just remember thinking about the many times I had gone out to eat on Sunday. I was in a quandary. I had not only eaten out on Sunday, but I never even felt bad about it.
I realize that oftentimes people have certain traditions that have somehow risen to the level of God’s Word. In fact, if you have ever heard someone say, “That’s the way it is done, that is the way we have always done and believed.” They are in great danger of teaching a custom as a doctrine of God.
I once read the story of John Wesley as told to children, to my children. I was shocked to discover that John Wesley almost chose not to hold open-air preaching campaigns, based upon the tradition that church could only be held inside a building. George Whitefield encouraged John Wesley with his success experienced when preaching outside to people who were not typically welcomed in church. John Wesley and some of his closest accountability partners were split over the issue. Some believed it would be a sin to preach outside. Others believed God was using the opportunities. They were split down the middle on the issue and so they decided to cast lots. The lots fell on the side of preaching outside. John Wesley did, and the move of God was overwhelming.
Again, there were some who had elevated a teaching of man that said only preaching inside a church building was of God. Incidentally, Jesus, Peter and Paul preached outside. In Mark’s Gospel, Jesus stood against many made-up teachings and would not allow them to sideline Him or His followers from true worship.
As a disciple of Jesus, we must make sure that we are not holding to a set of man-made doctrines and trying to blame God for them. We also must not put an extra burden upon people using God’s Name. This kind of living cripples others and hinders true worship before the Lord. Be resolved to avoid made-up teachings and make sure you don’t share them as if they came from the Lord Himself. Disciple’s Task: Is there anything you have elevated as a teaching or tradition that is made-up? Spend some time asking the Lord to forgive you for thinking or sharing falsely.