“. . . how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you in public and from house to house, testifying both to Jews and to Greeks of repentance toward God and of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. (Acts 20:20-21)

In his farewell address to the elders of the Church at Ephesus the apostle Paul stated that he had always preached the word of God for it was true as well as helpful and edifying to all. He commended this same gospel to those elders. And to us, for the message of the gospel of repentance and faith in Jesus Paul preached has never changed, nor should it. It is the Word of God which should not be compromised or watered down to suit cultural trends or public opinion. 

Yet that is what has been happening in America these days, and throughout the world. Pastors and churches have compromised the Word of God so as not to hurt the feelings and egos of sinful people. They have compromised the gospel in order to keep in sync with current social trends and mores. And this despite the fact that Pastors are shepherds whom God has entrusted with the duty of leading and guiding His people. As Paul indicates, perhaps the greatest and most arduous of the tasks of the shepherd is to guard and protect the sheep from wolves and predators, false teachers as well as legalists and charlatans out to fleece the flock for money, popularity, power, and ego. Such false teachers will arise from within as well as from outside of the church in order to devastate Christ’s flock by distorting the truth. These wolves will lull sinners into a false sense of security, comfortable in their sins with no need to repent. They will lead them straight to hell. 

To avoid false churches and pastors proclaiming watered down teaching masquerading as the Word of God, God’s people must devote themselves to study the scriptures so they may discern false doctrines and false teachers and oppose them openly. And as we do so, we should not be surprised that when we take a firm stand for the truth of God’s word, other people hate and despise us and try to silence us. But God’s power in His Word will prevail.