November 19 Test the Words by the Word

Scripture Reading: Galatians 1:11–24

Key Verse: 1 John 4:1

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

Don’t believe everything you read” is just commonsense good advice.

It is always wise to read with a wary eye and try to verify facts before you repeat them. The same is true about spiritual information. Scripture warns us to “test the spirits” (1 John 4:1) to make sure that what we are hearing or reading squares with God’s Word.

The people of the Galatian church had similar concerns about the accuracy of the information they were receiving. Some even doubted Paul’s authority to be a teacher. That was why Paul spent so much time defending his authority as an apostle. In other words, Paul furnished them with the basis for his knowledge: “For I would have you know, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ” (Gal. 1:11–12 nasb).

Paul had a one-on-one encounter with the Messiah on the road to Damascus and then spent several years in careful study of God’s Word. If the words he spoke were his own or supported by a self-generated philosophy, then Paul’s ministry would have been groundless and false.

Make it a personal habit to test the words you hear against the infallible, inerrant Word.

Master, give me the wisdom to test everything I hear against Your infallible, inerrant Word. Let Your Word be the plumb line against which I measure all other voices.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 338). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

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