Read Acts 13:4-12
The way Saul/Paul stands up to a false prophet in this passage is admirable. He wastes no time calling this person out and deeming their teachings false. This is something I struggle with. I’m far more of an observer than a talker, meaning I’d rather be behind the scenes than in front of them.
That may sound funny coming from a pastor, but it’s not all that weird. I’m an introvert, as are a lot of ordained clergy. However, we do still need to recognize the need to put our foot down.
Saul/Paul stands up without hesitation and immediately declares this person’s teaching false. He’s not worried about the consequences, about what his current followers would say, about anything other than the truth and the message he has been called to share.
Sometimes I think that’s a bit harder in how the church is organized today. It’s a sad thing, really. Whether it’s because I’m worried I’ll lose my job/income or because I’m worried that I’ll anger some people enough to leave the church itself…it’s not a good combination.
In some ways, I think the early churches had it far more right than we do. But I also know we can’t go back in time. We can’t reverse this space-time-continuum. At least not yet, the technology will exist eventually, I’m convinced of that. But for now we have the churches and the structure we have.
We need, however, to find a way to be more authentically Christian, where our fears of false teachings aren’t causing us to shut our mouths and say nothing. We have to know what those false teachings are (and no, I don’t think technology is one of those). This is why we go to the scriptures, with questions seeking answers and understanding.