Can you tell truth from error?
As ugly as that picture is, John calls the church to “test” the spirits…to analyze them for the purpose of determining whether they are from God or not. This call to discriminate is an act of discernment within the church…and it suggests that there are wrong turns, wrong directions, wrong ideas that can infiltrate church ministries.
Last Sunday I suggested reasons why even Evangelicals shy away from discernment in the church today and offered reasons why discernment is important to everything we are.
This coming Sunday we will walk through the passage piece by piece as John details what discernment in the church should look like…
He issues a command to discern (1a)
He gives a rationale for discernment (1b)
He gives criteria for discernment (2-3)
He suggests the perspective for effective discerning (4-6)
See you Sunday! 1 John 4:1-6