Show Me Your Doctrine

Is right doctrine more a matter of what you say you believe or what you show you believe?

If you read the book of Titus (and the book of James for that matter), I think you’ll find that right doctrine revealed in our lives is less about the knowledge we spout off and more about the evidence of faith worked out in our lives through an authentic journey with Jesus. I’m not saying that good works is the means of salvation, or that moral behavior is the key to unlocking justification in our lives. We are saved by grace through faith; it is a gift of God, so that no man can boast. But the mark of a life that is growing more in tune with right doctrine is growth in Christ-like character and integrity.

As Paul was addressing Titus and informing his leadership concerning the issue of “empty talkers and deceivers” in the church at Crete, this is what he said:

They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. They are detestable, disobedient, unfit for any good work. But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine.[1]

Paul goes on to address what “sound doctrine” looks like in the lives of older men, older women, younger women, younger men, and Titus himself. He does this by listing character traits that are in keeping with right theology. Apparently, when your view of God grows more accurate, your life begins to show it. Could this be what Peter was talking about in the first chapter of his letter to the churches?

As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”[2]

Perhaps this is what Jesus was getting at with his oft-quoted phrases referring to knowing people by the “fruit” in their lives.

As we submit our lives to Scripture, our integrity will grow. As we get to know Jesus, and as we grow closer to God, what we say and what we show will line up more closely.

Indeed:

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.[3]

A church made up of people who are longer on showing than they are on saying will be a welcome sight to a watching world.

[1] Titus 1:16-2:1, ESV

[2] 1 Peter 1:14-16, ESV

[3] 2 Timothy 3:16-17, ESV

About Pastor Andrew

Follower of Jesus, Husband to Carissa, Daddy to four daughters, Lead Pastor at LifePoint Church in Vancouver, WA.
This entry was posted in 1 Peter, 2theSource, Discipleship and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Show Me Your Doctrine

  1. Brent Kimball says:

    A sound blog on sound doctrine. Yes, it is as our view of God grows more accurate that we grow more accurate. I sure appreciate the content that you bring to the church and those who lead the church.

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