The word doctrine means "instruction" or "teaching." It refers either to that which is taught or to the act of teaching. The doctrine of Christ is central and essential to our salvation and fellowship with God and with God's people. Jesus said, in John 7:16, "My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me." Only those who hear Jesus' words and do them are building upon the rock. Matthew 7:21-27.
Jesus committed His doctrine to His apostles, and the Holy Spirit guided them unto all truth. John 14:26. Obedience from the heart to the doctrine of Christ is our only escape from sin. Romans 6:16-18. The early church was steadfast in the apostles' doctrine. Acts 2:42. Anyone who would cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine of Christ was to be marked and avoided. Romans 16:17.
Why is it, then, that many religious teachers today blaspheme the doctrine of Christ by saying such things as, "Christians are Christians because faith in Jesus has brought them his new life. It is faith and not doctrinal agreement which makes us brothers." (Illustrated Bible Handbook, Lawrence O. Richards, p. 642). This attitude perpetuates denominationalism.
Dear friends, it is exactly upon the doctrine of Jesus Christ and His apostles that faith is established and maintained! Romans 10:17. "Can two walk together except they be agreed?" Amos 3:3. Many today will not endure sound doctrine. Whoever transgresses and abides not in the doctrine of Christ, has not God! 2 John 9-11.
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