One of the great things about social media I appreciate is the platform it provides to discover new authors and books. I enjoy reading people’s quotes, recommendations and what they are learning. However, biblical discipleship requires that we steward our knowledge/learning and be vigilant about the teachers we sit under. How many times do you research the author recommended to make sure they consistently speak from a position of orthodoxy? What is their teaching on critical issues of concern in the Church today? I have seen many led astray because they did not exercise diligence in scrutinizing an author and his/her work. Just because someone is published, academically acclaimed and/or has a platform does not mean they are representing truth or the heart of the gospel.
Be responsible and evaluate a teacher’s work. Scripture tells us they are held to a higher level of accountability because of their position. I have talked with people who regularly engage with authors who are doctrinally compromised and rationalize it with “I just eat the straw and spit out the sticks.” Yet, scripture tells us that when it comes to false teachers, we are not to even go up to the trough.
No, I am not advocating a closed-minded approach to education that embraces judgmental censorship. I realize we must become aware of differing perspectives to be informed in our apologetic or to be aware of the culture. But ask yourself, “Is my intent to learn or to be informed?” Be aware of your end goal and proceed with caution and accountability. We should never think that we can’t be led astray. That is the epitome of intellectual arrogance and pride. You have a limited amount of time to learn. Invest it wisely.