While in theological school, more then two decades ago, one of my favorite subjects was systematic theology. I always enjoyed wrapping my mind and heart around complex theological issues and apply them to the ministry. My favorite professor at the time was Dr. Luis Pantoja (many of my Filipino friends will recognize his name, as later in life, he was senior pastor of Greenhills Christian Fellowship in the Philippines). Luis made theology come alive and I came away with the importance of possessing sound doctrine.
In our modern Christianity we have a tremendous amount of fluff, of plastic Christianity. Many disciples running around to the next “cool” fad within the church. Most disciples are lacking any discernment and depth to understanding biblical theology. Thus you have many in the church incorporating New Age and Eastern Mystical ideas within the Body of Christ without any resistance. Why? Because the church is not of sound doctrine. In fact, the apostle Paul, while mentoring young Timothy, warned of this: “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers…” (see Second Timothy 4:3) Thus the need to be of sound doctrine (note: you can be open to the Holy Spirit and the miracles of God while still being of sound doctrine). Because so many are of unsound doctrine; everything under the sun has been introduced (and accepted) to the church without any discernment being put into action.
For example, in a recent exorcism in Vancouver, British Columbia, I encountered a demon named “Heresy.” The demon boasted to me how the ancestors were undiscerning and not of sound doctrine thus their acceptance of demonic practices and beliefs such as nature worship. Because the church lacked sound doctrine, demons stepped in and took advantage of the spiritual vacuum. Thus the need to be of sound doctrine. A good place to start? Begin with the essentials. Know your faith and be able prove it in the Scriptures. Namely the essentials: the Triune nature of God, the work and person of Christ (and knowing WHO you are IN HIM), justification of faith in Christ, and the trustworthiness of the Holy Scriptures. Be of sound doctrine and devil proof your life!