‘For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.’ 2 Timothy 4:3
When we only want to suit our own desires, says today’s Bible verse, we will no longer put up with the truth, but we will gather teachers around us, who will condone our own cravings.
Paul told Timothy that the time would come, but we know for sure that we live in such times. We, modern people, do not ask anymore if someone is a servant of God, but if he suits us. We want to satisfy our own desires. We are loaded with knowledge, but it has only puffed us up; it does not determine our daily life anymore. If someone would really speak words of God, a gag order surely would be imposed. ‘Tell us pleasant things.’ This is the harsh reality.
The sound doctrine of the Bible is that ‘there is no one who does good, their throats are open graves; the poison of vipers is on their lips, ruin and misery mark their ways’ (Romans 3:13-16). To whom will the message - that we must be born again - still be powerful, if we conveniently suppose that every person has the Spirit of God? How can we ever be prepared to be truly crucified to our self-centeredness, if we conveniently suppose that we all ‘inherit’ being crucified with Christ?
Therefore… a day will come for everyone who will not put up with sound doctrine. A day, when the stone that was meant to be the cornerstone, will turn untrustworthy and will crack and collapse, and crush all who suited their own desires and wanted pleasant words, instead of loving the truth!
This is no threat, but an urgent, yet loving warning for us on whom the culmination of the ages has come.