“For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no great thing if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their destiny will be according to their works” (2 Corinthians 11:13-15 HCSB)
Another identifying mark of false teachers (like those who had infiltrated the first-century church at Corinth) is this: false teachers often do not recognize the Bible as the final and authoritative standard for belief and practice.
For example, some groups assert to have “another” Gospel of Jesus Christ. Others believe their interpretation of the Bible is as important as the Bible itself. Then there are those claim to have a new revelation to add to God’s Word. How do we know if these viewpoints are correct? Well, to answer this question, it helps to be clear on what the Bible says about itself.
The New Testament book of 2 Timothy tells us that all Scripture is inspired by God (see 2 Timothy 3:16) and is therefore free from errors or mistakes as originally written. Furthermore, we’re told that the Bible’s human authors spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:20-21). We can illustrate this process by considering the image of a sailboat on a lake.
Just as a sailboat is moved by the wind that fills it’s sails, the Biblical writers were carried along by the Holy Spirit so they went exactly where He wanted them to go in their Biblical works. For this reason, the Bible claims to be authoritative (Exodus 4:30, 1 Thessalonians 2:13), eternal (Psalm 119:89, Matthew 24:35), and true (Psalm 119:142, John 17:17). This faith has been delivered once for all (Jude 1:3) and cannot be supplemented today.
We also have the word of Jesus Himself regarding the Scriptures. Jesus taught that the Scriptures were the command of God (Matthew 15:3-4), contained no mistakes (Luke 16:17), were reliable (Matthew 26:54), and could not be broken (John 10:35). Jesus also promised that the Holy Spirit would guide His disciples into all truth and remind them of the things He said and did (John 14:26, 15:26-27). This explains why Paul the Apostle (1 Corinthians 14:37) and the Apostle Peter (speaking of Paul in 2 Peter 3:15-16) can refer to the God-inspired nature of their Biblical letters.
As God, Jesus should be recognized as the final authority on this subject. While other spiritual writings may have value, (1) they cannot replace the Biblical Scriptures as the final and authoritative source for doctrine and practice.
(1) Assuming they reflect sound Biblical doctrine.