Beware of Modern-Day Gnostics

Gnostics were a problem in the early church and they're a problem today as well.

In the early church, the Gnostics were a problem. 

Their beliefs varied because they each created god in their own image, but they all considered their beliefs superior to the apostles teaching. 
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“Progressive Christians” or “ex-vangelicals” would be our modern Gnostics because they’ve also created a Jesus in their image, a Jesus who fits in with the culture. 

Like ancient Gnostics, ex-vangelicals' beliefs are varied, but they’re united in denying biblical authority and trusting in man-made philosophies.

It’s easy for us to recognize these modern-day Gnostics, but harder for us to realize ways in which we Christians can also manipulate the image of God to make the gospel more palatable to our ungodly culture:

✔ We’ve tried to make Jesus non-judgmental because culture hates judgment. But Jesus clearly judges sin and commands us to do the same. See Shame Leads to Grace for a fuller explanation.

✔ We’ve tried to make Him non-confrontational because confrontation makes us unpopular. But Jesus not only judged sin, He confronted sinners and commands us to do the same. See Jesus Confronted Sin for some of the many examples.

✔ We’ve tried make to Him popular because we don’t like persecution. But Jesus guaranteed that His true followers would be as unpopular as He is. See Never Popular, Always Wonderful for more insights.

So let’s address and correct gnostic teachings in culture. And let’s correct our own gnostic thinking. 

“See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:8).


Creating God in our image:
To read more about this problem, see One of the Most Arrogant One-Liners Ever Uttered by Man and Pot or Potter?  For more examples, see the BLN collection Christian, Beware. I also recommend this series: The Fake Jesus versus the Real Jesus.

Being confrontational: 
You might enjoy reading Can We Convince People of Their Sins? 

Notes on Gnosticism: 
“The definition of the word Gnostic is about as easy to nail down as a flopping fish.” Got Questions  

If you read about progressive Christians, you'll find that their beliefs vary as well, but they have unity in some things. See Wilderness Wanderers which identifies seven areas where most progressive Christians agree.

Chapter 2 [of Colossians] addresses various false teachings which threatened the Colossian believers. These include a reliance on human, worldly-based philosophy (Colossians 2:1–10), Jewish legalism (Colossians 2:11–17), mysticism (Colossians 2:18–19), and ascetic living (Colossians 2:20–23). These ideas are all consistent with a philosophy known as Gnosticism, one of the earlier heresies troubling the church.” BibleRef

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Gnostics were a problem in the early church and they're a problem today as well.

Bible Love Notes

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