“Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment. 2For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well.” James 3:1
Throughout the Bible there are specific prohibitions or commentary on certain gifts. These are often said in passing and they often are missed if the Bibe reader doesn’t stop to ponder them. Although Christians are delivered from the power of sins and the power of the world, human nature is still affected by the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Humans love having “knowledge,” being seen as “wise,” and “wiser than.” There is good and bad in this. It is good to seek to help those who do not know. But there are pitfalls along the way.
One pitfall is that a teacher might not know all he should know. There is no sin in being ignorant of certain things…except when the ignorance cannot be admitted. Consider the many preachers in many denominations who have never healed anyone yet who speak with authority as if they know all about healing. Should one who has never healed declare why people are not healed? Perhaps not.
Pride of mind, pride of denomination, the desire to be respected, the fear of mockery, lack of spiritual insight, and countless other issues can affect a teacher and cause teachers to fail miserably. Peter wrote, “…regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, 16as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction.” 2 Peter 3:16
Mark records in his gospel, “24Jesus replied [to the Pharisees], “Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God? 25When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven. 26Now about the dead rising—have you not read in the Book of Moses, in the account of the burning bush, how God said to him, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’ ? 27He is not the God of the dead, but of the living. You are badly mistaken!” Mark 12:24-27
In the case of the Pharisees, their errors were based on tradition.
In John 3: 9, John writes, “Nicodemus answered and said to him, “How can these things be?” 10Yeshua answered and said to him: “You are the Teacher of Israel and you do not know these things?”
Nicodemus was praised and named “The Teacher of Israel” and yet, Jesus challenged him. If an old venerable and lauded Teacher could be ignorant of “the basics,” and if an entire sect/denomination of a religion could be wrong, Christians must always be aware and on their guard against being deceived by and accidentally deceiving each other.