When the Past is never Really Past
Heresies seem to be the norm in history. And according to John’s writings old errors and deceptions are recycled into ‘new’ heresies. That is why he told his readers to ‘test he spirits’ as there would be false teachers. Paul also counselled believers to ‘test all things’ and not be gullible, falling prey to old heresies that were dressed up as new truth. Jesus warned of powerful deceptions that would test the ‘very elect.’ But he also provided a guide that could be used to determine whether some idea was true or heretical.
During Jesus’ ministry there were many sectarian groups, and one with considerable influence was the ‘Yahad’ of the Qumran community. In the writings of Jesus and his disciples we are given many examples that directly contradict the heresies that this sect of Judaism were teaching in the first century. Learn more about these heresies in history and their effect on modern Christianity. What was old is new.