interpretations regularly sprout like weeds to compete with accepted
ideas. In our time, this phenomena is considered admirable.
Most scientific discoveries and technological progress have come as
inventors and researchers questioned established notions.
But alternative interpretations can be dangerous.
They erode workable and beneficial applications. The deterioration
of a democracy into a dictatorship is always accompanied by alternative
interpretations. The same is true for Christianity.
Alternative interpretations often break the unity with the group to whom
they are introduced.
The early Christians called alternative interpretations
heresies. To them, heresies were not refreshing ways of
viewing religious concepts, but paths that led from Jesus and the good
news contained in his gospel. Numerous heretics presented
themselves as Christian teachers and competed with the church for
converts. From the time of the apostles to the emergence of the
Roman Papacy, heresies regular assaulted Christianity.
The Christians developed an innovative way to detect
heresies and disarm heretics. Its usefulness was effective in
protecting the church from false ideas. It also helped to rescue
Christians from errant tenets.
The prescription against heresy that the early Christians
developed has use applications today. Alternative interpretations
regularly assault Christianity and attract Christians from the Savior's
gospel. We can find great benefit in understanding and applying
the ancient prescription. It not only detects heresy, but it
provides an easy rebuttal to the heretic's flowery sophistry.
121 pages divided into 45 concise chapters