The Testing Of Things
The apostle Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians 5:21 “Test all things; hold fast what is good.” The Christian’s daily walk should be a walk where “testing” is continually done. We find in scripture where God tests man “But as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts” (1 Thessalonians 2:4). In addition, man is to test himself; “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?-- unless indeed you are disqualified” (2 Corinthians 13:5). God tests our hearts to know if we are in fact loyal to Him (Matthew 6:33; Colossians 3:1-2). We are to continually test ourselves to ensure that we are in “the faith.”
What Is To Be Tested?
We have learned from 1 Thessalonians 2:4 that our hearts are to be tested because God certainly does. But what else can we learn that should be “tested” in our Christian walk? In 1 John 4:1 it says: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” This certainly is good advice for all of us. Test the teachings of man to make sure that those things being taught are in fact from God’s Holy inspired Word and not something that man has made up on his own. Our faith is tested on a daily basis. How should we respond when our faith is tested? With JOY! Why? Because it produces endurance within us when we overcome. Each and every test of faith that we confront and overcome, we become a much stronger Christian (James 1:2-4). Our works must also stand the test before God. Paul wrote: “each one's work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is” (1 Corinthians 3:13) and “But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another” (Galatians 6:4). How does our work stand up for Christ?
One thing that is for sure, it will be tested on the day of judgment and each one of us will give an account of our deeds, good or bad (2 Corinthians 5:10).
Why Test Things
As stated in our opening scripture, things should be tested so that we will know whether those things are good or evil. We want to hold fast to those that are good and discard the evil. Another reason we should test all things is to make sure that we do not become deceived. In 1 John 4:1-6 it says: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world. You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. They are of the world. Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them. We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.” The Bible tells us plainly why we should test things. It is only through our testing of things that we can be glorified. Peter writes: “that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” Let’s make sure that we test all things to ensure that we are doing ALL to the glory of God!
By What Are Things Tested?
Before you and I can test something we must first know what the standard is that we should test these things by. The Word of God is THE standard in which all things must be tested by (2 Timothy 2:15; 3:15-16). Human standards do not cut it. After all, who will we be judged by in eternity? The answer is GOD not man! Paul wrote: “For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise” (2 Corinthians 10:12). The wise thing to do is to “Test all things; hold fast what is good,” because our eternal destiny depends upon it!