Many things combine to make the present inroad of false doctrine peculiarly dangerous. There is an undeniable zeal in some of the teachers of error: their ‘earnestness’ (to use an unhappy cant phrase) makes many think they must be right. There is a great appearance of learning and theological knowledge: many fancy that such clever and intellectual men must surely be safe guides. There is a general tendency to free thought and free inquiry in these latter days: many like to prove their independence of judgment by believing novelties. There is a widespread desire to appear charitable and liberal-minded: many seem half ashamed of saying that anybody can be in the wrong. There is a quantity of half-truth taught by the modern false teachers: they are incessantly using Scriptural terms and phrases in an unscriptural sense. There is a morbid craving in the public mind for a more sensuous, ceremonial, sensational, showy worship: men are impatient of inward, invisible heart-work. There is a silly readiness in every direction to believe everybody who talks cleverly, lovingly, and earnestly, and a determination to forget that Satan is often ‘transformed into an angel of light’ (2 Cor. 11:14). There is a widespread ‘gullibility’ among professing Christians: every heretic who tells his story plausibly is sure to be believed, and everybody who doubts him is called a persecutor and a narrow-minded man. All these things are peculiar symptoms of our times. I defy any observing man to deny them. They tend to make the assaults of false doctrine in our day peculiarly dangerous. They make it more than ever needful to cry aloud, ‘Be not carried about.’Want to watch a video that will atound you regarding how superior the Bible is to any other "holy book"? Watch the Cosmic Code.
Does any one ask me, ‘What is the best safeguard against false doctrine?’ I answer in one word, ‘The Bible: the Bible regularly read, regularly prayed over, regularly studied.’ We must go back to the old prescription of our Master: ‘Search the Scriptures’ (John 5:39). If we want a weapon to wield against the devices of Satan, there is nothing like ‘the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God.’ But to wield it successfully, we must read it habitually, diligently, intelligently, and prayerfully. This is a point on which, I fear, many fail. In an age of hurry and bustle, few read their Bibles as much as they should. More books perhaps are read than ever, but less of the one Book which makes man wise unto salvation. Rome and neology could never have made such havoc in the church in the last fifty years if there had not been a most superficial knowledge of the Scriptures throughout the land. A Bible-reading laity is the strength of a church….
If we would not be carried about by ‘diverse and strange doctrines,’ we must remember the words of our Lord Jesus Christ: ‘Search the Scriptures.’ Ignorance of the Bible is the root of all error. Knowledge of the Bible is the best antidote against modern heresies.
J.C. Ryle, Warnings to the Churches, (Banner of Truth Trust: 2007), 77–79.