Form Without Substance

Q. My question concerns 2 Timothy 3:1-5. It explains the last days and the behavior of those in the world, but I don’t understand verse 5, “having the form of godliness, but denying the power thereof”. To whom does this refer, Christians perhaps, that are not living by the word of God?

A. I think in verse 5 Paul was describing the “form without substance” denominations of today. They deny the supernatural origin of the Bible, they rationalize away the Lord’s miracles, they deny the existence of spiritual gifts, the need to be born again, the validity of prophecy, even the deity of Christ, yet still call themselves Christian. Much of the liberal “church” falls into this category.

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