Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
We are not only to abstain from evil acts, but also to expose them and remove ourselves from associating with those who practice them: however, we are not to speak of such things beyond what is practically necessary for spiritual purposes (Ephesians 5:11).
For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.
Notice the following:
We were once in darkness, devoid of the knowledge of God and under the power of Satan, blind guides of the blind and evil, unrighteous liars condemned by a holy God.
Now, as children of light, we are to walk in the light: it is our obedience to the momentary leading of the Holly Spirit that proves us.
Therefore, we are come apart from all superfluity of naughtiness
It’s amazing how many Christians think it is okay to entertain and uphold spiritual beliefs, which they openly admit are not rooted in scripture.
They seem to adhere to the notion that it is good to be ‘open-minded’ [to open ourselves up to and entertain outside influences].
Yet, God teaches us otherwise:
We are to search for God in His words [for by them, He reveals Himself to us]: “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me,” (John 5:39). This is how we gain a right perspective upon life: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God,” (Romans 12:2). It is by regular study that we put on the mind of Christ and gain approval from God to teach His words to others: “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth,” (2 Timothy 2:15).
We are to “prove all things, and hold fast to that which is good,” (1 Thessalonians 5:21). We are to test all ideas against what the Bible teaches, agreeing only with God. Notice, even when the Spirit bears witness with us that a teaching given to us by another believer is true, we are still to seek out the confirmation of those truths in our personal study and prayer times through the tutelage of the Holy Spirit alone. Acts 17:11 testifies of this: “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” The Holy Spirit speaking to us through the Bible is our final authority in all matters.
God’s word leads to truth. Self-knowledge leads to deception:
They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: (For the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever:) That he should still live for ever, and not see corruption. For he seeth that wise men die, likewise the fool and the brutish person perish, and leave their wealth to others. Their inward thought [is, that] their houses shall continue for ever, and their dwelling places to all generations; they call their lands after their own names.