Galatians 1:8,9 is a pretty strong statement regarding how important it is that we not be led away by false doctrine. "though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel….let him be accursed" (v8). And then "if any other man preach any other gospel unto you…let him be accursed".
I had thought it was to be careful of looking beyond the basic truths and wandering off into "twinkies" or tangents. Frank, my husband, suggested that it could mean be careful of following personal interpretations. Either way, we need to be careful to not lose sight of the basic truths of the gospel.
Occasionally , people get caught up in trendy "other gospel" philosophies that start out as reasonable activities or concerns, but then the activity takes over the principle and suddenly, one has veered off the main course. Some examples of this might be: Getting caught up in "survivalist" food storage fanatacism, Politics--trying to convince others that one party or another is the party that is the most righteous. Some people are all about returning to Jackson County to await the second coming of the Savior, and miss the mark of serving and preparing in their own ward. Years ago, there were those who held on to Polygamy, rather than follow living prophets and current revelation. When we visited Independence, MO a couple summers ago, we visited with an "apostle" of the Church of Christ--Temple Lot. Frank and I both are pretty sure he was there many years ago, giving the same spiel. Their church has hung onto the concept of "we own the site for the temple in Independence" and they are kind of stuck in that mode. And the Community of Christ (formerly RLDS) got hung up on lineage authority, rather than actual priesthood authority and keys held by all of the twelve at the time of Joseph's death. Frank and I had quite a fascinating discussion as we considered all the possibilities.
The litmus test: if it is good, it comes from God, if it is evil, it comes from the devil. Satan will always fight against God, and godly things. God wants us to do good, enticeth--"to lead on by exciting hope" (Dictionary.com)--us to do good. (Moroni 7:12,13)
Somehow, we tend to get caught up in the teachings of men because at the moment it might seem more interesting, more "in the moment". This isn't an exact comparison, but I remember a seminary teacher that lived in our ward said that he once asked his students "who would like to know what is in the sealed portion of the Book of Mormon? All of the hands went up. Then he pointed out that we have the unsealed portion. How many are reading that daily, with the same level of excitement? A few less hands. Kind of typical, I suppose. We are drawn to the mysterious. Sometimes the teachings of men might appear to be easier to follow, less demanding, less "endure to the end"-ish.
Paul refers to Peter, James, and John as pillars--Peter had already been referred to as a "rock". D&C 107 says that the First Presidency are "upheld by the confidence, faith, and prayer of the church…".
Justification to me means that as I am presented to the Father, the Savior is there as my advocate and if I have done my best to keep the commandments and repent each day and try to do better, He makes up the difference and makes me whole and gives me the extra "umph" that I need. He justifies to the Father that I deserve eternal blessings, he fills in the gaps. This applies in my life in that I need to allow for the fact that the Savior is doing the same for others and I need not judge or be critical or unforgiving.
Also, I need to be forgiving of myself, and accept the reality of the atonement in my life--whatever my struggles happen to be that day. I need to allow partake of the Savior's grace each day and not become overwhelmed or discouraged.