There have been many times in the past when I've shared something that blessed me which I heard from someone (maybe this truth was from one of my elders I look up to, or a brother in the church, or someone in ministry), and I shared it with Christians whom I know, and the response I've heard back from them was, "You have to be careful.  You should follow Jesus, not any man."

I respect the desire to be careful.  There are constant exhortations in the New Testament to beware of false teachers.  We must test everything with Scripture, no matter who it is that we're hearing it from (1 Thess 5:21).  It's extremely dangerous to be listening to a false teacher - we should flee anyone who is not teaching according to the Bible, and also any teacher who is not living according to it!

But there's another extreme in addition to following false teachers, which is just as dangerous, and even more prevalent.  And that's to have NO teachers.

In a sense, intentionally choosing to have no teachers may be even more dangerous than listening to false teachers, because the temptation for pride is there with thoughts like, "I follow the Lord alone, I don't need anyone, I can figure everything out myself".  And it's a fearful thing to know that God Himself resists all proud people who don't want to listen to anybody:

1 Peter 5:5 "Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for 'God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.'"

Even Paul exhorted the Corinthians to follow him (1 Cor 11:1).  It's an absolutely false humility to say we don't need anybody, when Scripture itself says that God gave apostles, prophets, and teachers to build us up (Eph 4:11-13).  If someone falls into deception because of a false teacher - that false teacher will share in their guilt on the last day, and their blood will also be on his hands.  But if someone is living in pride and won't listen to anybody, they will not become Christ-like, they'll continue in their sin, and their guilt is not shared with anybody - it's all their own!

Hosea 4:6 "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge"

Jesus said, "Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.  You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they?  So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. (Matthew 7:15-17).

NOT ONLY did Jesus say, beware of bad trees which bear bad fruit, but He talked about good trees which bear good fruit!  If the bad trees are false prophets and teachers then the good trees are godly prophets and teachers.

It's so sad that many Christians today miss out on good fruit because they think, "I'm not falling for any of these bad trees.  I DON'T NEED ANY TREE."  And since they don't want to submit to anybody, they don't get any good fruit.  They starve because they refuse to eat anything.  They remain spiritually stagnant year after year, with no connection with God, bitter, complaining, in slavery to bad attitudes, yelling at their spouses, looking down on others, absolutely empty of the joy of the Lord.  This is because they didn't want to have godly authority in their life (Hebrews 13:17).

That kind of life is not God's will.  If you want to bear good fruit in your life, beware of bad trees, but then go and find a good tree – godly people to listen and submit to who can help teach and lead you, who have proven their walk with God and borne fruit in their life, so that you can have the same outcome.

Hebrews 13:7 "Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith"