The purpose of doctrine is to lead hearers towards Christ-likeness
“If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness, he is conceited and understands nothing; …….” ~1 Timothy 6:3-4
Paul warns Timothy of ministers who are prone to raising controversies, causing disunity and gathering followers after themselves. Such advocate the practice of Christianity as a means to fulfill their worldly desires.
By agreeing with sounds words, doctrine must espouse the virtues and Jesus Christ’s manner of life – His purity, His sacrificial love for humanity and His unyielding obedience to God.
It also follows that the purpose of doctrine is to lead hearers towards Christ-likeness or godliness. Any doctrine that diminishes the importance of sanctification towards Christ-likeness is considered a different doctrine. And any branch of teaching (e.g. prayer, worship) that stands apart from the pursuit of godliness is considered a suspect.
In some circles, prayer is presented as a means through which one fulfills his fleshly desires. The apostle James warns against soulish prayers, “You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.” James 4:3.
Jesus teaches concerning the purpose of prayer is to facilitate God’s will to be done on earth as it is predetermined in heaven (see Matthew 6:9-13).