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BROTHER JOE: NAME DROPPING AND MAN PRAISING

May 28, 2009 (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service)

The following is by Pastor Buddy Smith of Malenda, Queensland, Australia <smiletex@bigpond.net.au> —

Brother Joe was one of a kind. He only ever pastored one church. It was the church he started when he moved to a town near us in 1939. He never received a salary from his church. He said he would simply trust God for his needs to be met, and he did, and they were. He never asked for anything, but God heard his prayers and blessed his faith, and he never did without. He taught all the way through the Bible at least three times in a pastorate that lasted more than fifty years. He preached on the radio everyday for all those years and wrote a book that is a classic on raising children. He sent all his children to Bible college, and his son Tim now pastors the church his dad started almost 70 years ago.

One thing about Bro. Joe that puzzled me was the way he would quote preachers or commentators without telling us their names. He would say something like this, “A dear brother in the Lord once wrote…” or he would say, “A godly old commentator once observed this about our text…” I can’t ever remember him telling us who he was quoting. Later on, as I became a bit more familiar with writers and preachers I would stumble across the quotes he used and wonder why he never told us who said them. They were not heretics, nor were they involved in entangling and compromising alliances. They were men like Harry Ironside or A.W. Tozer or Harry Rimmer. But he never told us who he was quoting. Oh, he made it clear that the quotes were not his. He was never guilty of plagiarising. He just didn’t tell us who he quoted.

It was through his wise and discreet use of truth that I learned an important lesson on worship. Bro. Joe avoided name dropping because he sincerely desired for God and God alone to have all the glory. He very carefully and wisely used the truths that fell from the lips and pens of godly men, and he did so in ways that directed the worship of his hearers away from those men and toward God. As the years passed I heard of God’s blessings on Bro. Joe’s ministry, of the people who loved him and asked him to preach in their Bible conferences and churches and colleges, but it wasn’t Bro. Joe who told me about it. He simply had no desire for the praise of men. Certainly, we should thank God for those He uses, and thank them in person, but the crowns can wait till the judgment seat.

The apostle Peter speaks of the wisdom God gave to his dearly beloved brother Paul, so it is obvious that it is not inherently wrong to name preachers that we quote, but Peter avoids heaping upon Paul the lavish praise we hear so often given to mere mortals (2 Peter 3:15-16).  Bro. Joe simply desired that men should praise God and Him alone.

Giving praise to men is a very subtle form of hero worship. God has spoken ever so clearly on the subject of who is worthy to be worshipped. We all swim in a sea of pagan, materialistic, hedonistic, sensual, and rationalistic culture. Our culture genders in us visual, auditory, and olfactory failures. We do not see that we are worshipping idols. We do not hear the warnings of God’s Words, and we are totally unaware that swimming in our culture leaves us smelling like dead fish. Every culture thrives on the praise of men. Name dropping is the name of the game, in the world and in the church. “Dr. Flutesnoot said this,” and, “Rabbi(t) Warren said that,” and “The gospel according to Jack is this…” I attended a conference some time ago in which the main speaker could hardly finish a sentence without dropping the name of some well known Christian leader who is is his friend, or dropping the name of some famous church or college he had preached in. I got the impression that we were all expected to say, “Oh! Do you know him?” and “Wow!, did you get to preach there?” We just love to drop names, don’t we?

Why do we do this? Do we really believe that the gospel of Christ is enhanced by someone who has attained to celebrity status in our stagnant little cultural puddle? Does God need the endorsement of a megachurch guru or a supersalesman soulwinner? Will it count for eternity and for the glory of God that you or I were feted by the ringmaster of the religious circus that he calls a church? Or that you had a 30 second revival meeting with the pastor who jumped a Sunday School bus over a dozen tricycles? All our glorying in man is idolatrous and an abomination in the sight of God. It doesn’t really matter whose signature is at the bottom of your Bible college diploma. It doesn’t really matter whose endorsement is on the back of your book. What has eternal value is whether we have gathered up all the glory and praise we can find and given every bit of it to God.

Consider a few of the Scriptures that speak of the worship of God,

“God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24).

“I am the LORD, that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images” (Isaiah 42:8).

“For mine own sake, even for mine own sake, will I do it: for how should my name be polluted? And I will not give my glory to another” (Isaiah 48:11).

“Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy and for thy truth’s sake” (Psalm 115:1).

One last thought: whether we realise it or not, our praise of man tends to have a hidden agenda. We tend to praise men so that they will praise us back. There is in every one of us enough Devil to crave the praise of men. And so we give it to get it. We need to read John 5:44, “How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?” Our craving for recognition, for praise, for honour and glory, according to our Saviour, is an impediment to faith. “How can ye believe who receive honour one of another……..?”

One of my favourite evangelists lived to the ripe old age of 87 years. He preached for over 70 years and is sometimes described as the “best loved evangelist of all time.” When he was very old it was decided by his friends that he should be honoured publicly. Many were invited to come and give testimonials as to his usefulness in the Lord’s work, and they came in droves. One speaker after another sang the praises of the old preacher until finally the speeches were done, and the moderator turned to invite the aged preacher to the lectern to receive the award. To everyone’s surprise he was nowhere to be found. The guest of honour was not on the platform, or even in in the building. He had absented himself some time during the meeting. He had chosen to turn a deaf ear to the sweet words from his admirers! They searched high and low, and eventually they found him, outside the great hall, in the street, speaking to a cabbie about his soul. He knew all about the priorities if godliness and he knew about the emptiness of the praises of men.

Only God is worthy of worship!

Someone may ask, “Who was Bro. Joe?”

I don’t think he would want me to tell you.

We could be guilty of stealing from God the glory that belongs only to Him.

                        candlecross

 

How to Know When the Emerging Church

Shows Signs of Emerging in Your Church

Commentary by Roger Oakland

http://understandthetimes.org/

The world is changing. So is the Christian evangelical church. There was a time— not that long ago—when the Bible was considered to be the Word of God by the majority of evangelical Christians. Now that we are well into the third millennium and the post-modern, post-Christian era, the term evangelical can mean almost anything. What has happened? Why is this happening and what is the future for mainstream Christianity?

For the past several years, I have been speaking around the world on current trends that are impacting Christianity. After these presentations, I am approached by Christians who come from many different church backgrounds. Many are expressing their concerns about what is happening in their churches, troubled by the new direction they see their church going. While they may not always be able to discern what is wrong, they know something is wrong and that it needs to be addressed.

Further, many have told me they have attempted to express their concerns with their pastors or church elders. In almost every case, they were told they had a choice to make—get with the new program or get out of the church.

This move towards a reinvented Christianity (one designed to “reach people”) seems to be here for the long haul. It is not just a passing fad. I am often asked by concerned brothers and sisters in Christ to provide an explanation in order to help them understand what they have encountered. They want to know why these changes are underway and what to expect in the future. As well, they want to know what, if anything can be done, to stem this tide. It is for this reason I am writing this commentary—to provide biblical insight regarding the Emerging Church and where it is heading in the future.

The Gospel According to the Scriptures

Throughout church history, various trends have come and gone. While culture changes from place to place, biblical Christianity has always been based upon the central message of the Bible which is the gospel of Jesus Christ and the message never changes.

This gospel message is about who Jesus Christ is, and what He has done. A child can understand the gospel message. This message proclaims that life here on planet earth is finite and that life after death is eternal. The good news is that we can be saved from our sins if we will repent and simply ask for forgiveness and follow Him.

How we respond to the gospel message during the time we have on earth determines where we spend eternity—heaven or hell. Jesus, the Creator of the universe, provided a way and the only way we can spend eternity with Him. It is a matter of making a personal decision whether or not we will accept the plan He has provided.

God’s adversary does not want mankind to understand the simple message. His plan is to deceive the world. If he can blind people from the gospel or convince them that they believe the gospel when indeed they do not, his plan has been successful. Throughout the ages, countless billions have been duped, either rejecting the truth, or believing that they had believed the truth when instead they had been deceived.

The Gospel According to Postmoderism

Times change! However, the gospel must remain the same no matter what else changes. We are now living in the postmodern era. In a sincere attempt to reach the postmodern generation with the gospel, it seems many Christians have become postmodern in their thinking.

Perhaps the term postmodern is new to you. Let’s examine what it means.

First, the modern era was characterized by a time of rational thinking based on factual observation. Many claim the modern era ended in the mid 1900s.

The postmodern mindset moves beyond the rational and the factual to the experiential and the mystical. In other words, in the past it was possible to know right from wrong and black from white. In the postmodern era all things are relative to the beholder. What may be right for you may be wrong for someone else. There is no such thing as absolute truth. The only thing that is absolute is that there is no absolute.

We now live in a time in history that is characterized as postmodern. Professors at universities teach students there is no right or wrong. All things are relative. The gospel message to the postmodern mindset is far too dogmatic and arrogant. They say it is necessary to find a more moderate gospel that can be accepted by the masses.

Many church leaders are now looking for ways to reach the postmodern generation. They believe they can find the appropriate methods to do so without changing the message. However, in their attempt to reach this postmodern generation, they have become postmodern themselves and have changed the message. As the gospel is fixed upon the Scriptures, the gospel cannot change, unless of course it becomes another gospel. I believe this is what is happening in the Emerging Church.

He Didn’t Come

Many have noticed that since the turn of the millennium, their churches have changed positions on Bible prophecy and the Second Coming of Jesus. Many have given up on the return of Jesus. From the ‘60s on there was an excitement about the imminent return of Jesus. The Jesus People were excited about Bible prophecy and could see signs that Jesus would descend from the heavens for His Bride at any moment.

The year 2000 was of particular importance. When Jesus didn’t show up, it seems many were apparently disappointed. “Perhaps Jesus has delayed His coming,” some have said. Others are even taking the position that He may not be coming at all, at least not in the manner we have been taught. They are now convinced that we need to be busy about “building His Kingdom” here on earth by “whatever human effort is required.”

The Gospel of the Kingdom

One of the main indicators that something has changed can be seen in the way the future is perceived. Rather than urgently proclaiming the gospel according to the Scriptures and believing the time to do so is short, the emphasis has now shifted. No longer are “signs of the times” significant. The battle cry is very different. A major emphasis among evangelicals is the idea that the world can be radically improved through social programs.

This concept, while on the surface may sound very good, has some serious biblical implications. According to the Scriptures, there will be no kingdom of God until the King arrives. All the human effort man can muster up will fall short of bringing utopia. In fact, according to the Scriptures, fallen man will lead us further down the road to a society of despair and lawlessness just like it was in the days of Noah.

Thus, this purpose-driven view of establishing global utopia may be a plan, but it is “driven” by humanistic reasoning and not led by the Holy Spirit. While it is of course good to do good unto others, all the goodness that we can do will not be good enough. Pastors and church leaders who get involved in such man-driven programs can usually be identified by certain characteristics:

Sound biblical doctrine is dangerous and divisive, and the experiential (i.e.,mystical) is given a greater role than doctrine.

Bible prophecy is no longer taught and is considered a waste of time

Israel becomes less and less important and has no biblical significance

Eventually the promises for Israel are applied to the church and not Israel (Replacement Theology).

Bible study is replaced by studying someone’s book and his methods

Church health is evaluated on the quantity of people who attend.

The truth of God’s Word becomes less and less important

God’s Word, especially concepts like hell, sin and repentance, is eventually downplayed so the unbeliever is not offended.

Spiritual Formation and Transformation

Much of what I have described provides the formula for a dumbing-down of Christianity that paves the way for an apostasy that will only intensify in the future. This trend away from the authority of God’s Word to the reinvented form of Christianity has overcome all evangelical denominations like an avalanche. Few Bible teachers saw this avalanche coming. Now that it is underway, few realize it has even happened.

However, there is another big piece to the puzzle that must be identified in order to understand what is emerging in the Emerging Church. While biblical Christianity has been dumbed-down and the light of God’s Word diminished, another avalanche of deception is underway that is equally devastating.

This is best described by the Word of God giving way to experiences that God’s Word forbids. The best way to understand this process is to recall what happened during the Dark Ages when the Bible became the “forbidden book.” Until the Reformers translated the Bible into the language of the common person, the people were in darkness. When the light of God’s Word became available, the gospel according to the Scriptures was once again understood.

This trend, which is underway today, shows us that history is in the process of repeating itself. As the Word of God becomes less and less important, the rise of mystical experiences is alarming and these experiences are being presented to convince the unsuspecting that Christianity is about feeling, touching, smelling and seeing God. The postmodern mindset is the perfect environment for the fostering of what is called “spiritual formation.” This teaching suggests there are various ways and means to get closer to God. Proponents of spiritual formation erroneously teach that anyone can practice these mystical rituals and find God within. Having a relationship with Jesus Christ is not a prerequisite.

These teachings, while actually rooted in ancient wisdom (the occult), were presented to Christendom post-New Testament and not found in the Word of God. The spiritual formation movement is based upon experiences promoted by desert monks and Roman Catholic mystics – these mystics encouraged the use of rituals and practices, that if performed would bring the practitioner closer to God (or come into God’s presence). The premise was that if one went into the silence or sacred space, then the mind was emptied of distractions and the voice of God could be heard. In truth, these hypnotic, mantric style practices were leading these monks into altered states of consciousness. The methods they used are the same that Buddhists and the Hindus use as a means of encountering the spiritual realm

Such methods are dangerous, and are not sanctioned in the Bible – God gives no instruction for this. On the contrary, he warns severely against divination, which is practicing a ritual or method in order to obtain information from a spiritual source. While proponents of spiritual formation (like Richard Foster) say these methods show that the Holy Spirit is doing something new to refresh Christianity, I would suggest that what is happening is not new and is not the Holy Spirit.

The spiritual formation movement is being widely promoted at colleges and seminaries as the latest and the greatest way to become a spiritual leader in these days. These ideas are then being exported from seminaries to churches by graduates who have been primed to take Christianity to a new level of enlightenment.

As well, these contemplative practices are being promoted by emergent leaders such as Brian McLaren, Robert Webber, Dallas Willard and others. Publishers like NavPress, InterVarsity and Zondervan are flooding the market with books promoting contemplative practices based on Eastern mysticism. Pastors and church leaders read these books and then promote the ideas as if they were the scriptural answer to drawing close to God.

Signs the Emerging Church is Emerging

There are specific warning signs that are symptomatic that a church may be headed down the emergent/contemplative road. In some cases a pastor may not be aware that he is on this road nor understand where the road ends up.

Here are some of the warning signs:

Scripture is no longer the ultimate authority as the basis for the Christian faith.

The centrality of the gospel of Jesus Christ is being replaced by humanistic methods promoting church growth and a social gospel.

More and more emphasis is being placed on building the kingdom of God now and less and less on the warnings of Scripture about the imminent return of Jesus Christ and a coming judgment in the future.

The teaching that Jesus Christ will rule and reign in a literal millennial period is considered unbiblical and heretical.

The teaching that the church has taken the place of Israel and Israel has no prophetic significance is often embraced.

The teaching that the Book of Revelation does not refer to the future, but instead has been already fulfilled in the past

An experiential mystical form of Christianity begins to be promoted as a method to reach the postmodern generation.

Ideas are promoted teaching that Christianity needs to be reinvented in order to provide meaning for this generation.

The pastor may implement an idea called “ancient-future” or “vintage Christianity” claiming that in order to take the church forward, we need to go back in church history and find out what experiences were effective to get people to embrace Christianity.

While the authority of the Word of God is undermined, images and sensual experiences are promoted as the key to experiencing and knowing God.

These experiences include icons, candles, incense, liturgy, labyrinths, prayer stations, contemplative prayer, experiencing the sacraments, particularly the sacrament of the Eucharist.

There seems to be a strong emphasis on ecumenism indicating that a bridge is being established that leads in the direction of unity with the Roman Catholic Church.

Some evangelical Protestant leaders are saying that the Reformation went too far. They are reexamining the claims of the “church fathers” saying that communion is more than a symbol and that Jesus actually becomes present in the wafer at communion.

There will be a growing trend towards an ecumenical unity for the cause of world peace claiming the validity of other religions and that there are many ways to God.

Members of churches who question or resist the new changes that the pastor is implementing are reprimanded and usually asked to leave.

What does the Future Hold?

If the Emerging Church continues unfolding at the present pace, mainstream evangelical Christianity will be reinvented and the gospel of Jesus Christ according to the Scriptures will be considered too narrow and too restrictive. In other words, the narrow way to heaven that Jesus proclaimed will eventually be abandoned for a wider way that embraces pagan experiential practices. I call this reinvented, re-imagined form of Christianity that is unfolding—“Christian Babylonianism”.

This new form of Christianity will replace biblical faith with a faith that says man can establish the kingdom of God here on earth. The Word will continue to become secondary to a system of works driven by experiences.

An ecumenical pattern towards unity with Rome will become more apparent. Those who refuse to embrace this direction will be considered spiritual oddballs that need to be reprimanded. Those who stand up for biblical faith will be considered the obstructions to the one world spirituality that is promoted as the answer for peace.

The best way to be prepared for what is coming is to gain an understanding of what is happening now. While there are not many who seem to discern the trend underway, there are some. Without the Bible and the Holy Spirit as our guide, the darkness that is coming would be overwhelming. However, the light of God’s Word penetrates the darkness and there are those who are being delivered from deception and see what is taking place.

I am convinced we are seeing apostasy underway, exactly as the Scriptures have forewarned. This means that this current trend is not likely to disappear. We must continue to proclaim the truth in the midst of deception with love. As Paul instructed Timothy:

And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will (2 Timothy 2: 24-26).

There are still pastors and churches who are dedicated to proclaiming the truth. Find out where they are and support them. If you are in a location where this does not seem to be possible, seek out materials that are available from solid Bible-based Christian ministries and hold Bible studies in your own home.

And keep looking up! Jesus is coming soon.

                          prophecy1

Years ago, I was standing in my dining room watching my cat walk down the hallway to the bedroom. When he entered through the doorway, he suddenly stopped, and the hair on his back came up and then he started slowly backing out of the room. Of course, I was alarmed. Standing there for a few minutes, it was decided I had to know what was going on in that room.

Slowly I approached the bedroom doorway and peeked around the frame. A man was entering through the bedroom window. I stood there shocked. Then the man noticed me just standing there. He was afraid, and put up his hand, saying, “sorry, sorry, I am leaving, I am leaving”. He backed out of the window and fled.

The image that stuck in my mind was the cat though, backing slowly out of room, sensing invasion. An intruder was entering through an unexpected entrance.

Have you ever invited an intruder into your life or mind?

There are many ways to gain entrance or break the veil of protection of our very minds. This is done easily by mind-altering drugs, eastern-style meditation, Reiki, trances induced by repetition of words or sounds, or anything that empties the mind of thought. Just by mentally opening yourself up by willing another spirit to enter is enough. This invasion of our mind is called a crossover into the paranormal spirit world.

A classic way to invite a spirit into your presence is by using a Ouija board. But the apparatus is not always necessary. By rite, and ceremony you can invite a visitation from the spirit world, who is by the way, very happy to oblige your divination.

The problem with invading this spirit world is that these spirits are experts at giving you false impressions of being from or of God. They can make you feel joy, elation, power, electricity, and often they make you feel divine. For this reason the Bible forbids any contact with this spirit world, because these spirits are deceiving spirits. They are experts at their craft, and someone who listens to them, will be deceived.

If you have ever scanned  the prophetic word sites, you will find many predictions, advice, biblical interpretation, warnings, and so forth. Many are vague and rehashed over and over again.

Just in April 2009, I read that on April 1 disaster was coming. On April 9th, we were to expect something significant to happen because historically this was a dark day. These predictions proved false but I noted that the authors did not repent of their false warnings. In fact they just continued with further advice, as though nothing had been said, shrugging off the false predictions. What nonsense!

There has been a couple of instances of my having direct contact with diviners. Two sisters, moved away from the coast because they were warned by God to “MOVE NOW”, that there was a tsunami on the way. The other person also told me that there was a tsunami on the way and that moving inland would be wise at some point. But what I later learned is that the sisters were heavily involved in new age techniques, who would not give up their paranormal tendencies, and the other person was once married to a witch.  Divination was involved in both cases.

How fascinating though. Two different sources warned of a tsunami, but both were comprised by new-age thought and techniques. A repeated message from the spirit world, enforced in my mind, that a deception was brewing.  John Ankerberg’s New Age informative primer speaks of Uri Geller and of how multiple psychics can receive the same message. This eerie circumstance is something we also see in the prophetic world.

Those who know me, or have read my other articles know, that I too was once deceived. My mind had been pierced by anti-depressant drugs. Once I had a vivid “prophetic word” that a city was to be destroyed by a tornado in two weeks. It did not happen. I opened my Bible and this is what I discovered.

Deuteronomy 18:22 “If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the Lord does not take place or come true, that is a message the Lord has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.”

So according to this verse what I thought was from the Lord was NOT. The cause of my paranormal or occult messages were not revealed to me for awhile, but I knew something was wrong. I did not ask for these experiences, nevertheless, I repented, and they stopped. Why did this happen to me? I believe I went through this situation so that I could relate my experience to others and warn them. Also, I was being tested by God.

So how has divination entered the church? First let’s define divination. It is gaining spiritual knowledge that cannot be obtained through normal means, like reading or studying. Divination is a method one uses to gain secret information from the spirit world,which is not a true prophecy or an edification from scripture.

The means and methods are numerous. The easiest way one accesses the spirit world is through meditation by altering one’s consciousness. Eastern style would be like using Yoga with its repetitious words and breathing techniques. The church may introduce, stillness, or hypnotic music, to alter consciousness. Centering prayer is also advocated, but truly it is focusing inward and stilling the mind and it is deceptive in nature.

Christian Yoga? Hardly. All the positions in the Sun Salutation worship goddesses and push energy up the spine to the mind for enlightenment. Oh. Only for exercise you say? Doesn’t matter. Back to Deuteronomy again. This time 4:19

“And when you look up to the sky and see the sun, the moon and the stars–all the heavenly array–do not be enticed into bowing down to them and worshiping things the Lord your God has apportioned to all the nations under heaven.”

This totally excludes being able to do the sun salutation.

Modern Day Prophets

I have heard people say, “I was seeking the Lord” before they received their visions. But they do not explain HOW they were seeking the Lord. Were they allowing themselves to fall into deep meditation? Were they silent till the Lord spoke? Did they use a method to contact God?

I seek the Lord through His Word, in the Bible. But I guess I am old-fashioned that way. The new methods tend to be wrong, deceptive, faulty, misleading, cause manifestations, cause depression, pull people away from the Bible, and create a lack in the prayer life.

I like this article “Prophecy Is For Today” by K. A. Jentoft

from:

http://cicministry.org  under articles

http://cicministry.org/commentary/issue95b.htm

Here are some excerpts and quotes –

“Someone falsely speaking what is unknowable is in a unique position to damage God’s people.”

“God tests His people with false prophets to see if they obey the first commandment and love Him with all their heart and soul.”

“The first rule of discernment is simple; those who make predictions that do not come to pass are false prophets even if some of their predictions are accurate.”

“While God may raise up prophets to predict the future, there can be no more “new revelations” of God until the second coming because Jesus “in the flesh” appointed no new apostles after John and Jesus now abides in heaven sitting at the right hand of God the Father.”

“This does not mean that prophecy ceased nor even that prophets can no longer exist. It simply means that the revelation of God regarding Himself and how we are to experience Him has been completed.”

“The gospel is under attack when men claiming to be “modern apostles or prophets” attempt to alter the revelation of God and our approach to Him.”

“Many now claim to be modern prophets and predict future events or reveal things hidden from a normal person, but to the best of my knowledge, not even one of them meets the criteria specifically given to judge this type of prophet. Oddly, none of them even claims to be 100 percent accurate in all of their predictions.”

“People who seek guidance from prophets who fail God’s tests are sinning and rejecting God’s authority.”

I had a difficult time selecting the most important points in this article so please read it when you have the chance.

So we are to use God’s word as a final authority in our life. An unusual passage from Luke can be used to verify this. In Luke 16:19-31 we have a section called “The Rich Man and Lazarus.”

In this passage a rich man who ignored a beggar named Lazarus, sees him in the afterlife. The rich man is in hell and Lazarus is standing by Abraham. He calls to Abraham, “Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.”

His request is rejected, so then he begs Abraham to send Lazarus to his five brothers to be warned of this place of torment. Abraham replied, “They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.”

“ ‘No father Abraham,’ he said ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’ ”

“He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’ ”

The rich man had no confidence in the Word of God, he wanted a miracle to convince his brothers. But Abraham was unyielding. The Word was enough, but it was ignored.

We can also apply this same scenerio to Moses and the Israelites. The people saw the Red Sea parted, they were led day and night by pillars of smoke and fire, they were fed for 40 years with Manna, water flowed from a rock, yet….these miracles did not produce faith and obedience. The first generation all died in the desert except Moses, Caleb and Joshua. They disobeyed the Word given to them by Moses and suffered the judgments and plagues.

No matter what miracles we may see, visions we might consider, secret knowledge we may think we need, it matters not, if we do not obey God’s word. Over and over again the Israelites were instructed on how to worship in the tabernacle, what the law was, and how they were to obey God. But instead they worshiped other gods, they built gold idols, they listened to false prophets and leaders and they were destroyed.

Lately I have been greatly concerned about some of the prophetic sites and their dire predictions. While I know that the whole world will deteriorate and that the Bible predicts a one-man rule of the anti-christ, and that we are to watch for wars, famines, earthquakes many have taken to hoarding food, water, guns and ammo. Precautions are prudent. I have extra water and a full pantry, a small box with clothes, extra shoes, blankets, batteries, etc, just as I would for any emergency situation.

Oddly though, once when I was buying extra canned goods for a food drive, I was tempted to keep some for my own pantry. But I had a check in my spirit and this is what I was told, “GIVE IT ALL AWAY.” Do you see the contrast? I was to have faith that God would supply all my needs. I was not to hoard.

But there are sites selling survival packs in line with their soulish prophecies. The rebellious leaders prophecy from their own minds, then desire for their foul predictions to come true. When I read “THIS IS IT!!!!” about the flu pandemic, meaning this would instigate martial law, I became angry.

Ezekiel 13:6 “They have seen vanity and lying divination, saying, The LORD saith: and the LORD hath not sent them; and they have made others to hope that they would confirm the word.”

Then, I decided to take a look at several mainstream sites. One prophetic ministry had the teachers’ name and picture plastered all over the main page. Not one mention of Jesus Christ. But there was a load of DVD’s, CD’s, and products to purchase for personal blessing. This is outright exploitation. Also, you could purchase the latest divinations if you signed on as a member. (You always need to purchase new divinations because the previous ones did not come to pass.) For the right price, you too, can be an “insider” and be privy to “special knowledge” other Christians do not know! Divined special knowledge not revealed in the Bible is occult and many other predictions are mere imaginations.

See “Epidemic of Fear” from:

http://www.thebereancall.org/node/7716

All this new revelation draws people away from God’s Word, which truly is sufficient for those who believe in the Bible. God would not make His Word hard to understand, or only available to an elite few.

2 Timothy 3:16-17

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

 

So are you going to allow intruders into your Christian walk? A thief can steal your faith in the Living Word of God if you pay heed to him. God gave us many guidelines to protect us from false prophets in both the Old Testament and the New Testament. Read these verses and prayerfully ask God to help you understand them and use them in these deceptive times.

New to my blogroll – Slaughter of the Sheep

Two People “Healed” at the Lakeland Revival Die – From Slaughter of the Sheep

 

It was inevitable.  A false healing revival with overblown and unsubstatiated reports of healing can only lead to one thing for those who are desperate and looking for healing… death.

I grew up as a Charismatic.  I have seen people suffering with maladies and they were visibly in pain, but yet they would say, “I don’t accept that.  I don’t have _______.”  Even though they have been diagnosed by reputable doctors, they refuse to claim the disease or illness they have been diagnosed with.  To some charismatics, words have power, and if you speak a negative word, they will negatively effect you.  Therefore, only positive words must be spoken.

People with little to no Biblical knowledge have a heart that is a breeding ground for error.  It is these people that are susceptible to the hocus pocus of the Word of Faith/Charismatic doctrine.  One of the cruelest things a minister can do is to tell people unequivocally that they are healed.  Especially when these people are suffering from life-threatening illnesses.  Their misplaced faith can then turn deadly if they aren’t grounded in the Word of God.

Rest of article HERE

WHOA, Paul Washer tells it like it is…..

 

 

In this one Paul Washer asks “How much has being a Christian cost you?” and tells us to “set aside our little temporal causes.”

Jesus Christ is Everything

I will watch this over and over again.

       enlightenmentenlightenmentenlightenment

 

A Biblically based commentary on current issues that impact you

Todd Bentley, Bob Jones, and Patricia King Practice Astral Projection

By Bob DeWaay

In a bizarre You Tube.com video of “prophet” Patricia King’s TV program, fellow “prophet” Bob Jones and revivalist Todd Bentley discuss the practice of visiting “the third heaven”. Jones also professes to have taught Bentley and King the practice.1 In the clip from her aptly-titled show, “Extreme Prophetic” (which has been viewed more than 50,000 times), she introduces Jones as a seer: “Many people don’t understand seer prophets because they see visions and revelations and supernatural encounters and mystical experiences, and Bob Jones in our day, I think, is one of the champions of the seer realm. In fact, as a prophet he’s probably the most accurate prophet in our generation, but he is going to share some insights with us.” King evidently has low standards for accuracy. In 1997 Jones prophesied that an earthquake would destroy Los Angeles and that terrorists with nuclear bombs would also attack the city.2 He told Christians to flee, which means he considered the events to be imminent.

The topic of the day for this particular interview, however, was not predictive prophecy but travel to the third heaven. Bentley had previously called King and described traveling into heaven. Here is the account of how he learned this:

Click HERE for rest of article from

Critical Issues Commentary

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