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Pope Francis Tells Priests and Nuns: If They Do Not Love the Mother (Mary), and Pray the Rosary, Then Mother (Mary) Will Not Give Them The Son!

Source HERE from Soul Refuge

 

I came across an article written by the Catholic News Service on the Cruxnow website, that truly reveals the gross deception and falsity of the Roman Catholic gospel. Here are some excerpts from the article entitled: “Mother and son: Pope Francis has a personal, intimate devotion to Mary.” 

VATICAN CITY — From Easter to Pentecost — and especially during the Marian month of May — Catholics recite the “Regina Coeli” prayer “with the emotion of children who are happy because their mother is happy” that Jesus has risen from the dead, Pope Francis said.

Although his devotion to the Mother of God is profound, it is simple in many ways: Mary is a mother to every believer; Jesus would not leave his followers orphans.

While his connection to Mary clearly is a matter of heart and mind, it is also physical. Whenever Pope Francis passes a statue or icon of Mary, he kisses it or allows his hand to rest tenderly upon it.

Honoring the Mother of God, of course, is a solid part of Catholic tradition and a mainstay in the devotion and teaching of the popes. St. John Paul II’s motto, “Totus Tuus” (“All yours”), and the large M on his coat of arms were just the most graphic elements of a devotion that led to a whole body of teaching about Mary, her role in Catholics’ faith life and the importance of praying the rosary.

The following statement by Pope Francis is nothing less than amazing to me:

Visiting Naples in March, Pope Francis told priests, nuns, and seminarians that one way to make sure Jesus is the center of their lives is to ask “his mother to take you to him. A priest, a brother, a nun who does not love Mary, who does not pray to her — I would even say one who does not recite the rosary — well, if you don’t love the mother, the mother will not give you the Son.”

The Pope told the leaders in his very own Roman Catholic church that Mother Mary would take them to Jesus, and that was the sure way of their making Jesus the center of their lives. Then Pope Francis went on to say that if they did not love Mary, and pray to her (including the Rosary) then the Mother would NOT give them the Son! Folks listen to me here. Pope Francis is NOT speaking under the anointing of the Holy Spirit, but he is being led by a demon spirit, and that same spirit caused him to talk that way!

Take a good look at the “coat of arms” and notice the large “M” at the bottom right. That large “M” represents “Mother Mary” and that was the coat of arms for the late Pope John Paul II. Pope John Paul II had the saying “Totus Tuus Sum Maria” sewed on the inside of his garments also. Do you want to know what that saying means in English? It means “Mary, I am totally yours.” Do you think that the late Pope John Paul II was being led by the Spirit of the living God? The late Pope John Paul II is now a Catholic “Saint” and Catholics are already praying to him! Folks it is time to study the scriptures for yourselves, and to come out of the modern day political churches for the sake of your own soul. Much of the modern day television ministries are nothing more than “Christian clownery” and they are encouraging people to join in unity with Rome. Do not fall for that lie, because they have already been seduced.

Many ministers will point their people to the “Apostles Creed” in their attempt to convince Christians (and to avoid persecution and controversy), that the Roman Catholic people hold to the same core teachings, and are believers just like them. That is a very BIG deception though, because I recited the “Apostles Creed” for years but I was sitting in a church that preached a soul damning gospel. The “Apostles Creed” did not tell me that I could be justified by the blood of Jesus Christ. The “Apostles Creed” did not tell me that the Roman Catholic priesthood was a bogus priesthood! The “Apostles Creed” did not tell me that I did not need the Catholic Mass to satisfy the justice of God for my sins! The “Apostles Creed” did not tell me about the necessity of being born again the BIBLICAL way. I needed to be REGENERATED by the Holy Spirit but the “Apostles Creed” could not help me. The “Apostles Creed” did not tell me that I was deceived into believing that I was “born again” when I had my infant head sprinkled with water by a Roman Catholic priest!

I would not be surprised if you could teach a parrot to recite the “Apostles Creed” if you wanted to. (well maybe one line anyway).

I am a former Roman Catholic, and it was the Spirit of God who opened up my spiritual eyes to see the gross deception that I was in. In fact I did the exact opposite of what Pope Francis encouraged his own Priests and Nuns to do. I stopped praying to Mary, I stopped praying my rosary and I turned to the Lord Jesus Christ the Saviour of my soul. Mary is NOT my mother! I have been saved since 1989 and I did not need “Mother Mary” for anything, because the Holy Spirit was the one who brought comfort to my heart!

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That article went on to say that Jesus would not leave his followers orphans, but that is NOT the job of “Mother Mary” but it is clearly the job of the Holy Spirit to COMFORT the hearts of the Lord’s followers!

And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.”  John 14:16-18

The word “comfortless” that is used in this passage is the Greek word orphanos (or-fan-os) and it is defined as follows:  bereaved (“orphan”), that is, parentless: – comfortless, fatherless. 

So when the Lord Jesus Christ told his followers that he would not leave them “comfortless” he was telling them that he would not leave them orphans! It is the Holy Spirit and NOT Mary who helps the followers. The Holy Spirit is called the COMFORTER by the Lord Jesus Christ in the scriptures.

Pope Francis is certainly NOT led by the Spirit of the LIVING GOD, but he is being led by a DEMON spirit for sure. The Jewish apostle Paul warned us about such things, but few seem to take heed to the warnings anymore. We are living in a day of incredible APOSTASY, and the modern day professional ministers, are simply going along with the flow.

“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;”  1 Timothy 4:1

The Roman Catholic church is chock full of the doctrines of devils (demons) which Paul warned us about, and many sincere Christians have been deluded by their compromising pastors who are nothing more than sleeping watchmen.

“His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber. Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough, and they are shepherds that cannot understand: they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter.”  Isaiah 56:10-11

James Robison used to speak out against the church of Rome, and he once addressed the issue with Billy Graham. After conversing with Billy Graham James Robison changed his views on the church of Rome. That is so sad, because Billy Graham has been faithful in his compromise with Rome for 65 years now, but the Word of God (Scriptures) will NEVER change! James Robison emotionally declared that he was witnessing the UNITY that Jesus prayed for, happening right before his eyes! Sorry Mr Robison, but this is NOT the UNITY that Jesus prayed for at all. THAT UNITY is speaking about TRUE believers who have been born again of the Spirit, through FAITH in Jesus Christ. The New Birth does NOT come through INFANT baptism as the church of Rome teaches! THAT UNITY is talking about TRUE Christians who BELIEVE that Jesus Christ, and HIM ALONE, is the REDEEMER for their souls, minus a co-redeemer, and co-mediator, named Mary! The Lord Jesus Christ would NEVER encourage his followers to join hands with those who preach a FALSE gospel as the church of Rome most certainly does. The TRUE Spirit of God delivered my soul out from the church of Rome in 1989 and I will not be returning anytime soon.

I am also happy to inform you, that I am probably under, all of the hundred or so anathemas (curses) that Rome placed upon those who disagree with her false teachings. Those curses were instituted at the Council of Trent basically in response to the reformers who stood against Rome. The reformers OPPOSED the church of Rome, and stood against her false teachings, and many were tortured and slain for that stand! Rome took Protestant-bashing to the ultimate extreme with those killings! Rome’s anathemas (curses) were UPHELD by the Council at Vatican II (1964-65), but very FEW are aware of that fact. Vatican II made nothing more than SURFACE changes, but Rome’s false teachings remain the same. You cannot teach an old WOLF new tricks.

Mr Robison, UNITY with Rome is not the UNITY which Christ prayed for at all, BUT IT IS the DECEPTION and APOSTASY which Jesus Christ WARNED his disciples about all those years ago:

“And Jesus answered and said unto them, TAKE HEED that NO MAN DECEIVE YOU. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.”  Matthew 24:4-5

Here is an image of James Robison slapping a high-five with the Roman Catholic Pope Francis. Kenneth Copeland is also seen with the Pope.

The late Leonard Ravenhill hit the nail on the head with his assessment of the Roman Catholic Church in his book “Why Revival Tarries” and that assessment is still a perfect description of the cult of Rome today!

“Evangelists today are wide-eyed to the might of Communism, but tight lipped at the menace of Romanism. America would shake from coast to coast in twenty-four hours if some preacher, anointed with the Holy Ghost, gave the Roman Catholic Church a broadside! We stir national interest against the cruel, half-civilized Mau Mau (wicked enough), but powwow with, and pander to, the Roman Catholic Church! These priests who dope mens souls, these idolatrous “masses,” these Calvary eclipsing prayers to Mary, these miserable millions cheated in life and in death by the greatest forgery Lucifer ever made.” (Why Revival Tarries by Leonard Ravenhill, Bethany House Publishers, 1988, Copyright 1959)

Do not forget the words of the late Keith Green, and then compare his words with what you are hearing from people such as James Robison, Billy Graham, Franklin Graham, Luis Palau, Kenneth Copeland and tons of others.

To merely call such a system “a cult”, would be to throw it into the vast category of religions and quasi-religions that are currently making the rounds of our college campuses and city streets, snatching up many an unsuspecting youth. No, the Roman Church is not a cult. It’s an empire!

With its own ruler, its own laws, and its own subjects! The empire has no borders, it encompasses the globe with its eye on every person who does not vow allegiance. It calls the members of other faiths “separated brethren” (The term used by Vatican II to describe the members of Eastern Orthodox, Anglican, and Protestant churches.) and has as its goal the eventual bringing together of everyone under its flag.

I know that many will not be convinced or moved by this article (or any of the others) to make such a conclusion. They are impressed by what they’ve heard about recent stirrings among the Catholics in the “charismatic renewal”. Many evangelicals (especially Charismatics) have been thrilled by the reports of Catholics speaking in tongues, dancing in the Spirit, having nights of joy and praise, even attending “charismatic masses”.

Mouths that used to speak out boldly against the Church of Rome have been quieted by the times. It no longer is in vogue to speak of the pope as “the antichrist” (Although the following people unhesitatingly did: Martin Luther, John Bunyan, John Huss, John Wycliffe, John Calvin, William Tyndale, John Knox, Thomas Bacon, John Wesley, Samuel Cooper, John Cotton, and Jonathan Edwards.) or the Catholic Church as the “whore of Babylon”. Now Protestants unwittingly believe that “our differences are not so great”. Ah, that is just what She needs us to think!

I’ve never completely understood why God led me to write these articles. But it becomes more clear with each day of study, and each page of research. Never has something so black and wicked, gotten away with appearing so holy and mysteriously beautiful . . . for so long! (Keith Green-The Catholic Chronicles)

Were the TRUE Christian reformers wrong in their stand against the Roman Catholic church? Did you know that the teachings of Rome have not changed since that time? Do you care?

Finding God’s Will Is No Deep Dark Secret! Part 1

 http://standupforthetruth.com/2015/02/finding-gods-will-no-deep-dark-secret-part-1/

By Marsha West

Is itGod's will - decisions possible for a Christian to know God’s will and not have to agonize over it? Should a believer make a decision without first spending hours in prayer, asking God to reveal His will? Must a Christian avoid making a decision until he or she has a “peace about it”? What about waiting for a “sign” from God? Is it okay for a Christian to consult a psychic or a Ouija board to seek God’s guidance?

A married couple, John and Tina, is faced with a dilemma. They would like to move to Colorado to be closer to John’s family. They’ve been praying about it, asking God to show them His will. Their decision must be made before the end of the week, yet they’re still not sure what God wants them to do — should they stay or should they go?

Naturally John and Tina are confused and frustrated. John is leaning toward moving because he knows it will be good for the kids to live close to their grandparents. He’s even getting excited about it. Not Tina! She wants to wait for a “confirmation,” from God before they pull up stakes and move half way across the country.

John and Tina are in the proverbial pickle.

Many Christians talk about finding God’s will as though it were some deep dark secret, hidden away in the pages of Scripture. Maybe God doesn’t want us to find it.

Where does the Bible teach that God tries to hide His will from us?

Tina and John believe their heavenly Father loves them, yet they’ve decided that He’s hiding His will from them. Maybe God likes playing hide and seek.

Most good parents want what’s best for their children, right? So does it make sense that God would want to hide His will from those He loves? If Tina and John really believe He’s a loving Father, why are they clinging to the ridiculous notion that He wants to keep them in the dark?

 

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 From Stand Up for the Truth

Suffering for Truth: When churches force members to leave

Have you ever gone to church leadership because of some alarming things being taught in your church?

As the Great Falling Away continues in our beloved church communities, it seems that even those who once were thought “solid” are not immune to the yeast of false teachings and rogue leadership bent on silencing concerns.  It may have happened to you.

A friend of mine allowed me to re-publish her testimony on our site, and it’s one that might stir a lot of emotions for many of you. What happened to her and her family is very sad, but what her family is doing now serves as a tale and a trend you are going to be hearing a lot more about in the year ahead.

Family

Suffering for the Truth     By Jenna Guerette           (Originally published at Truth or Trend)

Ever since I was a child, I always found it important to stand up for the truth.  I’m talking about the truth that is only found in Scripture.  My childhood church turned emergent during the 1990’s.  I noted that something was wrong right away.  My family had held on there for years because of our friendships that we had there.  We knew that if we left we would lose them.  (Sounds like great friends eh?)  I was only taught Arminian doctrine.
Eventually, there was a complete exodus of most of the members of this church.  The next church my family attended went emergent and word of faith.  I didn’t know these terms back then.  I just knew something was wrong.  During my time at this church, I got married and had my daughter.  My parents and siblings continued to attend along with us.  One Sunday the pastor of the church announced that any who disagreed with the direction of the church could find their way to the nearest exit.  He said that he was leading the congregation south and we were welcome to head north.  Not surprisingly, we left that church.
My husband and I were left extremely discouraged.  We decided to try a church that a family friend had recommended.  Once we attended there, it was like a breath of fresh air.  The pastor preached from God’s Word.  He spoke out against Rick Warren, The Secret, Oprah, and The Shack.  He taught us about the errors of the Emergent Church , mysticism, and contemplative prayer.  For the first time in my life I felt like I belonged to a church family.  My husband, my parents, and I got involved in the church.  Our pastor introduced us to “The Way of the Master.”  My husband began an evangelism ministry that was fully supported by our church.  He and a number of other men went to the “Ambassador’s Academy.”  Every Friday night they would go out and share the gospel.  This ministry was thriving.  We had friends, ministries we loved, and the truth from the pulpit.  Life was great!
After being at the church for a number of years, things began to change.  Our pastor became cold and distant.  He took a six month sabbatical and wrote a book.  His wife (who called me frequently) became inaccessible.  The church had an elders’ board.  This was a unelected board.  The men on the board simply appointed new elders.  The head elder was always one of two men.  No others on the board would ever have this position. Our pastor became known as a “teaching elder.”
Strange things began happening.  The evangelism ministry was called into question.  The elders wanted the open-air preaching to stop.  Apparently, there were some complaints from our community about this ministry.  The men in the ministry were adhering to all the laws and bylaws for our community.  This was just persecution.  An executive decision was made by the elders to dissolve the evangelism ministry.  The people in the ministry could still go out and witness but they could not use the church’s name when witnessing.  They were to be completely separate from the church.
Around this time, a group named “Life Action Ministries” came to our church.  Prior to them coming, they sent a promoter.  It was kind of like what the circus would do in the old days.  Believe me, this was no less of a circus.  One of the men that came, spoke in detail about an adulterous affair he had had while on a business trip.  He credited “Life Action Ministries” with reviving him.  The whole thing was carefully scripted to elicit emotion from the congregation.  I knew that something was wrong with this ministry.
When their team visited our church eight weeks later, I was astounded.  They used every method of Charles Finney to manipulate the congregation.  They also endorsed Keswick Theology.  They believed that each Christian had to reach a crisis moment in their life.  At this point of crisis, they could achieve a second blessing or filling of the Holy Spirit.  The main speaker admitted that he had these revivals down to a “science.”  He took many verses out of context in order to achieve his goals.  Microphones were set up at the front of the church so that people could go and confess their sins openly to the congregation.  People were told to write down their idols on Styrofoam cups.  They were then to come to the front of the church and crush these cups with their feet.
A cursory look at the website of “Life Action Ministries” revealed that they had no problem with mysticism.  They had numerous books for sale.  Including those by Henry Blackaby, Priscilla Shirer, Jim Cymbala, Gary Thomas, and Mark Batterson.   They also quoted Catholic mystics such as Henri Nouwen and Brother Lawrence.  Here is a link to their beliefs – http://www.lifeactionministries.ca/about/.  Through two visits to my church they raked in about $62,000.  This ministry has long tentacles.  They are involved in the SBC, Moody, and The True Woman Movement.
This ministry received a cult-like following at my church.
The women in my church decided to attend a True Woman Conference in 2012.  As I looked at the list of speakers, I became alarmed.  Priscilla Shirer was one of the speakers.  I’ve already outlined the problems with this woman in a previous blog post.  I contacted the True Woman organization regarding my concerns with this speaker.  I was told that this conference wasn’t for a woman like me.  I also brought my concerns to my pastor ( teaching elder) and the head elder.  They weren’t going to stop the women from attending but they would go over what mysticism was with them.  They appeared annoyed that I’d brought this to their attention.
Unfortunately, I soon learned that the women in my church were reading “Jesus Calling” and “1000 Gifts.”  I discovered that the church library had books by Henry Blackaby and Richard Foster.  I became alarmed.  I brought my concerns to my pastor.  I was told that he and the elders couldn’t police the church.  They had too many strings on their violin to deal with it.  If I kept bringing disunity to the church then I would find myself in a home church.   I also tried to ask questions about Tim Keller and John Piper.  Both of these men do not believe in a literal six day creation.  They were constantly being quoted by our assistant pastor.  I wanted some clarification about what to do with this errant belief.  My pastor – teaching elder- told me to have grace for this error.  He also hoped that I would have grace if he ever “fell.” My husband, family, and I were puzzled by these words.  My Mom and I had used Facebook to try to warn the women of the church about Priscilla Shirer and to bring attention to these mystical books.  We soon found out that this was unappreciated.
On St. Patrick’s Day 2013 my family was kicked out of our church.  My husband and I were not present that day.  My husband had to work and I was home with our son who was sick.  My husband had been trying for 8 months to be able to meet with the elders board regarding the evangelism ministry.  They were still against open air preaching and my husband wanted them to show him from Scripture where it was wrong.  Instead the elders used a back door approach to get rid of us.  They decided to kick my parents out.  Three elders surrounded my parents.  My daughter and brother were present.  They did this in a back pew at the end of a service so that everyone could see it.  They told my parents that they were no longer welcome to worship with them.
One elder expressed that his wife would miss my children.  The elders didn’t like us warning the flock on Facebook.  Facebook wasn’t to be used as an outreach or for evangelism.  They were also appalled that my Mom had shared a sermon by John MacArthur about the seven year tribulation.  Our pastor – teaching elder- had his own, very original thoughts regarding the end times.  We were to accept these and no other teachings.  Also, the head elder expressed three times that he had no problem with lectio divina, contemplative prayer, and mysticism.  He also expressed that the church was going with “Life Action Ministries.”  He acted aggressively towards my parents.  He yelled at them saying, “Do you think you’re smarter than me?”  Our pastor – teaching elder- was out in the hallway.  He was waiting for their report.  Finally, the horrible interview ended.  These elders had the audacity to end it in a prayer about unity.  They mumbled something about an official meeting where my parents could plead their case.  Unfortunately, they neglected to give the time and place.  As of this writing, my parents have heard nothing from any elder or leader from our former church.
We were absolutely stunned.  I walked around like I was in a fog.  My husband was working 14 hr. days, 7 days a week.  I received 2 calls from the youth pastor of the church.  Each one, I let go to the answering machine.  I was in shock.  I sat down to write a letter.  I put nine hours into it.  Everything I said was backed up with proof.  My husband and I sent it to our elders and a few selected friends.  The only letter we received back from the elders was one full of personal attacks.  What we said was true but our tone was critical.  We were also told that we were responsible for the loss of numerous friendships for our children.  I was stunned.
The next Sunday, a congregational meeting was held.  They stated that my family hadn’t been kicked out.  Bits of my letter were read out of context.  A man who had eaten numerous dinners in our home, slandered my Mom and myself in front of the church.  A trusted friend told me what happened at this meeting.  All in all, the meeting was a complete snow job.  It was my family’s word against the elders.  The elders were anointed by God.  How could they be wrong?
Since this horrible event, we have tried another church in our community. At this church, we were frozen out.  Apparently, they had heard our story from the elders at our former church.  They made sure to make us feel unwelcome.  We also experienced errant teaching while we were there.   Finally, we couldn’t handle their unkindness towards us any longer.  So we decided to start a home church.
Another couple who had also been kicked out of our former church began joining us.  They were dismissed for Facebook infractions as well.  Each Sunday we meet in our home to sing and listen to a sermon podcast.  We also share in communion.  It has been a time of growth.  We have learned so much about doctrine.  We’d never been taught doctrine at all.  We were always told that it was divisive.  Finally, we understand doctrine.
I’m hoping that through sharing this that I can get over the trauma.  Perhaps some of you have experienced this type of abuse.  That is all I can call it – abuse.
Romans 8:18 ” For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

From The End Time

 

Gnosticism part 1: secret knowledge

Yesterday I introduced a new series on Gnosticism. I’m reading Colossians, which was a prison letter from Paul to the church at Colossae. Paul was responding to Epaphras’ news that the new Colossian believers were being quickly turned away from the faith by people who believed a different Gospel. What was that different Gospel? It was from the Gnostics, a group of cultish believers plaguing the church throughout the First Century, (and the second and third) and popping up here and there throughout the centuries since. Today, there is a resurgence of Gnostic belief encroaching and polluting even our fundamentalist churches among the Southern Baptist Convention. In other words, Gnosticism is a continual problem that never really went away.The Tribulation is a time when all sins will be released for their fullest iniquity. The Holy Spirit’s ministry of restraint will be taken out of the way, and all sins, spiritual and carnal, will explode onto the earth. We see the setting for this coming explosion now. All false doctrines that have ever plagued the church are rising to the fore, all at once. We are battling Gnosticism, Mysticism, Liberalism, Post-Modernism, Legalism, Ecumenism, Prosperity Gospel, and much more. Jesus’s Seven Letters to the Seven Churches contained in Revelation 2-3 are a listing of some of the false doctrines and behavioral failings the early believers were falling prey to. Those false doctrines and behaviors hinder us now.

Zondervan’s NIV bible lists 6 elements that comprise Gnosticism. They are not exclusive, as Gnosticism has several branches and many different elements can be said to comprise the philosophy. In addition, several other false doctrines overlap Gnosticism, such as Mysticism and Legalism, for example. But for the sake of brevity (sort of) we will stick with the Zondervan 6. They are:

1. secret knowledge,
2. asceticism,
3. depreciation of Christ (lowering Him in name and in glory),
4. strict rule-keeping, ceremonies, or rituals
5. worship of angels,
6. and reliance on human wisdom and traditions

Today we will take a look at the element of “secret knowledge”.

David Grabbe wrote in “Whatever Happened to Gnosticism?” that “Gnosticism was the predominant source of heresy when the New Testament was written. The books of John, I Corinthians, Galatians, Colossians, I and II Timothy, Jude, and I John all combat various elements of Gnosticism. Even the book of Revelation cites a couple of Gnostic beliefs and practices, referring to “know[ing] the depths of Satan” and “the Nicolaitans” (Revelation 2:6, 15, 24).”

Gene Edward Veith wrote in World Magazine in this 2006 article “The Return of the Cainites,” “The Gnostics were eastern mystics who taught that the physical realm is intrinsically evil and that the spirit can be freed from its bondage to physicality through the attainment of secret knowledge (or “gnosis”). They rejected the Christian doctrine of creation (saying that the material world is evil). They denied the incarnation (saying that Christ was a spiritual being who brought the secret knowledge and denying that He became “flesh”). And they denied the redemption (saying that sin is not a moral failure – since what we do in the flesh does not affect our spirits – but simply a lack of spiritual knowledge).”

Jennifer Trafton and Rebecca Colossanov wrote in “Gnostics: Did you Know?” that “The Gnostics sometimes claimed that secret truth had been handed down by one apostle to a select group of insiders. But Christian opponents like Irenaeus argued that the true church represented the teaching of all of the apostles passed on in many locations.”

The word “Gnosticism” comes from the Greek word gnosis, which means “knowledge.” Gnosticism rejects the doctrines of original sin, human depravity and salvation through the substitutionary death of Christ. It emphasizes transcendence through inward, intuitive knowledge, i.e., “gnosis,” of the “divine spark in each individual.” (source)

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Make no mistake. As a follower of Jesus Christ you are under attack. Constantly. Darkness came with the fall of man and it will loom as an ugly blossom  until the second coming. But how do you protect yourself from spiritual attack? How do you battle?

Be warned that there are many false teachers out there. The range and scope of these men and women are enormous. The Bible teaches that they disguise themselves as sheep among us but that they are wolves. How do they pull you away from truth? Remember that  they are not after unbelievers. Satan is content to let them wallow in their rebellion against God.  These false teachers, leaders, book writers, sensationalists, fake watchmen are professing Christians. How can you know them? Test them. Test their fruit. What are they concerned about?

True men and women of God are concerned about the souls of others. They know that truth is found in God’s Word. They will keep in you the Canon. They will always speak wisely in the ways of the Lord and lead you to put on Christ’s righteousness.

False teachers  will be after your money by selling countless books and DVD’s. When their false predictions do not come true they just write another book.

False teachers will lead you out of God’s Word by various means such as using non-biblical sources such as “hidden books”, Bible codes,  ancient writings or reliance on mystical  personal revelation or leadings. Many prophecy sites are notorious for these evil things.

One needs to stay in the Word of God which means an open Bible policy. (btw “The Message” is not God’s Word) Study scripture, meditate on it night and day, (read Psalm 119) and apply it to your life.

 

Today I present to you this article.

Source – Marsha West on Stand Up For the Truth

http://standupforthetruth.com/2014/12/fight-spiritual-forces-wickedness-win/

Fight the Spiritual Forces of Wickedness — and Win!

Florida’s Capitol displays a "nativity scene" from the Satanic Temple

Some of the news headlines this past week gave me reason for concern.  Here are a few of them:

  • Satanic Temple Approved for [Florida] Capitol Holiday Display
  • Legal group: repeal of D.C. amendment will have ‘severe impact on religious liberty’
  • ‘We love Jesus!’ – Iraqi children proclaim love for Christ in face of Islamic beheading
  • Court orders school district to pay $75,000 for denying boy use of girls’ restroom
  • Rick Warren’s call for Christians to unite with Catholics, ‘Holy Father’ raising concerns

Satanism…religious liberty…beheadings…gender confusion…ecumenicalism.  My tendency is to fret about such things, even though God reminds us in His Word: 

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil 4:6-7)

Likewise, 1 Peter 5:7 commands believers not to be anxious but to lay all our worries on God because He cares for us.  So is there any question that His people are to go to Him with the hard things, lay them at His feet, and trust that we can literally “let go and let God”?

Listen to the comforting words our Lord Jesus: 

And he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?  If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? (Luke 12:22-26 Also see Matthew 6:25-34) 

And… 

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. (Matthew 11:28-30)

black cloudBlack Clouds

What must the believer do when a black cloud forms over her head and follows her wherever she goes?

Finish article HERE

 

Search the Scriptures! Do not merely read them—search them! Look at the parallel passages—collate them—try to get the meaning of the Spirit upon any one Truth by looking at all the texts which refer to it. Read the Bible consecutively—do not merely read a verse here and there—that is not fair. You would never know anything about John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress if you opened it every morning and read six lines in any part and then shut it up again—you must read it all through if you want to know anything about it.

Get those books—say Mark or John. Read Mark right through from beginning to end. Do not stop with two or three verses, or a chapter—but try to know what Mark is aiming at. It is not fair to Paul to take his Epistle to the Romans and read one chapter—we are obliged to do it in public service—but if you want to get at Paul’s meaning, read the whole Epistle through as you would another letter.

Read the Bible in a common-sense way. Do not read it on your knees, as I have known some people do—it is an awkward posture—get into an easy chair and read it in comfort.

Pray after you have read it as much as you like but do not make a penance of what ought to be a pleasure. And when you are reading it, if you come to a knotty point, do not skip it. You all have some Christian friend who knows more than you do—go to him and try to get the thing explained. Above all, when you have read any passage and understand it, act it out and ask the Spirit of God to burn the meaning into your conscience till it is written on the fleshy tables of your heart.

Next, use good helps to your Bible. I do not know better helps for the common mass of people than, “The Confession of Faith,” or the little Catechism. With the little Catechism and texts of Scripture, any Believer, however ignorant, can, in a very short time, get a good view of the things of God. I believe that the Westminster Assembly’s Shorter Catechism has more divinity in it than nine out of ten of the modern printings. And if any person would know and understand that, he need not be afraid but what he will be able to give a reason for the hope that is in him, provided the hope is in him [and] be sure to attend a teaching ministry. . .

Then I should say, if you want to understand much, be much in prayer. Prayer cuts many a Gordian knot. Be much in communion with God. You cannot know God at a distance. Get close to Him—come to Him in the name of Jesus Christ—come very close to Him.

– C.H. Spurgeon (1834-1892)
taken from: KNOWLEDGE COMMENDED, Sermon No. 609, Delivered at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington on Sunday Morning, January 15, 1865.

THE OVERWHELMING ODDS ARE THAT YOUR PASTOR IS KEEPING THE TRUTH FROM YOU INSTEAD OF PREACHING ABOUT IT

by John Muncy

(**Warning!** Don’t Read This Post Unless You Are Willing To Face A Horrible Fact About The Majority Of Churches! I share these words with no malice, but with a genuine broken heart Please read it, not as a prideful put down, but as a humble cry for revival in our pulpits!)

Recent research confirms what I have been warning about for years. The majority of the pulpits of American Churches have unfaithful watchmen who won’t fully do their job as God’s spokesmen. (If you are not one of these preachers, or if you don’t have one of these preachers in your pulpit, you are rare indeed.) I’m thankful for the many faithful men of God that serve the Lord and their people with an authentic heart of love for the truth, and the willingness to stanchly proclaim the truth in love. I want to make it very clear that this is not a put down towards preachers, but a clear trumpet blast to wake-up and become alarmed at what we are seeing!

Carolyn and I were riding together a couple of nights ago, listening to a preacher on our local Christian station. This man, who is now gone to be with the Lord, was so powerful and straight with his message. He did not mix words, but laid out the truth, without fear or compromise. When he was finished, I turn to Carolyn and asked, “Now why can’t we find more men of God like that today? Why are pastors so afraid to tell the truth, even when they know it is in the Bible?”

It is so troublesome to me to watch, in over four decades of rubbing shoulders with pastors all across this country, a developing trend among our church leaders to minimize the message at the expense of having a “successful” church. I say this with a broken heart; I fear for the direction our ministers are taking our churches.

George Barna is the foremost researcher of modern Christianity in the country. He recently spoke about a two-year research project studying why modern-day pastors and churches are so silent regarding political issues. The result of his research only confirms what I have been trying to tell people for years. (It is available in a book entitled, “U-Turn: Restoring America to the Strength of its Roots”)

According to Barna’s two-year investigation, about 90% of pastors believe that the Bible speaks to key issues of our day, and yet, disappointedly, less than 10% say that they, as pastors, speak about them from the pulpit.

That 90% of America’s pastors are not addressing any of the most important issues affecting Christian people’s political or societal lives should cause alarms to go off – but that is not going to happen – BECAUSE THE CHURCHES APPEARS TO LOVE IT THAT WAY…

Jeremiah 5:31 “The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and MY PEOPLE LOVE TO HAVE IT SO…”

This is very alarming to me as an evangelist. I have visited churches from one end of our nation to the other, working with both conservative and liberal views, but I can never remember a time like this. When we see our pastors, the leaders, the shepherds of God’s little flock, ignoring the issues that face them day by day, I can’t seem to understand why this is not being openly rebuked and challenged!

Did you get that? 90% of America’s pastors say they KNOW that the Bible speaks to all of these issues, but they are deliberately determined NOT to teach Biblical principles in answer to them! That is an amazing admission! It would be one thing if the pastors would claim that none of these issues have any relevance with the Word of God, but these men are admitting that it does, but they continue to deliberately choose NOT to teach the Scriptural principles from their pulpits!

Does this alarm you? Does this bother you? Understand, we are not talking about IGNORANT pastors who don’t know about these things – we are talking about DISOBEDIENT pastors – who refuse to speak up! They choose to remain silent!

But, according to Barna, the report found that when these pastors were asked how to know if their church was “successful”, Barna found five factors that the vast majority of the pastor turned to:

1) Attendance – how many go on Sunday morning
2) Giving – how much money is coming in
3) Number of programs – how busy they are
4) Number of staff – how many associates serves you
5) Square footage of the facilities – how big is your building

What does all this reveal?? It reveals that the majority of pastors are more concerned about being “successful” than they are being TRUTHFUL. They believe if they tell their congregations the truth, their churches will not be as “successful”! This is how hell is lying to preachers! And it’s working! But where are these men getting these ideas, because they are NOT found in the Bible?

Like it or not, our pastors are trying to “keep up with the Jones’s”! They look around and see all the megachurches on TV, they watch these “big-time” preachers with their “big-time” crowds, making “big-time” money, living in “big-time” houses, driving “big time” cars and having a “big-time” name and their knees buckle under the temptation to follow the latest fad that has taken the church by storm.

ASK ALMOST ANY PASTOR if he has read anything recently on church growth and he’ll look at you like you’re insane, “Well, sure I have – several books!” Ask that same pastor if he has read anything recently on prayer, holiness or revival and he’ll look at you like you’re insane, “Why would I want to read about that?”

I’ve been to hundreds of the pastor’s meetings, the luncheons, the conferences, the conventions, and they’re all the same. I just stand around and listen to these guys talk “preacher talk”…they’re all comparing notes with each other, with the same questions time after time: “How many are you running now?”, or “How big is your sanctuary?”, or “What’s your budget for this year?”, or “How many do you have on your staff now?”

Most of these men are mesmerized by the likes of Joel Osteen, Rick Warren or Bill Hybels – these men are the “heroes” of today’s pulpiteers, or should I say, “puppeteers”. I’M AFRAID WE’VE EXCHANGED PROPHETS FOR PUPPETS IN MOST OF OUR PULPITS!

(I know, some of you are mad because I just named names, but please, keep reading…)

What we have today are men who have exchanged truth for “what works”. The best they can do is the only way they’ve been trained – just mimic the tactics and strategies of other “successful church growth experts” and you too can have a “successful church”. And what one thing is identical in the Osteen, Warren, and Hybels approach? The pastors avoid controversy like the plague!!

Remember, they are taught that one must realize that the goal is NOT being faithful to Biblical principles; the goal is building a “successful” church. Ladies and Gentlemen; the “success bug” has bitten these guys and they can’t stop now.

It is time for Christians to acknowledge that these ministers are not PASTORS of God’s flock; they are CEOs OF A BUSINESS ADVENTURE. They are not BIBLE TEACHERS; they are PERFORMERS. They are not SHEPHERDS, who would lay down their lives; they are HIRELINGS, who run from conflicts!

It is also time for Christians to be honest with themselves: do they want a pastor who desires to be faithful to the scriptures, or do they want a pastor who is simply trying to be “successful?”

BE HONEST, BECAUSE EVERY CHURCH DESERVES ITS PASTOR!

George Barna’s research blows the “ignorance” excuse out of the water. Again, it is not ignorance; it is deliberate disobedience. He goes on to say, “Now all of those things [the five points of success listed above] are good measures, except for one tiny fact: Jesus didn’t die for any of them.” Wow! Somebody better pay attention!

How different the church is today! It looks very little like the original! The preachers don’t look the same either. When John the Baptist preached, he didn’t need to give out “free camel rides” to get a crowd – he preached REPENTANCE – and it got his head cut off. Was that a successful minister by today’s standards? NO! But Jesus thought he was successful! (Matthew 11:11, Luke 7:28)

When the Apostle Paul listed his ministerial pedigree and credentials in 2 Corinthians 11, it looks nothing like our “big time” preachers today! Here is what Paul’s looked like:

*Stripes above measure
*In prisons frequently
*In deaths often
*Beaten with rods
*Stoned
*Perils
*Weariness
*Painfulness
*Hunger and thirst
*Cold and nakedness

I don’t see attendance, offerings, programs, staff, or square footage in that list at all; do you? Maybe Paul lived by a different standard then today’s hotshot preachers!

When Paul wrote his own epitaph, it read, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” (II Timothy 4:7). He didn’t say, “I had a large congregation, we had big offerings, we had a lot of programs, I had a large staff, and we had large facilities.”

In the world of “Pimping Preachers” and “Life Coaches in the Pulpits”, men in the ministry like John the Baptist and the Apostle Paul must be labeled as a dismal failure! I wonder how many church pulpit committees would even consider the pastoral résumé such as what the Apostle Paul wrote above?

Like it or not, I’m convinced that America’s problems are directly due to the deliberate disobedience of America’s pastors – and the willingness of the Christians in the pews who tolerate the disobedience of their pastors, who are more concerned over their tax-exempt status than they are at proclaiming the truth! God help us!

 

*update*

It was brought to my attention that he does endorse Joyce Meyer though which is problematic.

http://apprising.org/2012/12/18/ravi-zacharias-praises-word-faith-preacher-joyce-meyer/

*******************

What a wonderful thing it is when a known leader retracts endorsements of false religious teachers. Lighthouse Trails reports that this has happened with Ravi Zacharias. It is important to also report the good news along with the distressing. Here is the article.

********

It is not often that Lighthouse Trails can report on a major Christian leader actually renouncing earlier endorsements of the contemplative mystics. Rick Warren, Beth Moore, Chuck Swindoll, David Jeremiah, and many others have written books that have promoted contemplative teachers, and Lighthouse Trails has documented many of these situations. And in every case, even though each of these leaders learned about our challenge, none of them has ever come forth and admitted they were wrong. But in a 2012 online interview by an independent blog, Ravi Zacharias was asked the following question:

If in your book, you wrote how Eastern mysticism is completely erroneous, why did you state in one of your speaking engagements that Henri Nouwen was one of the greatest saints who lived in our time, when Nouwen is known to have been influenced by Thomas Merton and others who practice Eastern mysticism?
Zacharias answered the question thus:
I regret having said that. At the time, I based my comment on Nouwen’s story of the prodigal son which I felt was on target. But later as I learned more about Nouwen and Merton, I found their writings to be very troubling. I believe that doctrinally, Nouwen lost his way. I used to read Malcolm Muggeridge too until I read his book, “Jesus Rediscovered”. Muggeridge was morally and culturally a good thinker, but he was not theologically sound.
 A little background from our perspective: In 2007, Lighthouse Trails wrote “Ravi Zacharias Ministries Points to Nouwen, Merton, and Foster.”   Our article stated:
Go to Lighthouse Trails to finish HERE

Hillsong, Homosexuality and the Shrinking Gospel I have said this plenty of times before and I will say it again: when you are leading a megachurch, there is massive temptation to keep the masses happy and the money flowing by telling people what they want to hear instead of what they need to hear. The fear not to alienate anyone or offend anyone or upset anyone can almost become a god, with everything done to keep the masses comfortable, happy and entertained. Thus no controversial subjects will be raised, no hard doctrines spoken to, and no political controversies will be courted. This is how you can keep the crowds coming back. Thus in the biggest church in America and the biggest church in Australia, you simply will not hear anything about the most important moral, social and even theological issues of our day. You will certainly not hear about such controversial issues as homosexuality. Of course this has been standard operating procedure for megachurch pastors like Joel Osteen and Brian Houston for years now. I have written about both often, including on their refusal to proclaim biblical truth in these key areas. See here for example:

Finish article HERE

We have millions of believers who may have been saved decades ago, but are still acting like spiritual infants. They have not grown much, they have not progressed much in their walk with Christ, and their spiritual condition is rather anaemic and shallow.

They have not become genuine disciples in other words, and they are still stranded in a spiritual infancy. They can’t even handle the deep truths of God as revealed in Scripture. Indeed, many of them hardly even read their Bibles, barely pray, or engage in in-depth fellowship.

No wonder they are still floundering around as babies. They have not moved beyond the nursery. They are all stuck in day care. They are permanent residents of Christian kindergarten. Sadly this is so very widespread today in our churches.

As I said, there is a place for infancy. When you are a spiritual baby, then spiritual milk is of course quite appropriate. Peter speaks to this truth here: “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good” (1 Peter 2:2-3).

But all babies are meant to move on. No one wants to see a ten-year-old or twenty-year-old baby in the physical world. Nor is it fitting in the spiritual world. That is why Paul chews out the Corinthians in this regard. It is time for them to move on:

“Brothers and sisters, I could not address you as people who live by the Spirit but as people who are still worldly—mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. You are still worldly” (1 Corinthians 3:1-3).

The writer to the Hebrews makes the same case: “We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Therefore let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity” (Heb 5:11-6:1).

The question arises here: just whose fault is this? I would argue it is the fault of both individual Christians in the pews, and the pastors in the pulpits. Regardless of what is being taught from the pulpits, believers have a responsibility for their own personal growth and development. They cannot blame the pastor or the church for their own unwillingness to take the necessary steps to achieve genuine spiritual growth.

We all know that regular reading of the Word, regular prayer times, and regular times of corporate fellowship and worship are essential in the spiritual development of any believer. Without taking the basic and essential steps of growth and discipleship, we will remain spiritual pygmies.

And far too many Christians feed only on spiritual junk food. Instead of proper Christian nourishment the regular diet of many is pop Christianity. Books about being a better you, having a nice self-image, and even losing weight for Jesus, make up far too many reading lists of emaciated believers today.

 

Complete article HERE

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