Loyalty

 

Without loyalty no human enterprise can survive. We’ve been witnesses to the damage disloyalty can do to a nation.  We’ve seen the very fabric of our Constitutional Republic attacked by disloyal government officials who transferred their loyalty from the people to persons.  As children of God we have to continuously examine ourselves to see where our loyalties lie.  Are we loyal to the Savior or are we loyal to a religious enterprise?  Jesus Christ proved to all mankind His demand, His command is loyalty to God, nothing else will be acceptable to Him.

Jesus Christ constantly confronted the disloyalty of the religious hypocrites during His glorious walk upon this earth so many centuries ago.  He confronted both layman and leader alike proving their loyalties did not lie with God our Heavenly Father.  He proved their disloyalty through their rejection of Him, and their disbelief in God’s Holy Word the Holy Scriptures.

42 “But I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you.  43 I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, him you will receive.  44 How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that comes from the only God?  45 Do not think that I shall accuse you to the Father; there is one who accuses you—Moses, in whom you trust.  46 For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote about Me.  47 But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?”  John 5:42-47

 Beloved are we like the Jews of Jesus’ day?  Do we desire the honor of men rather than the honor of God?  What is the test that will examine us?  The test that Jesus applied to the Jews is the same test that Jesus applies to us.  Do we believe the Holy Scriptures?  Do we believe His Holy Word, the entire canon of the Scriptures found in the Old and New Testaments?  Do we know within our hearts, minds and souls the Bible is the holy, inspired, infallible, inerrant, preserved Word of God?  Is the Bible our rule for faith and practice?  Do we love God’s Holy Word more than the word or work of man?

Doubt of God’s Holy Word is disloyalty to Him.  As testified by our gracious Savior doubt of or unbelief in God’s Holy Word arises from disloyalty to Christ Jesus Himself.  We can be serious students of the Holy Scriptures but if that study doesn’t bring us to Christ it is an exercise in futility.  All study of God’s Word should always lead us to Christ because of our loyalty to God our Father.

37 “And the Father Himself, who sent Me, has testified of Me.  You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His form.  38 But you do not have His word abiding in you, because whom He sent, Him you do not believe.  39 You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.  40 But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.  41 I do not receive honor from men.”  John 5:37-41

 The subtle deception of our own hearts is a terrifying thing and has terrifying consequences.  Beloved, Jesus Christ was speaking to the religious zealots of His country, Israel.  They were sure they were right with God because of their superstitious study of the Scriptures and approval of one another.  Things have not changed.  Superstitions abound within the Christian community and many are assured of their salvation because they approve the right people.  But that’s not salvation.  That’s not loyalty to God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ.  Jesus our wonderful Savior defines loyalty and warns about the consequences of disloyalty to Him and His Word.

20 “For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does; and He will show Him greater works than these, that you may marvel.  21 For as the Father raises the dead and gives life to them, even so the Son gives life to whom He will.  22 For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son, 23 that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father.  He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.  24 Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.  25 Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live.  26 For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, 27 and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man.  28 Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice 29 and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.  30 I can of Myself do nothing.  As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.  John 5:20-30

So where our loyalties lie have eternal consequences.  Do we truly love Jesus Christ?  That’s what our Father in Heaven demands, commands.  He sent His Son as Savior of the world, no one else fulfills that office, that high heavenly calling.  So where do your loyalties lie? Are you content with apostate religious organizations led by heretics?  Do you spend your time imbibing false teaching in the myriads of books being hawked to those who name the name of Christ?  Do you cause division by who you chose to follow?  Jesus Christ is the only who saves us, His Holy Word the Bible is the only source of God’s salvation message.  Our loyalties must lie with God our Father, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Scriptures.

16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  18 He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.  19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.  20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light lest his deeds should be exposed.  21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”  John 3:16-21

 Lord Jesus Christ may we Your children be loyal followers of You.  May we turn from all evil and cling to You by the power of the Holy Spirit. Renew within us the joy of our salvation.  Thank you Lord God Almighty.  Amen

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God’s Love

In order to get help, you have to know you have a problem.  Recently, I had a couple of non-serious health issues that were concerning and somewhat debilitating, but didn’t make me want to go to the doctor right away, so I suffered for a while.  Finally, I asked the Lord to specifically help me by showing me what was going on through looking up my symptoms on a google search.  In both instances the first article proved to be answer to my prayer.  The first illness was cured by seeing the chiropractor; the second illness was cured through doubling the amount of a supplement I was already taking.  God’s love is amazing, but we do have to acknowledge we need His help.

Mankind is in dire need of the Savior, but so few are aware of their need, so they don’t ask for help.  How does anyone come to the knowledge they are in trouble and need help?  Well there has to be some humility and honesty.  But you know and I know, that’s a big problem right there because we are really good at obfuscation and sanctimony.  Left on our own we are without recourse.  Not only do we have the problem of self-righteous self-deception, there is also an enemy whose main purpose is to deceive.  Without divine intervention we are at the mercy of ourselves and our foe, we need the love of God to break through, show us our condition and our remedy.

Recently, I watched a video that claimed to give the true Gospel of Jesus Christ, however it was lacking some key components.  The Word of God was not proclaimed, the Gospel of Jesus Christ was not shared, the ministry of the Holy Spirit was not referenced nor relied upon.  The production was moving, filled with imagery and reasoning, but the power of God was absent.  The narrator gave a wrong diagnosis and a deceptive cure.  Man’s efforts to bring sinners to know their need will always produce false converts. This is a work for God and God alone.

Scripture from the masterful book of Romans outlines not only each and every human’s need but also the remedy.  God is so good and kind to us that we are not left to our own resources or the lies of the enemy, He graciously catalogs our desperate need and magnanimously has given us His treatment for our disease of depravity; all we have to do is believe.

Before Paul, by the Holy Spirit, tells us of our need, he shares his confidence in the gospel of Jesus Christ, he tells us it is the power of God for our salvation.  It is after this declaration the Holy Spirit through Paul tells us why we need the power of the gospel for our salvation, for healing.

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.  17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”  18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness.  Romans 1:16-18

       We need the gospel of Jesus Christ for salvation because God’s wrath is directed against us due to our unrighteousness, ungodliness and suppression of His truth in unrighteousness.  Just in case there are any who think they aren’t really that bad, God through Paul lays out the case against each and every human being.  He broadly convicts in chapters one and two for both Gentile and Jew, then lays out the universal case against sinners in chapter three.  It is in this chapter that Jesus Christ also makes clear what He has done to rescue us from our hopeless and debilitating ailment.

9 What then? Are we better than they? Not at all.  For we have previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin.  10 As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one; 11 There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God. 12 They have all turned aside; they have become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.”  13 “Their throat is an open tomb; With their tongues they have practiced deceit”; “The poison of asps is under the lips”; 14 “Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”  15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood; 16 Destruction and misery are in their ways; 17 And the way of peace they have not known.” 18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”  Romans 3:9-18

It seems we live at a time when all pretense for decency has been cast aside and humanity has eagerly embraced this biblical definition of themselves and don’t even blush!  I think that’s a good definition of a sinner, someone who does evil and does not even blush about its wickedness.  However, this inability to blush means they are completely unaware of their need for the Savior Jesus Christ.  Every single human being is cursed with this malady. It is only once an invalid awakens to their debilitation that they are ready for the gospel call of Jesus Christ, the gospel given in Romans chapter three, the cure for our disease of rebellious sin against Holy God.

21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe.  For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate both His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.  Romans 3:21-26

Sinners who know their sin and anticipate God’s wrath find these verses particularly glorious.  Jesus Christ takes away our sin and gives us His righteousness instead.  How does He do this?  Is it through our efforts?  No, it has nothing to do with us other than we must believe in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.  This passage emphasizes our salvation is only through faith in Jesus Christ, not what we do.  All we need is the knowledge of our illness and the realization of God’s cure.

So, what do we have to believe to be saved?  First, we have to know we are in desperate straits because our sin has placed us under God’s wrath.  We should be filled with great fear and shame, fear because eternity in hell-fire is the punishment for sin, and shame because God knows every sin we’ve ever committed.  This knowledge should drive us to meekly beseech God for His forgiveness and grace.  This great desire for God’s forgiveness and grace should bring us to trust His Son Jesus Christ our Savior for His deliverance and salvation.

So, what must we believe about Jesus Christ?  Numerous verses in the Scriptures teach us what we must believe.  These verses reduce the truth of God’s Word to the essentials we must believe about Jesus Christ in order to be saved.  These verses are found in the book of Romans and the book of 1 Corinthians.

8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): 9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.  10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.  11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”  12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.  13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”  Romans 10:8-13

 1 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. 1 Corinthians 15:1-5

      To be healed of our disease, we must believe that Jesus Christ died upon the cross for our sins, that He really died and was buried, but then He rose again from the dead the third day.  We must believe this in our hearts and confess it with our mouths.  We must recognize our desperate need and call upon Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord.   Jesus Christ the Son of God walked this earth as a Man revealing God to us.  But when He died in our stead upon the cross, He took the punishment we so rightly deserve.  However, since He is God the Son of God, death could not hold Him, so He rose again on the third day the Conqueror over sin, death & hell.  Jesus Christ proved this by appearing in His flesh and blood to those who had seen Him die.  He did all this for you and for me because of God’s love.

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God’s Good Word: The Issue

My beloved brethren if Jesus Christ, God the Son of God, believed the copies of Scripture that He had available while He walked the earth to be the very Word of God should we stand with those who contend that God’s Word is inspired only in the original autographs.

holdingforthhisword

Much mockery abounds with regard to which version best represents God’s Holy Word.  Well, that one is easy, it is the version that is God’s Holy Word, preserved, inerrant, infallible, inspired.  However, the visible church gleefully joins the herald of the resounding chorus that belches forth a cacophony of contradictory verses and passages from the counterfeit Alexandrian texts that pose as versions of the Bible.  There are grievous consequences for this blatant belligerence against the truth of the Scriptures preserved for us in the Received Text and faithfully translated in the KJV.  The end result is that the Scriptures lose their preeminence in the hearts and minds of Christians, and everything, all decisions, become simply the matter of one’s own personal opinion, which we know always results in sinful rebellion against our Holy God.  What else could it do?  Then the light becomes darkness and there is no preserving salt…

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Warning

Given what’s been going on in the world lately & the globalists refusal to confront the truth, this needs to be reblogged!

holdingforthhisword

9 They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief.  10 The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining:  11 And the LORD shall utter His voice before His army: for His camp is very great: for He is strong that executes His word: for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it? 12 Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to Me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:  13 And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger…

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The Grid: 4

Hello beloved friends, fellow believers, I am reblogging this post because it’s getting a lot of action right now, there’s quite a bit of interest. May God continue to keep His beloved children, redeemed sinners saved by faith in Jesus Christ, from the deceit of the enemy of our souls. God bless you all. Amen!

holdingforthhisword

Jesus warned us about the results of the deception that would define the end times before His return.  9“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake.  10And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.  11Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.  12And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.  13But he who endures to the end shall be saved.”  Matthew 24:9-13                                                                                 7“And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night…

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That None

What is most important to God our Father during this dispensation?  What work does He consider to have the greatest gravitas? Our Heavenly Father has a heart that beats for the salvation of sinners.  In the Gospel of Luke the holy angel shared the good news with the shepherds.

10 Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.  11 For there is born to you this day in the city of David of Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be the sign to you:  You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:  14 “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” Luke 2:10-14

God’s heart for the salvation of sinners is widespread throughout the Word of God.  Again, in the Gospel of Luke God expresses His desire for the salvation of sinners through His servant Simeon.

25 And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.  26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.  27 So he came by the Spirit into the temple.  And when the parents brought in the Child Jesus, to do for Him according to the custom of the law, 28 he took Him up in his arms and blessed God and said: 29 “Lord, now You are letting Your servant depart in peace, According to Your word; 30 For my eyes have seen Your salvation 31 Which You have prepared before the face of all peoples, 32 A light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, And the glory of Your people Israel. Luke 2:25-32

Almighty God sent His Son Jesus Christ to be the Savior of the world, there is no other way for anyone to be saved. Repentant faith in Jesus Christ and belief in Him is God’s means of saving sinners.  More than that, we must believe the truth about Him. We must believe that Jesus Christ died upon the cross for our sins and rose again from the dead for our resurrection and that He is coming again to set up His kingdom upon this earth. Every sinner who believes in Him has eternal life, a blessed life of God’s intimate care for them as they traverse this earth until taken home to heaven.  Every sinner who rejects the Son has the wrath of God abiding upon them, and if they die without repentant faith, then that sinner will endure eternal damnation in fiery hell.

9 In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.  10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.  11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also out to love one another.  12 No one has seen God at any time.  If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us.  13 By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.  14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. 1 John 5:9-14

9 “If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well, 10 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.  11 This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’  12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:9-12

14 “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.  16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  18 He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God…36 “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who doest not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”  John 3:14-18 & 36

24 “And they shall go forth and look Upon the corpses of the men Who have transgressed against Me.  For their worm does not die, And their fire is not quenched. They shall be an abhorrence to all flesh.” Isaiah 66:24

God’s will is that everyone should repent and put their faith Jesus Christ.  He sent His Son Jesus Christ to prove that and He says as much in the New Testament.  Here are a couple of passages that declare His heart towards sinners.

3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.  5 For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time,..1 Timothy 2:3-6

9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.  2 Peter 3:9

 Considering God’s fervent love for sinners and everything He’s done to accomplish the salvation of sinners, what should our response be to any ism that specializes in killing people and vehemently attacks Christians and their faith?  Think about the horrific despotic isms of the past century and their mass murdering of millions of people.  Communism and Nazism were responsible for over 100 million murders in the 20th century, while they also systematically opposed Christianity, especially outlawing biblical faith.  Thwarting God’s will in the salvation of sinners is the work of the devil.  Scripture specifically states the devil comes to steal, kill and destroy.  Isms are Satan’s opposition to God’s work of saving sinners.

In the 21st century the most dangerous ism facing humanity is Islamism.  Islamists brutalize people for no other reason than that they are women, children, or non-Islamists.  They behead, burn alive, disfigure, maim, rape, enslave, oppress people; people whom Christ came to save!  These are brutal beasts who care nothing for humanity but have a satanically inspired fervor for their benighted religion started by a murdering pedophile.  Their cruelty knows no bounds and they are equally cruel to animals.

The above are their actions one on one, but they also mass murder “infidels” by blowing them up, or running them over, or attacking with guns.  Islamists have no place in the civilized world and should be kept in the Middle East where they belong.  Wherever they go crime, terrorism, rape, brutality, hatred, increase.  They are maniacal in their adherence to their false cultic religion & hate anyone who isn’t them!  They especially despise “people of the Book” Jews and Christians.  Do you remember other isms that attacked Jews and Christians?  That would be the Nazis and Communists.  If we are believers in Christ Jesus and desire to see sinners saved, then we must oppose any spread of Islam beyond the borders of the Middle East.  Even Muslims in the Middle East oppose these dangerously brutal people.  God’s Word aptly describes Islamists in 2 Peter.

10 and especially those who walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority.  They are presumptuous, self-willed.  They are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries, 11 whereas angels, who are greater in power and might, do not bring a reviling accusation against them before the Lord.  12 But these, like natural brute beasts made to be caught and destroyed, speak evil of the things they do not understand and will utterly perish in their own corruption, 2 Peter 2:10-12

What I am saying will go against much of what is being spread throughout the church today, but realize the church has been infiltrated by liberals who care nothing for the salvation of sinners.  They are the ones who supported communists and now support socialists.  They care only for their false teaching that supports everyone who despises the gospel. As believers in Jesus Christ we must do all we can to support our God who cares about the salvation of sinners. That is His heart and should be our heart too! We must not only preach the gospel but must also fight against everyone who seeks to destroy humanity & enslave them to satanically designed Isms.  May God empower us for His high calling.

15 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. 1 Timothy 1:15

Jesus Christ may we as Your people, Your beloved sheep, stay true to You by sharing the gospel and fighting for the protection of our ability to share the gospel with sinners. Bless us mightily through Your Holy Spirit. Amen!

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Spiritual Abuse

Our glorious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has much to say about spiritual abuse and has left for His children the record of His words regarding this vital matter in His Word the Holy Bible.  Most of the passages that deal with spiritual abuse are taken from Matthew chapter 23, but there will be other passages from the New Testament that buttress what He taught since in reality all of the Holy Bible is the Word of Jesus Christ to His children.

The first warning sign that you are involved with those who are abusing you spiritually is that they are overly zealous and their zeal has very little to do with God’s purposes, with God’s glory.

15 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves”.  Matthew 23:15

There is a lot to discover from this short passage.  First, Jesus Christ is addressing the religious leaders of His day, the religious elites who had spiritual insight and wisdom, although it didn’t come from God.  These were religious men who were respected within their communities, you can imagine their chagrin and the shock of their followers when Jesus Christ so powerfully rebuked them for their hypocrisy.  Their zealousness wasn’t a God given love for the souls of lost men, no they wanted to make followers of their religion not God’s truth.  They were sons of hell and their followers were even worse.  So beware of zealots advocating for their particular teaching or false religion but not the truth of the Word of God.

17 They zealously court you, but for no good; yes, they want to exclude you, that you may be zealous for them.  Galatians 4:17

Next heavy-handed false teachers command their followers to observe customs, religious dogmas & dictates that overburden the souls of any who follow them.

1 Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples, 2 saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.  3 Therefore whatever the tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works, for they say and do not do.  4 For they bind heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their little fingers”.  Matthew 23:1-4

The religious leaders of Christ’s day did teach the Old Testament, and when they taught it accurately, the people were to obey them.  But when they taught them to do things contrary to God’s Word, the people were to ignore them.  Their false teachings were designed to instill feelings of guilt within their followers.  The scribes and Pharisees set up lofty standards they themselves could not fulfill, they didn’t even try, their goal was to keep the people burdened with a sense of guilt so they would come to them to learn how they could overcome that guilt.  They laid a trap of guilt upon those who followed them.  The religious elites had them right where they wanted them.  The same is true today, I have seen this played out in a church we used to attend.  Fortunately for me, Christ kept me from this crippling guilt trip because He has assured me that His grace is sufficient for me.  Jesus Christ has set us free from any man centered observances for absolution.  His death & resurrection are sufficient to cleanse us from all sin, establish us in His truth, and strengthen us to obey His Word.  Manmade religion binds the hearts and minds of men.

12 As many as desire to make a good showing in the flesh, these would compel you to be circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.  13 For not even those who are circumcised keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh.  14 But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.  15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation.  And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.  Galatians 6:12-16

Spiritual abuse by false teachers leads to eternal damnation.  False teachers blind their followers with their manmade dogma and doctrine that destroys God given thirst for salvation by substituting a spurious way that appeals to the flesh ensuring eternal destruction in fiery hell.

13 “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in”.  Matthew 23:13

Do you ever wonder why so-called Bible teachers will give chapter and verse but never quote the passage?  They have their own agenda which doesn’t include your salvation.  If they don’t quote Scripture, then flee away.  Even if they do quote the Scripture be very wary if they are trying to convince you of certain doctrines by quoting some passages but ignoring others.  To avoid these treacherous deceivers, we must be well-versed in the Holy Bible.  In other words, read and study God’s Word for self-protection and to help others!

19 And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning sun rises in your hearts; 20 knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, 21 for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.  1 But there were false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teaches among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.  2 Peter 1:19-2:1

False teachers, spiritual abusers, put on a good show to take advantage of you, but know their only motive ever is their own acclaim, glory and material enrichment.  They love the praise of men, but aren’t willing to be humble servants of Christ Jesus, to receive blessing from Him rather than ill-gotten gain in the here and now.  They especially prey upon the old and infirm.  Beware of their conceit and greed!

5 “But all their works they do to be seen by men.  They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments.  6 They love the best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues, 7 greetings in the marketplaces, and to be called by men, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi.’ 8 But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi’; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren.  9 Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 10 And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ.  11 But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.  12 And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted…14 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  For you devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers.  Therefore you will receive greater condemnation.”  Matthew 23:5-12 & 14

Today’s scribes and Pharisees have huge entourages, body guards, humongous bank accounts, enormous numbers of fans.  They rob widows and take advantage of hurting believers.  They pray lofty pratting prayers offending God in heaven and deceiving man on earth.  Their spiritual abuse knows no bounds because they are driven by over-preening pride and rapacious greed.  Beloved brethren do not make yourself a victim of their devilish malicious evil intent.  God’s servants will always be humble, loving, well versed in Scripture, filled with the Holy Spirit, doing the will of God.

1 Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart.  2 But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness nor handling the word of God deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God.  2 Corinthians 4:1-2

Flee from them if you see any of these signs of spiritual abuse: inordinate fleshly zeal, unbiblical demands, damnable heresies, self-promoting money grubbing lectures!  These false teachers will only abuse you; stay away and do all that you can to rescue others from their grasp!  True servants of Jesus Christ are driven by God’s truth by the power of the Holy Spirit for His glory and His love of His children.  Never forget that!

20 For you put up with it if one brings you into bondage, if one devours you, if one takes from you, if one exalts himself, if one strikes you on the face.  21 To our shame I say that we were too weak for that! But in whatever anyone is bold—I speak foolishly—I am bold also.  22 Are they Hebrews?  So am I.  Are the Israelites?  So am I.  Are they the seed of Abraham?  So am I.  23 Are they ministers for Christ?—I speak as a fool—I am more; in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often. 2 Corinthians 11:20-23 

Lord Jesus Christ the deceivers far outnumber the genuine within the church today.  May Your beloved redeemed ones be wary, testing EVERYTHING, by the Word of God through the power of the Holy Spirit!  Bless us for Your glory and our edification in Your glorious name Jesus Christ we pray.  Amen!

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