Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers, not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. Let no one deceive you in any way.
For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God. (2 Thessalonians 2:1-4)
Proclaiming The Truth Of Scripture Is the Antidote To Antichrist Doctrine
Leaving aside his penchant for reading mystics, some 60 years ago A.W. Tozer was dead-on-target when he wrote the following. In fact, I offer that there may be even more truth today in what he says below. While commenting upon Exodus 3:9-10 Tozer told us:
Yes, if evangelical Christianity is to stay alive, it must have men again—the right kind of men. It must repudiate the weaklings who dare not speak out, and it must seek in prayer and much humility the coming again of men of the stuff of which prophets and martyrs are made.
God will hear the cries of His people as He heard the cries of Israel in Egypt and He will send deliverance by sending deliverers. It is His way. And when the deliverers come…they will be men of God and men of courage. They will have God on their side because they are careful to stay on God’s side.1
We live in a time of a skewed cycle of phony tolerance. This makes the professing Christian community ripe for rebellion against the final authority of God’s Word. However, compromise in Christ’s Name—though it is not actual Christian activity—has always existed within the visible church of our Lord. Consider this passage of Scripture, which instructs us that—rather than embracing false teachers and their mythology—we are instead to confront them:
As I urged you when I was going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus so that you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine, nor to devote themselves to myths and endlessgenealogies, which promote speculations rather than the stewardship from God that is by faith. The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
Certain persons, by swerving from these, have wandered away into vain discussion, desiring to be teachers of the law, without understanding either what they are saying or the things about which they make confident assertions. (1 Timothy 1:3-7)
So, the following comment from Charles Spurgeon on these much-neglected verses, concerning the original liberals of his day, is a much needed reminder today:
How remarkable the times repeat themselves. When the same evils come, we must apply to them the same remedies. When a disease appears that has done deadly mischief in past times, physicians inquire for medicines that on a former occasion curbed that enemy.
We are bound to do the same in spiritual matters. We must see what Paul did in his day when the malaria of false doctrine is in the air… Let us not talk of inventing wise measures for the for the present distress in the spiritual world, but let us use the great remedy that was so effectual in Paul’s day.2
Submerging The Gospel For Comfort At The Expense Of Holiness
With all of this in mind then, here’s an important meditation that concerns the person of our Lord, Christ Jesus of Nazareth, and His glorious Gospel. You see, we already know that the other Jesuses3 in the Kingdom of the Cults are false; well, at least we used to. These are actually fairly easy to spot—although sadly even this is becoming more clouded with many evangelical leaders embracing The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons) as the so-called “fourth Abrahamic religion.” I showed you an early example of this back in 2010 in the Apprising Ministries piece SBC’S Richard Land Says Mormonism Is Fourth Abrahamic Faith.
For some evangelicals, it’s even worse; consider that Living Spiritual Teacher and leading Emerging Church guru Brian McLaren descended another level lower and even includes Mormonism as a part of Christianity, which you can see for yourself in The New Christianity Of Brian McLaren And The Emerging Church. However, in the real world, we really may look at this area of deception as the Jr. High/Middle School level of Satan’s myriad number of tricks. Remember, the Bible says the Christian is not ignorant of [the devil’s] designs (cf. 2 Corinthians 2:11). If you need some assistance in spotting the counterfeit Christ of the cults you’ll find this helpful: Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up?
Now we come to the next level of Satan’s deadly deceptions—the liberal churches of the mainline denominations—which have already apostatized long ago. These would e.g. comprise the Episcopal Church, the Congregational Church, the Methodist Church—large sections of the American Baptist Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and ever-increasing parts of the Presbyterian communities, just to name a few notables. When we reach this level—essentially the High School of Satan’s perverted Kingdom—we are now dealing with apostates in leadership positions as evidenced by the issues I’ve been covering at AM.
There is a bit more difficulty with deceptions in this area; like their fellow cultists, these people are also using the same words and terminology that true followers of Christ use. But you see, many of these apostates are doing so from respected platforms that are considered within the Christian church community of our Lord. So this means that one must be more knowledgeable in the Scriptures—in systematic theology—and in the wisdom of the Holy Spirit in order to be able to decipher their false teachings and to see through their phony Christian façades. Which now brings us around to a rather startling thought. It has rapidly become apparent that the “middle of the road” churches—what we would even call mainstream evangelical churches—have also begun to apostatize.
I guess we shouldn’t really be surprised as my opening text does say — Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day — [the Second Advent of Christ Jesus the Lord] — will not come, unless the rebellion comes first (v.3). The King James Version reads — for that Day shall not come, except there come a falling away first. It’s way past time that people come to realize that even the Jesus preached by many mainstream postmodern postevangelical churches—supposedly bringing the Kingdom here now—is also but a figment of men’s imagination.4 It’s here where we come into Satan’s college level deceptions, and those who have eyes to see, are now beginning to understand just how far those professing Christians have drifted away from their “first love.”
A decade ago I tried to apprise people of this growing apostasy in The Falling Away of the Evangelical Church. And sadly, this is quite possibly what the Lord is saying right now to so many leaders within the evangelical camp — “But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent” (Revelation 2:4-5). This is the tragic fact of this rather characterless generation: For whatever reasons, in recent years God’s message of salvation has been so softened it’s become benign. And a new brand of seeker sensitive Christianity has emerged, which Dr. John MacArthur dubbed Christianity-Lite in his book Hard To Believe.5
If you listen in the Spirit you may hear the Word of the Lord along the lines of, “Men have compromised My message; supposedly in their attempt to make My Gospel more appealing to unbelievers. But what they ended up doing, in order to justify their own lack of faith and commitment—the real reason why they have done so—was to make life easier and more comfortable for themselves.” And in time, because people weren’t studying to show themselves approved, this user-friendly “easy-believism” became accepted as if it is what the Bible actually teaches. But do you remember this — Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so (Acts 17:11).
Please, do search the Bible to see if what I say is true; for it’s our hope that all of us will be doing what Christ asked each of us to do when He literally comes again to His earth. And Jesus Himself said — Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes (Matthew 24:46). Have you ever stopped to wonder about, and to truly meditate upon, the awesome holiness and majesty of Yahweh Elohim—the LORD God Almighty—as He is revealed in the Bible; most particularly in the Old Testament? Do you see how the Holy Scriptures are adorned with praise for the one true and living God? O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens (Psalm 8:1).
Your right hand, O Lord, glorious in power, your right hand, O Lord, shatters the enemy. In the greatness of your majesty you overthrow your adversaries; you send out your fury; it consumes them like stubble (Exodus 15:6-7). Then the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision of the night. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven. Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might. He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding (Daniel 2:19-21). And have you ever noticed how the Bible lifts God up—and emphasizes His greatness—even at the expense of mankind? O Lord — grant us help against the foe, for vain is the salvation of man! With God we shall do valiantly; it is he who will tread down our foes. (Psalm 108:12-13).
Now, let’s take a moment and think about today’s evangelical churches. Would you notice anything different? Is this what you will hear preached on Sunday? Does your pastor tell you that it is God Who is in control; and you on your own are a mere creature stained with sin, and absolutely helpless before Him. Jesus says — And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him [God] who can destroy both soul and body in hell (Matthew 10:28). O mortal man—purpose driven or not; a supposed “seeker”6 in the Emerging Church or not, do you fear the living God? Well, you should; for this is what the God says to everyone who does not have a personal relationship with Him, through the Gospel of repentance and the forgiveness of sins in the Name of Christ Jesus of Nazareth as their Lord and Savior.
Because, whether you acknowledge Him as such or not, my seeker driven so-called seeker friend — Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, nd every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:9-11). O how much I do hope Satan was listening; for we, the undeserving saints of the Lord will—and sooner than we may even think—one day watch the defeated devil himself bow before our great God and Savior Jesus of Nazareth. And if you aren’t sure that you personally know Christ Jesus as your Lord and Savior, then you personally, have much to be afraid of yourself.
You won’t hear much today about Almighty God’s absolute holiness and majesty in far too many evangelical churches, who are now busy bowing before the narcissistic so-called postmodern culture of the United States of self-worship. This magnificent truth has been lost in these man-centered self-help centers masquerading as churches; mere hollow shells of lukewarm compromise, where more and more professing Christians are content in the The Ecumenical Church Of Deceit to seek for God, whatever their subjective concept of Him might be. And in many cases you wouldn’t even be able to hear the above truth—even if it was preached—amid the din of what Paul Proctor once called worshiptainment in these sinner-friendly playpens cleverly disguising themselves as churches.
But don’t they know that it’s our glorious and majestic, great and mighty, God Who controls whether they even take their next breath—or—not? And the Bible still sounds a clear and pristine warning:
For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses.
How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has spurned the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. (Hebrews 10:26-31)
The truth is that only by being regenerated by—and filled with—the Holy Spirit can you ever even hope to live for Jesus; or what do you think the Bible means when it says — Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come (2 Corinthians 5:17). The old sinful nature of the true Christian is dealt a mortal blow through God the Son’s finished work on the Cross and he is born again in his spirit; baptized in, and sealed by, God the Holy Spirit to the glory of God the Father. Soli Deo gloria…
- DOUG PAGITT AND HIS SOLOMON’S PORCH AFFIRM HOMOSEXUAL SIN
- T.D. JAKES AND JOYCE MEYER TEACHING WORD FAITH “LITTLE GODS” DOCTRINE
- DO NOT BE UNEQUALLY YOKED WITH UNBELIEVERS
- A.W. Tozer, Tozer On Christian Leadership [Camp Hill: Christian Publications, 2001], September 18. ↩
- Charles Spurgeon, At the Master’s Feet [Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2005], September 16. ↩
- cf. 2 Corinthians 11:4 ↩
- In professing Christendom today Christ Jesus the Lord has been essentially turned into a sort of glorified social reformer, i.e. Gandhi With A Beard. ↩
- MacArthur has also referred to this Purpose Driven/Seeker Driven evangelical sector of the Church Growth Movement as the new form of liberalism: John MacArthur: Seeker-Friendly Movement Is The New Liberalism. ↩
- Actually Scripture tells us no one truly seeks God on their own cf. Psalm 14:1-3; Romans 3:11 ↩