Posted in encouragement, false prophets, millennium, prophecy, temple

False prophets will be stabbed

False teachers and false prophets are a scourge. They always have been. Ever since the beginning, satan has been lying to humans, and as prince of the power of the air he has sent his demon horde to influence false teachers and make them prophesy falsely. (Deuteronomy 13:6–10; 18:20; Matthew 24:11). Gullible Christians and the lost have believed these false prophecies and untrue teachings ever since.

Probably today’s false teachers are aren’t more numerous than they were in the first century, though it feels like they are. Apologist James R. White said today

there are not more heretics today, there is just more availability of making your heresy known. 

However any Christian with a modicum of faith or any grain of loyalty to Jesus will be aggrieved when coming up against a false prophet or hearing about a heretical teaching. I am. I am a lot.

Like ants at a picnic, these false teachers are everywhere, and more are popping up every day. Jesus is in control and has ordained each and every one. As He does with everything, He has a purpose for false teaching.

What Is God’s Purpose With False Teaching? asks and answers John Piper.

Or this, from Dr. Paul M. Elliott, “Why Does God Permit False Teachers in the Church?

God uses the response to false teaching on the part of the members of the visible church, individually and corporately, to demonstrate who is true to Him and to His Word, and who is not. To put it another way, God is building a record that Christ will use at the Last Judgment, when many will come before Him and claim to have done many wonders in His name, but Jesus will say, “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!” (Matthew 7:23).

The main reasons God permits false teachers is that first, sin exists in the world. False teaching is sin. Secondly, it’s used to test His people. So though it’s a grief, a burden, and a scourge, God has His purposes for allowing it.

And then sweet relief will come! There will come a day when false prophets will not be allowed!

After the rapture, and after the conclusion of the Tribulation, in that order, a Kingdom on earth will be established. It will last for 1000 years. It is colloquially called the Millennium Kingdom. It will be an actual kingdom whereupon incarnated Jesus walks among His people, rules from Jerusalem, (Revelation 2:27) administers affairs of the nations, and receives worship (including sacrifices) in the Temple. (Isaiah 56:6-8; Zechariah 14:16; Jeremiah 33:15-18, Ezekiel 43:18-46:24)

Satan will be bound in the pit along with his demon horde. (Revelation 20:1-3). The people occupying the Kingdom will have relief from satan, finally! However, sin will still be present. Some of the people who survived the Tribulation will be mortal, and thy will enter the Kingdom along with us (glorified at the rapture) and the Old Testament saints (resurrected at the end of the Tribulation) and Tribulation martyrs (resurrected at the end of the Tribulation). These mortals will repopulate the earth through procreation, and their children will do the same and so on, for 1000 years. These mortals will still have a sin nature, which will express itself at the end of the 1000 year kingdom when satan is released from the pit and gathers the secretly sinful like sands upon the sea to rebel against Jesus. (Revelation 20:7-8).

But meanwhile during the blissful 1000 year Kingdom, there will be no false teaching, no false teachers, no false prophecies!

And if anyone again prophesies, his father and mother who bore him will say to him, ‘You shall not live, for you speak lies in the name of the LORD.’ And his father and mother who bore him shall pierce him through when he prophesies.” (Zechariah 13:3)

False prophets will be immediately stabbed. Even by his parents.

The form of phraseology here is drawn from De 13:6–10; 18:20. The substantial truth expressed is that false prophecy shall be utterly abolished. If it were possible for it again to start up, the very parents of the false prophet would not let parental affection interfere, but would be the first to thrust him through. Love to Christ must be paramount to the tenderest of natural ties (Mt 10:37). Much as the godly love their children, they love God and His honor more. (Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., & Brown, D. Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible) 

The dance between false prophets and demons will end. Matthew Henry:

False prophecy shall also be brought to an end: I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit, the prophets that are under the influence of the unclean spirit, to pass out of the land. The devil is an unclean spirit; sin and uncleanness are from him; he has his prophets, that serve his interests and receive their instructions from him. Take away the unclean spirit, and the prophets would not deceive as they do; take away the false prophets that produce sham commissions, and the unclean spirit could not do the mischief he does. When God designs the silencing of the false prophets he banishes the unclean spirit out of the land, that wrought in them, and was a rival with him for the throne in the heart. Henry, M. (1994). Matthew Henry’s commentary on the whole Bible

Of the Zechariah 13:3 verse, John MacArthur comments:

Because of the salvation of God that has cleansed God’s people and made them love Him and His truth, hatred of false prophecy will overrule normal human feelings, causing even a mother or father to put their apostate child to death. This is a stern reminder of hos God feels about and will eventually treat those preaches who misrepresent the truth.

Contrast the Zechariah verse of Millennium parents killing their own child because he speaks false prophecy, to the verse in Matthew 10:21 when in the last days parents will kill their offspring for speaking the Truth.

What a time that will be! When love for Jesus and His truth is the worldwide global attitude! For all my brethren who read this, it’s an essay about prophecy, obviously. It is also encouragement. Jesus IS in control. He has a plan, and that plan includes the [hopefully soon] day when He will rule and reign personally and false prophets will not be tolerated. What a day that will be.

Posted in blackaby, experiencing God, false prophets, henry blackaby, mysticism

Blackaby’s Experiencing God: if we’re to find out where God is at work and join Him there, then where is God NOT working?

I was a baby Christian when the church to which I belonged at the time fell under the hoopla regarding Henry Blackaby’s “Experiencing God” study (published in 1990). Even though the study had been produced and circulating for about many years already, it had taken a bit of a while to get to our small church in rural Georgia.

I remember the promises that were made by the people promoting the book/workbook/study. “It will change lives.” “It will transform the entire church”. “There is nothing like it.”

I like to study and I went along with the flow and participated in it with a small group. Perhaps I am a natural skeptic, but from the outset I was leery of anything that promised life change that was not the Bible. As the study concluded, I decided that it was not for me, there were parts I didn’t understand and it made no change in me at all. The parts I didn’t understand were not because the material was complicated or overly theological or in another language. Even the most difficult or demanding of material I’ve studied in the Bible eventually becomes clear through hard work, proper study, and prayer. The Spirit makes it clear.

All things in Scripture are not alike plain in themselves, nor alike clear unto all (2 Pet. 3:16); yet those things which are necessary to be known, believed, and observed for salvation, are so clearly propounded, and opened in some place of Scripture or other, that not only the learned, but the unlearned, in a due use of the ordinary means, may attain unto a sufficient understanding of them (Ps. 119:105, 130). (Westminster Confession of Faith 1.7)

Experiencing the Experiencing God study caused confusion in me, not clarity. It’s what always happens when something I’m studying goes away from the Bible. The Bible is always clear to me. When things are not based on the truths found in the bible, they are cloudy, unclear, murky, opaque. This is how, through discernment, I know what is edifying and what is not.

It’s been 9 years since I took the Experiencing God study. I have learned quite a lot since then, by the Grace of Jesus and the edifying work of the Holy Spirit. I know that Mr Blackaby and co-author Claude King will have a lot to answer for when they stand before Jesus. Mr Blackaby opened the door to mysticism, (aberrant orthodoxy) and he opened the door to an experiential method of getting to know God and living it. (aberrant orthopraxy). The credentials that he had, of being part of the North American Mission Board, the International Mission Board and LifeWay, opened the door to allowing and encouraging both extremely poor orthodoxy and poor orthopraxy in the most conservative denominations of the faith.

John MacArthur commented on this remarkable and rapid insinuation of the EG study’s main precepts into even conservative sections of the faith in his essay False Prophets and Lying Wonders,

Similar ideas [that God gives extra-biblical persona, revelation] have found sweeping acceptance even among non-charismatic Christians. Southern Baptists have eagerly devoured Experiencing God by Henry Blackaby and Claude King, which suggests that the main way the Holy Spirit leads believers is by speaking to them directly. According to Blackaby, when God gives an individual a message that pertains to the church, it should be shared with the whole body. As a result, extrabiblical “words from the Lord” are now commonplace even in some Southern Baptist circles.

I’m saddened that the Experiencing God study is not only still used, but is still a best seller. According to Amazon.com, Experiencing God is ranked #42 in Books > Christian Books & Bibles > Education > Adult. That is amazing for a religious book/study published in 1990, twenty-five years ago. Many people have reviewed the study and tested it against the Bible. I won’t go into lots of parsing today. I have just a few questions about the book/study.

First, here are a few links to reviewers that have examined the Experiencing God study and why it comes up short when tested against God’s word.

The main point of Experiencing God has been touted again and again as this:

“Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God” has a simple -– but challenging -– message: Find out where God is at work and join Him there. (source)

Here is my first question. Where is God NOT working?

Anyone? Anyone?

Yet the Bible says,

But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.” (John 5:17)

The answer of course its that God is working everywhere.

If one digs beyond the motto of the study, there are 7 main points that the study brings up. None are bad on the surface. As a matter of fact, some are good. The trouble with this study is that it combines so much biblical truth with some lies that it makes it past the gate of all but the most discerning. Mixing biblical truth with doses of lies makes for a dense evangelical fog.

Here are the study’s 7 main points, which King and Blackaby call “7 realities”:

So, as number 1 says if God is always at work around us, why does the study always urge us to “Find out where God is at work and join Him there”. Why do we have to ‘find out’? Why do we have to go there to join Him? If I stay here, and don’t go there, am I in a dead zone, a spot where God is not working? Worse, do we obey God by using our visual senses to make a determination as to what God is doing in a particular place? What about the missionary who worked for years and had not one convert? Was God not working there? What happens when we ‘find out’ where God is working because it is a happenin’, exciting church, and then it plateaus, and we scoot off to another happenin’, exciting place, as Rick Warren says, surfing the experience? Have we not covenanted with the people we worship alongside? Do we just abandon them because we see a better prospect somewhere else?

Or is the seed that was planted and then watered by another dead in the ground … or was it simply waiting on God’s timing to grow it? (1 Corinthians 3:6). Do we wander off into where we “see God is working and join him there? Or there? Or how about over there?

Anyway, you can see the inconsistencies in the 7-point bullet list generated by Blackaby and King. Number 7 is particularly troublesome.

Not to mention the most personal experience of God of all. When we repent and believe, He sends the Spirit to dwell IN US. This is the most personal, intimate, wondrous experience on can have with God, His very self dwelling in us making our body His temple. What a poor substitute Blackaby offers, the temporal and fleeting experience of human experience to determine how to know God.

While some things that last are edifying (the Bible, The Valley of Vision, Pilgrim’s Progress), other things that seem like they are lasting (Experiencing God) are not edifying, and indeed, their popularity bespeaks this warning:

Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets. (Luke 6:26).

Posted in discernment, doctrine, false prophets, false teachers, love

Should we love false teachers?

It’s always nice to talk about love and tolerance. We know that God loved the world. He loves His Son. We are told to love each other, that is how they will know us (John 13:35). But sometimes love is not appropriate or warranted. Do I mean this, really? Well, we know we are supposed to hate sin. We know there are six things, no, seven, that the Lord hates. (Proverbs 6:16-19). We hate sin so much we’re supposed to kill the old man in us. (Colossians 3:5). We don’t endlessly give the Gospel to those who hurl it back, those hurlers are called swine. So when it comes to love, we know we don’t ‘love’ everyone or everything, at least not according to the romantic or secular definition of love. So here is the question: are we supposed to love false teachers?

At The Berean Call, the question is posed:

To the world it might appear that all is well in the Christian realm. Much-beloved speakers hold forth from the pulpits of some of the largest churches in the world. Believers and nonbelievers alike buy their books, avail themselves of their programs, and utilize their methodologies. One might come to the conclusion that Peter must not have been referring to the church in our day regarding false teachers. Tolerance is the word of the day. We hear admonitions on a regular basis to “just get along” with those of opposing faiths. “Love” reigns supreme.

But what is this “love” of which they speak? What about those who identify a false gospel or a false teacher among some of the popular speakers these days? Does this “love” still apply to those who expose the ones who are actually deceivers among the flock?

A dear sister in the faith posed the question to me. To love those who are deluded and cannot understand the Word and care for them and not be critical. I thought about it for a long time, because I love poorly and I’m always appealing to the Lord to teach me love better.

So I began to think hard, should we love false teachers? Are they to be pitied? I decided, no. Though I value the opinions offered and they DO make me think, I don’t necessarily always agree. I’d like to offer an alternate view about how far not to go in pursuing love, and to offer a different perspective of what love actually is.

If we read Jeremiah 14:16, there is not even a hapless non-believer who accidentally can’t understand God’s truth and accidentally follows false prophets because they don’t know better. They DO know better. God said He will pour out their evil upon them because they knew better but followed false prophets anyway. 2 Timothy 4:3 also puts the blame on those who choose to follow false teachers because they wanted their ears tickled, so they went out and accumulated for themselves false teachers who told them what they wanted to hear.

But back to the false teachers themselves. I reserve my highest caring in this situation- for Jesus. We do care for the state of our neighbor’s souls, and we do care for brethren, but in all this let us not forget caring about Jesus.

I care about His name and what people do in His name. The harshest criticism in the Bible from everyone, (Jesus, Paul, Peter, John the Baptist, John, James, Jude, etc) was aimed at those who pervert God’s word. It is not a situation where we say “poor, poor false teachers. Let’s understand them and open our hearts to them and care.” I do hope they are saved someday, but beyond that they get no caring from me. I am highly CRITICAL of them in righteous indignation. Here is why-

The Bible tells us they do it on purpose. They disguise themselves- that isn’t an accident. (2 Cor 1:13). They do it for greed. (1 Timothy 6:5). They do it to put us in bondage again. (Gal 2:4). They do it because they hate Jesus and love themselves. (1 Tim 6:4). They do it because they enjoy lying. (2 Peter 2:1).

These false teachers are already cursed and destined for hell. In the essay “The Pathology of False Teachers” we read,

Unfortunately, their prognosis is not hopeful. Their spiritual condition is terminal. Those who are deprived of the truth are headed for judgment. Hebrews 6:6 solemnly warns of such men that “it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God, and put Him to open shame.” Peter says that they bring “swift destruction upon themselves” (2 Peter 2:1). The severest hell will be reserved for those who, having been exposed to the truth, turned away from it (cf. Hebrews 10:26–31).

The goal of the false teacher is not to create an environment of love, but to feed his ego and fill his pockets.
~John MacArthur

You notice they don’t pervert Buddha’s words. They don’t pervert Allah’s words. They don’t pervert Shiva’s words. They choose to pervert Jesus’ swords for gain, for fame, for an audience, and all the other reasons. I am critical of that because I care about Jesus.

The Berean Call again:

Every epistle in the New Testament was written to correct error in the church. Did Paul, Peter, James, John, and Jude not understand that to correct those who were in error was in truth a failure to love them? Did they believe that it was none of their business to bring correction to the false teaching? Do we consider them divisive for confronting error and holding fast to the truth? No! They boldly addressed the error and at times even named the offenders.

No, I do not love false teachers. I do not care about false teachers. I care about Jesus. I love His followers. Tim Challies said in his essay 7 Marks of a False Teacher,

False teachers are concerned with your goods, not your good; they want to serve themselves more than save the lost; they are content for Satan to have your soul as long as they can have your stuff.

Jesus called false teachers broods of vipers and hypocrites. (Mt 23:33)
So did John the Baptist in Mt 3:7
Paul said they were cursed. Twice in 2 sentences. (Gal 1:8,9)
Paul said their talk is gangrenous. (2 Tim 2:17)
Jesus called them ravenous wolves (Mt 7:15)
John called them deceivers (2 John 1:7)
Jude calls them ungodly perverters (Jude 1:4)
Peter called them depraved, disobedient, and destined for hell (1 Peter 2:8, 2 Peter 2:1,2)
John called them antichrists (1 John 2:22)
Never mind the harsh language from God in the OT against false prophets.

So. Were they wrong not to “love” the false teachers?

Indeed, we are told repeatedly we are to mark them, avoid them, not listen to them, close the hospitable door on them, put them out, warn them, keep away from them, give them to satan, but nowhere does it say to love them, care for them, or pity them.

Indeed, John advises the elder lady and her children not to even allow false teachers into their house NOR give them a greeting! If we do, God considers that we are participating in their evil deeds. (2 John 1:10). The John MacArthur Commentary on 2 John 1:10 says this-

Irenaeus relates that the church father Polycarp, when asked by the notorious heretic Marcion, “Do you know me?” replied, “I do know you, the firstborn of satan.” (Against Heresies, 3.3.4)

John himself once encountered Cerinthus (another notorious heretic) in a public bathhouse in Ephesus. Instead of greeting him, however, John turned and fled, exclaiming to those with him, “Let us fly, lest even the bath-house fall down, because Cerinthus, the enemy of truth, is within.” (Against Heresies, 3.3.4)

Charein, (greeting) means ‘Rejoice’ It was a common Christian greeting, conveying the joy believers had in one another’s presence. But it is an affirmation of solidarity that is totally inappropriate for false teachers, who have no part in the truth of genuine Christian fellowship.Such emissaries of satan must be exposed and shunned, not affirmed and welcomed.

False teachers like to decry such treatment as harsh, intolerant, or unloving. But love forbids dangerous spiritual deception to gain a foothold among Christians. John’s pastoral admonition is perfectly consistent with Jesus’ denunciation of false teachers as ravenous wolves, thieves and robbers, whose only purpose is to steal, kill, and destroy. The church cannot aid or abet such spiritual outlaws by doing anything that would acknowledge them as Christians. The one who does so, even by doing something as seemingly innocuous as greeting them, participates in their evil deeds by helping them to further their deception.

I reserve all my criticism, judgment, and righteous indignation for the false teachers, and all my love for Jesus the Man-God, His people, and His revealed word. During the few times I’ve had opportunity to engage directly with a few of the false teachers I’ve written about, I hope I was lovingly showing them the error of their ways. THAT also is love, though the world doesn’t call it love. Love is to admonish and correct so hopefully they do not persist in their tragic path, or worse, taking others with them.

Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.” (Matthew 15:14)
Source

Here are two resources on the subject:

How to Treat False Teachers

The Danger Facing the Church
Love also comes out of sincere faith, not the hypocritical faith manifested by false teachers. Faith that has no pretense creates love. A false teacher has a dirty heart because it’s never been cleansed by the true gospel of faith in Christ. A false teacher has a guilty conscience because his impure heart triggers it. But his conscience may have reached the point where it’s so scarred that it’s lost its sensitivity. And a false teacher has hypocritical faith. He’s a phony–he wears a mask. That kind of life will never produce the love of God. The goal of the false teacher is not to create an environment of love, but to feed his ego and fill his pockets.

A Final Warning: Beware of False Teachers

Lesson 107: A Final Warning: Beware of False Teachers! (Romans 16:17-20)
Years ago, a seminary professor told his class at the beginning of the semester that they would work together on one major project during that semester. They would move systematically through the New Testament to categorize every area of truth and determine how many times each area is addressed. Their goal was to find what one thing is emphasized more than any other in the New Testament. When they completed the project, they were amazed to see that warning against false doctrine is emphasized more than any other thing, even more than love, unity, and experience (Renald Showers, in “Israel My Glory,” [April/May, 1995], pp. 24-25). I have not verified their conclusion, but they’re probably right. …

J. C. Ryle was a champion for the truth in the Church of England during the 19th century. I’d recommend that you read him. In Warnings to the Churches ([Banner of Truth], p. 110), he wrote about how difficult yet necessary controversy in the church is. Then he added, “But there is one thing which is even worse than controversy, and that is false doctrine tolerated, allowed, and permitted without protest or molestation.” After acknowledging that many would view what he writes as exceedingly distasteful, he states (p. 111), “Three things there are which men never ought to trifle with—a little poison, a little false doctrine, and a little sin.”

Posted in discernment, false prophets, false religion, prophecy

Common ground with false teachers doesn’t exist

These are brief excerpts from a tremendous sermon by John MacArthur in 2012 called

Creative Commons, source

And the Lord said to me: “The prophets are prophesying lies in my name. I did not send them, nor did I command them or speak to them. They are prophesying to you a lying vision, worthless divination, and the deceit of their own minds. (Jeremiah 14:14-15)

Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you, filling you with vain hopes. They speak visions of their own minds, not from the mouth of the Lord. They say continually to those who despise the word of the Lord, ‘It shall be well with you’; and to everyone who stubbornly follows his own heart, they say, ‘No disaster shall come upon you.'” …“I did not send the prophets, (Jeremiah 23:16-17, 21)

John MacArthur: You think that’s gone away? That hasn’t gone away.

False teachers are described graphically in both the Old Testament and in the New Testament like this:

The description of them goes like this, “They are leaven. They are whited tombs, whited walls, graves concealed, broken pots covered with silver, tares, wolves in sheep’s clothing, wells without water, they are presumptuous, natural brute beasts to be taken and destroyed, they are filth spots and scabs, immoral, covetous, cursed children, clouds in a tempest to whom the mist of darkness is reserved forever, deluded dreamers who defile the flesh, spots on your love feasts, clouds without water, trees without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots, raging waves of the sea foaming out their own shame, wandering stars to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness. They are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts, their mouths speaking great swelling words, cloaks over sin, sensual and without the Holy Spirit.” (source)

That’s a sad state. That’s counterfeit religious authority. Why would you be looking for common ground with them?

 The answer is obvious. Common ground with false teachers doesn’t exist.

Clerical collar on a table in a pub. CC. Source

Listen to the entire sermon. It’s good.

Posted in charismatic, false prophets, macarthur, strange fire

Charismatics be warned: false visions, ecstatic experiences and prophetic proclamations are blasphemous

The highest science, the loftiest speculation, the mightiest philosophy, which can ever engage the attention of a child of God, is the name, the nature, the person, the work, the doings, and the existence of the great God whom he calls his Father. There is something exceedingly improving to the mind in a contemplation of the Divinity. It is a subject so vast, that all our thoughts are lost in its immensity; so deep, that our pride is drowned in its infinity.

~Charles Spurgeon, The Immutability of God

Is your pride drowned in the infinity that is Holy God? I hope so. I hope mine is! What helps dampen down my pride is simply contemplating Him.

I’m reading 1 Kings. I am up to chapter 18, the tremendous chapter where God displays His power over the false prophets of Baal. In the chapters leading up to the climactic moment, the power of the LORD is displayed in many ways, and it builds and builds. He spoke to Elijah and commanded him to go to Zarephath. Yes, that is mighty power, that the Holy God of heaven would speak His word to a man, the prophet Elijah. Don’t let that become mundane. He is LORD over men! Then He fed Elijah by the brook by commanding the ravens. He is LORD over creation!

And Elijah drank from the brook. But the brook dried up. (1 Kings 17:7). Stop there. The LORD had told Elijah that he would feed Him by ravens bringing him bread and that he could drink from the brook. (1 Kings 17:4). I wonder if the brook dried up slowly, and Elijah could see it going, getting smaller by the day until only mud was left. I wonder what he thought. Or did the brook dry up overnight, and when Elijah went to drink from it in the morning, it was gone. I wonder what Elijah thought then. We know Elijah was a mighty man in the LORD, but he was still human. Did he muse aloud, “Aw, man. What now?” The next verse said that “the word of the Lord came to him” (1 Kings 17:8), but it doesn’t say when. Was there a lag between when Elijah spotted the dried up brook and the word came? Was Elijah thirsty? How long did he wait?

Anyway, next was the miracle of the widow’s never-ending jar of flour. He is a LORD of provision! And then came the resurrection of her dead son. He is LORD of life and death!

And then the LORD told Elijah to gather the false prophets of Baal and He manifested His great power over them and their notion of a false god.

“Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering and the wood and the stones and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.” (1 Kings 18:38)

The fire consumed the stones. So great is his power. It consumed the dust. So precise is His power.

The next verse says that the false prophets fell on their faces. And yet we have so-called Christians, one after the other, coming out of the woodwork saying that Mighty Jesus, descends from heaven and pals around with them at the zoo, or while they are shaving, or runs around going ‘woop woop’ with Gumby arms. That THIS Jesus, does those things:

“and in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed with a long robe and with a golden sash around his chest. 14The hairs of his head were white, like white wool, like snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire, 15his feet were like burnished bronze, refined in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar of many waters. 16In his right hand he held seven stars, from his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword, and his face was like the sun shining in full strength.” (Revelation 1:13-16)

That this Jesus who said He was not coming again until the time, appears to them in visions…

“I tell you I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” (Matthew 26:29)

“See, your house is left to you desolate. For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’” ” (Matthew 23:39)

…and they DO NOT FALL ON THEIR FACES, but joke around with a buddy Jesus of their imagination. FALSE is the Charismatic movement. They make up a god of their vain imaginings. He is immutable and His hand is mighty and His Son is coming again in power and glory.

Please take some time to listen to the live stream of the powerful preaching at the Strange Fire conference going on now. And if you are reading this and cannot listen live (as I can’t) or the conference is concluded, then be sure to listen to the uploads which will be on the website when the conference concludes. Dr John MacArthur explains why he and his elders & peers put together the conference:

The conference came about as a result of my escalating concern about the charismatic movement. While claiming to represent a special work of the Holy Spirit, many in charismatic ranks—joined now by many in mainstream evangelicalism—are actually guilty of blaspheming Him. Out of a love for God’s people, and more important, for the sake of His glory, some hard things needed to be said.

I opened with Spurgeon and his sermon on the immutability of God, let’s close with him and another quote from that sermon. We do not need pale and flimsy man-made so-called miracles attributed to the wispy smoke of strange fire, not when we have the Holy Godhead to contemplate in spirit and in truth. We do not need visions and miracles and ridiculous speeches and claims when we have the power and might to contemplate from His word. Spurgeon encourages us:

Nothing will so enlarge the intellect, nothing so magnify the whole soul of man, as a devout, earnest, continued investigation of the great subject of the Deity. And, whilst humbling and expanding, this subject is eminently consolatary. Oh, there is, in contemplating Christ, a balm for every wound; in musing on the Father, there is a quietus for every grief; and in the influence of the Holy Ghost, there is a balsam for every sore. Would you lose your sorrows? Would you drown your cares? Then go, plunge yourself in the Godhead’s deepest sea; be lost in his immensity; and you shall come forth as from a couch of rest, refreshed and invigorated. I know nothing which can so comfort the soul; so calm the swelling billows of grief and sorrow; so speak peace to the winds of trial, as a devout musing upon the subject of the Godhead.

It’s very simple. The Charismatics who claim physical, ecstatic, and visionary experiences diminish their souls and besmirch the Godhead. Pure worship from His pure word expands the soul and honors the Godhead. Listen to the Strange Fire lectures and sermons to learn how to distinguish between the two.

Posted in delusion, false prophets

Why there are so many false prophets?

There is a sweeping delusion racing at tsunami speed across the world today. It is not the verses at 2 Thessalonians 2:7-11, but it is related. The delusion is that we are little gods, with power in our words to shape reality and thus to be like God.

The Tribulation will arrive when the restrainer is out of the way.

“For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming. The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” (2 Thessalonians 2:7-11)

But for now, the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. First let’s look at the indicators of this terrible precursor of how the lawlessness is appearing.

On the Asian continent there is a man called Joseph Prince. He is 50 years old, and is the senior pastor of New Creation Church in Singapore, one of Asia’s biggest churches. His website states that 30,000 attend weekly. His TV program Destined to Reign is broadcast in more than 150 countries. He has preached at Joel Osteen’s Lakewood facility in Houston, at Hillsong’s facility in Australia, as well as in South Africa at the Two Days of Hope Conference. Joseph Prince is big.

Joseph Prince’s teachings are bad.

He is a rising star in the Word of Faith movement but has been more successful in crossing over into conservative evangelicalism, says Pastor and discernment specialist Justin Peters.

“He is very articulate. He goes deeper than Joel Osteen, deeper than Osteen’s happy talk and platitudes. He has some working knowledge of the biblical languages. A lot of people who want to go deeper than Osteen, they turn to Joseph Prince. He takes many things out of context and flat out stating things as fact that factually are not true. He twists the doctrine of grace, takes it to extremes, often been charged with being antinomian (against the Law), holding a distorted view of grace, preaches easy beliefism along with the prosperity gospel. He is definitely a false teacher.” (source)

Here is a specific example of how Prince distorts grace. Prince was on stage with Joel Osteen and Osteen’s wife Victoria on TBN television in October 2012. There, Prince misdefined repentance. He said,

“The word repentance is from the Greek word metanoia, which literally means change your mind. Preaching the word without using the word repentance, people’s minds are being changed all the time From thinking negatively to thinking positively.”

So in effect Prince was teaching that if we go from being a negative thinker to a positive thinker, we have repented. Mr Peters explains Prince’s mistake in the clip I’d linked to above that,

“there is a grain of truth there. The word repent does come from the Greek metanoia and it does mean to change one’s mind. But it’s not from going from pessimist to optimist. Genuine repentance is a change of mind but it is granted by God and results in a change in your heart, in your whole being. Not just being a more optimistic person but an acknowledgement of being a sinner, that sin is heinous, and understanding the holiness of God. When God grants repentance, our mind changes and our heart changes. There is a fruit from that repentance. John said we will bear fruit in keeping with repentance. Not that we work to repent but when God grants it there will be fruit in our lives appropriate with repentance. Prince has a minimalistic and distorted view of repentance.” (Source, Peters above).

Here comes the part of the precursor to the antichrist’s lie (that he is God and deludes the whole world). Joseph Prince preaches that you can pronounce yourself clean. In his devotional this week, he wrote,

“You see, as believers, when we received Jesus, His blood cleansed us from sin as well as sickness. (Isaiah 53:4–5) But we keep hearing people pronounce sin, sickness, poverty and death over us. We keep hearing people tell us that we are unclean, undeserving, poor, weak, and that it is only natural that we grow old and sickly, and die. God is waiting for a priesthood that will rise up and pronounce His people clean!”

First: Jesus did not clean us from sin and sickness. He forgave our sins, and He cleaned us from the influence of sin and sickness. Only Jesus is free from sin and sickness. We won’t be free from sin and sickness until we receive our resurrected body at the rapture. That’s why we need the Holy Spirit now on earth, to help us resist sin. We are not free yet because we live in the same sinful flesh as we lived in when we were born and before we came into repentance and into Christ’s atoning kingdom. Philippians 1:29 reminds us that it has been granted to us to suffer. So does Peter in 1 Peter 4:12. There are many verses which remind us that it is our portion to suffer these things.

Second: I don’t hear ‘people’ telling me I am poor, weak and unclean. I don’t go around telling my friends they are poor, weak, or unclean. I usually tell them they are great, smart, successful and powerful. And they tell me the same. It is what people do. Who I actually hear telling me I am poor, weak, and unclean is Jesus, in the bible. His word tells us that we are these things, even after salvation. Yes, post-salvation we’re His children, heirs of His kingdom, but we are not free from sin yet, and therefore not free from its effects. Moreover, we still live on a sinful earth with all its accumulated effects of sin. While we are on earth, we remain conscious of our sins. If we were free from sin, why would we need to pick up our cross daily (Matthew 16:24).

Spurgeon said,

“EVERY new man is two men—every Believer in Christ is what he was and not what he was—the old nature and the new nature exist at the same time in each regenerate individual. That old nature the Apostle calls a man, because it is a complete manhood after the image of fallen Adam. It has the desires, the judgment, the mind, the thoughts, the language and the action of man as he is in his rebellious estate. He calls it the “old man,” because it is as old as Eden’s first transgression.”

Third: God does not wait for people to do things before He can get on with His plan. God is sovereign, He does what He wills, when He desires. (Psalm 115:3).

So you can see that Mr Prince has taken verses out of context and preached that our words have a power that they do not have. We are not little gods, pronouncing each other clean. Prince concludes his scripture twist by claiming: “God has cleansed you, so pronounce yourself clean! Right now, put your hand on your heart and pronounce good things over yourself. Say, “I pronounce myself clean, righteous, healed, whole and prosperous by the blood of Jesus!” By your word as a king-priest, every assault against you shall be settled!”

By His standard, we should be able to life a teflon life, impervious to the effects of sin, never having a sickness and prospering in all we do. That is some power that Prince ascribes to us, some grand power! That is the power of God, in fact, and it is the lie. We do not have that power. Satan wants us to think we are like God. He said in the beginning, “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:5).

Satan is deluding great swathes of peoples that they have God’s power to pronounce things that only God pronounces and thus be like God. That is the lie that is coming out of Asia.

On our continent we have a plethora of false prophets declaring that if we but speak with enough faith we can stop God’s plan and so doing be like little gods. Joel Osteen makes that claim. He explained in one of his motivational speeches he delivers weekly from the Lakewood facility in Houston, that:

Such power this puny human has! I can stop God’s plan with a few “negative words”! Osteen codified his false doctrine in his new book titled “I Declare”, stating, “Now you can take charge of your future with the help of Joel Osteen’s latest book-I Declare.”

However, God’s word says we are slaves. We are either slaves of sin or slaves to righteousness (Romans 6:16-18.) Slaves cannot and do not ‘take charge’ of their own future. God is in charge of that.

Angus Buchan is another person who preaches a false message. His story is heartbreaking because unlike some others who know they are lying, it seems that Buchan is wholly sincere and likely unaware of his falsity. His message is sweeping Africa. He preaches kingdom now, revival now, and calls for Holy Ghost miracles on a constant and common basis. Yet the word of God says not to call for signs. The use of signs was when the Lord was working with the apostles to validate their ministry. (Mark 16:20). Yet the signs themselves were never to prove faith and are not the final arbiter of having faith.

As Let Us Reason Ministries explains the purpose of signs and wonders, “Scripture and history prove that signs and wonders do not instill faith, just the opposite, lack of faith prompts one’s desire to see signs and wonders. John 12:37- But although He had done so many signs before them, they did not believe in Him. John 4:48- Then Jesus said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will by no means believe.” Jesus was disappointed that it took the miraculous for people to listen to his teachings or follow…. Seeing a sign was never a assurance of belief for the individual.”

Below, 2009, and below that, 2013.

Hillsong in Australia is another place where a continent has been taken over by false gospels racing across the land like a tsunami. Wikipedia explains, “Hillsong Church is a Pentecostal megachurch affiliated with Australian Christian Churches (the Australian branch of the Assemblies of God) and located in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. Brian and Bobbie Houston began the church in 1983 as the Hills Christian Life Centre in Baulkham Hills. Hills Christian Life Centre later merged with Sydney Christian Life Centre at Waterloo. Over 21,000 people attend services each week.” Below, inside Hillsong, Wikipedia photo

Asia, Africa, America, Australia…the deceived are falling down in great numbers.

“How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.” (Isaiah 14:12-15)

Satan’s lie “weakened the nations”, did you catch that? He purposed in his heart that he was like the Most High, and lied to Adam and Eve that if they partook of the fruit, they would also be like the Most High: he said so in Genesis 3:5,

“For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

That is satan’s goal, to be like the most high. The nations will be so weakened by so many individual’s own exaltation and the diminishment of God’s stature that when the antichrist comes, they will be ready to believe the lie.

Again, what is that lie? That antichrist is God. (source)

Why is this tsunami-lie of having personal power only God has racing around the globe? Why are so many false prophets abounding? First, because Jesus said it would be so. (Matthew 7:15, 24:5, 24:11)

Secondly, look at this incident from 1 Kings. The host of heaven are gathered around His throne to the right and to the left.

“and the Lord said, ‘Who will entice Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead?’ And one said one thing, and another said another. Then a spirit came forward and stood before the Lord, saying, ‘I will entice him.’ And the Lord said to him, ‘By what means?’ And he said, ‘I will go out, and will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ And he said, ‘You are to entice him, and you shall succeed; go out and do so.’ Now therefore behold, the Lord has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these your prophets; the Lord has declared disaster for you.” (1 Kings 22:20-23). Illustration, The Prophet Micaiah Before the Kings, 17th-c. woodcut by Otto Elliger.

Gills explains: “Now therefore behold, the Lord hath put a lying spirit in the mouths of all these thy prophets … That is, suffered the lying spirit to suggest a lie to them, and sent them strong delusions to believe that lie, whose minds were disposed at any rate to flatter Ahab, to whom they told it; which was the way designed to bring him to the ruin appointed for him.”

The Lord put a lying spirit into the mouth of the prophets and notice the second half of the same sentence: “the Lord has declared disaster for you.” Believing the false prophets seems to only enhance the conditions which allow the strong delusion to take hold and will in fact become a judgment upon them all. It is the way designed to bring ruin upon them. They want flattery (you are little gods with powerful words), they believe this lying delusion and so they will become ruined when the final lying lie uttered by the antichrist comes about.

The final lying delusion, THE lie will culminate in the Tribulation, as I stated at the beginning. It is not happening now. But the speed with which the false prophets are heaping up multitudes of flattering believers upon themselves is amazing, just like Ahab and his flattering prophets. It is occurring because though they received the truth, the love not the truth. (2 Thessalonians 2:10b). And look here-

“For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, (2 Timothy 4:3).

If you are heartbroken as I am by seeing those pictures of the multitudes believing the lies the false prophets are enticing them with, then please continue to pray. It is a most effective weapon in the arsenal of God’s army.

In my personal opinion, the false prophets are abounding with a lying spirit in their mouths because it is a judgment upon the world, and a significant condition that is readying for the antichrist’s appearance. Your thoughts welcome.

Posted in false prophets, false teachers, peace and security, tribulation

While they are saying peace and security

Here is some Middle East news. Things are deteriorating so rapidly over there it is breathtaking.

1. Jordan’s King Abdullah dissolves Parliament, calls early elections
“The royal decree follows Abdullah II’s pledge to bring in political reforms aimed at avoiding anti-government unrest in the wake of the Arab Spring. Jordanians have been pressing for a greater say in how their country is run and demanding corruption be tackled. Jordan’s Muslim Brotherhood said in July its political party, the Islamic Action Front, would boycott the polls. The group has called for the monarch’s powers to be curtailed, and for an overhaul of the parliamentary system in which the prime minister is appointed by the king rather than elected. It has said it would boycott polls until such measures were introduced.”

The King may look stable but no situation in the ME is stable right now. This editorial in the UK Guardian asks, “Is Jordan heading for chaos?” The answer is yes. Yes it is. No nation will survive the chaos that is coming, and the chaos will begin in and around Israel.

Iran is not stable, either. Iran’s rial currency plunges in value, causing riots.

2. Iran’s currency plunges, protests in streets, clashes with police
“DUBAI (Reuters) – Riot police clashed with demonstrators and arrested money changers in Tehran on Wednesday in disturbances over the collapse of the Iranian currency, which has lost 40 percent of its value against the dollar in a week, witnesses said.”

Lost 40%!!!??? Imagine if the dollar had lost 40% of its value in one week!

This next one merits an uh-oh.

3. Another mortar has fallen into Turkish territory, and Turkey is even more incensed now. Turkey is a member of NATO. NATO nations are allied by treaty and must come to each other’s defense if attacked. The Lebanon Daily Star reports this afternoon, “Israel says Syrian mortar strike was attack on NATO. Says attack on one NATO member attack on all

“PARIS: Israel’s Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor said on Thursday a deadly Syrian mortar strike on a Turkish town had to be considered an attack on a member of the NATO alliance. Israel is technically at war with Damascus and occupies the Golan Heights that it seized in the 1967 war and later annexed, but it has generally taken a cautious line on the uprising in its Arab neighbour. “One has to say that according to the NATO treaty, it was an attack on a member of NATO, and that means France,” Meridor told reporters during a visit to Paris, referring to France’s membership of NATO. Syria and Israel have not exchanged fire in three decades, and a parliamentary briefing in July by the Israeli armed forces chief about the risk of “uncontrollable deterioration” in Syria were interpreted by local media as a caution against opening a new fighting front with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.”

3a. The UN scrambles to defuse Syria-Turkey tensions
“UNITED NATIONS – UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was “alarmed by escalating tensions” between Syria and Turkey and warned that the risk of the 18-month-long Syrian conflict embroiling the entire region was growing, his spokesman said on Thursday. “The Secretary-General is alarmed by escalating tensions along the Syrian-Turkish border,” Ban’s spokesman Martin Nesirky told reporters. “As the situation inside Syria deteriorates yet further … the risks of regional conflict and the threat to international peace and security are also increasing.”

Speaking of peace and security, there is this headline from today too:

Turkey seeks ‘peace and security,’ not war with Syria

And the UN speeches last week were full of references to peace and security.

“The world is in need of a new order of trustworthy leaders offering peace and lasting security.” Iran’s President Ahmadinejad, UN Speech, 9/2012

“Jordan’s King Abdullah said in his region of the Middle East, new opportunities are needed, especially for youth, to “fill the universal desire and basic human right to live in freedom, dignity and peace. … Abdullah also spoke of the Palestinians’ need for dignity and safety. UN Speech, 9/2012

Prophecy says, “While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.” (1 Thessalonians 5:3).

While they are saying…

Now it should be noted that the context of the verse is of the Day of the LORD, which means the Tribulation leading up to the actual moment of Jesus’s reappearance, coming in glory. But the problem of false prophets who tout peace around the next corner is as old as the hills. God told Jeremiah to say,

“They have healed the wound of my people lightly, saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace.” (Jeremiah 6:14)

The wicked false prophets were telling the people that peace was coming, and that no trouble was on the horizon. They dressed the bleeding wound lightly. That wound was the Israelites’ separation from God. They were faithless, and the false prophets were capitalizing on their penchant for listening to the easy cure rather than the hard one. There are always people eager to hear an easy message being preached, and in that day, ‘peace, peace’ was the most favored one.

It is like that today, with so many false prophets and false teachers. The message most favored in the American church these days is “prosperity, prosperity.” The false ones preach an easy message to tickle the ears, and they find many willing listeners to heap up to themselves as eager followers to their false message. (2 Tim 4:3).

In the Tribulation, though there will be catastrophic wars, destructive natural disasters, and an economy and government gone wild, the false prophesiers will be saying “peace and safety is just around the corner!” As always, there will be eager people willing to listen to the false message and who refuse the hard cure: humble repentance.

In this day, just prior to the coming Tribulation, they are saying “peace and security!” with increasing fervor. (Imagine how many people will be saying it then, and how often, if it is so frequent now!)

The verse right before the one in Jeremiah 6 where they were saying “peace, peace”, is this. I believe it to be apt today. It closes out chapter 5:

“An appalling and horrible thing has happened in the land: the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule at their direction; my people love to have it so, but what will you do when the end comes?” (Jeremiah 5:30-31).

Posted in beth moore, billy graham, false prophets

Discernment lesson: the curse of popularity, Beth Moore, and Billy Graham

Did you know that the Lord curses religious popularity? He does. It is in Luke 6, where Jesus pronounces blessings and woes upon various groups of people. One of them that He pronounces woe upon are popular people and He urges the audience to remember the false prophets of old. Jesus says, “Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.” (Luke 6:26). Woe is the strongest possible curse. In the Greek, it is a grief or a cursed denunciation upon a person. Coming from the King of the Universe, the curse of popularity bears paying attention to.

Now, on earth, people seek popularity. There is nothing wrong with being a popular person in your job or in your class or in your family. It means you’re likable. But used in a religious context, if you are a popular teacher or pastor, watch out!

Barnes Notes explains of the verse: “When all men shall speak well of you – When they shall praise or applaud you. The people of the world will not praise or applaud “my” doctrine; they are “opposed” to it, and therefore, if they speak well of “you” and of “your teachings,” it is proof that you do not teach the true doctrine.”

Still not convinced? Jesus said in John 15:19 “If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.”

Matthew Henry commentary explains of the Luke popularity verse: “Woe unto you; that is, it would be a bad sign that you were not faithful to your trust, and to the souls of men, if you preached so as that nobody would be disgusted; for your business is to tell people of their faults, and, if you do that as you ought, you will get that ill will which never speaks well.”

Popularity is no guarantee of truth. In one of the Beth Moore exposés I had written, I noted in the comments section, “As to the wide acceptance of teachers, and authors, and others by the majority of mainstream Christianity today, well the first red flag to me is when the world begins to embrace a popular Christian. This is in opposition to what Jesus teaches in John 15:18-19. I’m always skeptical of wildly popular Christian personalities. Being wildly popular these days is almost a sign that falsity exists. People do not stand for sound doctrine, period. “The time will come when they [the people in the church] will not endure [tolerate] sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths” (2 Timothy 4:3-4). If there is a wildly popular, lucrative book, DVD, and speaking tour, sellout crowds, AND it is based on strict truth and nothing but the truth, show it to me and then knock me over with a feather.”

Pastor-teacher John MacArthur explains of the Luke verse, “And then the fourth is the curse of popularity. In verse 26, “Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for in the same way their fathers used to treat the false prophets.” And Scripture is pretty clear what happens to false prophets, and those who join with them and affirm them. Oh, you want everybody to speak well of you, huh? You…you’ve designed a religion that causes people to speak well of you. That’s a sign of being cursed. When everybody likes your approach to religion, you’re in serious trouble. When you can invent a kind of religion that offends nobody, that’s a serious indicator you’re not in the Kingdom.”

In late 2010, Christianity Today published a lengthy article about bible teacher Beth Moore. They opened the article saying, “Homespun, savvy, and with a relentless focus on Jesus, Beth Moore has become the most popular Bible teacher in America.”

Uh-oh. If I was the most popular bible teacher in America I’d want to get a spiritual check-up, pronto.

Let’s take a look at a reverse example of popular bible teachers, Jeremiah. Jeremiah lived a righteous life yet he was hated by all for proclaiming the Truth.

“Alas, my mother, that you gave me birth, a man with whom the whole land strives and contends! I have neither lent nor borrowed, yet everyone curses me.” (Jeremiah 15:10).

The more the Word is preached truthfully, the more it will be hated.  The more the Word is preached untruthfully, the more it will be loved. Preaching the true message does not attract believers, it convicts them. It rebukes them. It provokes them.Why? “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)

That Beth Moore is SO popular is an indicator from the Lord’s own word that there is not truth being proclaimed. That’s Beth Moore, now on to Billy Graham.

Here is a link to the transcript from the 1997 interview with Robert Schuller with Billy Graham on his view of wider mercy. The Wider Mercy view is the idea that man in his depraved state can find God, do God’s will, live a righteous life to please God and then go to heaven when he dies. It is a view in which the Lord is going to include everybody in heaven, no matter if they have called on the name of Jesus to be saved or not. Billy Graham believes in the wider mercy view. I wrote about it three weeks ago, here.

It is a view he has held since at least 1997 and likely since 1960 when Graham wrote about it in his Decisions Magazine. Billy Graham believes that a person never calling on the Lord Jesus Christ and outside the body of Christ will go to heaven because he lived a good life?? That is not what the bible says.

Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Just in case we think, oh, that must be a fluke, Billy Graham doesn’t really believe that people of other faiths will inherit salvation? Right? Right? Well in 2005 he said the same thing on Larry King. It is by faith in Jesus alone that we are saved. “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Romans 10:9

Failure to speak of the wrath is to fail to alert people what they are being saved FROM:
“Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.” (Romans 5:9)

It is sad that the “greatest evangelist of our time” Mr Graham believes the opposite of the Gospel, believes a different gospel, and thus it means he is false and should not be listened to. But it explains why he is so popular, beloved and famous. Here is a headline from an article from two days ago when Mr Graham turned 93: “Billy Graham, America’s most famous preacher, turns 93“. Wikipedia states, “Graham’s visibility and popularity extended into the secular world. He created his own pavilion for the 1964 New York World’s Fair. He appeared as a guest on a 1969 Woody Allen television special, where he joined the comedian in a witty exchange on theological matters. During the Cold War, Graham became the first evangelist of note to speak behind the Iron Curtain, addressing large crowds in countries throughout Eastern Europe and in the Soviet Union…”

Wow, a preacher so popular he is confidante to presidents, his fame extends into the secular world, his religious influence penetrates the communist/atheist iron curtain. Really? Not wow, but “Woe!”

It is sad to discover that a favored person whom we study under, read books by, or take courses of, is false. But they are out there, many, and more often that not, a famous person WILL be false- Luke 6:26 says so. The more popular someone is the more likely it is that they will be preaching a false Gospel. It is WOE to be universally liked!

Secular popularity of “Christian evangelicals” and teachers, should make us skeptical, yet Rev. Graham and other popular teachers such as Beth Moore are universally liked. How can this be so, when Jesus said that if they hated Him they will hate them also? In Billy Graham’s case, now we know why he is universally liked. He brings a different Gospel.

It’s crushing to know that Graham and Moore, and Osteen and Meyer, and so many other popular ones have woe unto them, when all men shall speak well of them. People who love sin hate the messenger who exposes it. If you are not hated, you are not exposing sin. In journalism they say “If you’re not drawing flak, you’re not over the target.” Are you over the target? If you are, there will be turbulence, turmoil, and plenty of shots at you. Billy Graham and Beth Moore are sadly not over the target. But as long as they draw breath we can pray for them that they should see the light, even after so long a time. THAT is the truth of God’s mercy!
http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.jshttp://www.facebook.com/widgets/like.php?href=http://the-end-time.blogspot.com/2011/11/discernment-lesson-curse-of-popularity.html

http://s7.addthis.com/js/250/addthis_widget.js#pubid=xa-4df8df7d18b59150