Archive for the ‘False Prophets’ Category
Pentecostal Spin Doctors?
Car Race Story
Mr. Madden, my teacher from South Bend Central High School, told a story one day to make a point during our Speech and Debate Class in 1961.
He repeated a story that TASS, the official news source of the U.S.S.R. had released during the Cold War.
The news article was a report of an automobile race between an American Ford, and an unnamed Russian vehicle. Only two cars were in the race.
The Ford blew the doors off of the Russian vehicle. Ego was at stake. The Russians refused to lose face, so they skewed the details, without actually lying.
TASS reported that in an International Stock Car Race, the American car came in next to last, and that the Russian car placed second. That type of reporting, Mr. Madden told us, was called Propaganda. Today, we are uncomfortable with using that term. We choose to use the word spin and those who spin, are called Spin Doctors!
Even Husbands And Wives Are Good At It!
Spin Doctors are not always highly paid professionals. Some are folks just like you and me. We may not get paid for doing it, but most of us have tried it on some level.
He – May Try To Put A Spin On Why He Needs A New:
- Deer Rifle
- iPad 3
- MacBook Pro
She – May Try To Put A Spin On Why She Needs A New:
- Pair Of Shoes
- iPhone 5
- Mini Van
The Old Testament Even Had Spin Doctors.
The Prophet Isaiah decried the use of Spin Doctors nearly 740 years before the birth of Jesus Christ.
Isaiah 5:20 Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
This generation has nothing new in Spin Department. It was in use before the church was ever born in Acts Chapter 2.
To feel more comfortable in our waywardness, we mortals try to:
- Justify our sin,
- Justify ourselves,
- Justify our compromise.
Today, some Church Members have done it, some Backsliders have done it, and worse than that, some Preachers have done it too. God, especially, detests the work of Spin Doctors!
For Centuries, Some Have Wanted A Spin Doctor For A Pastor.
Isaiah 30:8 Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever:
Isaiah 30:9 That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD:
Isaiah 30:10 Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:
Carnal people have always wanted the preacher to leave them alone. “Preach, but don’t preach,” seems to be the message they convey to their pastor. Hirelings have no problem adjusting.
The New Testament Had Spin Doctors.
Paul Warned The Church
Colossians 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
Colossians 2:9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.
Paul Warned Timothy
2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
2 Timothy 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
Some congregations love the Pop Psychology they hear in the pulpit. But, deaf ears are turned to the preaching of doctrine. Not every congregation is willing to sing the song, “Preacher Preach To Me.”
Preacher, preach to me,
Preacher, preach to me,
whatever it takes,
I must be saved.
Preacher, preach to me.
For many years I served sin
But a preacher preached to me.
I’ve come thus far, but not on my own
A preacher preached to me.
Preacher, pay me no mind.
Preach it right down the line
There’s one thing for certain,
regard not my person
Preacher, preach to me.
Preacher, preach it right
Lord knows we need to hear from Heaven tonight
The word itself is pure, there is nothing it can’t cure
Preacher, preach to me.
Preacher, preach to me
Preacher, preach to me,
Whatever it takes, I must be saved,
Preacher, preach to me.
Preacher, preach to me.
(Lyrics and music by Bro. Wayne Lawhorn)
Jesus Even Warned His Followers Of Spin Doctors
Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Judas Was A Spin Doctor
John 12:5 Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?
John 12:6 This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.
- Write Bible Translations they think people will like better!
- Hate to call sin, Sin! So they rename it or rephrase it.
- Think the mention of the Blood is not necessary.
- Tell you that fat meat is not greasy.
- Want their churches to be seeker friendly.
- Believe they can win more of the world by looking like the world.
- Are in Chat Rooms.
- They are on Forums.
- They have Facebook Accounts.
- They are found in Religious Organizations.
- They are also among Independents.
- They no longer say they spoke in tongues. They say they prayed in their prayer language.
- They no longer say they will baptize in you Jesus Name. They now baptize you, “Into Christ.”
No Apostle Ever Put A Spin On The Gospel Message. Their Preaching Was:
- Straight forward
- Their accounts were accurate and not self serving
- Their words benefited the reader
- Their advice served others, not themselves
- More importantly, it was truthful and anointed.
Satan Was The First Spin Doctor!
Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
Genesis 3:2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
Genesis 3:3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
Genesis 3:4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
We all should have learned our lesson from this example alone!
Nathanael Was NOT A Spin Doctor!
John 1:47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!
The Lord Jesus chose him to be a Disciple. He knew Nathanael could be trusted with handling the Truth!
In whom is no guile. That is the very first comment out of the mouth of Jesus when He saw him. Would Jesus be impressed with you as a disciple, because you had no guile?
1 Peter 3:10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:
The Punishment Of Spin Doctors.
Revelation 21:27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
Revelation 22:15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
The Truth Still Matters!
Why I Don’t Own A Revised Standard Version Of The Bible.
First Of All, It Is A “New” Bible, Not A Translation. Over 6,000 changes are found in the RSV.
It is a modernistic interpretation. Liberals who reject the fundamental doctrines of the Word of God produced it. A modernist is one who:
- Denies the virgin birth of Jesus Christ.
- Denies the Deity of Jesus Christ.
- Denies that the blood of Jesus saves from sin.
It Makes Drastic Changes That Are Unacceptable. Here Are Just A Few.
KJV Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.
RSV Genesis 6:3 Then the LORD said, “My spirit shall not abide in man for ever, for he is flesh, but his days shall be a hundred and twenty years.”
- The meaning is completely changed.
KJV Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
RSV Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, a young woman shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
- There is a major difference between virgin and young woman.
KJV Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remissionof sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
RSV Acts 2:38 And Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
- Remission is more than forgiveness. It is the complete removal of the cause of the offence.
KJV Hebrews 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
RSV Hebrews 12:2 looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
KJV Luke 24:6 He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee,
RSV Luke 24:6 Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee,
- What happened to “He is not here, but is risen:”?
KJV Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
KJV Mark 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
KJV Mark 16:17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
KJV Mark 16:18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
RSV Mark 16:9-20 is left out of their Bible.
KJV John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
RSV John 1:14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; we have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father.
KJV John 1:18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.
RSV John 1:18 No one has ever seen God; the only Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has made him known.
- They do not like the word “begotten”.
KJV Colossians 1:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
RSV Colossians 1:14in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
- The blood is missing again.
Any Bible that denies the virgin birth of Jesus Christ, His Deity, and Redemption through His shed Blood, has no place of my book shelf.
Wolff, MJ (1953) “The New Bible” – The Pentecostal Herald November 1953, page 4, 13
The Old Oregon Trail, And The Apostle John
No, the Apostle John never travelled the Oregon Trail. Yet, there is a common thread here and a simple truth worth sharing, found in their stories.
In the early 1920’s Ezra Meeker, the world-famous wagon train master, walked into my grandfather’s Oregon City Art Studio. My mother’s father, Turner Hubble Gleason, had been commissioned to paint the portrait of one of the most prominent citizens of the state of Oregon. A copy of his portrait remains in our family to this day.
By now, Mr. Meeker was a very old man. His beard was full and long and his hair white. His steps were still steady. His life had been filled with more adventure than most men could ever dream about. He had seen his life’s dreams come true.
“Before his death in 1928, just a few days shy of his 98th birthday, Ezra Meeker had not only walked the Oregon Trail several times, he’d ridden along it in an automobile and aboard a train, and flown over it in an airplane: he’d come a long way, and for many his story symbolized the opportunities that had been available on the frontier.” - http://www.lib.washington.edu/exhibits/frontier/local/case8.html
He had met with Indians. He had become friends with Indian Chiefs and had even driven his ox team to Washington to meet with President Teddy Roosevelt and several congressmen. The President had even walked out of the White House to see Ezra Meeker’s ox team and to talk of his future plans for him.
Unscrupulous men for years had side-tracked the unsuspecting traveler on the trail with their bogus signs. Signs with arrows proclaiming such things as “Custer’s Last Stand.”
In reality, the side trails took the weary and naïve off the true trail. To their dismay, they found that this was just a trading post or curio shop.
There was much confusion for the unsuspecting traveller. Something had to be done to straighten out the true Oregon Trail.
The President commissioned Ezra Meeker to guide surveyors, engineers and project managers to show them the original trail… The Old Oregon Trail.
Regardless of what the current signs said, Meeker ignored them and fully trusted his memory of the trail. He had spent a lifetime climbing every mountain and crossing every river. He knew the trail. That’s why they had chosen him.
Meeker, would say things like:
- “We crossed the river right here.
- “We went up the mountain on this side.
- “Over there is where we made camp.
- “Right here is the trail, ignore what that sign over there says.”
He then would remark the trail with his own signs that said. “Old Oregon Trail”
Because of Ezra Meeker’s life experience with the trail, the United States government trusted only him to lay the trail out right.
When the final stake was driven, they began construction of the famous east-west highway. Today, they call it, U.S. Highway 30. It remains as true as possible to the original trail.
The Apostle John
Mr. John Phillips in his commentary on the Gospel of John, starts his preface with something similar to this…
Matthew, Mark, and Luke were all dead. Peter, the Prince of Apostles had died too. John was the first, and now the last Apostle. He alone of all the Apostles remained alive.
He was approximately 90 years old. Banished on the Island of Patmos, he began to write to his children in the Lord. He wrote as if he was the last defender of the New Testament doctrine.
Already the church was beginning to drift. They were deviating from the old paths in doctrine and in separation from the world, among other things. Grievous wolves had entered the flock.
His Epistles were the last known attempt to set the record straight. He had traveled the Trail of Truth from the very start. He wasn’t about to let anyone pervert this glorious message.
He drove down verbal markers and stakes, fearlessly proclaiming the message. It was the message that Jesus had given to the Disciples. The only message the Apostles ever preached.
John was prepared to die. But before dying, he was making sure that generations to come would know the Truth. As he made each point and drove it home, he would say: “This is…” He left no room for error.
“This Is Our Message”
- He Began His Gospel and Epistles Saying, This Is The Most Important Revelation.
- That There Is Only One God. His name Is Jesus!
John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
John 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
He then went on to proclaim in his epistles to the churches, the true Message.
1.) “This is the Promise.”
1John 2:25 And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.
2.) “This is the Message.”
1John 3:11 For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.
3.) “This is His Commandment.”
1John 3:23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.
4.) “This is the spirit of the Antichrist.”
1John 4:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
5.) “This is the Love of God.”
1John 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
6.) “This is the Victory.”
1John 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
7.) “This is He.”
1John 5:6 This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.
8.) “This is the Witness of God.”
1John 5:9 If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son.
9.) “This is the Record.”
1John 5:11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
8.) “This is the Confidence.”
1John 5:14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:
9.) “This is the True God.”
1John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.
10.) “This is Love.”
2John 6 And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.
11.) “This is a Deceiver and an Antichrist.”
2John 7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.
If you ever plan to drive to the state of Oregon and arrive there safely, one of the men you can thank is Ezra Meeker. He did everything he could to make sure that generations to come would follow the “Old Oregon Trail.”
If you ever plan to go to heaven and see Him who is God manifested in the flesh, one of the men you can thank, is the Apostle John. He did everything he could to keep the New Testament Church following “The Apostolic Message.”
Obey Acts 2:38
Learning To Live Without God.
Living without God in our life would be, without argument, the hardest thing anyone could ever do! It would not just be hard, it would be terrifying, it would be heartbreaking, and it would be filled with pain… so much pain.
To those who are accustomed to the blessings of the Lord’s daily presence, His absence would leave a void too great for words.
I cannot imagine trying to live even one day without the Lord in my life. Every time I finish reading the Bible, those that were foolhardy enough to try, still amaze me.
Day One without God… I wonder what that felt like? Did Day Two or Three get any easier? Imagine living the rest of your life without God’s approval or blessing. Imagine Him turning His head when you pray.
Saul was the King who at first was so humble and small in his own eyes, but later crossed an invisible line and walked on the side of arrogance until he died. He crossed over into the spiritual realm of service unto God that belonged to the ministry, and God immediately rejected him. God lifted His blessing, approval and support. God even refused to ever speak to him again.
His fatal mistake happened early in his reign. Saul’s 40 years on the throne was spent without God’s help. The prophet Samuel no longer prayed for him or prophesied to him. He had to learn to live without God.
- He ignored the office of the man of God in his life.
- He thought his kingdom authority gave him spiritual authority.
- He made that mistake only once.
- Repentance was not an option.
Day one without God… I wonder what it felt like?
When Esau showed his disdain for the Birthright and sold it for a bowl of pottage, he angered God. The Lord called him a profane man because he saw no value in that which included the covenant blessings of Jehovah.
It may not have seemed all that important to Esau when he sat at the table, but God never forgave him. Esau even tried to repent, but God wouldn’t let him. He cried, but God turned his back on him forever. He had to learn to live without God.
- He let his hunger of things of the moment override his hunger for the things of God.
- He treated the Word (of God’s covenant) lightly.
- He traded the eternal for the temporary.
- Repentance was not an option for him.
Day one without God… I wonder what it felt like?
Even the name still scares us. The Ark of the Lord was stupidly and unlawfully carried into battle and lost. A birthing mother heard the news and named her newborn son Ichabod, meaning ‘the glory has departed.”
The Ark was gone and stayed gone a long while. No wonder David danced wildly and with great joy when he saw the ark finally coming to it’s proper home. What was it like for a nation, knowing that the Ark was missing? It seems like all of the congregation would think about that every time they went to the tabernacle to sacrifice. The Mercy Seat was missing. They had to learn what it was like to live without God.
Day one without God… I wonder what it felt like?
The 400 Years
When Malachi laid his head down to rest for the last time, it was all over for Israel. They loved picking up the ways of the heathen. They incorporated the heathen’s ways into their worship. The freely married them as well.
Israel seemed to delight itself in dressing like the rest of the world and ignoring the pleadings of all the prophets. God had sent them prophet after prophet, but nothing changed. So God got tired of wasting His breath and His men. God quit. For 400 years God never spoke to Israel. His mercy and patience wore thin.
How many years went by before someone said, “I can’t remember when I last heard a prophet”? Generations passed without one correction from God. They had turned their back on Him; He turned His back on them.
- No preacher in their life.
- No direction or correction from God must have brought peace to their deluded minds.
- Did it ever dawn on them that they were living with less of an experience with God than before?
By the end of the first year without God… I wonder how much further they had slipped?
You Think God Can’t Get Serious?
You Think The God Of Love And Mercy Will Let You Do Whatever You Want?
Is The Only Scripture You Want To Hear Quoted Is ‘God Is Love”?
The following scriptures are just a few of the passages that shows the other side of God.
“If You Love Sin, God Won’t Listen To Your Prayers.”
Psa. 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:
“If You Kill Your Neighbor With Your Words, God Will Hate You And Your Prayers!”
Is. 1:14 Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.
Is. 1:15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.
Is. 1:16 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;
“God Won’t Listen To Their Prayers!”
Is. 59:1 Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:
Is. 59:2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
Is. 59:3 For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.
“If You Mistreat Your Wife And Disrespect Her, God Won’t Hear Your Prayers.”
1Pet. 3:7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
“Don’t Even Pray For Them!”
Jer. 7:16 Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee.
“Don’t Pray For Them, I’m Done!”
Jer. 14:11 Then said the LORD unto me, Pray not for this people for their good.
Jer. 14:12 When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and an oblation, I will not accept them: but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence.
“I Don’t Want Your Worship!”
Amos 5:23 Take thou away from me the noise of thy songs; for I will not hear the melody of thy viols.
Many church members have turned their backs on God of late. They have rejected the essentiality of Repentance, Baptism in Jesus Name and the infilling of the Holy Ghost evidenced by the speaking with other tongues. They make fun of Holiness and those that are living separated from the world. They attach names of mockery to those that carefully follow Biblical principles of Holiness. They call them “Ultra Cons” and other names of derision. They make fun of Godly women and their long dresses and long hair. There is a falling away.
Sadly, quite a few former Apostolic Pentecostals now live like they have never been inside of a Holiness church. Their dress, their lifestyle, their language, and their social activities show no evidence of Godliness or God mindedness. Their Facebook pages do not identify them as Apostolic. God Is not pleased.
They have explained away, rationalized and cut off any scripture or preacher that speaks against their ‘enlightened’ freedoms. In their delusion, they feel God will accept them as they are, because they don’t plan to change. They want God to change His word so that it will adapt to them.
They continue to go through the motions of having church kind of like Israel did in the Old Testament after God quit talking to them. God doesn’t approve.
Sadly, many that once were submissive to God’s Word have now turned aside to follow after their own lusts.
Does God keep dealing with them? I can’t answer that. I do know that the ones I have seen leave, have no desire to return. I do not know of anyone that has left this truth for an “easier” way, that has ever recovered, come back and God gave them another chance.
It seems to me that they have no choice but to live without God. Live without Him now, and live without Him later.
Backslider? What was Day One like? Are you still trying to live without God? It won’t get any better! The way of the transgressor is hard. I don’t know if repentance is an option.
Preach Me The Gospel
Rom. 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
Ours is a day of dilution of sacred truths. The importance of our basic tenets of faith is being challenged. Compromise is seen in every too many areas. Some sermons are not much more than an exercise in Pop-Psychology. Word preaching is non-existent in too many places. Doctrine is scorned by some and called ‘old school.’
It may be ‘old school’ to the compromiser, but doctrinal preachers, believers and practitioners are still here and doing well.
- They are still living ‘the life.’
- They haven’t caved in to compromise and worldliness.
- They were blessed to have heard some old-time Doctrinal messages on the New Birth. They got it in their heart.
- They heard teaching and preaching about Holiness, Separation from the World, Church Government, and Standards. They loved it.
- They were taught why the New Birth was important.
- They were taught why separation from the world was important.
- They were taught why it is important to live holy.
- They were taught why they should worship.
- They were taught why they should be faithful.
- They were taught why they should honor God with their tithes.
- They were taught why they should honor God with their modest apparel.
- They said Amen to the preacher.
- They believed it.
- They received it.
- They got in the Word and the Word got in them.
Some churches, organizations and fellowships have neglected the Word and turned to gimmicks and programs to distract from the obvious void and lack of a move of God.
The lack of Word preaching is evident by what is seen in the lives of many at conferences, camps and rallies. If preachers ‘get what they preach,’ someone must not be preaching very much.
There will always be a constant need to preach on worship. Please do not stop. I fear however, that our heavy emphasis on worship demonstration promotes the belief that our best services are always runaways.
Thank God for a runaway. But to me there is no measure of the lasting blessings the Word has on our lives. A shout can be forgotten. But the engrafted Word can be hidden in the heart until we die.
It is easy for some to jump up and down and run the aisle. Yet these same folks seem lost and uncomfortable in a deep move of God. Why?
Every pastor has seen folks shout in church, and then heard of them sinning before the night was over. They had the ‘physical exercise’ part down. They just didn’t get much on the inside. No root.
Luke 8:13 They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.
Some pastors only want to teach doctrine (or anything that isn’t evangelistic) in ‘closed door settings’. They must be afraid to stand up and preach it to their whole congregation. The shallowness of church membership today is alarming.
Psa. 119:161 …but my heart standeth in awe of thy word.
Psa. 119:11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus tells a story of two houses. One house was built on the rock. The other was built on the sand. All was well until the storm came. Only the house on the rock remained standing.
Without a solid foundation, we too will fall apart when the storms of worldliness come against the church.
2Chr. 15:3 Now for a long season Israel hath been without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law.
God give us a season of the teaching priest. Give us a season of loving thy law.
Paul’s Gospel was the New Birth. The Death, Burial and the Resurrection.
Thank God for preachers who just stand up and preach the Word. Thank God for saints who want to hear preaching. Singing doesn’t save us, preaching does.
The Apostle Paul didn’t say to Timothy, “Discern someone’s phone number, their name or medical condition.” He just said to preach the Word.
Carloads will drive miles to hear a preacher call out folks and pray over them. (I can tell you ahead of time what he will say. He will prophesy blessings, healing and prosperity over those he prays for. He will never discern the sinfulness they are living in.)
The same folks that go gaga over that type of ministry get easily bored listening to a ‘Word’ preacher. Some wouldn’t drive across town to hear him.
Take some advice from an old man. If you are a preacher and have a choice between being a feeder or an exhorter, be a feeder. Because a feeder will build a church.
2Tim. 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
Don’t stop the worship, but at the same time, preach the Word. Keep preaching about Worship, but let Doctrine showcase your ministry.
Preacher, there are still plenty of saints out there that bring their Bibles to church.
There are still plenty of saints that bring a notebook and pen to Church just waiting.
There are still plenty of saints that will readily say, “Preach Me The Gospel.”
The Day The Devil Read My Palm
On a cold winter’s evening, in the early 1960’s, I stood in the historic old Walgreens, downtown Chicago on State Street. I was killing time waiting for my parents to get their shopping done. Our Evangelist, Kenneth Phillips and his wife Wanda were with my folks in another store.
I was the odd duck. I was still single and a teenager. The couples had managed to disappear leaving me to my own devises. We were to meet in an hour and a half for supper. I wandered around for a while looking at the items for sale.
Snow was on the ground. I wore a long trench coat, but no hat. My coat was buttoned to the top and my hands were jammed down into the pockets.
I turned off the main aisle near the back of the store. In front of me was a lady sitting behind a folding card table. Her hands were in her lap. The lady had shoulder length dark hair and wore dark slacks. She appeared to be in her early thirties.
The handwritten sign taped to the card table said: “Palms Read For $1.00”
Although I knew Christians weren’t supposed to have their palms read, curiosity began to stir within me.
The lady looked harmless enough. The only thing on the table was a deck of playing cards. She smiled and nodded as if to reassure me.
A quick look around the busy old store confirmed that no Pentecostals were in sight to tell on me. My Parents and the Evangelist were nowhere to be seen.
My Father preached against Astrologers, Palm Readers, Spiritism, Séances and following Horoscopes and I knew it. Guilt was warning to turn away. But like a bug to the light bulb, I seemed drawn.
I finally pulled a dollar out of my pocket and laid it on the table. She picked up the deck of cards and said, “Cut it.”
I’d never cut a deck of cards before and I’m sure it showed. It was a black 10 that was turned face up. She looked but said nothing.
She reached out for my hand, and I extended it, palm up. She took it in both of hers and some traced lines across my palm.
When she was done, she dropped my hand and leaned back in her chair and spoke.
“You will marry an old-fashioned girl who will always wear dresses and will never cut her hair.”
A cold that was colder than a winter’s chill went all through me. I could ‘feel’ what I knew I shouldn’t be ‘feeling.’ Hair stood up on my arms.
I turned and ran from down the aisle of Walgreens out into the bitter cold night.
- How did she know?
- That wasn’t God!
- I knew that wasn’t God beyond all doubt.
- The devil knew about me!
- The devil helped her read my palm!
- That woman had a spirit of divination upon her.
- Even the devil knew what kind of girl I would marry.
In fear I repented to God, and out of fear didn’t tell my parents of my foolish deed.
Years have past now, and I find myself of late, listening to stories of modern-day ‘Prophets’ who tell people things about their lives.
In my young Christian experience, men such as Bro. Verbal Bean and Bro. Joe Duke discerned the sins and called out the sinful in our church in South Bend, Indiana. Their walk with God and their spiritual accuracy brought repentance and revival.
Today, the modern ‘Prophets’ don’t do that anymore, all they seem to prophesy about is Blessings, Healings and Prosperity. Crowds flock to hear them. People will give wonderful offerings to these men. (There is no money to be made in discerning sin.)
I’ve known men who try to discern people’s names or tell them what their phone number or street address is. The onlookers are overwhelmed, thinking, this must be God.
There is NO Bible precedent for that. There is no example of that in the Book. Yet today’s church crowd will drive 100 miles to hear some one get called out and prophesied over. But these same folks won’t drive 2 miles to hear an old-fashioned ‘Word’ preacher. It’s boring!
Has God Changed? Or do we have itching ears? Are we the generation that only wants to hear smooth things preached?
Sure, I believe in the ‘Gifts’ of the Spirit. I just have a problem with those that sound like they need a chair, and a folding card table with a sign.
Yes, we all need healings and blessings. But if the truth was spoken, we need some fearless men of God that aren’t afraid to preach the word today, a whole lot more.
Let God use you in Prophesy if He has given you the ‘Gift.’ Just don’t cheapen your ‘ministry’ and sound like you work part-time at Walgreens.
Make sure it’s the Holy Ghost and NOT the spirit of divination.
1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.