War On The Saints… Revelation 13, pt 1
(Greetings and happy 2018 to all of my readers. The LORD saw fit to impose upon me, a month long writing fast,(Through a painful medical ordeal) . My situation is presently all good my brothers and sisters, I give God thanks for your prayers, I believe I am in much better shape than I was at the beginning of November.
I am on the mend and hopefully ready to cry out, or to teach, or warn…whatever God wants of me in the allotted time I have left, I covet your prayers for my health, and for my stamina and continuance in ministry.)
WAR ON THE SAINTS…
And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. (Revelation 13:4-8)
And of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows. I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom.(Daniel 7:20-22)
I sought the LORD for the most significant subject to address in view of the oncoming year, 2018. I then received the phrase,” war on the Saints”. We are all undergoing, whether we believe and acknowledge or not, a tremendously intense level of Spiritual warfare such as never seen before in History.
The Bible tells us that this intensive, high level spiritual warfare would be one of the characteristics of the last days. The book of Revelation warns us that in the very last times, the Abyss, i.e. “the bottomless pit” will be opened and the earth will be inundated by a locust like Demon invasion, sent to torment all men. Paul warns us that in the last days demons will be teaching people doctrine and that those doctrines would even infiltrate the church, causing many to fall away.
God is allowing evil to come out into the open and to have a last Hurrah, a final opportunity to fully manifest itself, in the sight of all men, offering to fallen and deceived and Christ rejecting mankind the kind of “world order” that Satan and his evil Spirits have long promised, as an option to the promise of the Kingdom of God.
This is truly (their) Hour, and the power of darkness.
Thus shall Satan be given temporary permission to “Make war” on the Saints,(The Holy People), and to overcome them…a seeming string of “victories”, for we are told that the the Dragon wears many crowns, (Revelation 12:3) and we shall realize soon, that all worldly power and influence is revealed to be at the service of the Beast, utterly turned over to it.
The Saints will have no worldly influence, they will be powerless to defend themselves when attacked in this world, and they will be impotent to set the record straight when they are lied about, by the Synagogue of Satan. We must hold to the truth and patiently await the ultimate triumph of the Seed of the woman. In many cases we will win by losing, for we “love not our lives unto death”.
It is time for we who love and profess Jesus in this world to realize the Spiritual warfare which wages about us, that we might engage properly. We need to see spiritually, and to think from a spiritual perspective.
Our war isn’ against flesh and blood, people are not our true enemies. We can pray for those who have set themselves against us, and overcome any evil they do against us , with good.
The adversary, Satan is now operating against the church, using people, social systems, institutions, technology, to convey his Philosophy, Empty Imaginations, vain reasonings, knowledge that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, right into our thinking. With modern technology, there has never been a better time for Satan to do this, for what better way to convey “Images” than through our tablets and smart phones?
A child of (lets say) ten is frequently given a little handheld portal to all of the knowledge, entertainment and teaching in the world! Frequently these things are handed over with little or no supervision. The technology represented by that “Smart Phone” exceeds the technology it took to land men on the moon! How are we going to supervise this opening, into our child’s mind?
Who is going to be there to counter the Satanic propaganda, the lies, the false and distorted imagery, the antiChristian narrative of current events, history and the lionization of vile people, at the same time as the frequent demonization of good people?
The War is on folks and it is non stop until the Messiah comes to crush the Serpents head! The Devil knows his time is short and that now is the time to seduce, cajole and deceive as many people as possible away fem God.
Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.(Revelation 12:12)
The Subtlety of the Serpent …War on the Saints pt 2
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 3:1)
At the very beginning of the Word of God, we see that mankind has an adversary, a malevolent being whose goal it is to estrange man from God, and disrupt the peace and communion between God and man.
In the garden he is simply introduced as ‘the serpent’, and we are immediately impressed by the power of his subtlety. Thus we can infer that this being was no mere snake, there is an intelligence and volition about him that mere reptiles are incapable of, though this being employed the serpent in his plan.
There is no fuller introduction nor explanation as to his true identity, we would have to persevere all the way to the end of the Bible, to find out that the “Serpent of Old”, was in fact the Devil, and the ancient Satan (Adversary) a fallen Angel cast out of heaven.
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.(Revelation 12:9)
He asked of the woman, (not the man, whom God had appointed as head), a loaded question.
What was he looking for, when he inquired of the first couple? He was looking for the least crack, or opening between the couple and their God.
The serpent greatly exaggerated the prohibition of God, “Did God really ban you from eating of every tree in the garden?” The Serpent knew this was an exaggeration and he also knew hat the woman would know this was a gross exaggeration as well, tfor he question was but a probe, into the mindset of the couple.
The woman’s answer at first seemed to be adequate,
And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: …(Genesis 3:2)
She corrected the overstatement of the Serpent,’ God was not THAT strict! He has given us freedom to eat of the trees of the garden, But…’
She could have ended the conversation right there, but in that ‘…But…’ she went on to reveal the slightest crack, a tiny seam of alienation of the couple from the Creator. Of course it was no where near as overstated as in the Serpent’s initial question. They didn’t think God was a Tyrant…but…
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 3:3-4)
But what? Eve answered that God had forbidden them to eat of one tree (this was true), and furthermore He forbid them to even touch it…(This was false, a slight exaggeration of the strictness of God).
Next she added a phrase which must have encouraged the Serpent…‘Lest ye die’… . Lest ye die? In other words the woman was not so sure about the Divine sanction, ‘Did God really say we would die? Or is it possible that we just might die, or that we might not die?’
God had originally told Adam, (who was to pass it on to Eve) that in the day they ate of the tree in the garden, “…in dying you shall surely die…”. It couldn’t have been said any plainer and stronger than that, for God wanted them to know what was at stake.
Here was the opening the serpent had been waiting for. The conversation with the woman revealed the estrangement,(ever so slight) of the couple, maximizing the prohibition of God, yet minimizing the penalty of God, and outright calling it into question.
Now the Serpent knew that the first couple were ready to hear the Word of God openly denied! “You Shall Not surely die…”.
We see that this story is timeless and very modern, applicable to our own current situation. The Serpent has long infiltrated the Christian churches, and has been calling into question truths and doctrines which are obvious to any honest reader of scripture.
The Christian teaching on marriage, gender, prohibitions against fornication and all forms of adultery and perversion, as well as the Christian warning that there is a heaven to gain and a Hell of fire to be shunned is as clear as a bell in the scriptures. There can be no mistaking the plain meaning of the texts.
Almost all of the horrible things I know about hell come from the lips of Jesus himself. The doctrine of eternal conscious punishment is so horrible, it is as though God entrusted the bulk of description of Hellfire to His Son alone, so that no one could say “Paul or Peter had a lot of hangups, thats why they railed on Hell!” .
But Jesus is the one who taught us about “Weeping and gnashing of teeth”,” outer darkness”, an the urgency of escape to the point where you would cut off your hand or foot to escape it”!
Matthew 13:41-42, 49-50 “The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law-breakers, and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Mark 9:43, 48-49 “And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire…where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.’ For everyone will be salted with fire.”
Matthew 22:13 “Bind him hand and foot and cast him into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Matthew 8:12 “while the sons of the kingdom will be thrown into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
See how clear this teaching is? These are the Words of Jesus! You wouldn’t think it possible to deny such things in church, but there are many, many pastors and teachers who do so. They have listened to the Serpent, and put themselves unwittingly at his disposal, to help carry out his program of distorting and denying the Word of God.
My point is that we are truly engaged in a real spiritual warfare. We have a very subtle adversary, we cannot afford to loosen our grip on the Word of God, and to walk by the inclination of our own fallen hearts. This is the master deceiver, the “one who deceives the whole world”,He has taken captive many earnest and sincere Christians, We must put all of our trust in the LORD and His Word.
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 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. Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.(I John 4:1-4)
Temptation; the underlying religious principle…war on the Saints pt 3
In Genesis Three we see the Temptation of the first Adam, (along with his wife).There is much to learn in the account, about the nature of the adversary, human psychology, and the power of well crafted lies to seduce us.
In Matthew Four we have another temptation narrative, that of the ‘last Adam’. The Lord Jesus Christ had been baptized and affirmed by the very voice of God, and anointed with the Spirit of God, when he was “led” of the Spirit out into the wilderness. It was time to engage in the Spiritual conflict.
He is tempted as a man, and not in a garden of delights, but fittingly in a harsh and unforgiving desert. He is alone, and all he has as a resource is his memory of Scripture.He has been fasting, and in much prayer. At the point in the fast where the hunger would re-emerge with a vengeance, the Tempter came to Him.
The tempter spoke to Him, and He knew it was the serpent’s voice,
“If you are truly the Son of God, Turn these stones into bread…”.
The first temptation had this in common with the original temptation, it had to do with food. We all need food for our sustenance, there is no question about that, and furthermore, a man fasting for forty days is greatly aware of his need for food. The smooth stones in the various Wadis’ that the Judean wilderness teemed with, would actually resemble loaves of bread, especially after forty days of fasting.
But the temptation ran deeper, for He was being tempted to do something ‘out of himself’ about his need, to use the power which God had entrusted to him to miraculously turn these stones into bread.
Underneath every temptation, no matter how seemingly mundane, a religious principle is being called into question, far deeper issues are at stake.
The issue in this case is, ‘would Jesus rely on the Father alone to feed him in His time? Or should Jesus take matters into his own hands, and “use” God’s power to solve his own problem and meet his own need? Satan was calling on Jesus to take matters into his own hands, and to prove to himself that indeed He really was the Son of God!
But Jesus drew from a very deep stream in his life as a man, the knowledge of scripture. In this case there was already a scriptural similitude to Jesus’ temptation other than the temptation of Adam and Eve in the garden. Jesus knew he was retracing he steps of the nation of Israel, for they too had been brought out int the wilderness to be tempted sorely, that they might learn one important lesson,
And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord doth man live.(Deuteronomy 8:2-3)
The one great lesson intended in the wilderness was that we do not live by physical bread alone, nor by anything temporal and material ; education, entertainment, approval, the honor of our fellow men, will all temporarily satisfy but eventually fall short.We were made to be sustained by something much higher and purer.
Nothing the material world has to offer is adequate to satisfy our deepest longing, which happen to be spiritual. We will never be able to live without communion with God himself, and that remains impossible to us, because of sin and alienation from God.
This is why it is not simply a matter of Jesus “using” the power entrusted to Him by his power, to “turn those stones into bread”, on his own volition and impetus.
The true Bread by which man lives is, and can only be received as a gift from God, and granted to us by God at his initiative.
Jesus was waiting for God to feed him, in the wilderness, he would not succumb to the temptation to “turn those stones into bread” on his own initiative.
Only God’s Word can be to us the true “bread of Life”, We can only truly live by utter dependance upon God, for everything! God’s word is our true food and sustenance.
Thus Jesus drew from the scripture implanted in his heart, and in the midst of temptation spoke, “It is written…”.
Why should the person who is in very truth the eternal Word of God, and the true author and originator of all scripture, have to say “It is written…”? Couldn’t he legitimately say, “I command…” or “I have spoken….”? Why does he speak in the third person, “It is written….?
The answer is that Jesus is being tempted as a man, and not his own man, but as a man under God and under the authority of God, and citing to Word of God as an authority. By saying “It is written…He is invoking an authority above Himself as a man, and standing underneath that authority in his conflict with the Devil.
This is hugely significant, to us in these modern days of ungrounded self confidence, and false spiritual warfare teaching, which have actually encouraged believers to do the very opposite of Jesus, and to rail on Satan and the demons. Jude an Peter warn us against this practice though,
Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities. Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee. But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves.(Jude 8-10)
Jesus does no such thing, rather he stands in his pace as a man under God and under the very authority of the scriptures, and invokes those scriptures in the very face of the Devil. He knows what the temptation really is and the underlying religious principle at stake, and that the issue goes far beyond the mere satisfaction of a temporal hunger.
He quotes the passage in Deuteronomy, “…Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God…”.
The Pinnacle Of the Temple…war on the saints pt 4
Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.(Matthew 4:5-7)
The temptation of Jesus in the wilderness yields deep insights into the nature of the adversary and of the Spiritual warfare we find ourselves engaged in.
Some aspects of the temptation of the Son of God are representative, as was the temptation of Adam. In the wilderness, Jesus passed the test which our first father failed, he overcame the Devil for us, as the “last Adam”. Thank God, none of the redeemed will ever endure a temptation with so much at stake. In a mysterious sense,the temptation of Jesus was real, and the stakes were high, the salvation of us all was on the line. Christus Victor!
On the other hand,there is much to be gleaned regarding the “wiles of Satan” and the way of victory in the Spiritual warfare of the church in this story.
The underlying issues of this temptation are manifold. For example,What was the Temple’s true Purpose? Satan would have Jesus draw attention to himself in the house of prayer for all nations, in order to jump start his ministry by a dramatic exhibition of power and deliverance. God would not let his Messiah fall to the ground!
The temptation was real, and quite compelling when we take into account the Messianic expectation of the popular Rabbis and Sages. Alfred Eidersheim notes that there was a widely expected teaching that Messiah would perform just such a feat, at his advent;
. In the Commentary just referred to,7 the placing of Messiah on the pinnacle of the Temple, so far from being of Satanic temptation, is said to mark the hour of deliverance, of Messianic proclamation, and of Gentile voluntary submission. ‘Our Rabbis give this tradition: In the hour when King Messiah cometh, He standeth upon the roof of the Sanctuary, and proclaims to Israel, saying, Ye poor (suffering), the time of your redemption draweth nigh. And if ye believe, rejoice in My Light, which is risen upon you . . . . . Is. lx. 1. . . . . upon you only . . . . Is. lx. 2. . . . . In that hour will the Holy One, blessed be His Name, make the Light of the Messiah and of Israel to shine forth; and all shall come to the Light of the King Messiah and of Israel, as it is written ….. Is. lx. 3. . . . . And they shall come and lick the dust from under the feet of the King Messiah, as it is written, Is. xlix.Free
.On top of that, Satan added a scripture,
There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.(Psalm 91:10-12)
The misuse of scripture is a powerful device of Satan because believers (rightly) reverence scripture, thus giving false authority to many of Satan’s arguments.
Satan and his agents “use” scripture, to deceive and seduce.
This is an important and profound revelation. Like Jesus, we use scripture, rightly divided and applied, to answer to Satan’s proposals. John said to the “young men”, that they were “strong,and the Word of God “was in them, and that they had “overcome the Wicked One”.
But we must realize that Satan resorts to scripture also, of course always twisted,misapplied and tortured. What we see in Matthew 4 was a religious argument between Satan and Jesus.
The 91st Psalm is a God given promise of protection and provision for all who truly fear God and remain in his covenant protection. He really does appoint his Angels to protect his people in their earthly sojourn.
But is that promise a basis for any believer to do something self seeking and reckless to force God’s hand? Can any believer “use” a promise of God to obligate Him to act?
The sin is called ‘presumption’. All of God’s promises are true God is faithful, but they are all fulfilled on his terms, and at his initiative. God is faithful and sovereign.
Hearkening back to the context of Deuteronomy, Jesus could see that the suggestion to forcefully and publicly fulfill the general Messianic expectation,and to misuse the very Temple of the Lord for his own self promotion, was a sinful snare. It was “putting the Lord to the test”,as Israel had done in the wilderness at Massah, when they demanded,”is the Lord among us or not”?
True reverence for scripture,careful study of it in context, and the effort to grasp the whole picture, the text in the larger flow of scripture,as well as prayerful dependence upon God can save us from the sophisticated deception of the wicked One.
The whole concept of “using” scripture ,prooftexting, picking and choosing particular verses over others, or even the superstitious use of verses with little or no regard for actual context or for cross references, predisposes Christians to be open to deception which features scripture.
Jesus again invokes scripture, standing as a Son under the authority of God,”it is written,you shall not put the Lord your God to the Test!”
The Question of Worship…war on the saints pt 5
Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.( Matthew 4:7-10)
We can only marvel at the vast powers granted to the Devil, for the time being, in this account of the temptation of Jesus. Consider that Satan was able to transport Jesus to the very Pinnacle of the Temple of God in the previous temptation.
Was he taken there in a vision, trance or perhaps a dream? Or was Jesus somehow actually physically transported to the temple in Jerusalem, by the Adversary? We don’t know for sure but the experience was vivid and real.
Again in this final temptation, Satan is able to show Jesus all of the Kingdoms of this World and their glory. Then the adversary offered the Kingdoms of this world, to Jesus, as if they were His. Luke has Satan claiming that these Kingdoms were his, having been given to him. Jesus didn’t deny Satan’s assertion.
And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.(Luke 4:6)
Who is this malevolent being set against the church,and against the Word of God?
He is called the”prince of this world” twice in the Gospel of John, and Paul, by the Holy Spirit refers to Satan as the “god of this age”. John warns us that “the whole world lies in the wicked One”. We wrestle not against flesh and blood,Paul warns,but against “principalities,powers and rulers of the darkness of this world,and spiritual wickedness in high places…”,(Ephesians 6).
This is why the present dispensation has been called “this present evil age”, and “ the evil day”.
All of the influences and institutions of this world; education,religion,entertainment,information sources,opinion shapers, molders of minds, leadership in law, commerce , government and even medicine has come under the power of, and are at the service of the Prince of the age.
The Apocalypse tells us that soon, “The Kingdoms of this world”,shall become “the Kingdoms of our LORD and of his Christ”. This is one of the final turns of events of the eschaton, but necessitates Jesus offering himself as a sacrifice for our sins, suffering,dying,and being raised from the dead,and inaugurating the church age.
But Satan is offering Jesus a much easier path to glory, at the cost of a momentary compromise. Satan presents Jesus with a classic ends/means situation. Here was an easier way to attain his goal. A way without the humiliation and sufferings of the cross.
We gain insight into the core issue of Spiritual warfare in this story. We see what the issues all boil down to in the real conflict raging for the souls of men: worship.
Man was made to worship, and he will worship. But worship is exclusive, we were created to worship God alone. “Thou shalt love the LORD thy God,with all of thy heart,and all of thy soul and mind and strength”.
Only God is worthy of all of our affections. He alone who made us, completes us. To worship anything less than God is the very essence of sin. We fell as a race because we “knew God but would not glorify him as God…”, this is the fountainhead of our corruption.
Satan has set himself as the rival to God for the affections of mankind. All false worship is in fact Satan worship. The Devil craves and demands worship. He has the entire world of unbelieving men in deception; worshipping man made idols, Demons such as Allah, or in the secular world, technology and the achievements of modern men.
The Lord Jesus again prevailed, but not in himself, humanly speaking. Jesus overcame the very real and powerful temptation to worship Satan by invoking the Word of God! “It is written…”. Deuteronomy six came to mind,there in the wilderness,”You shall worship the Lord your God,and him only shall you serve”.
Perhaps the greatest and final test for humanity is coming rapidly, for the Mark of the Beast will soon be introduced in this “smart planet” we have created by our technology. It will just seem to be the next step in the decades long shift from cash and checks, to digitilized commerce. There will be so many obvious practical reasons for this, it will seem retrograde to resist it.
In the evaluation of God,however, participation in the Mark will be considered an unforgivable act of worship, it will be the final act of man’s defection from God.When the gospel comes to man in its final form it will come a a call to worship the true God,and to realize that the beast system is more than political, or economic, it is a system of false worship.
Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.(Revelation 14:7-11)
The Ultimate Lie … war on the saints pt 6
And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. ( 2 Thessalonians 2:8-12)
The Adversary of mankind is a liar. He bore false witness against God to trick our parents into defecting from God, bringing ruin upon the human race. He wove a skillful lie when he seduced them into eating of the forbidden fruit, and by lies he has kept the children of Adam and Eve in bondage to this very day, alienating the human race from the Creator and Redeemer God.
He is called “the one who deceiveth the whole world”, and who by his lies, has “weakened and destroyed the nations”.
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. (Revelation 12:9)
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! (Isaiah 14:12)
In the passage in 2 Thessalonians I cited above, the text reads literally, “…that they should believe THE LIE”, not “a lie”.
Though there are millions of “lies” of various shapes, sizes and for untold billions of situations, the Bible warns us that all of mankind is susceptible to an ultimate lie, the primal lie by which all men fell.
Man wants to believe the lie, because it flatters him. Society is gravitating to the full acceptance of this lie,i it finds its way into everything everywhere in human society; advertising, entertainment, philosophy, education, religion,(including apostate Christianity), technology and the sciences seem to confirm it in some ways.
What is this LIE which exerts such a strong pull on humanity ever since the garden ? Or we should say, What are the components of the original lie, for it has a complexity.
The Lie of the serpent has these specific components;
“ Yea, hath God said…” The Lie always begins by calling God’s clear Word into question.What did God really say? Notice He doesn’t openly deny the Word of God at first, nor does he confirm it, the serpent raises the question, opening the couple to second guessing God’s word. Over the last hundred years this lie has been promoted by our so called Bible schools, and by theologians who have literally deconstructed the Bible through “higher criticism” and destroyed the faith of untold thousands who have come under their pernicious influence.
“Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?…” In other words, This God seems stricter and more exacting than is reasonable. The serpent questions the near total freedom that Adam and Eve were granted, he implies that they are bound in some restrictive submission to God. The false equation is The God of the Bible equals bondage. Man must break free from such restrictions, such as Judeo Christian morality. The second Psalm teaches us that the “Kings of the earth and their rulers” have embarked on a ‘liberation crusade’ seeking to cast aside the ‘bonds’ and ‘cords’ of the Lord and his Christ. We are currently living in the wreckage of such ‘freedom’ in our decadent and cruel society.
“Ye shall not surely die…” At some point the Lie openly denies and contradicts the Word of God. God said clearly in Genesis 2, “the day you eat of that tree, (lit) In dying you shall surely die…” This is the denial of the reality of death (in all of its forms) as the penalty for sin, and it is also a denial of the ‘second death’ the final and irrevocable eternal judgment and punishment of the unrepentant wicked. “You will not surely die”, the Lie which is communicated via the doctrine of re-incarnation, as well as by Spiritism, Universalism, and countless occult notions. The cults all attack vigorously the teachings of Christ on the danger of Hellfire, the final judgment , and the separation at the end of the wicked and of the Righteous. Satan would teach modern men that death is a natural process, it is our friend, it is a portal to other lives, that all go to the same place…anything but the moral teaching of scripture, that because God has ordained a moral universe, “It is appointed once to die and then the judgment”.
“For God Knows…your eyes will be opened”, this is the master slander of the good and upright God. The Creator nows something which he is keeping from you…it is something very fulfilling and beneficial, which he keeps to himself, not wanting to share it with you and I. In this part of “the Lie”, the serpent is the illuminator, the guide into the hidden knowledge. He is the one who enlightens man, and sets him free from the “illusion” that the Creator has had man locked into. No one wants to be ‘in the dark’, we all have a deep desire to be ‘let in on the secret’. This is why books such as “the lost books of the Bible” or the “Secrets of the Kingdom” will always appeal to quite a large group of people. The very word,”Occult” means “hidden”, the occult is currently experiencing an unprecedented revival. What is this secret of secrets which God has supposedly withheld from us?
That Ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil… . This is the very essence of the lie, it is the ‘mystery of iniquity’ which corrupts the human race, and the treason against God by which unconverted man will be condemned forever, in spite of the redeeming love of God. It is to this topic, the deification of man, that we must devote our attention in the next article in this series…
The Very Heart of the LIE…war on the saints pt 7
Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. (Isaiah 43:10)
The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth.( 1 Timothy 4:1-3)
In the late 1950’s an atheistic medical psychologist named Helen Schucman began to receive strange dreams and odd promptings to write down dictation from a disembodied ‘voice’. Eventually one of her colleagues urged her to go ahead write it all down, and he would edit it. Out of this occult experience came the very popular “A Course in Miracles”, It consists of three books: a 622-page Text, a 478-page Workbook for Students, and an 88-page Manual for Teachers all given by the occult practice of automatic writing.
“Three startling months preceded the actual writing, during which time Bill suggested that I write down the highly symbolic dreams and descriptions of the strange images that were coming to me. Although I had grown more accustomed to the unexpected by that time, I was still very surprised when I wrote, “This is a course in miracles.” That was my introduction to the Voice. It made no sound, but seemed to be giving me a kind of rapid, inner dictation which I took down in a shorthand notebook. The writing was never automatic. It could be interrupted at any time and later picked up again. It made me very uncomfortable, but it never seriously occurred to me to stop. It seemed to be a special assignment I had somehow, somewhere agreed to complete….
This book has gone on to be translated in more than 23 languages and is globally distributed and promoted by the likes of Oprah Winfrey.
What is it that the voice which dictated to the atheistic psychology professor have to say? Here are some direct quotes;
A Course in Miracles, vol. 2, p. 45
“God is in everything I see”
Vol. 1, Page 92
“God is still everywhere and in everything forever. And we are a part of Him”.
Vol. 1, p. 165
“Whenever you question your value, say: ‘God Himself is incomplete without me’”.
Vol. 1, p. 136
“The recognition of God is the recognition of yourself. There is no separation of God and His creation”.
This is the serpent’s lie, repackaged, updated, and very popular in the Age of Oprah and Doctor Phil. By loving and clinging to this die, many will be damned forever.
I want to use this book ( A Course in Miracles) as a sample of a larger, end times movement of massive deception, unleashed upon the earth in these last days by Satan who knows his time is short and would deceive as many sons and daughters of Adam as possible to damn them and send them to hell.
I will select a few quotes, for its teachings are very instructive to us, and we can see where a good many well meaning people are coming from, as they are blinded into a false spirituality spawned by Satan and his servants.
True Spiritual Warfare is taking the time to understand the teaching and philosophies which hold men back from being saved. Paul called it, “Casting down vain imaginations and every high thing which exalts itself against the knowledge of God”. Our modern world is being heavily drawn into Pantheism, even if they don’t know it.
This book and the movement of which it is representative, flies in the face of a very important distinction found in the first verse of the Bible. The blurring of this distinction is at the heart of every false religion and is the very corruption of the human race. I speak of the Creator/Creature distinction.
All is not one, as the Course in Miracles, Bhuddists, New Agers, and Hindus claim.Satan’s warfare against mankind lies in part in blurring that distinction.
All is two. “God created the heavens and the earth…” and that is all there really is, God and his Creation.
The Christian church and Judaism before it, bore witness to this distinction, insisting on the absolute transcendence of the Creator. He alone is God, there is no other. Creation came from Him, but is in no way a part of him.We ourselves are created, dependent beings.
There is God and his Creation, two distinct categories. God is eternal, and self existent. Creation had a beginning and will have it’s end, and it depends upon God for its existence. God has no limits, but Creation is limited by Time, Space and matter.
In Genesis 3, Satan’s lie blurred that distinction when he told Adam and Eve, that they too could be as gods… as though attaining godhood was merely a matter of partaking of whatever it was that God partook of. He denied the transcendence of God, putting everything on the same level, and implying that there is a secret to attaining ‘godhood’.
The name for this error is Pantheism, the belief that God is inseparable from all of his creation, and that God is in everything, or that everything is God.
Pantheism is as ancient as the fall of man in Genesis 3, but it was dealt a setback when the LORD revealed himself to Israel and then to the church. Belief in the transcendent Creator/Redeemer God became the foundation for western civilization with all of its blessing, as we know it.We knew from the Bible that the Creation is not Divine, it is no mystery, it can be studied and understood according to predictable laws, because it is the Creation of a personal God.
But lately the West has gone Eastern.
Pantheism is rapidly spreading across the world as the Judeo Christian world lets go of its former faith, to embrace Eastern Religions such as Hinduism, Yoga or the New Age movement. This error lies as a subtext beneath many popular movies such as Star Wars, with it’s impersonal force, or The Matrix which teaches that the created world is but an illusion.
What did the God of Creation set about doing after Creation? He set about dividing things, light from darkness, male from female, water from land, the waters above from the waters below, day and night, etc.
But those who deny this have set about removing all distinctions.This explains the madness of our modern, decadent society.
The radical egalitarianism we are seeing in the “gender wars” and the deliberate confusion of sexual roles is a reflection of this false belief, because Pantheism is a war on all distinctions. Here is what “Jesus” of the course in Miracles says about himself,
A Course in Miracles, vol. 1, p. 5
“Equals should not be in awe of one another because awe implies inequality. It is therefore and inappropriate reaction to me. An elder brother is entitled to respect for his greater experience, and obedience for his greater wisdom…There is nothing about me that you cannot attain”.
Vol. 1, p. 70-71
“My mind will always be like yours, because we were created as equals. It was only my decision that gave me all power in heaven and earth. My only gift to you is to help you make the same decision”.
The Course’s “Jesus” insists that He is equal to the rest of us, that there is nothing different about him, He is only here to show us the right decisions.
One of the implications of Pantheism is the negation of the concept of sin. There can be no right or wrong if “all is One”, “good and evil” are only constructs, there is no heaven or hell or judgment in the systems of Pantheism. Therefore pantheism negates the need for Salvation , Redemption and any kind of Propitiation (Sacrifice for sin). Sin is a mere illusion, correctible by positive thoughts.
A Course in Miracles Vol. 1, p. 88
“No one is punished for sins, and the Sons of God are not sinners”
Vol. 1, p. 423
“The Holy Spirit will never teach you that you are sinful”
Vol. 1, p. 377
“When you are tempted to believe that sin is real, remember this: If sin is real, both God and you are not”
Therefore the need and efficacy of the crucifixion of Jesus is also denied in this best selling Metaphysical book, promoted by Oprah Winfrey, Eckhardt Tolle and others.
Can you see how Satan makes war on the gospel, attacking the message itself and lying to the world about the only way to be saved?
Vol. 1, p. 396
“A slain Christ has no meaning. But a risen Christ becomes the symbol of the Son of God’s forgiveness on himself; the sign he looks upon himself as healed and whole.”
Obviously there need be no Hell and final judgment, if sin is but an illusion, and we are all a part of “god’.
A Course in Miracles, vol. 1, p. 281
“The Holy Spirit teaches thus: There is no hell. Hell is only what the ego has made of the present
I could go on and on, but I think I have illustrated for you the nature of the LIE that many have been seduced into loving and believing, and by which they are rejecting reality, and the only true God and father of our LORD Jesus Christ.
This is the lie which Satan has sold to our generation, it is the new “Gnosis”, the secret knowledge, which (falsely) claims to be more genuine, more compassionate, more open minded and loving and tolerant than the Gospel believing church has ever been in history.
One day these peace loving pagans will turn on those of us who hold to the truth, and we will see how cruel their “tender mercies” really are. Beware the intolerance of the “tolerant”!
What is AntiChrist?… War on The Saints pt 8
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 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.( I John 4:1-3)
I deliberately named this article “What is AntiChrist”, rather than perhaps the more provocative, “Who is AntiChrist’ to establish the concept that Satan wars against the Church, the Jews and the Saints through a concept called “AntiChrist” which manifests itself chiefly in three entities; The Spirit of AntiChrist, and the many antichrists already in the world, and ultimately this will culminate in an individual, the AntiChrist who comes at the end of the world.
The word “Anti Christ” is compound. The prefix, “anti” is added to the word “Christ”. The Word “Christ”, is a Greek term for the Hebrew word “Messiah”, ie “the anointed One”.
Jesus is the Christ of God, the one promised from the very beginning, the “seed of the woman”, the “seed of Abraham”, “the star that comes out of Jacob”, the “root of Jesse”, the “Son of David”, the one promised by all of the Prophets since the third chapter of Genesis. He, Jesus of Nazareth alone, met all of the credentials outlined in the constant promise to Israel that God would send a Messiah.
He would be born in Bethlehem,Ephratah” as Micah 5 predicted, He would come shortly before the temple was destroyed,(as promised in Daniel 9:25-27) and at the very time that “the scepter departed from Judah” as Jacob predicted in Genesis 49. David saw the crucifixion of the Anointed One, but predicted that He would live again, in Psalm 22. Isaiah predicted that he would be executed between two thieves and build in a rich man’s tomb, in chapter 53.
You would have to be very obtuse and resistant to God, to keep on denying that Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah.
But for all of those who insist upon their rejection of Jesus, (in the face of overwhelming prophetic evidence), another “Anointed one” will soon appear.
Jesus predicted that those who refuse to reject himself, who actually met the criterion, will be presented with another who doesn’t bother to meet the criterion or even appear to, He comes,”In His own name”, that they would receive him instead.
I am come in my Father’s name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.(John 5:43)
This is the concept of AntiChrist. The prefix “anti” means “in the place of” or as “a substitute ” for Christ. AntiChrist doesn’t mean “against Christ” it means “instead of Christ”.
Jesus Christ, the Messiah, sent his Spirit into the world upon the resurrection, to empower the church, and to form a bride for himself, (the Bride of Christ), and to witness to the world of sin, righteousness and Judgment.
The false Spirit, the Spirit of AntiChrist has been released to do something similar, but opposite. He, the spirit of antichrist is forming a body of false christians, a bride of antichrist, steeped in mysticism, experienced based christianity, false prophecy, and a distorted “grace doctrine” which actually gives license to sin, and denies the reality of a final punishment.
I have seen this “anti anointing” and written against it, in several books, An artificial Pentecost occurred in 1994 when the “spirit” overtook worshippers at the Toronto Airport Vineyard putting them into trances and inducing them into a state called “Spiritual drunkenness”. This phenomenon became widely known and thousands of Christians made “pilgrimage” over to Toronto to “soak” in the “blessing” and then to carry it home to their churches.
This “new anointing” empowered pastors to quit preaching the Word, to seek to be intoxicated in the “new wine” and to write erotic songs to Jesus and the Father in the name of the so called “spirit”. One main proponent of the movement, Rodney Howard Browne became known as “God’s Bartender” and he called his meetings, “Joel’s Place” as if the prophet Joel had opened a pub for drinking!
Obviously this was not the true Spirit of Christ, it is the Spirit of AntiChrist! But it was accepted and promoted by hundreds of thousands of Christians throughout Europe, England, America, Canada, and the English speaking world. The Assemblies of God stood against it, until they received their own version of it, called the “Pensacola Revival”, a contrived “revival” at an Assembly of God church in Brownsville Florida.
The last days would be marked by the outpouring of a counterfeit “holy Spirit”, a lawless Pentecost would occur and men would be deceived by “signs and wonders” which come after the working of Satan, yet also accompanied by a “Strong delusion” sent by God to damn the unbelievers.
Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 These 2:10-12)
There is a Spirit of AntiChrist that has been poured out upon the world, to rival the Holy Spirit of Christ.
There are also many individual antiChrists, which have come and which will come into the world. AntiChrists are false Christs who supplant a real walk with Jesus by false teachings designed to redefine the Knowledge of God.
All false Christian teachers and prophets are antiChrists. They rob people of real faith, by teaching pseudo faith.
I was just converted for a few months, when I was exposed to the teaching of Kenneth Copeland and Kenneth Hagin, two very popular charismatic teachers in the 1970s. Both of these teachers propertied to “Word ” teachers, or “Word of faith”. They were seemingly down to earth teachers, homespun, Texas accents, and wonderful communicators.
But their teachings amounted to a redefinition of the fall, (Man lost dominion and authority granting it to Satan), they redefined faith itself,(Faith as a force, operating by set laws, God uses faith to create, he is under the laws of faith, etc*). They taught that Jesus’ death on the cross was inadequate to save us**, first he must descend into hell to be tortured by Satan, until he had paid the price for our sins, only then could he be raised from death. They also taught that we the redeemed , sons of God, are in fact “little gods”, in “gods class of being” and as much an incarnation as the incarnation of Jesus Christ”.
When God opened my eyes to the Word of Faith error, I had a choice to make; I had to either admit I am and have been wrong and back away from these heretics and their teachings, or just stay in the movement.
Am I a little God? Isn’t that the serpent’s lie in the garden?
By repenting of the false teachings I had so happily received, I actually “overcame” the antiChrists.
Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them.(I John 4:4-5)
**“For three days He suffered everything there is to suffer. Some people don’t want to believe that. They want to believe that after His death, Jesus just stayed in that upper region of Sheol that the Bible calls paradise, but they’re mistaken! If He had simply stayed there, there would have been no price paid for sin.” (Believer’s Voice of Victory, Vol. 19, No. 9, Sept. 1991)
*** “He [Jesus] allowed the devil to drag Him into the depths of hell….He allowed Himself to come under Satan’s control…every demon in hell came down on Him to annihilate Him….They tortured Him beyond anything anybody had ever conceived. For three days He suffered everything there is to suffer.” (Kenneth Copeland, “The Price of It All,” 3.)
****“You are as much the incarnation of God as Jesus Christ was… the believer is as much an incarnation as was Jesus of Nazareth.” – Kenneth Hagin, Word Of Faith, December, 1980, pg 14.
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Die tyd raak min, maak maar seker jou eskatologiese vertrekpunte is korrek!