Awesome quote by A.W Tozer..
People can get saved under a false preacher or ministry. People can also be healed even though the preacher is a fraud. People can even receive a genuine prophetic word from a genuine false prophet, but why? Because God’s word will never return void. Isaiah 55:11 states, “so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.”
However, just because someone comes to Christ under a false teacher, or healed by a false servant, or hear from God by a false prophet, that does NOT place a stamp of approval upon that individual, they are what they are – false. Too many times I’ve heard sound preachers condone, defend and approve ministries which are false, and they do so with a condemning tone toward anyone who dares touch their “anointed” vessel. This doesn’t show their intelligence, it simply shows their spiritual ignorance.
Jesus proved this in the word itself of many who would stand before him, declaring their righteousness by gifts, works and knowledge, “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you workers of lawlessness.’” (Matthew 7:23)
It doesn’t matter if someone has an altar call at the end of their sermon, or they mention the cross, or even tell sinners to repent, if their doctrine is wrong, if their ENTIRE message is wrong, then what you have is a perfect example of what we have been warned about to flee from – deceivers, deceiving and being deceived. We live in a day like no other right now within the modern church world, much less the real world around us, and it’s important now more than ever to KNOW who labors among you! This is why I don’t jump at the latest preacher who pops up on Christian television. Nor am I overtaken by someone who has a massive following, whose charismatic, who can say a fast word and it seems to be true, or someone who can sway a crowd. Listen, Christians are some of the most gullible people on earth, especially Western Christians. They’ve bought into the Hollywood version of American Christianity which is about entertainment, style and glamor. Never about Christ.
Did you know that there is a set criteria to get on the two biggest Christian television networks such as TBN and Daystar? When a preacher submits his or her demo tape to either of these networks, they are judged NOT by content or the message as much as they are judged by how the person looks physically, or how they would look on camera. This means that if a preacher is overweight, or is not very good looking, or does not dress in a more fashionable and appealing way, they are less likely to be selected for a test run. Again, it’s about style and less about substance.
We must test ALL things, because if the message is not the cross, if it’s not about crucifying the flesh DAILY, or turning away from sin, then something is wrong, and I don’t care how many millions of fans and followers that man or ministry has, they are false – period. But again, that’s American culture impacting the modern church, because today we judge how successful a ministry is by numbers, not by anointing. If a ministry has world appeal, then it must be successful. But once again, Jesus himself tells us that it’s not about numbers, style or fleshly appeal, but it’s about him.
There is a counterfeit Christianity growing across America and the rest of the world, and Jesus himself warned us it was coming, and it’s all part of the spirit of antichrist. The word tells us that this deception would appeal to many – even the very elect. And if the elect can be swayed, then what does that say of the heart of the modern believer? Again, we must always test the message and ministry to see if it’s truly of God. The problem however is that many have fallen into the trap of political (religious) correction where it’s now wrong, or somehow unchristian to ask questions about any preacher or ministry, or be labeled a troublemaker. Nothing will get a questioning believer shown the door, or a fast rebuke by many who follow a particular ministry than to question the message these people preach. But that’s what we are called to do! It’s not judging, it’s simply calling into question doctrine. And for the record, doctrine does matter!
So the next time you know someone who goes to hear the latest popular preacher, or travels to the latest conference and they say the cross is being preached, or repentance is told the sinner, remind them this, that a broken clock is right twice a day, and Mormons preach Jesus too, but that doesn’t make them right, it just means they know how to use the name of Jesus, and use it well – to deceive.
My thoughts from China.
“I refuse to allow my relationship with God to be limited by my understanding of theology.”
~ A.W Tozer
So true, many have a relationship with “theology” but not the Living God. Head knowledge is great but if we don’t actually have the JESUS that we are learning about in seminary then what good does that do? It puffs us up with knowledge but we will have zero power to actually live holy or walk in God’s power becuase all we have is the “letter” and not the “LIFE”.
“You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, But you WON’T COME TO ME that you may have life.” (John 5:39)
~ Blaze Martyr
In these days when all kinds of strange ideas are being heralded as helping the Church accomplish her task, it may be necessary to remind ourselves that:
The purpose of Christ’s Church is not to promote the Church (or worse A Church), but rather the LORD of the Church.
The goal of Christians is certainly not to exalt “Christianity” but to extol Christ.
Gospel preaching is not meant to magnify the skill of the preacher, but to proclaim the glory, wisdom and mercy of the Saviour.
And the ONLY seed available that grows into eternal life is the word of God, as found within the pages of the Bible.
Much error results with confusion on these issues; for if we misinterpret our role or our goal; pragmatism, proselytism and professionalism and will dull the sword of our evangelism.
It is a strange day. Churches don’t want their buildings to look like churches because they want the unchurched to think the church isn’t a church. Christians don’t want to look like Christians because that is not relevant to the unchurched. We can’t read the KJV because it sounds too much like the Bible. Churches don’t sing hymns because they sound religious. Sermons should be conversational, lest they sound like preaching. We shouldn’t preach against sins like homosexuality because we don’t want to sound like bigots. When these hyper-relevant folks reach their eternal home I fear it will not look or sound like Heaven.
2 Timothy 4:3-4 KJV
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;
And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
Instead of believers coming together to fellowship around the Lord Jesus Christ, the Bread of Life, without all the extraneous paraphernalia, and just to feed on His Word, we have too often turned our services into a carnival. The Word has been pushed aside into a secondary place. Instead, we have an hour and a half of preliminaries, with singing of silly choruses and empty spirituals, and joking and laughing and horseplay. Entertainment has taken the place of worship; singing and music instead of preaching; and then a fifteen-minute sermonette, highly spiced and sensational, in order to keep people awake after all of the wearying entertainment. And then we wonder at the worldliness and the shallowness of Christians today. We have substituted or added pickles, olives, radishes, and highly seasoned extras, and have relegated the Word of Life to a side dish, which few will touch.
The assembly of the saints should be first of all a time of worship and devotion and feeding and feasting upon the Lord Jesus Christ, and not a matter of shallow entertainment. It is a sad thing indeed when a Bible-teaching service or prayer meeting is attended by only a handful of worshipers, while a high-powered entertainer, a musical night, or moving pictures will draw packed houses. Instead of gathering around the person of Christ and feeding upon His Word, we are today regaled by cowboy stunts, ventriloquism, magic tricks, and western movies. Oh, for a return to the good old days when folks went to church not to be entertained and amused and tickled, but to worship the Lord, and to feed upon His Word, and prepare for service through the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
John 12:48 “
He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.”
Written by M.R. DeHaan, M.D.
Shared by Mugisha Charles