Deception In The Last Days

Matthew 24 -

Jesus mentioned deception numerous times throughout chapter 24 in the book of Matthew. He also told us how to deal with deception. Jesus said, “Take Heed” (Matthew 24:4). One definition of “Take Heed” is:

listen, hear, focus, pore, rivet, center, centre, concentrate – direct one’s attention on something…There is only one source of “truth” that ensures the deception promised in the last days can be detected and that is the Word of God (John 17:17)

What’s important to understand are the questions the disciples were asking Jesus in Matthew 24:3 – Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

Jesus told his disciples the sign of his coming is “deception”.  Specifically, look at Matthew 24:24 -

For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

This is a most powerful statement yet so misunderstood. It’s not the signs and wonders that are deceiving, it is the prophets with their false message proving their doctrine is true by producing signs and wonders…Jesus said, “

Matthew 7:22-23 -

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

And then will I profess unto them, “I never knew you”: depart from me, ye that work iniquity…Jesus didn’t say, I once knew you then you backslid, He said “I never knew you“.

I know it’s difficult, our beloved Apostle Paul told us concerning the last days in 2 Timothy, chapter 3 (Amplified):

BUT UNDERSTAND this, that in the last days will come (set in) perilous times of great stress and trouble [hard to deal with and hard to bear].

For people will be lovers of self and [utterly] self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate [greedy] desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be abusive (blasphemous, scoffing), disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy and profane.

[They will be] without natural [human] affection (callous and inhuman), relentless (admitting of no truce or appeasement); [they will be] slanderers (false accusers, troublemakers), intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good.

[They will be] treacherous [betrayers], rash, [and] inflated with self-conceit. [They will be] lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of God.

For [although] they hold a form of piety (true religion), they deny and reject and are strangers to the power of it [their conduct belies the genuineness of their profession]. Avoid [all] such people [turn away from them].

In order to get the full scale of what Apostle Paul was trying to tell us, we must understand a very important scripture in 2 Timothy 3, verse 8 -

 Now just as “Jannes and Jambres” were hostile to and resisted Moses, so these men also are hostile to and oppose the Truth. They have depraved and distorted minds, and are reprobate and counterfeit and to be rejected as far as the faith is concerned.

Here the Apostle Paul is giving us more light on Matthew 24:24…Just as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses..When you read the account of these magicians of Pharaoh in Exodus chapters 7 & 8, you will see they performed all the “signs and wonders” that Moses performed yet they were false. Moses represented the Word of God and they resisted the true Word of God spoke through Moses…This is to repeat again in the last days. The true Word of God (now in written form) being resisted by those that claim to be fulfilling the Word of God and yet they are false.

False Christs and False Prophets will resist the Word of God and prove to many they deceive they have the Word of God and will support their false teachings with “signs and wonders”.

Apostle Paul also said in the “last days” many will depart from the faith and heep to themselves teachers and will be drawn into fables…2 Timothy 4. These are seducing spirits that are unleashing doctrines of devils (1 Timothy 4).

Brothers and Sisters, don’t see your fellowship through – Numbers, Money, Fancy Buildings, Fancy Music or Great Entertainment as the source that God is moving mighty in your meetings, look at what is coming from the pulpit. The Word of God is the only source of truth that WILL NOT lead you astray. God watches over His Word to perform it. If what your fellowships are teaching is not in the Word of God, it is a lie regardless of any physical manifestations, signs or wonders…

Apostle Paul warned the Ephesus Brethren for 3 (three) years night and day with tears that men would rise up among them and draw away disciples (Acts 28-31). Draw them away from what? The True unadulterated Word of God spoke through the Apostles. The same Word we have today.

The following is a quote from A.W. Tozer written years ago but speaks volumes of what is happening among fellowships of today -

Is Your Assembly Fed on Excitement?

 A Church fed on excitement is no New Testament church at all.  The desire for surface stimulation is a sure mark of the fallen nature, the very thing Christ died to deliver us from.  A curious crowd of baptized worldlings waiting each Sunday for the quasi-religious needle to give them a lift bears no relation whatsoever to a true assembly of Christian believers.  And that its members protest their undying faith in the Bible does not change things any. A.W.Tozer, The Next Chapter After the Last, p.14.

Jesus Wants Loving Obedience

Originally posted on Pastor Joe Quatrone, Jr.:

ObedienceEvery true Christian wants to have a winning witness, a testimony that demonstrates Jesus makes a difference in their life. They want the world around them to see Jesus in them. But unfortunately, that is not always the case. All too frequently the image the world has of Christians is one of hypocrisy and compromise.

I have found many people today who profess to be Christians are living lives that are not significantly different from the world around them. I have read survey after survey, which demonstrates evangelical Christians are as likely to embrace lifestyles every bit as hedonistic, materialistic, self-centered, and sexually immoral as the world in general. Divorce is more common among born again Christians than in the general American population. Noted Christian apologist Josh McDowell has pointed out sexual promiscuity of evangelical youth is only a little less outrageous than that of their non-evangelical peers.

As much…

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Prosperity Doctrine (In my youth I believed, until I saw the fruit of it)

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If the “doctrine” of prosperity works, why aren’t those that preach it going to places like the Horn of Africa, Haiti, Ethiopia, or other impoverished countries, setting up shop and combating poverty with the doctrine instead of according to statistical data, sending only a portion of the millions of dollars that flow through these ministries to missions?…it seems the prosperity doctrine only works in places where the economy is booming, where people are being paid and their futures are secure, of course people of the world are doing well in those places also…Parts of American Christendom had a hard time in recent years due to the collapsing economy…many that took out multi-million dollar loans lost their church buildings because the economy took a dive and people could no longer support above and beyond to help pay for those luxurious buildings…and if the ministry was striving to keep the building, I wonder how much of the contributions went to missions…I didn’t know that the divine was limited in power being directly linked to the American Economy…I feel sorry for leaders that have been entrapped by this teaching…

What this doctrine doesn’t teach is what Apostle Paul revealed concerning “gathering manna” in the wilderness…you only took what you needed so there was (equality)…if you had two children, you took enough food for two…if you had eight children, you took enough food for eight…if the Christian economy operated in this light as a whole, who knows what type of “impact” would be made on the less fortunate and those ministries with leaders envisioned to take care of these needs…our thought process would be to work a 40 hour week to support ministry instead of working to achieve a certain lifestyle…yet the pull from the American culture telling us we can have what ever we want or desire, and men speaking this from pulpits across America is so powerful that we forget this journey on earth is like a grain of sand on a seashore compared to eternal life and nothing in regards to possessions in this temporal world can compare to what’s coming…eye has not seen nor ear heard the wonderful things that are prepared for those that Love God…

This doctrine only seems to work at the higher echelon as well, for those at the top…us bottom feeders send money up the funnel and watch the lifestyles of those continually telling us to send money flourish above and beyond anything we will ever experience…and though the doctrine tells you your seed (money) will multiply 30, 60, even 100 fold, it must not work for those preaching it because if it did, they wouldn’t have to continually beg you for money, because their seed money would also multiply…

Remember what Jesus said, “give, expecting nothing in return, then your reward will be great”…the purpose of giving is for “needs”, so the less fortunate can enjoy even the basic necessities of life (equality)…and, the bible teaches “sacrificial giving”, not from abundance…this pleases our Father, Jesus tells a parable concerning this…

The interpretation of what Jesus talked about in the gospels concerning money is shown in the book of Acts…the believers sold their possessions giving to everyone that had need…again, nor was there anyone among them who lacked; for all who were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of the things that were sold, and laid them at the apostles’ feet; and they distributed to each as anyone had need…(do you see this?…laid the possessions at the “leader’s feet” and the leaders distributed to everyone in “need”)…this is the interpretation of what Jesus taught us concerning money, in fact, we read in the gospels how Jesus “rebuked” the religious leaders of His day because they were lovers of money and the religious leaders mocked Jesus and scorned Him for bringing their covetousness to light…Jesus also told us a man’s worth is not based on the amount of possessions that he has…

Why did the believers give to the needy in the book of Acts?…because this is what they were taught by the Apostles that literally walked with the Lord while He was on earth getting first hand, unadulterated truth and correct interpretation of what Jesus taught concerning money…they were not taught to seek to fulfill a “bucket list” or seek to “live your best life now”, and they definitely were not seeking the “American Dream”, they walked in humility and placed the needs of others before their own…and the same can be said of those that were following the teachings of Apostle Paul, he praised church groups continually for placing the needs of others first even in their poverty stricken circumstances…

And a “follower” will always “emulate” a leader…if a leader is seeking a lifestyle by a doctrine that does nothing but fulfill self desire, those that follow will do the same thing…

The bible tells us in the last days will come perilous times of great stress and trouble, hard to deal with and hard to bear because men will rise up among the believers giving heed to seducing spirits, utterly self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate greedy desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters…they are totally centered on self making merchandise of people, even going the way of Balaam, a prophet of God who loved the way of gain (possessions), more than the truth of God…and we are commanded by these men to tithe and threatened with a curse if we don’t…

Scripture has to come to pass meaning somebody has to be doing this on the earth…but it doesn’t mean everyone is doing it either…don’t lump everyone in the same basket…there are wonderful ministries out there doing sensational things however, use some discernment in your giving…remember the prophecy!…someone boasting about how they obtained their lifestyle by faith are misinforming you…the support of the tithe is how the lifestyle was obtained and just may be the fulfillment of 2 Timothy 3…the ministry should be boasting on the believer’s giving and how the ministry is following in the footsteps of scripture…

Find a worthy mission for your money…please stop supporting entities that spend your money on lavish lifestyles that is somehow justified because the leaders see themselves as a CEO of a business rather than a Shepherd of the Flock…simply put, lifestyle is based on the number that support…

Divine Health

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I was brought up in a doctrine called “divine health”, meaning that a Christian can walk out this life with no physical ailments as long as they have enough faith to believe…when a bodily ailment would come on a person in example, the common cold, I was told to “speak to it”, “command it”, “don’t confess you possess it”, like saying, “I have a cold”…you were automatically rebuked by someone that was stronger in the doctrine than you were by them telling you that if you confess you possess it, then you will have it…

I did great at this when I was 20 years old but now I’m 55 years old…I have joint pains, back pains, muscle cramps, in and out of the dentist office, I need glasses, I’m going gray, my face has started to wrinkle, I dehydrate, I find it hard to control my weight and I have to take certain things to help me go to the bathroom…

With others that believe this doctrine I see medicine cabinets full of pain killers, anti-inflammatory medicine, anti-depressants, sleep aids, medication for sugar, bi-polar medication, insulin needles, catheters, and the list goes on with medications I can’t even pronounce…

The problem with the doctrine is it only works when you’re young…you would think over time a person would grow increasingly strong in their faith making the believer the most healthy person that walked the earth, however, with this doctrine it is just the opposite…

I’m told by science that around 20 years of age, the human body starts to die, this is when physical ailments start to manifest…when I was 17 I could jump out of a 2nd story window, what do you think would happen to me if I tried that at 55?…what amazes me is how many people still cling to this doctrine…even the mega-men that preach it have private doctors, secret operations, are on medication, promote it to their followers and many that have preached it over the years have died from physical ailments by refusing to see a physician…some people will secretly run off to doctors because they are in bondage believing people will see them as having no faith…

And when trouble comes, because our faith is in a doctrine instead of our faith being in God, we lose hope, we think God doesn’t love us anymore, we see ourselves as doing something wrong or we believe we don’t have any faith…many are just unwilling to believe that the human body “was not part of the deal” when it comes to the redemption process until Jesus Christ returns and gives us a new body…until then, we are just as the world when it comes to the human body…the difference is, we have “Faith” that can see us through trials regardless of how bad they are because God is right there with us, and other Christians are praying for us and because of faith, being positive about something, can bring about healing in itself, the bible talks about this in Proverbs 4…

I do feel sad for my married sisters in the Lord because somehow the men that are still infected by this doctrine see going to a Doctor as a lack of faith…Over the years I have realized that the knowledge unleashed to the American Doctor has saved countless lives, relieved millions from pain and has given a quality of life to a person far beyond those that still cling to the doctrine of “divine health”…these men will make a widow out of their wives long before their time…they don’t head warning signs the human body gives off, they won’t listen to reason, they turn the clock on you and say, “you’re the one that doesn’t have any faith”, yet live in pain, watch the warning signs grow continually worse and finally, causing permanent damage to themselves that could have been avoided…

People in 3rd world countries can only dream of what we have in America as far as medical knowledge…call me crazy, we believe this doctrine of divine health in America, yet those that promote this doctrine are asking you for money to send Doctors oversees as missionaries…

This doesn’t mean God doesn’t do miracles, but what it does mean, until He does, there is an avenue to take to ensure our health so we can enjoy our lives while on earth…why live unhealthy if you don’t have to?…your attitude alone will be a million light years from where it is now being freed from the idea that you are a second class Christian because you were seen by a doctor, that’s bondage and you need to free yourself from it…

Ambassadors of the Kingdom of Heaven

 

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If we are not telling others about the “power” God uses that leads to salvation, the (death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ) and our life does not imitate God and we don’t love others as Christ loved us, then how effective are we as Ambassadors of the Kingdom of Heaven? 

If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am onlya resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

The Image of God (1 Corinthians 13)

* loves it’s enemies
* does good to those that use us and persecute us 
* never holds in account a wrong suffered
* endures long, is patient and kind
* is not envious nor boils over with jealousy
* is not boastful or vainglorious or displays oneself haughtily.
* is not conceited, arrogant and inflated with pride
* is not rude and does not act unbecomingly
* does not insist on its own rights or its own way, is not self-seeking
* is not touchy or fretful or resentful
* does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness 
* rejoices when right and truth prevail
* is humble, thinking of others as better than self
* does not look out only for self interests, but takes interest in others also
* treats others as one desires to be treated

Loving As Christ Loved Us

He sacrificed Himself, He gave His life not only for His friends, but for His enemies as well…the perfect example of (Agape Love), a higher form of love the world knows nothing about unless we Christians express it…

The same Spirit that was in Christ is now in us empowering us to walk even as He walked if we so desire displaying the same God that was in Christ to the people of this world that know nothing about His love for them…

And this love covers a multitude of shortcomings among ourselves…we are far from perfect, that’s why we are told to love each other fervently, just as God loves us…He does not hold our shortcomings against us, neither should we hold anything against one another…never let it fade, keep this love in the midst of us and we will clearly let the world see that we are disciples of Jesus Christ… 

The Gospel 

1 Corinthians 15 – Moreover, brethren, I “declare to you the gospel” which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand…for I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ (1) died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was (2) buried, and that He (3) rose again the third day according to the Scriptures

Help Me Understand

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I’m not the smartest guy on the block and I don’t think of myself better than others, however, I do know a little about the bible…I was saved years ago…I’ve had my ups and downs, yet prior to knowing Christ and what He did for me I was absolutely no good to the world…I was nothing more than an individual that should of eaten up people’s tax money by placing me behind bars…

When I met Christ, everything changed, I became a new creation, a totally different person…this is why Jesus Christ came, to save sinners, to offer new life and as a result I am now being led and displaying different attributes than the ones I displayed prior to knowing Him.

To make a long story short, (and I’m not bragging on myself) I am a retired military soldier that started a business selling cars and out of that business I’ve sowed much income into different ministries…I don’t live off the business and I never have…I’ve given many cars and auto parts away and have worked on more cars for free than I can count helping Christians and the less fortunate…personally, I talk about the Lord, I tell people what He did for me, I try to display weekly if not daily thoughts via the internet and I try to live a quiet life being an example in my words and deeds, not living beyond my income…

That being said, I don’t know what else there is…I’m told there is more and that I don’t understand what God is doing today, there is “new revelation” to follow…yet I watch the internet and see my fellow Christians that are following this new revelation posting how they are seeking the bigger and nicer house, the newer car, the better lifestyle, in fact, one minister posted a comment saying we should show the devil how we are defeating him by showing off our lifestyle…

I guess I just don’t understand, I could of had all these things through my business…I hope when it’s all over that I won’t be rebuked by the Lord for what I am doing because I really don’t understand this modern day Christianity movement…

I hope I effect others by them seeing a difference in me personally, of what Christ did in me and how I’m being changed by His word, instead of how one pastor put it, “people in our community know my kids by the kind of car that they drive”…the pastor’s kids drive a Mercedes…

Transparency

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What is the “cry” of the people to the government?…”transparency” (The state in which all relevant information is fully and freely available to the public)…what is amazing is this is the same “cry” of the people to many “Church Fellowships”…it’s a (spirit) that does this…

The same spirit that works in the world is the same spirit that has crept into fellowships…the few believe they can “lord over the masses” with their hidden agendas…yet, God has promised to make all folly manifested, to bring it to surface and put those that do these things to an open shame…the government (those at the top) that lord over the people gets richer through the masses and those that lord over the people in Church fellowships get richer through the masses…

The “love of money” brings out the worst in any organization from the highest form of government or mega church down to the smallest business entity or flock…the only “life styles” that change are those at the top and in control either by law or by those that are blind…lifestyles for the elite flourish all in the name of government and religion…

The bible does not teach this, therefore those the practice these things are not submissive to God and not submissive to His word…both entities have lost sight of their calling, “to be public servants to the masses”…humility is something that has long been forgotten…

Is the prophecy long before told upon us concerning the last days?

But understand this, that in the last days will come perilous times of great stress and trouble, hard to deal with and hard to bear.

For people will be lovers of self and utterly self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate greedy desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be treacherous betrayers, rash, and inflated with self-conceit…

 

Submit to those in Authority

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The following passage of scripture is written by Apostle Paul (moved by the Holy Spirit and inspired)…did the Holy Spirit realize that soon after writing the following (Romans) that Nero would be persecuting Christians?…are we only to submit to governing authority during times of peace, prosperity, success and abundance?…or because things aren’t going the way we feel are correct, we should rebel and take matters into our own hands because in today’s Christian world, we believe this is what the Holy Spirit desires of the modern day Body of Christ?…

Key – (Examples) to the unbelieving world…

Romans 13:1-3
Let every person be loyally subject to the governing (civil) authorities. For there is no authority except from God by His permission, His sanction, and those that exist do so by God’s appointment.

Therefore he who resists and sets himself up against the authorities resists what God has appointed and arranged in divine order. And those who resist will bring down judgment upon themselves receiving the penalty due them.

For civil authorities are not a terror to people of good conduct, but to those of bad behavior. Would you have no dread of him who is in authority? Then do what is right and you will receive his approval and commendation.

Romans 13:4-7
The authorities are God’s servants, sent for your good. But if you are doing wrong, of course you should be afraid, for they have the power to punish you. They are God’s servants, sent for the very purpose of punishing those who do what is wrong. So you must submit to them, not only to avoid punishment, but also to keep a clear conscience.

Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.

1 Timothy 2:1-4
First of all, then, I admonish and urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be offered on behalf of all men,

For kings and all who are in positions of authority or high responsibility, that outwardly we may pass a quiet and undisturbed life and inwardly a peaceable one in all godliness and reverence and seriousness in every way.

For such praying is good and right, and it is pleasing and acceptable to God our Savior,

Who wishes all men to be saved and increasingly to perceive and recognize and discern and know precisely and correctly the [divine] Truth.

1 Peter 2:12-16
Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world.

For the Lord’s sake, respect all human authority—whether the king as head of state, or the officials he has appointed. For the king has sent them to punish those who do wrong and to honor those who do right.

It is God’s will that your honorable lives should silence those ignorant people who make foolish accusations against you. For you are free, yet you are God’s slaves, so don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil.

Do I even need to talk about “Slaves” being subject to their “Masters”?…being subject to authority seems to be a big issue in scripture, yet we so easily speak evil of those in governmental positions therefore doing the exact opposite of what scripture tells us to do…

As Christians, we must remember we are “Ambassadors” of another Kingdom, we come in the Name of the Lord and have one truth in which we teach among the Nations, the Word of God…