By “steal your Blessed Hope” I refer to the Blessed Hope of the soon return of the Lord Jesus Christ. I’ve been listening to several people over the last few weeks (since about mid-January) preaching on repentance, turning away from the flesh and the World, as well as forgiveness. Many of these messages have been good and well-rooted in scripture. However, there at some who live to get the Conviction, but it’s a kind of false conviction intended to sow the seeds of doubt in our salvation.
They look at it as “road-testing” the newbie Christians, but it does damage, whether these people realize it or not. Spiritual damage. You can actually lose new believers this way, when you should be building them up within the Word of God and the Blessed Hope. Not the “fake” hope like Prosperity gospel or “Church Tolerance Doctrine,” but real hope as taught by Jesus Christ our Savior, Paul the apostle and the other prophets and apostles in the Bible (both new and old testament).
We as Christians are supposed to strive to overcome the world, repent for our sins and avoid the things that cause us to return to the ways of the flesh rather than spirit. While some preachers and teachers actually believe what they are saying, and even though they are right on a lot of things when quoting from scripture, there are those who try to cause doubt to fester within you.
I even found myself questioning my own faith, and over a period of days, the old wall of depression came roaring back. What if I wasn’t “good enough” to be saved? What if Jesus found one tiny speck of doubt in me? But then I remembered the mustard seed, And the words of Jesus.
“And the Lord answered, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.”
My faith came roaring back, too, real quick, as did the peace I’d finally found after years of suffering. My faith will not be shaken and the devil will not steal my Blessed Hope. If you think I’m wrong, fine. Sit there until the day comes, and we’ll see who is right. If I’m wrong, I just go through the Trib, but still a believer, rejoicing in the soon arrival of my Lord Jesus Christ. If you’re wrong, well, you’ll just have to go through the Trib wondering how you got so far off the path. I pray the Holy Spirit counsels you on this before that day ever comes.
Oh, and before anyone goes there, I’m not “angry,” I’m being emphatic in my speech. There’s a difference.
Meanwhile, there are others saying similar things, nitpicking. We all battle iniquity, bad thoughts, temptation. That’s part of the Christian struggle. It will continue until the day the Lord calls us home.
They are asking insidious questions like, “Are you really saved? Are you sure that Jesus really came to you when you called out to Him? Are you sure that it wasn’t a demon pretending to be Jesus?” While I do see the point of this, one does have to be sure, the way that some are going about it is disturbing. The Bible addresses this as well:
“…8But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: 9that if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.“
But it can’t be THAT simple, can it? Yes it IS that simple.
Some of the things being said by some of these teachers and preachers are not scriptural. One questioned my (and others’) use of the term, “What would Jesus do?”
Really? You question that? Isn’t Jesus supposed to be our example?
The apostle Peter said,
1 Peter 2:21 – “For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps.”
(And yes, it says this in context, too)
Even worse, just yesterday I heard one that floored me, “Even demons can use the name of Jesus.”
I’m assuming this person was referring to the name “Jesus” specifically – the anglicized version rather than Yeshua Ha Moschiach (or one of the other 50+ ways it is said and spelled in Hebrew). Again, I hear someone telling me and other people that the name Jesus – said in English – cannot be trusted. I honestly hope this person realizes and repents for their huge error that poured out of their mouth when saying this. Demons flee at the very name of Jesus when it is spoken in your native tongue. The name “Jesus” in English is also known worldwide and Satan is actively trying to confuse things by putting the Hebrew version out there that only a small number of people living on this earth can pronounce accurately (and they can do so because it’s in their native language).
There will be many false Christs, but there is only one Jesus Christ, who is our Redeemer, Intercessor and only begotten Son of the Almighty Lord God in heaven. Chances are, if I traveled to Japan, said the name “Jesus” out loud, even those who don’t speak English over there will recognize that particular word. Not the Hebrew version, but the English one. That’s because His name is the Name above all other names.
I have personally witnessed the power of the name of Jesus spoken in the English version, and I’ve also had problems trying to recall the name Yeshua Ha Moschiach and how to pronounce it correctly. English is my native language, so to be clear to anything that might be lurking around in the spirit world, I say Jesus’s name in my language. I don’t guess at a version of it in a language other than my own. This isn’t a slam on people who speak Hebrew or are fluent in Latin. That’s what they’re familiar with, so they speak it in their own tongue. I don’t speak those languages, so I go with the one I am fluent in – English.
There are many ways that some people try to confuse the Gospel and unwittingly (or maybe wittingly) lead people away from Jesus Christ.
Another way they do it is by saying you have to be purified and completely righteous while in our flesh before you can be considered “saved.” You can in spirit, but not the flesh. That’s why they appeal to those who buy into the Post-Tribulation rapture or Pre-Wrath doctrine. Paul the Apostle, as well as Peter and the other apostles laid out the doctrine of Jesus Christ. Paul had the most comprehensive explanations of it, but there are those out there who even dismiss Paul as a heretic. The apostles were human, yet they taught the Word of the Lord as accurately as possible, since they were there and personally talked to Him.
Again, there are always going to be those who cherry-pick the parts of the Bible they like, and simply ignore the parts that don’t support their ideas of what it says. They are reinterpreting the Bible as well, setting themselves up as the final authority on the matter, explaining scriptures after reading them, but in their own way. This is their “My way or the highway” approach instead of Jesus’ way, and it is still an opinion coming from man – which is your own take on the scriptures.
In a nutshell, if you read the scriptures then offer your interpretation of them, and if it is different than what Jesus, Paul and the other apostles taught in any way, then you are putting YOUR OWN doctrine out there. Call it whatever you want, that’s what it is.
Consider that all men (mankind) are fallible. Even you. That’s why we all need Jesus – and guidance of the Holy Spirit, as well as the love / patience of the most high Lord God.
*Note – this post went on a little too long, so I took the latter half of it, on the subject of the word “escape” and created another post on that by itself.