Why Is God A Jealous God?

In Exodus 20:5 God says “… I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God…”
So the question is: If jealousy is a sin, then why does God describe Himself as “a jealous God”?

The word jealous can be generally be described as the following:
1. Strongly wanting someone else’s position, advantages or possessions
2. To covet or be envious
3. Suspicious or unduly suspicious or fearful of being duplicated by a rival

The above definitions would be used to define or describe the sin of jealousy that is mentioned in such verses as James 3:14-16 or Galatians 5:20.

However, the kind of jealousy which God refers to in Exodus 20:5 is different from the sin of jealousy.
In context, God is speaking of the love, commitment and faithfulness that is expected in His relationship with mankind.
Just as in a marriage relationship between a husband and wife, there is the expectation that both spouses will be loving, committed and faithful to one another.
A husband who deeply loves and is faithful to his wife would expect the same reciprocal response from his own wife.
A good husband would not want to share his wife with other men. He would not desire his wife to flirt or be interested in other men because he loves his wife and because he values the marriage relationship that he has with his wife.
If a husband were to discover that his wife is flirting or having sex with another man, then the husband would be naturally jealous or protective over the relationship that he has with his wife.
The husband would do what he possibly can to prevent the violation of their relationship and he would jealously guard his wife and do what he can to protect his relationship where possible.

In the same context, God is like our husband who does not want to see mankind falling into the sin of idolatry or worshipping any false god.
In Exodus 20:3-6, God gives the reason why He describes Himself as a “jealous God”.

Exodus 20:3-6
“You shall have no other gods before me. 4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate Me,”

There is only one true God and therefore it is God alone who should be worshipped and no one else.
God alone is the Creator of the universe and the Creator of all of mankind. Therefore when mankind directs his worship to other things or entities besides God, this becomes idolatry and is likened to a wife who cheats on her husband.
It is in this context that when God sees mankind worshipping false gods and participating in idolatry that He describes Himself as being “jealous”. It is because God desires that all of mankind be loving, committed and faithful to its relationship with the one true God.
In Ephesians 5:22-29, the Scriptures also describe the relationship between Jesus Christ and His Church as being that of a marriage between a husband and a wife with Christ as the groom and His Church as the bride.

 

HOW MUCH DOES GOD LOVE US?
God loves us so much that even when we are actively engaged in the sin of idolatry or the worship of false gods, He is ever ready to reconcile with us so that we may be faithful to Him alone (2 Peter 3:9).
Therefore even though we are not committed to God, the Lord remains committed to reconciling with us. 2 Timothy 2:13 says that “if we are faithless, He remains faithful”.
The Bible tells us that God loves us so much that He sent Jesus Christ on the cross to die for our sins so that we would not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).
Therefore even though we are sinners and even though we fall short of God’s perfect standards (Romans 3:23), Jesus Christ came to pay the debt of sin that we cannot pay.

Romans 5:6-10 says: For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— 8 but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by His blood, much more shall we be saved by Him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by His life.

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God.

 

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

Have you accepted & believed in Jesus Christ as a result of reading this article and would like to know more about what to do next? If so please acknowledge by clicking the “I Have Accepted Jesus Christ” button below

If God Is Real, Why Doesn’t He Reveal Himself?

Most atheists will argue that if God is real, then why doesn’t He reveal Himself? They question why God would choose to hide Himself from His own creation and not just simply prove His existence to the entire world.

However the following question must also be asked to every atheist: If God physically or supernaturally revealed Himself to the world, is it likely that every atheist will bow down and choose to humbly worship Him?
Unfortunately, when asked this question, many atheists have answered “No!” and declared that they will not worship God even if He does reveal Himself. Why? Atheists will then attack the character and nature of God as reasons to deny worshiping Him as God.

Therefore atheism is an issue of the heart and it is a choice to suppress God rather than to naturally accept His existence.
Psalms 14:1 says that “A fool says in his heart, there is no God…”
Therefore atheism is a choice that a person convinces himself to believe; It is a choice to not believe in God or His existence.

The Bible itself makes no effort to prove that God exists. Instead according to Psalms 14:1, it is the atheist who tries to prove and assert in his own heart that God does not exist.
Romans 1:20-21 says: For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities — His eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified Him as God nor gave thanks to Him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.

From Romans 1:20-21 we discover that clearly it is not the issue that God has not revealed Himself which would cause an atheist to deny God’s existence. Instead the denial of God is because of a hardened heart.
The existence of a Maker is in creation itself just like a building cannot exist without a builder. God’s invisible qualities are revealed through His creation. Every design has a designer. Rather atheism is the result of a darkened heart that has made the choice to rebel against God by suppressing His existence.

 

HAS GOD EVER REVEALED HIMSELF?
God has revealed Himself in many different ways to many people. God has revealed Himself not only to believers – but also to unbelievers.
In Exodus 14:21-27 God revealed Himself to Pharaoh but yet Pharaoh refused and rebelled against the one true God.
The Lord used the 10 plagues against Pharaoh and the Egyptian people in order to reveal Himself to the Egyptians and the Jews that He alone was the true God and not the false Egyptian “gods” whom Pharaoh worshiped (Exodus 7-11). Yet we learn that Pharaoh refused to believe in the one true God because Pharaoh’s heart was hardened.

Throughout the Bible we will notice that God would also constantly reveal His presence and who He was to the Israelites, yet the Israelites would continue to fall into the sin of idolatry and choose to worship idols or false gods instead of the one true God who chose them and rescued them out of Egypt.

Therefore the problem is not that God does not choose to reveal Himself, but the problem lies with the sinful heart of man. A heart that is controlled by sin will always deny or rebel against God.

The ultimate way in which God revealed Himself was through the Person of Jesus Christ.
John 1:1-3,14 says the following about Jesus: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him was not any thing made that was made… 14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Therefore we learn that even though God became flesh to dwell among us, Jesus was not popular and He was rejected as God.
God chose to reveal Himself through Christ but yet He was ridiculed, persecuted and crucified even though He performed miracles to reveal that He was indeed God and came from Heaven (John 10:31-39).
John 1:11 says “He came to His own, and His own people did not receive Him”.

Therefore it does not always mean that if God reveals Himself that people will automatically worship Him. Seeing is not always believing. The problem is not with God, but the problem is with the condition of the heart of man.
Jeremiah 17:9 says: The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?
A deceived or deceitful heart will not submit to God. Therefore atheism in itself is a deception or a sign that one is deceived.

 

FAITH IS NECESSARY TO RELATE WITH GOD
Hebrews 11:6 says: And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him.
Both the atheist and the Christian exercise faith. The atheists believes that creation came from nothing and therefore concludes that there is no God or Creator of the universe.
However according to Hebrews 11:6, if the atheist is to know God or draw near to God, then he/she must first believe or have faith that God exists.
Faith in God is important for our relationship with God. Our salvation is possible through faith alone in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9).
The entire Christian life and journey is by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7).
In John 20:29 Jesus says: “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God

 

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

Have you accepted & believed in Jesus Christ as a result of reading this article and would like to know more about what to do next? If so please acknowledge by clicking the “I Have Accepted Jesus Christ” button below

How Should A Christian Respond to Suffering?

We undoubtedly live in a world where pain and suffering is inevitable. The Bible reminds us that this world is a fallen world in which man is a sinner who needs God’s redemption.
The Bible also reminds us that the condition of the heart of man will grow from bad to worse.
2 Timothy 3:1 says that “in the last days there will come times of difficulty” because of the ungodly nature and attitude of man towards each other and towards God (2 Timothy 3:2-5).
Therefore in a world that is filled with ungodliness, there will always be pain and suffering.

However, how should a Christian respond to the issue of pain and suffering? What attitude should Christians have during times of persecution and opposition?

First of all it is important to categorize suffering into 3 types or 3 reasons for why a person suffers in life.

 

3 REASONS FOR SUFFERING

1. Persecution or Suffering for Righteousness Sake
1 Peter 3:13-14,17 says “Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? 14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled… For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.”
Therefore there is the kind of persecution and suffering which one experiences for doing the right thing or for standing by godly and righteous principles or for exposing wrong-doing. For centuries, many Christians have been ridiculed, excluded, punished and even killed for preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ and for exposing wrong doctrines and lifestyles. In other words, they experienced forms of persecutions for righteousness’ sake.
In our world, anyone who stands for Biblical truth is likely to be viewed as an outsider or threat to an existing and ungodly system which then leads to persecution. For example, Jesus faced persecution from the scribes and Pharisees and was eventually crucified for standing for the truth and for exposing the false religious systems of the scribes and Pharisees. All of Christ’s disciples also faced persecution on account of the message of the gospel, yet the Christian values that they preached promoted godly living and character.
In 2 Timothy 3:12 it says that anyone who desires “to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.”
Therefore persecution for righteousness sake is unavoidable for the Christian believer who stands for the Biblical truth and seeks to live a godly life.

2. Suffering Because of The Culture / Systems of the World
The Bible tells us that the world is at enmity with God and at enmity with Christians. The reason is because the standards, values, philosophies and culture of the world are opposed to Biblical values. It is the very reason why Romans 12:2 tells us not to conform to standards of this world. The philosophies and ideas of this world have created suffering, pain, injustice within the social, political, economic and even the spiritual areas of people’s lives.
Therefore when the system and culture of the world is corrupt, there will be many who will suffer as a result.
In the world there are also natural occurrences that are beyond human control such as natural disasters which may cause man to suffer. These include such things as earthquakes, cyclones, floods and the like which contribute to the pain and suffering of mankind.

3. Suffering Because of Personal Sin or The Sins of Others
Our own personal sin has consequences which can lead to pain and suffering. The sin of Adam in the garden of Eden led to the tragic consequence of every person being born a sinner and death affecting all of mankind (Romans 5:12).
1 Peter 4:15 says: But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler.
The acts of a murderer for example, do not only affect the murderer, but they also affect the victim and the victim’s loved ones. Therefore whether it is sin that is committed by us or by another, our sins can have consequences which affect other people in general. Ultimately sin causes suffering.
The scriptures warn us that we should not suffer because we have committed evil. Instead it is better to suffer for doing good or for the truth of God’s word.

 

HOW SHOULD WE RESPOND TO SUFFERING?

A) We Must Be Prayerful & Thankful
James 5:13 says “Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray…”
Therefore we must talk to God about the issues that pain us and allow Him to take charge of every problem and challenge in our life (1 Peter 5:7).
Through prayer we can both seek God’s direction and receive the peace of Christ through our situation. Philippians 4:6-7 says “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Furthermore, even in pain and suffering, we must count our blessings and have an attitude of thanksgiving because 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says that we are to give thanks in all circumstances (both good and bad).

 

B) We Must Endure & Persevere
The word Endurance means the power to withstand hardship or stress; a state of surviving or remaining alive.
The word Perseverance means to be steadfast; persistent determination; the act of persisting; continuing or repeating behavior.
Therefore in the midst of suffering of any kind, we are expected to endure and persevere. And both to endure and persevere during trials can be used by God as a testing of our faith which can develop our character.
James 1:2-4 says: Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4 And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
James 5:10-11 says: As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. 11 Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.
Ephesians 6:10 says: Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.

 

C) We Must Count It All Joy & Count Yourself Blessed
Every Christian who suffers or is persecuted for righteousness sake or for the Biblical truth shares in the sufferings of Christ and is therefore blessed.
In Luke 6:22-23 Jesus said the following: “Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man! 23 Rejoice in that day, and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is great in heaven; for so their fathers did to the prophets.”
1 Peter 4:13-14 says: But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. 14 If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.

 

D) Remember The Sovereignty of God
Romans 8:28 says: And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
We are reminded that God uses all things and all situations in life – both good and bad – to accomplish His own purpose.
Despite the chaos in the world and the personal challenges we may face in life, God still remains in control and God is never surprised by anything that happens in the world.
God remains all-knowing and all-powerful. Therefore even in the midst of suffering we must remember that God is in control and we must continue to live a godly life in Christ Jesus despite our circumstances.
1 Peter 4:19 says: Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.

 

E) Repent If You Have Sinned & Resist The Devil
Where sin is the cause of our personal suffering, then we must repent and walk according to God’s word. We are to resist the devil and resist his temptations by seeking to be close to God and casting all our issues on Him.
1 Peter 5:7-11 says: Casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you. 8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. 10 And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.

Therefore pain and suffering is part of life. However, God is always in control and all who are in Christ Jesus will only experience the discomfort of difficult times for a short while. Ultimately the born again believer will one day experience a painless life and a life that is free from suffering when he/she receives the eternal promise of Heaven and eternity with God.

 

What is a Cult? What are the Characteristics of a Cult?

Cults are everywhere and they exist all over the world. They exist in different forms. For example there are religious cults, political cults, sex cults, new age cults and many more.
Some groups are extreme and abusive cults, while others are very subtle and deceptive cults. Some cults are widely accepted and mainstream, while other cults prefer to be isolated from the general public.

However, the most important thing to understand about most cults is that there is a major element or culture of lying, deception, manipulation and control. Cult leaders or the group leaders will excessively or subtly deceive, brainwash and control their members.

The context of this article is specifically related to defining religious cults that are of a pseudo-Christian nature.

Since there is an overwhelming number of religious groups existing all over the world, it’s important for people to know and understand the difference between a legitimate Christian group and a religious or pseudo-Christian cult.

 

WHAT IS A CULT?
In the Christian context, a cult is a religious group that either subtly or blatantly denies or distorts one or more of the fundamentals or essentials of Biblical doctrine. Most religious cults are also known for exercising manipulative mind control techniques in order to brainwash or control the lives of their followers.
Therefore when understanding a religious cult and its characteristics, it is important to understand that a religious cult has 2 natures that govern how the group operates.

The two natures / aspects of a cult are the following:
1. The Doctrines / Beliefs of the Cult
2. The Group Dynamics of the Cult

A cult’s doctrines / beliefs and its resulting group dynamics are usually interrelated as these natures are like 2 sides of the same coin.

 

1. THE DOCTRINES / BELIEFS OF THE CULT
Every cult either denies or distorts the fundamentals or essentials of Biblical doctrine. For example, a cult may deny the deity of Jesus Christ. Some cults may deny salvation through faith alone and instead teach a works-based salvation. Other cults may distort the Biblical view of grace and instead they will teach a perverted type of greater grace / hyper-grace which is sometimes called antinomianism.
At their core, the doctrines of these groups creates a false concept of God and causes the followers to believe in a false gospel and to follow after a false christ (2 Corinthians 11:4). Furthermore, the doctrines of a cult can lead to false conversions or false believers (Matthew 7:21-23).

In 2 Corinthians 11:4, Paul says: For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough.

In Matthew 7:21-23, Jesus says: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’”

Therefore there are many religious cults which claim to be Christian and may teach from the Bible, but yet because of their false doctrines and beliefs, these groups have created false believers who believe in their false gospels.
Therefore in the Christian context, a cult denies or distorts the fundamentals of the Christian faith by promoting the group’s own false doctrines and religious traditions above the truth of the Bible. Such groups are likely to prevent the genuine conversion of their followers. The nature of a cult is such that if the false doctrines of the group are believed, it will cause many of their followers to remain unsaved or to be under the deception that they are saved when the Biblical reality is that the members are not truly born again. Hence Jesus emphasizing that not everyone who says “Lord, Lord” will enter the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 7:21-23).

Examples of mainstream or well-known religious groups that claim to be Christian but are actually cults are Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Mormons (Latter Day Saints) or the Moonies.
These religious groups and many more are known for preaching a different gospel, a different Jesus and they are under the influence of a different spirit (2 Corinthians 11:4).
Their teachings deny the essentials of the Christian faith and put emphasis on the doctrines and traditions of the group rather than on the true interpretation of the Bible.
(read Are The Jehovah’s Witnesses a Cult?); (read What Do The Mormons Believe?)

However, besides well-known groups such as the Jehovah’s Witnesses or Mormons, there has been a fast-paced growth for several decades of a different breed of pseudo-Christian groups that teach a variety of false gospels and heretic doctrines. For example, such false gospels / doctrines include the prosperity gospel, seed-faith teachings, hyper-grace / antinomianism, spiritual covering doctrines and word of faith theology.
Many of these groups, whose leaders have become extremely wealthy due to their false teachings, have either become cultic in nature or have over the years evolved into full-blown cults that have distorted the true gospel of Jesus Christ and Biblical Christianity.

In 2 Timothy 3:13 Paul speaks of evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.

In Matthew 7:15 Jesus said that we should “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”

2 Corinthians 11:13-15 says For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.

Ultimately a group becomes a cult simply because it denies or distorts the essentials of the Christian faith and the group’s false doctrines & traditions are promoted by its false teachers above the truth of God’s word.

 

2. THE GROUP DYNAMICS OF THE CULT
Group dynamics refers to the interactions or system of behaviours that occur within a cult and influences the attitudes and behaviours of the followers / members.
The Bible says that “bad company ruins good morals” (1 Corinthians 15:33) and therefore the consequence of being a member of a cult will psychologically and spiritually influence the members in a negative and ungodly way. Members may become morally, spiritually and also psychologically corrupted because of the social system and cultic methods that may exist within the group.
In most cases the cult leader is a narcissist who seeks to intimately control the lives and decisions of his followers for his own personal gain. Therefore control and dominance is a very big thing within a cult.

Some of the group behaviours or characteristics of most cults are as follows:

A) The Cult Leader is a “little christ” – In a cult, the focus shifts to a man and not to the Biblical Christ. In a cult, the cult leader can be a dead person. For example in groups such as the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Mormons and many other groups, the heretical teachings of the founders of these groups are still believed and practiced by the members long after the founders / leaders have died. Therefore the founder of the cult is extremely revered and adored by the cult members as if he/she were a type of deity.
The founder can be either dead or alive, but his heretical teachings will remain as foundational doctrine to the members and to the overall function of the group.
Followers perceive their leader as a “spiritual father”, “God’s man”, “God’s anointed”, “God’s apostle”, “God’s prophet”, “God’s special messenger” or a type of “christ”.
If an outsider were to speak or comment negatively about the group’s leader or even the cult itself, the members are likely to get very upset and even vindictive for being against their leader or the group.
Therefore the cult leader, whether dead or alive, is revered by the members as one who stands as a human deity for the group – or as spiritual mediator on behalf of his group. (read 12 Characteristics of a Cult Leader).

B) Authoritarian Leadership – A cult leader will teach and enforce false doctrines such as spiritual covering theology or use various submission and fear techniques to influence their members to submit to them and their control. A culture of legalism is also introduced in the group.
The leader demands total submission and unquestioned obedience from members even when there is a conflict with the scriptures. The leader claims to be a “spiritual covering” or a “spiritual father” over his members. The “touch not my anointed” phrase is used to subdue members. Therefore the leader can never be challenged; he is always right and no one should correct, judge or criticize him or else they will encounter curses or the wrath of God for “touching the anointed”.
In the authoritarian system of a cult the members are always under pressure to please the group leader and to gain the leader’s approval rather than God. The members also fear to disappoint the leader rather than God because in the cultic system the leader and God are perceived to be one. As a result the members fear opposing or criticizing their leader even in situations where it is Biblically justified because they are falsely warned of inviting a curse from God if they disagree with their leader.  (read  Who Is Your Spiritual Covering? Is It Biblical?)

C) Group Over Individual – The group’s goals, objectives and purpose supersede the individual’s needs, concerns and aspirations. Therefore the group always comes first. To say “no” to the group is to say “no” to God or to the group’s leader, which is considered to be unacceptable. Members can be persuaded to deny or forsake their friends, family and even job for the sake of the group agenda or group goals.
Members lose or shed their original personality / individuality and take on a cultic personality or the personality of the group or the group leader.
Therefore there is always a psychological and emotional pressure by individual members to please the group and its leader. Fear, guilt, love bombing, and other forms of emotional manipulation is also used to coerce and control members.

D) Critical Thinking Not Allowed – The cult leader is the exclusive means by which the “truth” is revealed or taught. Therefore members will often quote the leader or reference the leader’s teachings instead of referencing Bible scripture or Biblical truth. To the members, the teachings of the cult leader on particular issues are more accurate than what the Bible actually says about those particular issues. The group leader’s teachings must not be questioned.
Therefore members lack critical or independent thinking regarding many topics that are taught within the group.
Members become a clone of their leader and will often channel their group leader’s characteristics through mimicking / imitating the leader’s personality and traits. Members will often quote the leader’s phrases or talking points almost word-for-word and use loaded language to promote or defend the group.
Members are also spoon-fed spiritually instead of learning to be Bereans (Acts 17:10-11) or to think for themselves because the group leader is believed to be infallible or always right.

E) Us versus Them Mentality – Anyone who is outside the group is either viewed as inferior or as an enemy. Cults often have a superiority complex because they believe that it is the group alone that has special knowledge and revelation whilst other religious groups or individuals are perceived as lacking the special revelation or knowledge that the group has.

F) It Is Difficult For Members to Leave the Group – In a cult there is great spiritual bondage which is caused by fear and manipulation. Therefore members are threatened with spiritual, emotional and even physical punishment if they consider leaving the group. Members may want to leave the group but they fear retaliation or harassment from the group leaders or the other members. Members may also be told that if they leave the group they may face curses from God.
Members also fear being unable to cope with life outside of the group. They question themselves if there is any group that is “better” or they fear joining another abusive group.

G) Sexual Exploitation of Members – In a cult, the leaders have a culture of sexual promiscuity and abuse. Therefore a leader will commit sexual immorality with many members within the group. Sex is used as a form of initiation and power over members. This exists because of the amount of spiritual and psychological control that the leader may have over individual members. (read How Cult Leaders Use Sex to Control Followers)

H) A Culture of Lying & Deception – Many members in a cult are taught to lie or deceive on behalf of the group. Cult members are taught to behave unethically as long as it is in the best interests of the group. Therefore in a cult, the end justifies the means. In a cult, lying and deception is not a sin if it is for the “good” of the group and its leader.
There is also a culture of deception among the group members themselves where they may spy on each other and report back to the group leader.
A new member cannot know or understand the true and dark nature of the group until he/she has been either properly indoctrinated, brainwashed or initiated.
Therefore manipulation, deception, brainwashing and coercive techniques are consistently used in order to manage and control a member’s decisions and behaviour.

I) Economic or Financial Exploitation of Members – Leaders may use various manipulation and coercive techniques to financially exploit their followers for their own monetary or personal gain. Unbiblical doctrines and techniques are introduced to deceive followers out of their money for the purposes of enriching the group leaders (read What Does The Prosperity Gospel Teach) , (read Seed-faith teachings).

J) Salvation Can Only Be Experienced / Achieved Through The Group – Anyone who is not part of the group is either lost or not saved. Anyone who leaves the group has lost his salvation. Therefore it is common that most cults are obsessed with deceptively recruiting followers into the group because they believe that joining their group is the pathway to salvation.

K) Isolation of Members From Family or Anyone Who Is Likely to Expose The Group – Many cults do not respect marriage nor the family unit. If a member joins, they are likely to isolate that particular member from his/her family so that they may effectively control the individual’s life. Some cults or cult leaders will separate marriages and destroy relationships between parents and children.
Members are also trained to avoid or smear people who may expose the group’s true nature especially family or ex-members.

L) A Culture of Double Standards – There are standards or rules that are applied unfairly where some are expected to achieve or follow but other people are not. Therefore a culture of hypocrisy is very rife in a cult, especially among group leaders.

 

What Can Christians Do?
Cults are very controlling and very deceptive groups by nature. They employ different manipulative and coercive techniques to brainwash their members. They cause their members to live in spiritual bondage and they spiritually and psychologically destroy or corrupt the lives of their followers.
Quite often, the last people to know that a group is a cult are the cult members themselves. More often it is those who are not part of the cult who can easily discern a particular group’s aberrant doctrines and abnormal behaviour whilst the members themselves are either unaware or totally deceived about the group’s true dark nature and beliefs.
As Christians we should always pray for people who are involved in a cult and seek to minister to them the true gospel of Jesus Christ whilst exposing any false doctrines that may be detrimental to the salvation of many people.
In Matthew 15:3 when Jesus asked the question: “And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?” , Christ knew that there were people who had no interest in obeying the true Scriptures, but instead many people preferred to follow their religious and legalistic traditions than to follow the authentic word of God.
Matthew 23:1-39 is one of the major chapters in the Bible where Jesus dealt with the hypocritical and cultic nature of the Pharisees who sought to exploit and abuse their followers through false teachings and for the purposes of gaining power, wealth and control over the people.
The Bible encourages us to test the spirits because of the rise of false prophets and teachers in the world (1 John 4:1).
We must also be diligent to expose any group that teaches demonic doctrines that are contrary to the fundamentals of the Christian Faith with the hope that people will be educated and not be trapped or deceived by various cultic groups (Ephesians 5:11-13).

 

RECOMMENDED RESOURCE: Index of Cults and Religions | Watchman Fellowship, Inc

 

What is Christian Ministry?

Misconceptions About The Definition of Ministry
One of the most common misconceptions by many people regarding the definition of Christian ministry today is that the word ministry has been defined to mean either a church, a particular department within a local church or a Christian organization.
The other misconception pertaining to the definition of ministry is that anyone who works full-time for a church or Christian institution such as a pastor or missionary is perceived to be “doing ministry” whilst anyone who is not full-time is not perceived to be a minister nor to be “in ministry”.

 

The Correct Definition & Concept of Ministry
Biblically, the word ministry is translated diakonia in Greek which means “service” or “to serve”.
Therefore ministry is an act of service to spread the gospel of Christ, and to serve and edify others to the glory of God.

This act of service to God is not limited to a selected few such as a pastor or to someone who is paid a salary by a Christian organization. Instead ministry can be done by any born again believer who seeks to serve God and glorify His name in any capacity. In other words, every Christian is a minister of God because every Christian has been given a gift/gifts by the Holy Spirit to give one the capacity to serve the Lord.
Romans 12:6-8 says: Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; 7 if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; 8 the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.

Therefore one’s ministry does not have to be limited to preaching, singing in the choir or ushering in a church. Rather ministry or service to God can be extended through helping the poor, sharing the gospel to a friend or strangers or even using social media or the Internet as a platform to spread the word of God. Methods of ministry or service to the Lord not only include public speaking / preaching, but God uses artists, filmmakers, Christian writers, sculptors and people with many different skills and talents for the benefit of His kingdom and to the glory of His name (Exodus 31:3-6).

One’s ministry does not have to be limited to a central location such as one’s church, but one’s ministry can be extended into the workplace, at home, on the Internet or any venue and in any circumstance where God can be glorified. Christians have been commissioned by Christ to minister to the entire world (Matthew 28:19-20), and the Bible says that whatever we do must be an act of service to the Lord.
Colossians 3:17 says: And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. [Emphasis Added]
Colossians 3:23-24 says: Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. [Emphasis Added]

The Bible acknowledges that every born again believer has been given a gift by the Holy Spirit to minister or to serve for the edification of others and for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 12:4-7 says: Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5 and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. 7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.

Even though every Christian is a minister of God, the Bible also tells us that we do not all have the same gifts or the same functions. Though Christians are one body in Christ, we have different functions and therefore we serve differently. Therefore not all can pastor, not all can sing, not all have the gift of generosity.
The Bible also tells us that there is no gift that is better than another gift and neither is any member of the body of Christ better or more important than another member, but all people are equal before God.
Romans 12:3-6 says: For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. 4 For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, 5 so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. 6 Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them…

1 Corinthians 12:14-26 says: For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? 18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, 24 which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, 25 that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.

 

What Can We Learn From How Jesus Christ Ministered?
Since ministry means “to serve”, we can take the example of Jesus who took the form of a servant and He said Himself that He came to serve and not to be served (Mark 10:45).
Jesus Christ served or ministered to others with humility and even though He was the Son of God, He became a servant of God and humbled Himself to the point of death on a cross (Philippians 2:1-8).
Jesus also taught His disciples that whoever desires to lead must be a servant. Therefore Jesus Christ’s perception of leadership and ministry was different from that of the world.
In Matthew 20:26-27, Jesus says: It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, 27 and whoever would be first among you must be your slave,

The ministry of Jesus Christ and also the ministry of the apostles and the early church, was not an organizational institution – but their ministry was a lifestyle of servanthood to God; their ministry was day-to-day; their ministry extended to every situation and circumstance in their everyday life.
Jesus did not only minister in a synagogue, but He ministered in homes, at a well, on a mountain, on a road or in a conversation. Many times Christ used the least expected methods to minister. Even in the midst of persecution, Christ’s every word and action was a life of ministry or service to God – even unto His death on the cross when He said “It is finished” (John 19:28-30).

Even whilst in jail in the midst of persecution and awaiting execution, people like Paul still ministered to others and he was used by God to write part of the New Testament Bible whilst he was in prison. Paul continued to share God’s word as he called himself “an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak” (Ephesians 6:20). Therefore despite Paul’s location and despite his circumstances, Paul was used by God to fulfill one of his most important ministry or service to the Lord which was to write part of the New Testament scriptures that we read today.
As was the case with many Christians in the early church, Christian ministry extended beyond the 4 walls of a building. Instead for the Christian, ministry must be a lifestyle or a way of living.

 

Conclusion / Summary
Therefore, every born again believer is a minister of the Lord. Every born again Christian has been given gift(s) or talents by the Holy Spirit to equip him/her to minister and edify others to the glory of God.
As we faithfully and genuinely minister or serve, we must do it in humility, not thinking that we are better than others. No function, talent or gift in the body of Christ is better than another instead we are equal before God.
Our ministry or service is not unto men or to gain recognition from men, but our ministry it is unto the Lord and for the glory of the Lord alone.
Our service or ministry as believers is not limited to a specific venue or location and neither is ministry limited to a selected few. Your life or lifestyle is a ministry because one’s life can be an epistle / letter that someone reads so that Christ is glorified (2 Corinthians 3:2-3).
Therefore in every place in the world and in whatever circumstance, we have an opportunity as born again believers to minister to others for the glory of God.

 

What are the Essentials of the Christian Faith?

The essentials of the Christian faith basically refers to the core foundational beliefs of Christianity. Even when intending to join a church it is important for every Christian to know the essential beliefs of that particular church and compare if those beliefs are similar to orthodox Christianity.
The essentials of the Christian faith are key Biblical doctrines which are important for every Christian believer to understand and believe. By understanding the essentials of the Christian faith, the genuine Christian is able to guard himself from various heretical doctrines and deceptive religious groups.

The essentials of the Christian faith refer to the following:
1. The deity of Christ
2. Man is sinful and in need of salvation
3. Salvation is by God’s grace through faith and not by works
4. Salvation is through Jesus Christ alone
5. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ
6. God is one and exists in 3 Persons; The Father, The Son and the Holy Spirit
7. The Authority of the Scriptures as the word of God

 

1. The Deity of Jesus Christ
It is essential for Christians to believe in the divinity of Jesus Christ. Throughout the Bible there are many verses about Jesus that refer to Him as being God and having God’s full attributes. Here are some of the Bible verses that prove the deity of Christ:

Jesus & The Father are ONE
John 10:30-33 (NKJV)“I and My Father are one.” Then the Jews took up stones again to stone Him. Jesus answered them, “Many good works I have shown you from My Father. For which of those works do you stone Me?” The Jews answered Him, saying, “For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy, and because You, being a Man, make Yourself God.”
We can learn from John 10:30-33 that Jesus indeed claimed to be God. When Jesus said that He and the Father are one, He was saying that He and the Father are of one nature and have the same attributes. The Jews clearly understood what He meant when Jesus said that He is one with the Father. This is why they responded in an attempt to stone Him and accusing Him of blasphemy they said “… You, being a Man, make Yourself God”. The Jews knew that Jesus was saying that He is God.

Jesus is I AM
John 8:58 (NKJV) – Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”
When Jesus said these statements in John 8:58, the Jews responded again by attempting to stone Him. Again, the Jews knew exactly what Jesus was saying; Jesus was saying that He was God. Jesus was equating His declaration of being I AM with what God told Moses in Exodus 3:14 and the Jews understood His statement but they refused to accept it. Therefore Jesus was not only saying that He existed before Abraham but He was saying that He has always and eternally existed just as God is self-existing and eternal.

Jesus is God Who Became Flesh
John 1:1-2, 14 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God… And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1:1-2 & 14 also explains the deity of Jesus. It proves that Jesus Christ is the Word who was not only with God but that He was God who became flesh and dwelt among us.
1 Timothy 3:16 also says the following: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.
1 Timothy 3:16 proves again by saying that “God was manifested in the flesh” meaning that Jesus Christ is God who came in human form.

Jesus is Worshipped as God
John 20:28 And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus did not refuse worship and He did not rebuke anyone for worshipping Him. Jesus accepted worship while at the same time teaching people to only worship God. Here are some Bible verses where Jesus was worshiped:
Matthew 14:33; Luke 24:52; John 9:35-38; Matthew 28:9,17; Matthew 2:11

 

2. The Gospel – Man is Sinful and in Need of Salvation
All of mankind is sinful and has sinned against God. We are not inherently good. Instead since the sin of Adam all men are born with sin (Romans 3:10, 23).
It’s essential that every Christian believer understand that God is just and holy. He does not tolerate sin and that the punishment for sin is hell. God cannot allow sin to go unpunished (Romans 6:23).
However, God through His love, mercy and grace has made a provision for mankind to be saved from eternal punishment through His son Jesus Christ who became our substitute by paying for our sins on the Cross (John 3:16). Essentially, Jesus was punished for our sins on the Cross (1 Peter 2:12).
Therefore the genuine Christian must believe in the gospel of Jesus Christ which is the power of God for salvation (Romans 1:16).

 

3. Salvation is by the Grace of God Through Faith and Not by Works
Every genuine Christian must believe that salvation is by grace through faith in Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5-7).
Every genuine Christian must understand that our works or personal effort cannot save us. Only our saving faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour can save us (John 1:12; Romans 10:9-11).

 

4. Salvation is Through Jesus Christ Alone
The genuine Christian must believe that salvation is through Jesus Christ alone. Jesus is the way the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father except through Christ (John 14:6).
There is no other religion, god or person by which anyone can be saved except through believing in Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12).
In Matthew 7:13-14 Jesus said: Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
Jesus is the only path to salvation. Without Christ there is no salvation. This doctrine is essential to everyone who hears the gospel and seeks a genuine relationship with God.

 

5. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ
Romans 10:9That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.
From Romans 10:9 we can observe that believing that God raised Jesus from the dead is essential for the genuine Christian.
In addition to Christ’s crucifixion on the Cross, the resurrection of Christ is significant because it proves that all that Jesus spoke and all that Jesus did was true. It proves Christ’s authority over death and since the Christian believer is in Christ, then the believer will also be resurrected into eternal life.
John 11:25 – Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.”
2 Corinthians 4:14knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you
The leaders or founders of every other religion do not have the same testimony of Christianity. All other religions have their leaders who are dead, buried and unable to save their followers.
However, Jesus Christ was crucified for the sins of the world and resurrected on the third day. He was also physically seen by many credible witnesses after His crucifixion as evidence that He resurrected.

 

6. God is One and exists in 3 Persons; The Father, The Son and the Holy Spirit
Christians are monotheistic. This means that the genuine Christian believes in one God.
The Bible reveals that there is one God who is revealed in 3 Persons. This speaks of the Godhead or the Trinity. Although the word “Trinity” is not mentioned in the Bible, there are various scriptures that refer to The Father as being God, The Son as being God and the Holy Spirit as being God. However, this does not mean that there are 3 Gods.
When we speak of the Trinity, we should not think of it as 1+1+1=3. But the correct way to view the Trinity is as 1x1x1=1. This means one God existing in 3 Persons.
In Matthew 3:16-17, the moment when Jesus was baptized is the distinct time when we see the appearance or manifestation of the Trinity together at the same time.
Matthew 3:16-17When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
So we see from Matthew 3:16-17 that Jesus the Son was there, the Holy Spirit appeared and the voice of The Father was heard.
Therefore all 3 Persons in the Trinity are distinct but equal. All 3 Person in the Trinity share similar attributes but yet they are one God.
It’s important to note that with our finite minds and limited understanding, it can be difficult to fully comprehend or even illustrate the Trinity or the nature of God.
However, we must believe what the Bible says and what the Bible teaches in relation to the Godhead.
Genesis 1:26 (ESV)Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…” [emphasis added]
The Hebrew word for “God” such as the one used in Genesis 1:26 is [Elohim]. Elohim is a noun which refers to God in the plural. The word Elohim appears in the Bible more than 2000 times. Therefore Elohim allows for the Trinity.
In Genesis 1:26 God is speaking of Himself in the plural form denoting that God is consists of more than one Person.
Genesis 1:1 (ESV)In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
Deuteronomy 6:4 (ESV)Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one!
Again Genesis 1:1 and Deuteronomy 6:4 refers to God as Elohim. Therefore the scripture is denoting God as consisting of more than one Person. Deuteronomy 6:4 refers to God as Elohim and that Elohim is united or is one.
There are many scriptures that reflect the triune nature of God. For example, Jesus was in the beginning with God according to John 1:1 and not only was Jesus with God but He was God. All creation was made through Jesus (Colossians 1:16-17). The Holy Spirit is also listed with the Father and Son as “the name” believers are to be baptized into according to Matthew 28:19-20 and Peter referred to the Holy Spirit as God in Acts 5:3-4. The teaching of a Triune God is unique to Christianity and affirms the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as one God in three Persons.

 

7. The Authority of the Scriptures as the Word of God
The genuine Christian must believe in the Bible as being the God inspired written Scriptures. Christians believe in the Bible pertaining to the total 66 books with 39 books in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 (ESV) “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”
The Bible is where Christianity’s beliefs are found.
The Bible’s instructions and teachings are still relevant in our individual life and also on issues concerning the world today.
The only way that we can understand God’s mind on many issues in life, is through His word. Therefore every Christian must believe in the inerrant and infallible authority of God’s word.

This article has been excerpted from The Genuine Christian which is available on Amazon and through this website.

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God

 

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

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What Does The Bible Say About Revenge?

How should we react or retaliate in the face of persecution, harassment, betrayal or any kind of wrong-doing? What should we do when someone offends us, mocks us or even deceives us?
Should our response be to seek revenge or is there a different solution that we should apply to such problems or issues?

According to dictionary.com to revenge means to exact punishment or expiation for a wrong on behalf of, especially in a resentful or vindictive spirit
Other definitions are as follows: to take action in return for an injury or offence; It is a retaliation for a perceived wrong; The desire to repay an injury or wrong

The Bible consistently tells us that revenge or vengeance is a response or action that is specifically reserved for God alone.
Romans 12:19 says: Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”
Therefore it is not our role to avenge or to seek vengeance against those who offend us or cause us pain. Instead vengeance belongs to God because it is God alone who is the perfect avenger.
God is a just God and He is a perfect and incorruptible Judge who will judge and punish the wicked in His perfect time.

Why does God prohibit man from pursuing vengeance? It is because mankind is flawed and sinful? Revenge or vengeance is capable of corrupting us and breeding feelings of hatred and unforgiveness. The human desire for revenge also creates bitterness and anger. In many cases, vengeance is never done from a pure motive when it is executed by man. A spirit of vindictiveness is dangerous and destructive to the human soul. However, only God does all things from a pure and righteous motive, and this is why He says “vengeance is Mine”.

In Psalms 94:1-11, the psalmist understands that vengeance or revenge belongs to the Lord alone. The psalmist does not seek to execute vengeance himself against the wicked, but instead he prays and trusts that God alone will judge and avenge the wicked.

In 1 Samuel 24:1-22, David also understands that vengeance is the role of God alone. Though David was innocent against Saul, the man who was trying to kill him, David spared Saul’s life even when he had the opportunity to revenge against Saul in the cave. Instead David chose to obey God and not seek vengeance (1 Samuel 24:5-7).
David reserved all judgment and vengeance into God’s hands as he says to Saul “May the Lord judge between me and you, may the Lord avenge me against you, but my hand shall not be against you.”

In Romans 12:21 it says: Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Hard as it may be, the only way to overcome persecution or an offence of any kind is by doing good. We should not retaliate with an eye for an eye or evil for evil (Romans 12:17). Instead we should respond in love and with good virtues (Romans 12:20).

In Matthew 5:38-39, Jesus says: “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

During Christ’s earthly ministry, Jesus faced persecution, ridicule and many offences from those who opposed Him. Yet even though Christ was innocent and blameless, He did not return evil for evil against those who opposed Him. Instead He continued to focus on the work of His Father in the midst of opposition, persecution and ridicule.
When Jesus Christ was being crucified on the cross, He mostly remained silent even though He had the power to destroy those who mocked Him (Matthew 26:53). Instead Christ prayed to the Father to forgive His persecutors as He was pinned to the cross (Luke 23:34).

Therefore in the face of persecution, wrong-doing or mocking, God commands us to not retaliate with evil or deception or mocking – but instead we should turn the other cheek. We must follow the example of Jesus Christ. Our response must be of love and prayer towards those who are at enmity towards us (Matthew 5:43-45).

Therefore we must know and trust that God will avenge according to His perfect will and that all His judgments are perfect.
As Christians we are to retaliate in prayer and with love and leave the vengeance to God alone.

 

How Do I Get Right With God?

There are times in our life when we realize that our life is just a mess. There are times when we feel the weight of guilt and condemnation because of sin in our lives. Then there are times in life when we know that our guilt, our sin and all that we do in life has separated us from a just and holy God. In our hearts, we know that the issues in our life are just too big and too much to solve on our own, and so the only way to get peace is to come to the Lord Himself and to get right with Him.
The Bible says that we are all sinners and that none is righteous before God (Romans 3:10).
Romans 3:23 says: For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
Therefore, the real truth is that every human being needs to get right with God. Every human being needs to be reconciled with God because the sin of mankind separates us spiritually from a holy God (Isaiah 59:2).

 

GOD WANTS YOU TO GET RIGHT WITH HIM
So, how do we get right with God? First we must understand the character and nature of God. The Lord is patient and forgiving. He always desires to reconcile with us especially when the presence of sin in our lives has separated us from Him. Therefore God passionately desires for you to get right with Him. He is always ready to help us, guide us and save us from the power of sin, guilt and condemnation. Just like the story of the prodigal son, God is our Father who is waiting for those who are spiritually lost, confused and guilty to be reconciled back to Him (Luke 15:11-32). All we need to do is to boldly come to God’s throne of grace so that we may receive His mercy and grace (Hebrews 4:16).
1 John 1:9 says: If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
2 Peter 3:9 says: The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

Therefore no matter how big or how many times we have sinned, God is ready to forgive us of all our sins so that He may be reconciled to us.

 

RECONCILIATION & FORGIVENESS OF SINS IS THROUGH JESUS CHRIST ALONE
Secondly, for us to get right with God, we must understand that forgiveness of sins and reconciliation to God was made possible through Jesus Christ alone.
In John 14:6, Jesus says: “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
1 Timothy 2:5-6 says: There is one God, and there is one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.

Jesus paid the penalty for our sins on the cross. Jesus became our Substitute on the cross and paid for our sins on our behalf. On our own, we cannot pay God for our sins because we are incapable of doing so – even by our good works or our own righteousness. Isaiah 64:6 reminds us that our personal works of righteousness are like filthy rags to God.
Therefore our forgiveness and reconciliation with God are not based on our personal good works, but they are based on the works that Jesus Christ did through His life, death and resurrection.
The blood that Jesus Christ shed on the cross was the eternal payment for our sins and made it possible for us to be forgiven and reconciled with God.

Romans 5:8-11 says: But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by His blood, much more shall we be saved by Him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by His life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

 

GET RIGHT WITH GOD BY BECOMING A BORN AGAIN CHRISTIAN
Finally, 2 Corinthians 5:17 says: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
Becoming a born again Christian means that Christ lives in you and Jesus Christ becomes your spiritual covering. Christ gives you a new nature – His nature – and your old self is removed.
Through Christ and because of Christ, God sees in you the righteousness of Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says: For our sake He made Him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.
Therefore our reconciliation to God as born again Christians is because of Jesus Christ alone through His finished work on the cross. 2 Corinthians 5:18-21 says: All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to Himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making His appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.

Becoming a born again Christian means that Christ has saved you from the power of sin and you now have redemption and forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1:13-14 says: He (Christ) has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Ephesians 1:7 says: In Him (Christ) we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace,

Becoming a born again Christian also means that we officially become children of God and therefore become part of the spiritual family of God. John 1:12-13 says: But to all who did receive Him (Christ), who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

We become born again Christians by simply placing our faith or total trust in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour because of the sacrifice that He made on the cross for our sins.
We must realize and believe that Jesus Christ is essential for us to get right with God. Christ alone can save us from our sins, from condemnation and from the flames of hell (Romans 8:1).
Our salvation is by grace through faith alone in Jesus Christ and not of our own personal works (Ephesians 2:8-9).

 

Do You Wish To Get Right With God & Be Reconciled With Him?
Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

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6 Ways to Avoid Spiritual Deception

We live in a world where spiritual deception is on the increase. 2 Timothy 3:13 says that evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. Therefore with many deceptive teachings that have gradually crept into the church such as the prosperity gospel, spiritual covering theology, seed-faith teachings, word of faith theology, and many others, it is imperative that people understand both the nature of deception and how to avoid spiritual deception. It is not only false teachings and philosophies that are being used to deceive people, but false prophets are also performing false miracles, magic illusions and using satanic power to deceive the masses. 
The Bible warns us that spiritual deception will not only increase but it warns us of a great deception or a “strong delusion” which will occur before the antichrist appears (and during his brief reign), and before Jesus Christ returns (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4).

2 Thessalonians 2:8-12 says: And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of His mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of His coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, 10 and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, 12 in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

When we read 2 Thessalonians 2:8-12 we learn that there is a type of spiritual deception that has the following characteristics:

  1. This deception is performed through the activity or strategies of Satan
  2. This deception involves satanic power and false signs and wonders
  3. This deception affects those who refuse to love the truth
  4. This deception also affects those who have pleasure in sin or unrighteousness

In Matthew 24:24, Jesus says: “For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.”
Here Jesus is warning of the fact that there will be false believers / teachers who will perform miraculous signs in order to deceive or lead people astray including genuine Christian believers if possible.

The Bible also warns us many times to avoid being deceived by strange teachings, philosophies and doctrines.
For example, Paul says in Colossians 2:8: See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.
In 2 Corinthians 11:4 it says: For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough.

It is therefore important to understand the meaning of deception; how people are deceived and how a Christian can avoid being led astray by the many false prophets and false teachings that plague our world today.

 

WHAT IS DECEPTION?
Deception can be defined as the manipulation of appearances such that they convey a false reality or a false belief system.
When studying deception, you will discover that with deception, there is always the deceiver and then there is the deceived / victim.
Deception generally depends for its success on keeping intended victims unaware that deception is actually taking place in their life or situation.

Deception may involve a lifestyle, a teaching, philosophy or doctrine sounding good and sounding as if it is logical and practical – but it does not always mean that the teaching is Biblical or that it is true according to God’s word. Spurgeon once said “Discernment is not knowing the difference between right and wrong. It is knowing the difference between right and almost right”

• Therefore deception includes concealing and disguising one’s true nature and motives from the intended victim. This is why it’s important for false teachers to “disguise themselves as servants of righteousness” just as the devil conceals his true identity by disguising himself as an angel of light according to 2 Corinthians 11:14-15.
• Deception includes hypocrisy or pretentious behavior. For example, in Matthew 23:1-39, Jesus exposed the hypocrisy and deception of the Pharisees.
• Deception involves information control. This includes both dissimulation (hiding or withholding information) and simulation (putting out wrong or misleading information). Deception also involves true information being mixed with false information. Therefore truth can be mixed with a lie so that the deception is difficult to immediately discern. In Galatians 5:9 Paul says “A little leaven leavens the whole lump.”
• Deception may involve the deceiver imitating or appearing as a type of saviour / hero / spiritual covering to the intended victim or victims. This is why the Bible warns of false christs (Matthew 24:24).
• Deception also includes the deceiver imitating the nature and characteristics of the intended victims so that the victim is unaware of how dangerous the deceiver is or of what kind of danger lies ahead for the intended victim. When the deceiver imitates the victims, the victims assume that they are in good company. An example is when Jesus said in Matthew 7:15, “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”

 

HOW TO DISCERN & AVOID SPIRITUAL DECEPTION
The only way we can discern and avoid spiritual deception is in the following ways:

  1. We Must Be Genuinely Born Again & Have A Relationship With Jesus Christ
    Jesus said that He knows those who belong to Him and that His sheep hear His voice and that no one can steal His sheep (John 10:27-28).
    It is therefore imperative for a person to be born again and have a genuine relationship with God in order to avoid deception.
    Those who hear and obey the voice of Christ spoken in the Bible are able to discern between the voice of the enemy and the voice of God. However, such discernment is only possible through having a relationship with God.

  2. We Must Love The Truth Found in the Word of God
    2 Thessalonians 2:10-11 mentions the fact that victims of deception can be those people who do not love the truth but instead they love falsehoods. They do not love the word of God nor do they rightly interpret or divide the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15).
    2 Timothy 4:3-4 says that there is a time when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions.
    This scripture gives us some insight that there are situations in life where deception is not always involuntary or due to ignorance. Instead deception is sometimes a matter of choice. In other words, people choose to be deceived. People choose to follow darkness instead of light.
    Therefore people love falsehoods because it suits their inner sinful passions and they hate the truth because the truth may speak against their sins or sinful desires.

  3. We Must Love Righteousness & Hate Evil
    Romans 12:9 says that we must “… hate what is evil; cling to what is good”.
    In John 3:19, Jesus spoke of people who loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.
    Avoiding deception in our life, means that we must love the things that God loves and hate the things that God hates. We love light and not darkness. We must therefore pursue righteousness and seek to bear good fruit in our daily life. We must no longer cling to our old sin nature but we must walk in the fear of the Lord.
    Colossians 3:5-10 says: Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 On account of these the wrath of God is coming. 7 In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. 8 But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. 9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its Creator.

  4. We Must Hate The World & The Philosophies of this World
    James 4:4 tells us that friendship with the world means enmity with God. Therefore we must not love the world and its ideologies.
    Romans 12:2 says that we should not be conformed to the standards of this world? But why!?
    It is because the world’s systems, values, principles and practices are against God and His written word.
    The world’s philosophies and ideologies can easily lead people into deception. Therefore hating the world’s philosophies enables us to avoid spiritual deception and being deceived by those who follow the world.
    1 John 2:15-17 says: Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world— the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. 17 And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.

  5. We Must Walk in the Spirit
    In John 16:13, Jesus says that one of the purposes of the Holy Spirit in our life is to guide us into all truth. Therefore the Holy Spirit is essential towards helping us avoid living in deception or being led astray.
    The Holy Spirit will help us discern between the truth and falsehoods through the standard of the Scriptures and not the traditions or philosophies of men.
    Walking in the Spirit of God enables us walk in God’s truth but living according to the flesh or sin nature leads us into spiritual deception. How do we walk in the Spirit? By obeying God’s word and trusting in His word.
    Galatians 5:16-17 says: But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.

  6. Imitate the Bereans
    If we are to discern and avoid spiritual deception, then we must imitate the example of the Bereans in Acts 17:10-11.
    The Berean Christians were said to be noble and they did not accept a culture of being spiritually spoon-fed. Instead the Bereans would study the scriptures for themselves and crosscheck anyone who preached to them. They examined Paul’s message in Acts 17:11 because they wanted to make sure that what he preached was the truth and not a lie.
    1 John 4:1 says: Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.
    Therefore to avoid being deceived by false prophets and false teachings, it is essential that we learn to test and verify all things through the word of God and discern which spirit is really behind the teachings.
    Paul warns us in 1 Timothy 4:1-2 that the Holy Spirit warns us of deceiving spirits that will teach people doctrines of demons and will cause people to depart from the true faith by causing them to follow demonic teachings.
    1 Timothy 4:1-2 says: Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, 2 through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared,

 

GOD’S WORD IS OUR STANDARD
The Bible is the ultimate standard for our Christian walk. It is therefore important that all teachings be measured against the word of God. Jesus Christ Himself used the Scriptures to avoid being deceived by the devils temptations and suggestions (Matthew 4:1-11).

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A GENUINE FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

  1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
    This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
    You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.
  2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
    Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
    Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
    follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.
  3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
    God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.
  4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
    You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
    “He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
    By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God

 

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

 

Have you accepted & believed in Jesus Christ as a result of reading this article and would like to know more about what to do next? If so please acknowledge by clicking the “I Have Accepted Jesus Christ” button below

 

Alice Bailey 10 Point Plan to Destroy Christianity

Alice Bailey is known as one of the founders of the New Age Movement. She was a writer who lived between 1880 and 1949 and she is the person who is known for creating the term “New Age” in her books which mostly focus on the subject of theosophy.
Britannica describes theosophy as an occult movement originating in the 19th century with roots that can be traced to ancient Gnosticism. The term theosophy is derived from the Greek theos (“god”) and sophia (“wisdom”), is generally understood to mean “divine wisdom.”… The international New Age movement … originated among independent theosophical groups

Alice Bailey is known as one of the prophetesses of the New Age Movement. Her teachings and writings are viewed as foundational and authoritative within the New Age Movement. She described the majority of her work as having been telepathically dictated to her by a Master of Wisdom, or spirit entity identified as Djwal Khul.

Alice Bailey’s writings are so revered and authoritative to such an extent that her New Age views and philosophies have a social, spiritual and political impact on politicians, various nations and also the United Nations. Alice Bailey also founded The Lucis Trust which was formerly known as Lucifer Publishing Company in 1922 and her organization has influence within the United Nations.

One of the main agendas of the New Age Movement is to become the dominant religion or lifestyle within the entire world. Therefore in order for New Age philosophies to become dominant, then all other religions especially Christianity must either be destroyed or become less of a spiritual influence within society and in the individual lives of people. It is from this desire to see the dominance of the New Age movement that Alice Bailey wrote a 10 Point Plan / Charter to destroy Christianity so that New Age philosophies may become the one world religion for the world

The main purpose of the 10 Point Charter / Strategy is to either destroy Christianity or to convert the nations to New Age philosophies.
The 10 Point Charter by Alice Bailey is as follows:

  1. TAKE GOD AND PRAYER OUT OF THE EDUCATION SYSTEM
  2. REDUCE PARENTAL AUTHORITY OVER THE CHILDREN
  3. DESTROY THE JUDEO-CHRISTIAN FAMILY STRUCTURE OR THE TRADITIONAL CHRISTIAN FAMILY STRUCTURE
  4. IF SEX IS FREE, THEN MAKE ABORTION LEGAL AND MAKE IT EASY
  5. MAKE DIVORCE EASY AND LEGAL, FREE PEOPLE FROM THE CONCEPT OF MARRIAGE FOR LIFE
  6. MAKE HOMOSEXUALITY AN ALTERNATIVE LIFESTYLE
  7. DEBASE ART, MAKE IT RUN MAD
  8. USE MEDIA TO PROMOTE AND CHANGE MINDSETS
  9. CREATE AN INTERFAITH MOVEMENT
  10. GET GOVERNMENTS TO MAKE ALL THESE LAW AND GET THE CHURCH TO ENDORSE THESE CHANGES.

Let us bear in mind that the above 10 Point Plan was formulated in the early 20th Century –- many decades before such a strategy was even conceivable within culture and society at the time.
If one makes an objective observation it would be easy to conclude that this 10 Point Plan is definitely being implemented at the highest cultural, spiritual and political levels within the world.
Why? Probably because Alice Bailey is regarded by New Agers and occultists as one of the “prophetesses” of the New Age Movement.

1 Timothy 4:1
Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons

 

1 Timothy 4:1 reveals that mankind is able to receive teachings from demons or deceitful spirits. Since Alice Bailey claimed to receive inspiration for her New Age / theosophy writings from a spirit being by the name of Djwal Khul it is evident there is a demonic inspiration to the New Age philosophies and practices.
Ephesians 6:12 says: For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

 

WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT THE 10 POINT PLAN?

  1. TAKE GOD AND PRAYER OUT OF THE EDUCATION SYSTEM
    The Bible is clear that prayer is essential in the life of every human being. We have access to God 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. The Bible says that we should “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).
    The attempt to remove God and prayer out of the education system is a spiritual attack on the young generation. It is the devil’s attempt to change the minds of the young and lead them away from God and from prayer.
    Instead we notice that teachings such as the theory of evolution are taught to children in order to remove the concept of God from children’s minds.

  2. REDUCE PARENTAL AUTHORITY OVER THE CHILDREN
    Reducing parental authority over children is an attack on the family. Proverbs 13:24 says “Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him
    When parental authority is undermined and reduced, this will gradually create an undisciplined young generation that does not respect authority. Respect for authority by children begins at parental level.
    It is therefore the responsibility of parents to exercise godly or Biblical authority over their children and to also train the children in the values and principles of the Lord (Proverbs 22:6).

  3. DESTROY THE JUDEO-CHRISTIAN FAMILY STRUCTURE OR THE TRADITIONAL CHRISTIAN FAMILY STRUCTURE
    There have been many blatant and subtle attempts to destroy the traditional Christian family. Examples are: the promotion of sexual immorality which leads to a growth in teenage pregnancies, adultery, fornication and the like. Sexual immorality destroys marriages, creates a growth in single mothers, increases divorce rates.
    Other examples include the promotion of same-sex marriages which are clear attempts to destroy the traditional Christian family.
    The Bible teaches us that since the creation of the first man and first woman, marriage is between a male and a female (Genesis 2:18-25).
    Within the traditional Christian family, the husband has a role; the wife has a role and so do the children (Ephesians 5:22-33).

  4. IF SEX IS FREE, THEN MAKE ABORTION LEGAL AND MAKE IT EASY
    According to statistics, more than 40 million unborn babies are aborted every year around the world. This is clear evidence just by the statistics alone that abortion in this world has become easier and “convenient” due to its legality in many countries.
    But is abortion Biblical? No! God does not support abortion. The Bible says that God knows us whilst we are in our mother’s womb (Jeremiah 1:5). An unborn child is a unique person even though he/she temporarily resides in the mother’s womb.
    The promotion of sex through the media and the like has contributed to sexual immorality in the world. It has removed the principle that sex is only to be conducted within the confines of marriage. Sex outside of marriage which ironically is supported by Alice Bailey’s 10 Point Strategy is likely to create more “unwanted” pregnancies which result in increased abortions which the 10 Point Strategy also supports.
    An unborn baby is still a human life that God has created and which He values very much (Psalms 139:13-18). However, every year, more human lives (though unborn) die because of abortion alone, than any disease in the world.

  5. MAKE DIVORCE EASY AND LEGAL, FREE PEOPLE FROM THE CONCEPT OF MARRIAGE FOR LIFE
    Divorce rates worldwide continue to rise. Indeed as we look at our world today, the institution of marriage is no longer sacred or respected. Many couples continue to lose their sense of commitment to each other.
    Yet the Bible says that God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16). Marriage parallels Christ’s relationship with the Church. Jesus Christ is the bridegroom and the Church is the bride (Ephesians 5:25-30). Therefore an attack on marriage is an attack on God who created the institution of marriage.
    In the beginning, God created marriage when He created Adam and decided that it was not good for the man to be alone but that man should have a helper comparable to him. This is why God created Eve and created marriage so that the man and woman would become one flesh (Genesis 2:18-25).

  6. MAKE HOMOSEXUALITY AN ALTERNATIVE LIFESTYLE
    Even though Alice Bailey wrote her 10 Point Charter many decades before homosexuality became accepted by the world, it is clear that the push to make homosexuality an alternative lifestyle has gained momentum. The gay rights movement is a very powerful movement in the world today.
    Even churches are ordaining homosexuals as priests or pastors thereby accepting homosexuality within the church itself.
    However, the Bible does not change; God’s word still remains the same in relation to sexual immorality and homosexuality. Leviticus 18:22 says: You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.

  7. DEBASE ART, MAKE IT RUN MAD
    How does one debase art and make it run mad? Today we live in a world were pornography and nudity is viewed as an “art” or form of artistic expression. We live in a world where promiscuity and immorality of all kinds is promoted and celebrated in music and film.
    What is Alice Bailey’s goal with debasing art? The purpose of art should be to glorify God and edify others. However, debasing art will lead to corrupt minds and a corrupt form of expression. Instead of people being edified by art, they are instead defiled by it.
    The plan of “debasing art” and making it run mad is an expression of the defilement that is already in the soul of man. The Bible says that the heart of man is desperately wicked and who can understand it (Jeremiah 17:9).
    In Mark 7:20-23 Jesus says the following… “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. 21 For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, 22 coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. 23 All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”
    It is therefore the case that the kind of art that we see in the world today is an expression of what is in the heart of men. It is therefore evident that the form of artistic expression we see in music and film is just as the vices and sins that Christ mentions in Mark 7:20-23.

  8. USE MEDIA TO PROMOTE AND CHANGE MINDSETS
    The media is one of the fastest ways to change people’s mindsets on a massive scale. The media has enormous power to persuade and change perceptions and even cultures.
    In the world the media is mostly controlled by people who are not born again Christians. Even before the television had become a device that was owned in every household and well before the Internet and social media platforms existed, Alice Bailey understood the power of the media in the future and how it could be promoted to change mindsets.
    The media can be used as an instrument for both good and bad. However, because most of the media is controlled by unbelievers or people who support Alice Bailey’s New Age beliefs, the media is being used to support the New Age agenda.
    Romans 12:2 says: Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
    Therefore we are not to conform to the mindset of the world, but instead we should allow God’s word and teachings to transform our thinking so that we know the will of God.

  9. CREATE AN INTERFAITH MOVEMENT
    Alice Bailey’s advice to create an interfaith movement is one of the main agendas of the New Age, which may eventually lead to the creation of a one world religion. An interfaith movement promotes the notion that all faiths or religions must become one and look for “common ground” and discard their differences. It is the ecumenical view that all religions in the world can unite and become one.
    It is certain in this day and age that there is a subtle but emerging movement that exists within different faiths from Christianity to Buddhism to Hinduism, which seeks to promote ecumenism at the expense of the truth.
    Therefore in the name of unity, Christians are advised to compromise God’s truth for the purpose of being united.
    False doctrines will always divide people between those who believe the truth and those who believe what is false. Furthermore the authentic gospel of Jesus Christ will also divide people. 
    1 Corinthians 1:18 says: For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
    Jesus Himself knew that His message and His arrival on earth would divide many people because the truth will always divide people between those who follow the truth and those who follow a lie (Matthew 10:34-39).

  10. GET GOVERNMENTS TO MAKE ALL THESE LAW AND GET THE CHURCH TO ENDORSE THESE CHANGES.
    Today governments all over the world are legalizing such things as abortion, homosexuality, beastiality, same sex marriage and even addictive drugs such as marijuana. Even though the Bible disagrees with such lifestyles, there is a growing trend where governments are legalizing lifestyles that directly oppose the scriptures. This is because the influence of the New Age movement is growing as it seeks to achieve Alice Bailey’s 10 Point Plan agenda. Psalms 119:11 says: I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.

 

God Still Remains In Control
It is important to realize that despite all that is happening in the world, God still remains in control and He is not surprised by what is happening in the world. God will ultimately bring an end to all forms of evil at His appointed time. The devil has tried many times to destroy Christianity but ultimately he will fail.
Our role is to ensure that we are focused on Jesus Christ and that the word of God is deeply indwelt in us. Without the word of God and the Holy Spirit to guide us, we will surely be deceived by the great deception that is growing in the world.