2 Peter 2:1-3 ESV
But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.
The church, as we know, is the body of Christ. It is comprised of those people who have truly trusted in Jesus Christ as Lord (owner-master) and Savior of their lives. They have died with Christ to sin, and they have been resurrected with Christ to newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. And, now they are no longer walking according to the flesh, as they did before they believed in Jesus, but now they are living (in practice) according the ways of God/Jesus Christ.
This is what the church is supposed to look like. But, much of today’s church here in America has fallen under deception. For, they were hornswoggled into surrendering their separateness from the world, being holy unto God as their only Lord, and they were persuaded to unite with the government in an unholy union (via the 501c3), so that they now have become a corporation (a business) underneath the head of the US government.
Rather than this church having Jesus Christ now as its only head, it now has the government as its head. And, instead of being led by the Holy Spirit, it is market-driven, instead, and flesh-driven, too, for this union is of man, not of God. And, since it is driven by the flesh and the market (business), it has altered its gatherings, its worship services, and its message (the gospel message) to be more appealing and acceptable to the world. And, it has turned the church into a place of comfort, relaxation and enjoyment.
Since the market-driven church here in America is trying to attract the world to its gatherings, it has softened the gospel message to make it less offensive and to make it more comfortable and appealing to the world. So, they have altered God’s grace, and they have created a grace message which is in a state of open hostility and conflict with Jesus Christ and his gospel of grace. And, this substitute (false, cheap) grace gives a softened (diluted) message of the righteousness which God requires of his people.
This cheap substitute (replacement) for God’s grace is more welcoming (inviting, attractive) to the people of the world than the gospel of Christ is. It is easier to accept. It is more comfortable. It sounds a whole lot like the true gospel, though, because it is half true. But, if something being taught as truth is only half true but it is half lies, it still makes it false. Yet, it is disguised to make it look like the real thing, so that people will believe they truly have the hope of heaven. But, there are essential elements of the gospel of Christ which are removed, and there are add ons in their place.
What they remove from the gospel is repentance, i.e. turning away from our sins (sinful addictions), and turning to walk in obedience to Christ and to His Word. They, as well, delete God’s requirement for submission to the Lordship of Christ over our lives. They may or may not teach some of these as part of our walks of faith, but they do not teach, that to have eternal life with God, we must walk according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh (See: Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 8:1-17; Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Jn. 1:5-9).
Thus, many people who believe that they have believed in Jesus Christ feel that freedom in Christ Jesus is the liberty to keep on in their sinful addictions without guilt and with no need for true repentance. For, the gospel has been watered down to a mere acknowledgment of Jesus Christ and a mere acceptance of his forgiveness of our sins. But, they don’t realize that forgiveness is not automatic for everyone, or all would be saved. We must die with Christ to sin in order to live with him for eternity (See: 1 Pet. 2:24; 2 Co. 5:15; Rom. 6:1-23; Eph. 4:17-24; Gal. 6:7-8; Tit. 2:11-14).
2 Peter 2:19-22 ESV
They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved. For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.”
Do you know what vomit looks like? What it smells like? It is awful, isn’t it? Just the smell of it or the sight of it can be enough to make you want to throw up. It makes you sick to your stomach. And, your natural instinct is to get rid of it so that you no longer have to see it or to smell its stench.
But, this is talking about sinful practices, isn’t it? But, do we truly see sin in this same light? Do we truly hate the sight of it? Does it make us sick to our stomachs? And, is it our God-given instinct to get rid of it out of our lives? Or, is it to hold on to our sinful addictions, and to continue in them? Do we return to our vomit over and over again while claiming we love Jesus?
If we do, then our vomit is two-sided. On one side we proclaim faith in Jesus Christ, that we love God, that we want to follow him with our lives, and we give off the impression that we are walking in fellowship with him. But, on the other side we are addicted to lust, porn, entertainment, pride, selfishness, deep-seated anger, resentment and bitterness. Our lives are full of evil intent, plotting wickedness against others, eyes always full of adultery, then lying and manipulating the truth to cover up the sin.
But, the thing of it is, these two sides of the vomit are actually not opposed to each other. They just look like they are. They are actually two sides of the same whole, for they are both deception. We convince ourselves that we are Christians who are just struggling with sin (which means regularly giving in to it), and that we are forgiven all our sins, so our sins truly don’t matter to God. Or we give the appearance that we are really fighting off the enemy while we give in to him on a regular basis. Thus, false righteousness and sinful addictions are on the same page (in agreement). They are both vomit.
The Fake Battle
So, if this is where you are, claiming you love Jesus Christ, that you are listening to him, that you are walking in fellowship with him, or merely that you are saved from your sins and going to heaven, while you habitually sin against God and you practice unrighteousness, then know that these are two sides of the same vomit. You are not really battling sin. You are giving in to it on purpose, willfully, fully knowing what you are doing, because you know the way of righteousness, but you are choosing the way of wickedness.
This is not saying any one of us has to be perfect, or that any of us have reached perfection. This is not what this is about. It is not saying we will never sin, either. But it is saying that true faith in Jesus Christ dies daily with Christ to sin by the power of the Holy Spirit, and it lives to Christ and to his righteousness to follow in his ways. It doesn’t keep returning to its same vomit over and over again and then try to claim it is “struggling.”
All this is just an excuse for continued willful sinful practices which are in direct opposition to God and to his holiness. And, that is what the cheap grace gospel is all about, too. It is an easy out, an excuse to cover up wickedness. But, Jesus’ covering he offers for our sins is not concealment of sin and it is not permission to keep on in sin, either. His forgiveness says “Go and sin no more.” His forgiveness offers freedom from slavery to sin, not just freedom from the punishment of sin. His grace is not the freedom to keep returning to the vomit without guilt. His grace is the power to not return to the vomit and to walk daily in Christ’s righteousness.
So, just know that God is not fooled. He knows vomit when he sees it and when he smells it, and we should, too. If we are truly in Christ, by faith in him, and if we are walking in fellowship with him, we won’t keep going back to the same vomit habitually, which includes the fake spiritual battle, too. We will have victory in Jesus Christ, our Lord, and we will be walking in that victory, not in absolute perfection, but growing in our walks of faith, truly putting off those sins which bind us, and putting on Christ in all truth.
For Our Nation
An Original Work / September 11, 2012
Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.
Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.
Wednesday, February 20, 2019