Jeremiah 23:14-15 ESV
But in the prophets of Jerusalem
I have seen a horrible thing:
they commit adultery and walk in lies;
they strengthen the hands of evildoers,
so that no one turns from his evil;
all of them have become like Sodom to me,
and its inhabitants like Gomorrah.”
Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts concerning the prophets:
“Behold, I will feed them with bitter food
and give them poisoned water to drink,
for from the prophets of Jerusalem
ungodliness has gone out into all the land.”
The prophets of old were people of God who spoke God’s direct words to the people. They were the word of God to the people, like we have the written word of God today, our Bible (Genesis to Revelation). But in these last days God has spoken to us through his Son Jesus Christ – God the Son (Heb. 1:1-2). He is the fulfillment of the law and of the prophets (Matt. 5:17).
And, now Jesus Christ, in the person of his Spirit, dwells within the lives of all who have truly trusted in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of their lives. And, the Spirit of God who dwells within us counsels, guides, and instructs in the ways of the Lord, and he empowers us to live godly and holy lives, pleasing to God.
But, he also gives us spiritual gifts, as he determines, for the building up of the body of Christ for the unity of the faith and maturity in Christ Jesus. And, we are each given assignments within the body of Christ, too, for the mutual edification of one another. And, some of these gifts involve giving God’s messages to the people, too, such as the gifts of prophecy, teaching and knowledge (Rom. 12:3-8; 1 Co. 12:4-31; Eph. 4:11-16).
So, some of these people who are teaching or preaching (prophesying) the Word of God from the Bible, as applied to our lives and world today, in all practicality, are doing some of these same things as the prophets did of old. And some of these same words from God, as applied to the prophets of old, can also be said about some teachers or preachers of the Word today.
For, in America, at least, we have many who are preaching or teaching the Word of God who are lying to the people and who are living in sin. In fact, many of them are even promoting sinful actions or they are certainly giving free license to continue in sinful practices while promising heaven to their adherents. And, so they are strengthening evil doers when they tell their listeners (or imply) that faith in Jesus Christ requires no repentance, no obedience and no submission to Christ and to his cross.
So, they do not turn people away from their sins, but rather they convince them that faith in Jesus Christ means forgiveness of sins and eternal life with God, but that forsaking our sins and walking in obedience to the Lord are optional. For, they teach a faith absent of death to sin and living to righteousness, as required for our salvation and eternal life with God. So, they are teaching forgiveness of sins, but they are not teaching deliverance from bondage to sin, which Jesus died for (1 Pet. 2:24; Rom. 6:1-23).
Jeremiah 23:16-20 ESV
Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you, filling you with vain hopes. They speak visions of their own minds, not from the mouth of the Lord. They say continually to those who despise the word of the Lord, ‘It shall be well with you’; and to everyone who stubbornly follows his own heart, they say, ‘No disaster shall come upon you.’”
For who among them has stood in the council of the Lord
to see and to hear his word,
or who has paid attention to his word and listened?
Behold, the storm of the Lord!
Wrath has gone forth,
a whirling tempest;
it will burst upon the head of the wicked.
The anger of the Lord will not turn back
until he has executed and accomplished
the intents of his heart.
In the latter days you will understand it clearly.
Vain hopes are what many preachers and teachers of the Word of God are giving people today. For, when they teach salvation from sin and eternal life with God absent of true repentance and obedience to Christ, they are giving people a false hope of heaven based on a lie. For, scripture is real clear on this subject. We must walk according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh if we want to have eternal life with God (Lu. 9:23-25; 1 Jn. 1:5-9; Rom. 6:1-23; Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24; Tit. 2:11-14; Gal. 6:7-8).
So, what these preachers and teachers of the Word of God are teaching, for the most part, are not God’s words from the Bible, but they are words coming from their own minds where they twist and distort the scriptures to their own advantage in order to appease the flesh rather than put it to death. And, they are giving people the idea that it will go well with them even if they live in gross sin against God, despising the Lord.
So, they are lying to the people, but they are giving them what their itching ears want to hear. For, many people want to hear that they can “believe” in Jesus Christ and have heaven as their eternal destiny, but that their “faith” in Jesus Christ does not necessitate that they alter their lifestyles a whole lot, or at all. They also want to believe that they will be raptured up to heaven and that they will never have to suffer any judgment of God because they professed faith in Jesus Christ, even though they dishonor him with their lives.
But, these liars and deceivers, these wolves in sheep’s clothing, these who are thieves and robbers are convincing people by the masses that a mere profession of faith, or some words repeated after someone in a prayer, guarantees heaven for them no matter how they live their lives from this moment forward, so they are, instead, sending them straight to hell.
For, the Word of God says we will reap what we sow. If we sow to please the flesh, from the flesh we will reap destruction (decay, death). But, if we sow to please the Spirit, from the Spirit we will reap eternal life (Gal. 6:7-8).
Jeremiah 23:21-24 ESV
“I did not send the prophets,
yet they ran;
I did not speak to them,
yet they prophesied.
But if they had stood in my council,
then they would have proclaimed my words to my people,
and they would have turned them from their evil way,
and from the evil of their deeds.
“Am I a God at hand, declares the Lord, and not a God far away? Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? declares the Lord. Do I not fill heaven and earth? declares the Lord.”
Those who are truly sent from God and who are speaking his messages to the people, from his Word, are going to turn people away from their sins, and they are going to turn their hearts to walk in obedience to our Lord, continually, persistently and faithfully to the very end. They are going to teach the whole counsel of God and not a half-truth gospel absent of repentance and obedience. They are not going to twist the scriptures to appease the flesh, but they will, in all sincerity, teach what is true to the glory and praise of God.
So, if the teaching or preaching of the Word you are receiving is not leading you to forsake your sins and to live to Christ and to his righteousness, then it is not of God. If the teaching you are receiving is convincing you that faith in Jesus Christ is a one-time experience which guarantees you heaven no matter how you live once you “believe,” then it also is not of God. For, if it is of God, it is going to turn you from your evil deeds, not pacify you in them.
So, know that God sees all, and he knows all, and that he is all powerful, and he will do everything he said he will do. If we keep on our sinful addictions after we claim to have faith in Jesus Christ, and we do not walk (in lifestyle) according to the Spirit of God, then heaven is not guaranteed us, and we don’t have eternal life with God, but a fearful expectation of judgment and of hell (Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 8:1-17; Gal. 5:19-21).
For, to believe in Jesus Christ is to die with him to sin and to live with him to righteousness. It is to love him, and to love him is to obey him. It does not mean we will never sin again or that we will be perfect, but it does mean that, by the Spirit, we are putting to death the deeds of the flesh, and by the Spirit we are walking with Christ in holy and godly living (Tit. 2:11-14). And, it means that Jesus Christ is now truly Lord (owner-master) of our lives.
It’s All You
Lyrics by Tosin Iyawo Ogaga & Sue Love
Music by Sue Love @ Original Works
Vocals by Tosin Iyawo Ogaga
May 31, 2019
You are the reason I want to dance.
You are the reason I want to sing.
You are the reason, expressing myself,
I serve You in all the ways You lead me.
You are the reason my heart gives You praise.
You are the reason that I am alive.
I bring out Your best moves
Just so I do embrace You;
Sing out loud as You lead just to please You.
Let myself follow You. I don’t care who watches me.
All I want to do is to make You smile.
Let every fiber of me bring You praise.
Your love has lifted my feet to dance.
Your faithfulness leaves me singing for joy.
You, Jesus, are the reason, it’s all You.
Your grace gives me life.
*full lyrics used by permission of the lyricists
Monday, June 24, 2019, 11:11 p.m.