Steadfastness of Devotion

James 5:1-6 ESV

“Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days. Behold, the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, are crying out against you, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in self-indulgence. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered the righteous person. He does not resist you.”

In America, there is a gospel being taught that is not the gospel of Jesus Christ, even though it purports to be so. It is a gospel of men which strongly opposes the true gospel as Jesus taught it, and as his New Testament apostles taught it.

For, it is contrary to the true gospel of grace, and it also attacks the true gospel of grace in many attempts to try to discredit it so that people will not believe it. Thus, it is of Satan, not of God.

This false gospel, which is an enemy to the true gospel, teaches that a person can be saved of his sins and have heaven guaranteed him no matter how he lives his life on this earth. And, it teaches salvation as a one-time experience which does not have to impact the rest of one’s life regarding one’s actions or behaviors.

In fact, many of this false gospel blatantly proclaim one can believe in Jesus and not have to repent, obey Jesus, or submit to Jesus as Lord of his life.

Those who promote this false gospel of Jesus Christ, thus, are manipulating, twisting, and misrepresenting the true gospel as taught in the Scriptures. They remove Scriptures from their context, and they present them in ways that are not consistent with the biblical context. And, this is intentional to deceive naïve minds, and to persuade the people to follow the lies.

Thus, they are slaughtering the truth of the gospel with their many lies. They are crushing and they are suppressing the truth, and they are replacing the truth with a man-made gospel intended to tickle itching ears and to keep its adherents still bound in their sin, still floundering in sin with no way out.

They are making evil out to be good and good out to be evil by what they are teaching the people about the gospel of our salvation. For, they are convincing many that they don’t have to leave their sinful lifestyles behind them, and that they don’t have to obey Jesus and his commands, and that they do not have to submit to Christ as Lord.

And, they are teaching them that to submit to Christ, to obey him, and to leave their sins behind them is works-based salvation, and that it is the wrong way to go.

So, what they are teaching is not a gospel which teaches holiness, righteousness, faithfulness, love of God, and love for our fellow humans.

Their gospel is based in the flesh of man, in appeasing human flesh, and in giving man what his evil heart desires. Rather than teaching self-control, it promotes self-indulgence. Rather than teaching freedom from slavery to sin, it promotes freedom to continue in sin without guilt. Rather than teach the fear of the Lord, it promotes disdain for God and for his Word.

And, not only does it condemn the truth of the gospel of our salvation, and vilifies it, as if it is hate, and not love, but they who promote it also work hard to condemn those who are following the truth, and who are living godly and holy lives, pleasing to God. For, they are accusing them of being “holy rollers,” or “self-righteous,” or “legalistic,” or “unloving” and “intolerant.”

And, God is hearing the cries of his harvesters, i.e. of those who are out there on the front lines teaching the truth of the gospel, and who are opposing the lies. And, he has a day of judgment for those who are living in self-indulgence while falsely claiming his salvation, and while treating him and his gospel and his messengers with disdain.

James 5:7-11 ESV

“Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains. You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. Do not grumble against one another, brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing at the door. As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. 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.”

It is hard to watch how our Lord is being treated as though his words do not matter, and as though he is just there to serve us, but as though we have no obligation to serve him, in return. It is difficult to listen to the lies being spread and to observe how those lies are leading people to believe they can keep on sinning and that God will not judge them for their sin.

And, it is heartbreaking to see so many being led by these “pied pipers,” i.e. by these false teachers, to their deaths, while they are being promised life everlasting with God in heaven, while they have no regard for our Lord while they live on this earth.

But the Lord said these times would come when men would not put up with sound doctrine, but that they would surround themselves with teachers who would tell them what their itching ears want to hear. And, we are living in that time right now. But it is sad to see.

So, we must be patient, and we must wait on the Lord for him to act, for him to do what is necessary to open blinded eyes and to open ears that are deaf, so that many will be saved before our Lord returns. We must trust the Lord in these times, and we must keep on doing what he has called us to do, even if we face much opposition, and even if we don’t see much fruit yet for our labors.

We must remain steadfast in our faith and in our testimonies for the Lord and for his gospel, and we must persevere in getting out the truth and in exposing the lies in hopes that many eyes will be opened to the truth, and that they would turn away from their sin, and that they would turn to follow our Lord Jesus in faithful obedient faith in him.

So, if you are one who is out there proclaiming the truth and dispelling the lies of Satan, then be encouraged. And, keep on singing.

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever

James H. Fillmore

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever,
I will sing, I will sing,
I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever,
I will sing of the mercies of the Lord.

With my mouth will I make known
Thy faithfulness, Thy faithfulness,
With my mouth will I make known
Thy faithfulness to all generations.

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever,
I will sing of the mercies of the Lord.

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