Psalms 119:161-163 ESV
“Princes persecute me without cause,
but my heart stands in awe of your words.
I rejoice at your word
like one who finds great spoil.
I hate and abhor falsehood,
but I love your law.”
Many people who are in positions of power, rule, and authority within the gatherings of what is called “church” today in America are charlatans or wolves in sheep’s clothing. They make a pretense of being our friends when they are really our enemies, for they claim to be friends of God but in truth they are his enemies for they do not obey him. They are good at acting and performing and pretending to be Christians while they are truly opposing the Lord and his gospel message and his messengers, too.
For they are still of the flesh and not of the Spirit. Their lives are still their own to be lived however they want, and their lives are not surrendered to Jesus Christ to follow him in his ways. Marketing books are their bibles instead of the Holy Scriptures. And the people who write these marketing books are their holy spirit, and not the Spirit of God. And they are followers of man instead of being followers of God. And they are spiritually dead for they do not have the life of Christ in them.
And you may think that is being judgmental, but the Scriptures warn us over again about these charlatans and these wolves in sheep’s clothing and these pretenders who fake their Christianity in order to deceive the people. And we are to be those who are to be testing the spirits to see whether or not they are of God so that we don’t buy into the lies, and so we don’t end up following these liars and deceivers instead of following Jesus Christ. So, this is doing what the Scriptures teach us to do, to test the spirits.
So, how can we discern these things? Well, we can listen to what they are teaching and then we can test their words against the Scriptures (in context) to see if they match. And please test their words against the Scriptures in their full context, for many false teachings stem from the Scriptures taught outside their context and twisted to say what the Scriptures do not teach as a whole. And we can observe their casual conversations and the things they talk about and we can observe their lifestyles to see how they are living, etc.
But we must never judge anyone by our own selves or by our culture (even the Christian culture in our area of the world) or by our own religious traditions or family traditions or hypocritically, etc. The Scriptures (in context) must always be our measure for testing if a person in a position of pastor or elder or deacon in the church is teaching and living the truth of God’s word or if they are teaching “another gospel” and a “different Jesus” other than the gospel and the Jesus of the Scriptures.
And we are never to tolerate or to put up with false teaching and liars and thieves who are stealing the truth from people’s hearts and minds and who are deceiving them into buying into the lies, instead. We should be the people of God who love the truth of God’s word and who hate lies. But we must be students of the Scriptures so that we learn to discern truth from lies. For many people are accepting the lies as truth and they are rejecting the truth as though it is a lie. For they are being deceived.
But if you are one who loves the truth and who is standing on the truth of God’s Word, and who is sharing that truth with others, and who is exposing the lies for what they are, you are going to be opposed. And you will be hated and persecuted for righteousness’ sake. But you must not let that discourage or dishearten you. You must persevere and keep standing on what is truth, but make sure it is truth by studying the Scriptures in their full context prayerfully asking for the Lord to lead you to all truth.
[Matthew 5:10-12; Matthew 7:15-23; Matthew 10:16-25; Matthew 24:11-14; Luke 6:22-23; Luke 21:12-17; John 10:1-15; John 15:18-21; 2 Peter 2:1-22; 1 Timothy 1:3-7; 1 Timothy 6:3-10; 1 John 4:1-6; Jude 1:3-23]
Psalms 119:164-168 ESV
“Seven times a day I praise you
for your righteous rules.
Great peace have those who love your law;
nothing can make them stumble.
I hope for your salvation, O Lord,
and I do your commandments.
My soul keeps your testimonies;
I love them exceedingly.
I keep your precepts and testimonies,
for all my ways are before you.”
As followers of Jesus Christ we should be those who love the Scriptures and who love the commands of God (New Covenant). And we should thank and praise the Lord for giving us His Word and His commands, for they are for our good, for our spiritual nourishment and growth, and to keep us from falling back into sin, and to lead us on a righteous path. And they are for our comfort as well as for our correction. And they are filled with the promises of God as well as teach us the conditions for those promises to be fulfilled.
A lot of people professing faith in Jesus Christ today here in America have this mistaken idea that, because we are not under the Old Covenant liturgical, ceremonial, sacrificial, and dietary laws and restrictions, that we are now lawless, i.e. that we don’t have to obey the commands of God. But that is not true! All throughout the New Testament we are commanded to obey the commands of God or we don’t have salvation and eternal life with God, and he does not know us and we don’t know him, in truth.
We still have to obey our Lord, for if sin is what we obey, it will end in death, not in life everlasting. We still have to submit to Christ as Lord (Owner-Master) of our lives, and we still must repent of (turn away from) our sins in order to follow Christ in his ways. For Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. He gave his life up for us on that cross so that we would be delivered from our slavery (addiction) to sin so we would now be slaves of God and of his righteousness.
So, don’t buy into the lies that tell you that all you have to do is make a profession of faith in Jesus Christ and now your sins are all covered by the blood of Christ and heaven is guaranteed you when you die regardless of how you live your life on this earth. We must walk according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. Sin must no longer be what we practice, but the righteousness of God is to be our practice, in the power of God, or else we do not have eternal life with God. So take this to heart.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
On Bended Knee
By Robert C Guidry
On bended knee, I come
With a humble heart, I come
Bowing down before Your holy throne
Lifting holy hands to You
As I pledge my love anew
I worship You in spirit
I worship You in truth
Make my life a holy praise unto You
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