As you are reading this devotion, I pray that each one would be challenged to examine his own heart before God to see if their personal foundation may have a few cracks in it. Areas that may have become weak or are falling asleep. For many, I believe the Lord is laying this on my heart for you to share with others you are praying for who may not receive the word from you, but may read something from someone they do not know. Only the Lord knows who this is for so I lay out my heart today before the Lord of the apostasy I see everywhere I look.
Have you looked around “the church” recently? Have you heard “the prophets”? Are you chasing the next “word”? Are you focused more on seeking miracles than on Christ? Are you enamored by the “supernatural”? Please bear with me as we try to separate the wheat from the chaff. God is definitely moving and speaking to those whose hearts match up with His. I have had visitations from the Lord. I’ve also had a visitation of an angel to let me know that God was with me through my difficult challenges. I’ve also had Satan send death to my door to try and smother me, but at the name of Jesus he vanished. He was trying to scare me, but the odd thing was that I had no fear in that moment. See, I fear God more than anything else, He holds my life in His hands, and I rest in Him alone! Oh, I’m not perfect, far from it, but my heart’s desire is for Him. Because of this love, my heart grieves as I see the rapid decline of the church and the ways of many who call themselves believers. My prayer is that they hear and receive the truth. For Scripture states, “and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:32)
It is time for the true watchmen of the Lord to sound the alarm! Blow the trumpet, we are under attack and the great body of believers are asleep. Remember, it is not our job to make sure people respond, it is our responsibility to be faithful to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and speak truth. Truth is love. Anyone who has read any of the scriptures knows that the walk of truth is the narrow way. God is drawing a line in the sand. WHAT SIDE OF THE LINE ARE YOU STANDING ON?
I must say that I get alarmed as I listen to preachers today. I hear “sermons” (I use that term lightly) about God wants you to be healed, God wants you to be prosperous, God is sending a revival, etc. “Prophets” (I also use this term lightly) give words of doom and of prosperity, of calamity and restoration all at the same time! Remember, chaos is not of God. God has a very clear message and it will always be the same!
Have you ever questioned these things? If you know the scriptures, God’s true prophets never gave conflicting messages! They also never went around preaching prosperity! True prophets of God spoke of repentance of sin, sanctification, consecration and holiness. Everything they spoke pointed to God. The test of a true prophet was whether the words he spoke lined up with the nature of God.
There were false prophets in the Old Testament, there always will be false prophets. Satan disguises himself as light, (please read 2 Corinthians 11:13-15), but if you allow the Holy Spirit’s discernment to guide you, you will not be lead astray by these deceivers. Let’s look at the alliance of King Jehoshaphat the king of Judah and King Ahab of Israel. II Chronicles 18 relates in great detail a very important lesson in discernment and exposing of evil spirits and false prophets. King Ahab asked King Jehoshaphat to join him in battle against Ramoth-gilead. King Jehoshaphat let him know that he is aligned with him but in verse 4 he shows the differences in their walk and relationship with the Lord. “Moreover, Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “Please inquire first for the word of the LORD.” (2 Chronicles 18:4) (emphasis mine)
King Ahab assembled the 400 prophets in Israel and all said “Go up, for God will give it into the hand of the king.” (verse 5) But look what the king of Judah asks in the next verse! But Jehoshaphat said, “Is there not yet a prophet of the LORD here that we may inquire of him?” (2 Chronicles 18:6)
This next verse reveals the character of a real prophet of God, as well as man’s heart as to his desires. “The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the LORD, but I hate him, for he never prophesies good concerning me but always evil. He is Micaiah, son of Imla.” But Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say so.” (2 Chronicles 18:7)
Beginning in verse 12 we hear the messenger sent to get Micaiah try to convince him to just speak in agreement with what the prophets of Israel have spoken. Micaiah’s response? But Micaiah said, “As the LORD lives, what my God says, that I will speak.” (2 Chronicles 18:13) The next part of this conversation is very interesting! When King Ahab asked Micaiah if he should go against Ramoth-gilead, Micaiah said, “Go up and succeed, for they will be given into your hand.” (verse 14) The king immediately challenged him because Micaiah never agreed with the prophets of Israel. Listen closely to what Micaiah tells the king:
Micaiah said, “Therefore, hear the word of the LORD. I saw the LORD sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing on His right and on His left. “The LORD said, ‘Who will entice Ahab king of Israel to go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead?’ And one said this while another said that. “Then a spirit came forward and stood before the LORD and said, ‘I will entice him.’ And the LORD said to him, ‘How?’ “He said, ‘I will go and be a deceiving spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ Then He said, ‘You are to entice him and prevail also. Go and do so.’ “Now therefore, behold, the LORD has put a deceiving spirit in the mouth of these your prophets, for the LORD has proclaimed disaster against you.” (2 Chronicles 18:18-22)
The worse part is yet to come, they threw Micaiah in prison and still went to war! When the leaders of the country are corrupt and determined to be their own god, true prophets will not be listened to, but that doesn’t remove the responsibility to speak as directed by the Lord!
Let me ask you, do you see any parallel in this scenario and the President of the United States today? Wake up American believers! I’m not talking a political revolt here but a nation of true believers turning toward the Lord God Almighty, repenting and walking by the power of the Holy Spirit and trusting God to lead us. We need to remember, this isn’t about us, it is about God! We will stand before Him one day and answer for our deeds.
We have preachers in our pulpits publicly stating they will NOT EVER teach the portions of scripture on hell or address the sin of immorality and homosexuality! Love is preaching the truth so that people can repent and be saved! Instead, Satan is using a minority to raise a very loud voice and call it hatred when the words in bold above are preached!
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires,” (2 Timothy 4:3) You and I are living in this time right now! Let’s look at a few scriptures that give us the insight needed.
“But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols.” (Revelation 2:20) (emphasis mine) Bond servants are those who willingly commit their lives to be obedient to God that He be their Master and Lord!
I sense the Holy Spirit teaching me at this point that when the scripture here states “eat things sacrificed to idols” that this is not strictly speaking of meat. Things we sacrifice to idols are our excessive time on useless pursuits, our money, our love of money, people or things. The key word here also is “tolerate”. Are we tolerating sin because “everyone is doing it”, possibly even our pastoral leaders? Do we look the other way when we know God has placed us in that situation to speak truth? I sense that the “new prayer” which is actually contemplative prayer, which comes from the Buddhists, is one of those sacrifices. We take what God has ordained, prayer between us and the Father, and instead lay it at the feet of idols and are lead astray because we no longer hear God. What about the “ministries” that are merely to grow the church size? What about the secular teachings that have been brought into the church and “disguised in spiritual language”? What about the pastors who say they cannot travel without their several million dollar jets? They are throwing their members money at idols for their own pleasure; the same for their houses and their lifestyles.
Let us compare this “star” mentality of the preachers today with the Prophets of the Old Covenant and the Apostles of the New Covenant. We’ve seen Micaiah the prophet and the life he lived which is consistent with the prophets of old. In the New Testament, the Apostle Paul was literally taken up to the Third Heaven and instructed by the Lord Himself! If there was anyone who could boast and make himself a star, it would have been Paul. Instead, Paul even tells us that he couldn’t even share most of the things he saw and witnessed. Instead he only preached the foundation of faith; the exact same message that God spoke through the prophets and Jesus spoke to the masses while on earth. Never once do we hear him, or any of the other Apostles, prophesying about coming revivals and how to get rich by making sure they tithed and gave their offerings so God would bless them financially! The offerings they collected were used to take care of the members needs and also sent to the other churches who were struggling! (Acts 4:32-37; 6:1-6; I Corinthians 16:1-3; Romans 15:25-27)
“But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron,” (1 Timothy 4:1-2)
“But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5)
How can God speak more clearly than He has through Scripture to give us direction to choose righteousness over evil? Loved ones, it begins with you and me. We can preach to a “church body” but unless the individual members of the body repent and move into holiness, there will not be a correction. This message begins here, between me and God. That’s my responsibility, it is not my responsibility to police others while continuing to walk in sin.
“just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, since they in the same way as these indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, are exhibited as an example in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire.” (Jude 1:7)
“I gave her time to repent, and she does not want to repent of her immorality.” (Revelation 2:21) (I am reminded of Jesus standing over Jerusalem and weeping because they did not want Him! Loved ones, He is still standing over the nations weeping because we are denying Him sovereignty in our lives, as well as allowing others to have the power to remove Him as the foundation of the moral standard for our lives.
“For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the passion of her immorality, and the kings of the earth have committed acts of immorality with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich by the wealth of her sensuality.” (Revelation 18:3) I’m going to challenge you with a thought because we can clearly see this since the world began and it is no different today. But if each one who believes in Jesus Christ as the true Son of God and has repented of their sins, were to walk in “the new man” (Colossians 3:10, Ephesians 4:24) we would begin to walk out Psalm 111:10, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments; His praise endures forever.” We would stand upright for God’s ways. We would choose good over evil, we would choose God’s moral laws over immorality, we would not tolerate sin but seek justice.
“Flee immorality. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the immoral man sins against his own body.” (1 Corinthians 6:18) At one point in time most would only associate this scripture with sexual sin. But let’s think about this, drugs and alcohol use are sins against the body AND mind. “Cutting” is a new trend especially among young people as a way to cope! And this is not uncommon among “believers”. Scripture specifically addresses tattoos in the OT and this scripture would also cover the defilement of the temple of God.
I cannot tell you the number of “Christians” today who have no guilt about having their bodies tattooed. “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?” (1 Corinthians 6:19)
“Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge,” (2 Peter 1:5)
“But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints;” (Ephesians 5:3)
“For God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior;” (1 Peter 1:14-15)
“So, he who rejects this is not rejecting man but the God who gives His Holy Spirit to you.” (1 Thessalonians 4:7-8)
“But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.” (Ephesians 5:3-6)
“And He began to teach and say to them, “Is it not written, ‘MY HOUSE SHALL BE CALLED A HOUSE OF PRAYER FOR ALL THE NATIONS’? But you have made it a ROBBERS’ DEN.” (Mark 11:17)
Have you been hearing any of the above scriptures being taught in the pulpits? If you have, praise the Lord! But the majority of the churches will not teach these things because they will not draw large crowds! Jesus taught truth. He didn’t preach “feel good” messages. He spoke the truth in love. Many hated Him, they wanted to kill Him! Did it stop Him from teaching the pure Word? NO!
We don’t need to go any further than the first chapter of Isaiah to hear God speak through Isaiah about the sin of the people which brought about destruction.
For the LORD speaks,
“Sons I have reared and brought up,
But they have revolted against Me.
“An ox knows its owner,
And a donkey its master’s manger,
But Israel does not know,
My people do not understand.”
Alas, sinful nation,
People weighed down with iniquity,
Offspring of evildoers,
Sons who act corruptly!
They have abandoned the LORD,
They have despised the Holy One of Israel,
They have turned away from Him.
Where will you be stricken again,
As you continue in your rebellion?
The whole head is sick
And the whole heart is faint.
From the sole of the foot even to the head
There is nothing sound in it,
Only bruises, welts and raw wounds,
Not pressed out or bandaged,
Nor softened with oil.
Your land is desolate,
Your cities are burned with fire,
Your fields—strangers are devouring them in your presence;
It is desolation, as overthrown by strangers.
The daughter of Zion is left like a shelter in a vineyard,
Like a watchman’s hut in a cucumber field, like a besieged city.
Unless the LORD of hosts
Had left us a few survivors,
We would be like Sodom,
We would be like Gomorrah.
(Isaiah 1:2-9) (emphasis mine)
So we could use the example of prayer. We aren’t allowed to pray to the sovereign God in public because we might “offend” others; in other words, we are offending the pagan gods that others worship, which means we acknowledge and give place to other gods for worship! But first, how is your private prayer life? We don’t have the right to be offended that we can’t pray in public if we aren’t in relationship with God and in prayer ourselves. We gave up our right when we became silent! So if our foundation is not the laws of God Almighty we are on shifting sand. The people are on shifting sand before the whole nation is on shifting sand! Jesus spoke a powerful parable to His followers as to what would happen to those who built on anything other than God’s firm foundation. “Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. “The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall.” (Matthew 7:26-27)
We really need to read all the words of Jesus beginning in chapter 5 through chapter 7 in order to have understanding of what He speaks. A summary would be that anyone who is not walking on the narrow path is on the broad path which is the sinking sand, it only leads to destruction of our lives. Read again Isaiah 1:2-9, it takes the rebellion of the people to bring about the destruction of a nation.
Many prominent pastors of large churches have embraced contemplative prayer (Buddhism) and New Age teachings in order to build larger churches and deceive the people. This is building altars to other gods! For those who do not know, Contemplative prayer is not really prayer at all. It is essentially Eastern/New Age meditation disguised with Christianese terms and lingo. Eastern/New Age/Contemplative teaches the person to empty the mind of thought and to enter what is known as The Silence. It is here, in the silence that spiritual deception occurs.
We have believers who do not see the abomination of abortion! If we would rightly call abortion for what it is, it is sacrificing our children to Molech! Just because they aren’t being thrown into the fire in front of our eyes, they are being murdered, there is no difference!
We are witnessing the following scriptures today. If we will allow the Holy Spirit to open our eyes and our understanding of God’s Word, it is not too late to reach out to the lost. But it may be too late tomorrow for destruction is at our door. The place to start is on our knees in repentance (II Chronicles 7:14-15). Don’t even ask what you should do, wait on the Lord to tell you what He wants you to do! (Jeremiah 29:11)
“for false Christs and false prophets will arise, and will show signs and wonders, in order to lead astray, if possible, the elect.” (Mark 13:22)
“Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.” (Matthew 24:22)
The Lord is gracious and has given us many examples to follow so I have included a few scriptures for you to begin your journey.
“but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.” (1 Corinthians 9:27)
“Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)
“With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,” (Ephesians 6:18)
“so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober.” (1 Thessalonians 5:6)
“We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,” (2 Corinthians 10:5)
“And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope until the end, so that you will not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” (Hebrews 6:11-12)
Dear Heavenly Father, I love You and thank You for sending Your Holy Spirit to live in me to lead me into all truth and bringing to mind all things You have said. Thank You that You are faithful even when we are not! Thank You for this word which is challenging but has so much love as You desire that none should perish! Seek my heart, O God, and see if there is anything in me that is not of You. (Psalm 139:23-24) Strengthen the things in me which are weak according to Your word. You have told me that in my weakness You are strong, so thank You as You show me when my weakness of trying to handle things on my own arises, that I will quickly lay it all down at Your feet! Thank You Lord as You have opened my eyes to much this past week as I’ve sat with You to hear Your heart in this message. Thank You for Your forgiveness as I’ve repented of things that You convicted me of that I was blinded to! Continue to lead me in Your paths of righteousness for Your name’s sake. All this I pray in the sacred name of Your Son Jesus Christ. Amen!