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GNOSTICS, JUDAIZERS, FALSE TEACHERS, HYPOCRITES & PHARISEES – Keeping it Simple
What do all these have in common? They all say that Jesus is not enough. They all say “Jesus, plus these other things”. The Bible says Jesus is the only way to life, both now, and later in heaven.
Jesus says, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father except through Me. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; from now on you know Him, and have seen Him.” John 14:6-7
“Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them.
“I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.
“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me; just as the Father knows me and I know the Father, and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life, only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.” John 10:7-18
From the day Jesus spoke these words, until not, those who heard these words are divided. Many of them said, “He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to him?” But others said, “These are not the sayings of a man possessed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”
WHAT ARE THE ODDS?
The odds of 1 to 100, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000 is 1 to 10 to the 157th power.
These are the odds against – yes, AGAINST – Jesus Christ having fulfilled just 48 of the over 450 prophecies written about Him.
In order to give you some perspective, electrons are very small objects. They’re smaller than atoms. It would take 2.5 TIMES 10 to the 15th power of them, laid side by side, to make one inch. Even if we counted 250 of these electrons each minute, and counted day and night, it would still take 19 million years just to count a line of electrons one-inch long. 19 MILLION YEARS!
Read that again, please. Why is that significant?
It is significant because it gives us evidence that the Bible is true and correct when it says that Christ Jesus came to earth and is the Savior of the world.
It gives YOU evidence, if you choose to pay attention, that your life can be eternal with the only LIFE source which gives eternal Peace, Safety, Security, Joy and fulfillment the universe has ever known or ever will know.
Just think about it: It is a scientific and a mathematical impossibility that HAS COME TO PASS!
No odds can defy the REALITY of Jesus Christ.
NOW, WHAT ABOUT THE ‘OTHERS’?
Gnosticism is a collection of religious ideas and systems from the late 1st century AD among Jewish and early Christian sects. These various groups emphasized personal spiritual knowledge (gnosis) above the orthodox teachings, traditions, and authority of religious institutions. They view material existence as flawed or evil; Gnostic cosmogony generally presents a distinction between a supreme, hidden God and a malevolent lesser divinity who is responsible for creating the material universe. Gnostics considered salvation to be direct knowledge of the supreme divinity in the form of mystical or esoteric insight. Many Gnostics do not deal in concepts of sin and repentance, but with illusion and enlightenment. There are those who call themselves Christian, but practice forms of Gnosticism, which are heretical to the Christian faith.
The “Emergent Church movement” has been a recent variety of Gnosticism, approving of abortion, mysticism, new age idealism, homosexuality and more, both in their ordination practices and in their personal lives.
The Prosperity Gospel, although claiming to hold to a form of the Christian Gospel, is a form of Gnosticism.
In the early church, those who taught a combination of God’s grace and human effort for salvation, were called “Judaizers.” The word Judaizer comes from a Greek verb meaning “to live according to Jewish customs.” The word appears in Galatians 2:14 where Paul describes how he confronted Peter for forcing Gentile Christians to “Judaize.”
A Judaizer taught that, in order for a Christian to truly be right with God, he must conform to the Mosaic Law. Circumcision, especially, was promoted as necessary for salvation. Gentiles had to become Jewish proselytes first, and then they could come to Christ. The doctrine of the Judaizers was a mixture of grace (through Christ) and works (through the keeping of the Law). This false doctrine was dealt with in Acts 15 and strongly condemned in the book of Galatians.
The Catholic church, oddly enough, is a form of Judaizers. It is a mixture of grace through Christ and works through keeping the doctrines of the laws and rituals of the church.
Matthew 7:15–16, warns us to, “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits.” The word beware means all of us should be alert, but especially shepherds, to identify not just false teaching, but false teachers, whose ways are subtle. They’re clothing themselves with lamb’s wool while they’re wolves.
The Apostle Paul used the same Greek word for beware in Acts 20:28–29 when he said, “Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.”
2 Peter 2:1, warns us, “But false prophets also appeared among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves. Verse 2. Many will follow their indecent behavior, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned; verse 3. and in their greed they will exploit you with false words; their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.
Verse 4. For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, held for judgment; Verse 5, and did not spare the ancient world, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others, when He brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; Verse 6, and if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction by reducing them to ashes, having made them an example of what is coming for the ungodly; Verse 7, and if He rescued righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the perverted conduct of unscrupulous people 8 (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them, felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds), Verse 9, then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from a trial, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment, verse 10, and especially those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt passion, and despise authority.
Reckless, self-centered, they speak abusively of angelic majesties without trembling, verse 11. whereas angels who are greater in might and power do not bring a demeaning judgment against them before the Lord. Verse 12. But these, like unreasoning animals, born as creatures of instinct to be captured and killed, using abusive speech where they have no knowledge, will in the destruction of those creatures also be destroyed, verse 13, suffering wrong as the wages of doing wrong. They count it a pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are stains and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions as they feast with you, verse 14, having eyes full of adultery that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having hearts trained in greed, accursed children; verse 15, abandoning the right way, they have gone astray, having followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved the reward of unrighteousness; verse 16, but he received a rebuke for his own offense, for a mute donkey, speaking with a human voice, restrained the insanity of the prophet.
Verse 17. These are springs without water and mists driven by a storm, for whom the black darkness has been reserved. Verse 18. For, while speaking out arrogant words of no value they entice by fleshly desires, by indecent behavior, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error, verse 19, promising them freedom while they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by what anyone is overcome, by this he is enslaved. Verse 20. For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. Verse 21. For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment handed on to them. Verse 22. It has happened to them according to the true proverb, “A dog returns to its own vomit,” and, “A sow, after washing, returns to wallowing in the mire.”
Many in the contemporary Pentecostal movements practice the ways of Balaam, the son of Beor, and claim a type of hyper-grace to justify their sins and to escape the coming punishment. They claim “God loves us so much, He can love us no less”, a nonsensical adage to soothe a guilt ridden soul and to satisfy the lusts of the rebellious.
Hypocrites & Pharisees
Matthew 23:1, says, ”Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to His disciples, verse 2 saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair of Moses. Verse 3. Therefore, whatever they tell you, do and comply with it all, but do not do as they do; for they say things and do not do them. Verse 4. And they tie up heavy burdens and lay them on people’s shoulders, but they themselves are unwilling to move them with so much as their finger. Verse 5. And they do all their deeds to be noticed by other people; for they broaden their phylacteries and lengthen the tassels of their garments. Verse 6. And they love the place of honor at banquets, and the seats of honor in the synagogues, verse 7, and personal greetings in the marketplaces, and being called Rabbi by the people. Verse 8. But as for you, do not be called Rabbi; for only One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers and sisters. Verse 9. And do not call anyone on earth your father; for only One is your Father, He who is in heaven. Verse 10. And do not be called leaders; for only One is your Leader, that is, Christ. Verse 11. But the greatest of you shall be your servant. Verse 12. Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled, and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.
Verse 13. “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites…”
HOW RAPANT IS THIS APOSTASY?
HOW ARE WE TO DEAL WITH THEM WHICH ARE OF THE SPIRIT OF ANTICHRIST?
Do not associate with them. 1 Corinthians 5:11; 2
Stand firm against them. Ephesians 6:10-18