Pastor John Ricci discusses 1 Corinthians Chapter 9 and the Heresy of Lordship Salvation.
Category Archives: latter days
This is a difficult post for me to try and put across, it encompasses years of the Lord showing himself to me while he was working in my life.
We are now living in the age that Matthew 24: 24 applies.
24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
Early on, while dating my wife to be; I can still recall the Lord assuring me that “my life was in his hands”. I did not comprehend at the time the totality in that meaning; I had not had my “near death experience” of Christ lying shoulder to shoulder next to me, nor was I in the Church leadership after I returned home from my orders under Operation Enduring Freedom. I had watched the leadership in the church become more and more institutionalized, as they focused on “building” a larger church body.
I became frustrated because of what I could plainly see, I surpassed all the training at the time because of my personal study under Dr. Gross for six years in street ministry, and Dr. Gross was one of the top exorcists in Baltimore City. I later told the Lord I wanted to be like Paul and Silos; and like them, effective for the Lord so that the enemy would know who I was, and not just pew stuffing in some church!
I then suffered my heart attack and NDE while in the U.S. Army, who were instrumental in saving my life while in water survival; and without which I would not have survived the ordeal.
A week later my new proximal lad stent had started to clot again. They rushed me down the corridor to have more emergency stenting. I told the nurse to tell my wife she was the best thing that had ever happened to me, and I insisted! The nurse (who I had never seen before) spoke very calmly to me exclaiming, “ Mr. Dell, the enemy knows who you are; but this will not stop what the Lord has planned for You” !!!
I was simply speechless, as I knew then that this woman was used of God in showing me he had heard my prayer! Incidentally, this all occurred like a silver thread that has run throughout my life in providence. I had asked the Lord not to have to serve in the Army more than I was obligated too, this echoed the words of a Lieutenant I had know in the Coast Guard, who told me during the reduction in force that the Coast Guard was not his God! It was almost my 20 year mark with the Army Reserve Watercraft now, and 23 years for pay purposes. It was also just three days after my ordination as a minister, and I was soon to get accredited by the reformed Baptists.
As I continued to struggle with getting my accreditation’s, mostly for what I learned under Dr. Gross years before; something very strange happened. I felt led to a room opposite my office where I was writing my thesis. As I entered this guest bedroom, I could feel a calm presence within, and out of the corner of my eyes I could make out what appeared to be the Lord; but this time the ghostly image was in color, not just black and white pushing in next to me, as when my heart stopped!
Honestly, although it was a wonderful experience, it scared me a bit; so I called my old mentor the late Dr. Gross on the phone, and explained to him what just had happened. He instinctively asked me; “where did this happen”? I told him opposite my computer room and office; then he said, “ Roland, don’t you see, it is the Lord telling you to follow him”!!! I had become so busy in attempting to prove myself to men, it seems I had sort of lost focus on my Lord!
Not too long ago, I was deeply involved with a couple men who espouse a type of “Lordship Salvation group” on the net. The leader of this group excepted me with great love in a 7 year Skype relationship. I finally felt accepted by one who seemed to understand just how the Lord functioned. Friction then started with a young brother who likened everything to being tied to Rome and the Illuminati. I tried desperately to communicate with this young brother about what I had learned of secret organizations in the past; but he would have none of it, as he knew I supported Donald Trump for president, who he despised.
The supposed “elder” would not intervene, and relationships with other internet “Christian whack jobs” which he allowed “into the fold” just increased. I am an open person, but I do not like being spied on by sanctimonious dingbats who think that they know better than anyone else; you know the types!
This all came to a head about the same time doctors discovered I had a vary serious infection to my hearts hardware which the military installed.
I was then accused of being “chastened of God” by the group fellowship leader, as being political minded instead of “God minded” read carnal. I do know one thing however, the Lord used this very serious event in my life to “rip me from this Lordship Salvation Cult”, in which the leader exclaims that he is so sanctified that he no longer sins, he just has glitches in the flesh!
I now must ask myself, “what was I thinking”? But in a time of strong delusions and wickedness abounding all over the world, peoples like these are bound to show up on stage; so to speak. The lesson I learned was don’t allow anyone to dictate how the Lord works his salvation and sanctification within your life. The Lord is so far above and ahead of the “paygrade” of any human being within the world that it is laughable to think that anyone can achieve such spiritual wisdom in judging another’s walk; that is – apart from blatant sin and rebellion against God.
It is more likely to be seen as a blatant rebellion against the leaders perceived authority, which he is actually reacting too; as no one is needed in defending the infallible and almighty Lord of heaven and earth!
To all committed followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, remember that mere men are fallible; my best advice I can give – is what the Lord gave to me; FOLLOW HIM and no one else, in these days of strong delusions!
I will close with what my dear old mother reminded me of tonight: ROMANS 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
One’s perceived Holiness or walking in the Holy Spirit of truth, should never depend upon one’s own viewpoint of the scriptures, nor idiosyncratic emotions. False teachers are big on using such manipulations to gain favor with others and then build their own following. I do not believe all people who engage in such teachings is always on a conscious level; rather they have been deceived into believing that they have found the only or “narrow road” to fellowshipping with our Lord.
Matthew 24:24 24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, to mislead, if possible, even the elect.
I know a brother who dogmatically insists that his own spiritual experiences have taught him over the years just who are the “Goats” and who are indeed “Sheep”. He decides who’s allowed in the “Sheep Fold” who is not, and even who is to be rejected among the brethren! He does not enforce these principles by using balanced Biblical doctrines, nor even confer with other elders before deciding to eject the member; he does this as a matter of self-righteous pride, and his distorted sense of self-worth, and perceived authority in Christ! This is very dangerous in deciding who are the weeds, goats, wolves, dogs, and pigs. Only the Lord Jesus Christ himself can know who the Father gives unto him. Fallen humanity uses discernment, when in line with the authority of the scriptures alone.
Below is what a brother recently shared with me, in what he (like myself) has painfully discovered over the years.
“Roland, here is a list of 5 things I learned about “spiritual leaders”. I wrote this in 2014.
If you are not with them or believe like them, you are not of God.
Your value is based on your performance. How you perform is how you are regarded. (No intrinsic value).
You are only truly loved if you are fully submitted to them. If you rebel against their authority or control in anyway, you are being influenced by Satan.
Control and manipulation is enforced through fear, condemnation, confusion, and partial truths. Twisting the truth is common.
There is a “drawing” to the leader. The leader will come in the form of a friend at first. After your heart is opened and exposed to accept the person or group of people, the manipulation and control begins.”
I post this today, as I am continually troubled by the zeal of deception which is broadcast now weekly. The man and his followers are convinced that they follow “but Christ alone” with no amount of human sin being present in their members. They will condemn anyone or anything who would find disagreement with them, and their favorite targets are not Marxist – Liberation Theology; but rather the Evangelical Bible believing church! They systematically pick apart what “they see” as heresies even found within Christian fundamentals. They say that they are not involved with the world, or the world’s systematic theologies, apologetics, policy, politics and even geography. Yet they continually beat down any semblance of the Christian informed peoples of the past, and any attempt at restoring a level of decency in the postmodern world! These brothers but bury themselves within their own sanctimonious behaviors and beliefs; yet stand in condemnation to anyone who would try and convert others to the principles of sound doctrine in scriptures, Christ, or even Biblical ethics, as being a lover of the world more than Christ!
Like a bunch of committed communists working towards their revolutionary goal in converting the world to their way of thinking; these misplaced beliefs, like a Communist are destructive, but even worse unlike a Communist, they claim to represent Christ, yet with having a distorted viewpoint of the Lord. This poor brother, continually pounds on the Church (false and or real – in my estimation) along with anyone who believes the “State of Israel” is still tied to the coming prophesies of the Bible; and for my favorite twist, they especially hate Evangelicals who support Donald Trump as President!
These people teach avoidance of anyone who would challenge or disagree with their so-called discernment’s as being non-believers, and have deceived themselves (and others) that only they, and people like them, who agree with them that they, are the “chosen remnant”, who in the end will be with the Lord! This is a shameful and gut-wrenching pride which I feel is my duty to point out as a minister of the Gospel, and as someone who has inside knowledge of these types of characters!
In closing I would like to recommend the site: http://www.wickedshepherds.com/
This is the most comprehensive and exhaustive site which I have found on the net for such modern-day Pharisees, (who think that they do no wrong)!
Published on Mar 28, 2011
This video may completely change your life and relationship with God. It is that good ! Derek Prince shows from the Scriptures what the Bible says the Gospel is. What it means for us. Many people talk about the Gospel without actually knowing what it is. This is a very clear message on the most important teaching in the Bible. It is English audio with Chinese Subtitles
Since this is my web page and ministry, I decided to post this most basic truth of the Gospel.
I painfully became aware after 7 years of fellowship with a legalistic “Lordship Salvation” group on the net; the complete lack of love shown to me, in one of the greatest trials of my life while facing the very real possibility of my my own death, for the second time around! Many of my earlier videos reflect the very sharp teachings of a brother who is so dogmatic in the faith – that he has forgotten about his own fallibility and even has convinced himself and others of “their own righteousness” by a “continual abiding” in Christ! This is a very dangerous and deceptive trap, as even to those who have been truly born again of spirit, should never become so proud in condemning others for not keeping legalism. Or in other words, believe that they have something to do with moving into the Kingdom of God in and of their own efforts!!!
I chose to publish this video on the site as an example to such heretical teachings while using the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and subverting the Gospel into something the Lord never intended it to be! I would hope that people could learn from my mistakes, rather than having to suffer the consequences in listening to “another Gospel” like I made the mistake in doing!
I know that most of my traffic comes from being one of the original followers of “Lucas Labrador”, ( I will be gracious and not use his real name) who I was ingratiated with for a solid seven years, until Donald Trump got elected a President; and I was later accused of being “chastened of God” for my political views by this “dog”, as for an infection on my heart’s hardware I received while in the military. Which has since been removed by the man who invented laser surgery to the heart, and the Lord graciously allowed me to meet, Praise God!
I may not be the best public speaker, but I can tell you that I have never been a “boot licker” ; once I discover an unrepentant personality disorder in which * I believe is used in twisting the Gospel of the Lord for their own following having become devoid of Grace, “puffed up” in exclusiveness, while comparing himself to other brethren and full of Spiritual Pride in attempting to follow the Lord – unlike any other.
I earnestly beseech you to listen to what is being said by Dr. Prince, as it is the most fundamental aspect of the Gospel and Faith in Jesus Christ alone,which you will ever need to live a victorious life in Christ!
Missionary Evangelist Robert Breaker talks about Politics and the Bible.
It does matter people…
Published on Jan 29, 2019
Romans 2: 1 (KJV)
1 Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things…
I don’t intend to be mean-spirited in pointing out errors I have found in another’s teaching, yet rather in becoming a victim myself to some near heretical ramblings, I offer the following insights…
I once spent six years in street ministry learning Bible from a man holding three doctorates which he spent 22 years in seminary to achieve. Yet more importantly, he could move in the things of God, and not just teach about them. He was a doer of the word, not just a hearer – or what we used to call on ship, a repeater. I even have had experience in some dealing with demons, as Dr. Gross was one of two top exorcist in Baltimore City.
To a large degree, I too have moved in the power of the Lord, and if I didn’t scare people by sharing these events in my life, then they were more like stolen treasures to me: as I had willingly attempted to build up others in encouragement of the Lord, within the leadership with the things I had experienced. Little did I realize, but most were ravaging wolves and pigs who perhaps unwittingly just wanted to make a name for themselves.
Have you ever heard it said that the first witness is of God, and the others Satan? I never understood this till recently, as I had never met a man who speaks so fervently about the Lord, in being with him, following him, and moving in his power. Yet he often speaks as if, no others are capable of doing it, and the past churches he often speaks about are certainly not moving within the power of the Lord (any longer). He speaks continually about all types of churches who once had something of the Lord, yet no longer do… He says this is deadly serious stuff, and warns of the broad roader’s destruction should they not heal to the Lord continually.
Allot of people are attracted to such a showman, especially in having a large amount of understanding of the scriptures, (including myself). Yet I learned later, that the man cannot move within the things of God, which he often preaches about to others!
I can tell you, which for the most part, his preaching he is correct; as I too once moved in the power of the Lord, and I must say I experienced rejection by most churches, probably starting in the mid 90’s. Yet the reason for not moving now, is because I believe the Lord has chosen this time to remain silent!
No matter how fervently one follows the Lord, it is not possible to move him to power within your life, unless he chooses to move (in the manner – in which you might wish). I learned this years ago as, when he did move in power within my life, it was often a surprise to me – as I’m simply a jar made of clay like any other.
If the Lord has decided to shelve me for some later use, that is up to him. As “I wasn’t there when he made the heavens and the earth”, but I rather am most grateful when he does decide to use me in some task. What I find most irritating is one who chooses to speak for God, when they have not the authority nor commissioning! It seems to me the brethren of today are experiencing the great falling away, and all the attacks on other brethren (Churches) will not, and does not change the place and time we are in within world history. All the fervent preaching in the world won’t change this fact of the history we are all witnessing. As an example, I have been watching television for years, and I never could understand why Hollywood, and others found acceptable the stars and behavior exhibited and promoted in programming. This is primarily because a believer has a nature change, yet the world does not, and to them we seem antiquated and rigid.
Yet nowadays it is now most evident, that decency and righteousness have become an item of the past: it is as if the staging has collapsed, with special interest groups, and debauchery being sold all over the world to people, in any color, taste or form.
Also, most churches are dead now, and even the PCA is under tremendous LGBT attacks, by people who wish to be identified as followers of Christ: (yet cannot be, as the fruit is wrong within them) – in accordance with the scriptures. Yet false brethren continually push the envelope in defiance of God.
Sin is the issue, and I am convinced this is the age of strong delusions, which the Bible prophesied about. I cannot fault a man’s zeal for the Lord, but I must condemn the condemnation of other real brethren, whom he feels have become unworthy of their calling, and have taken the broad road, which leads to spiritual death. The man then may cut off all forms of communication with you as he fancies, (as he has done it before) but unless you have sinned against God, and the brethren, he has no justification in accordance with the scriptures, and needs much more than a couple sycophants to collaborate his viewpoint in condemning another (which is the wrong type of judging).
Allot of people can pump up other believers to be fervent in the faith, and even zealous to gain “more power” in the Lord, but this will not happen unless the Lord himself decides to empowers you! It seems to me, when I had run short of stories of the Lord empowering me, to the man, then I was accused of “not being in the right place any longer with God”, and even “chastened of God” when I got sick. But I’m quite sure that if I had, had “another” miraculous near death experience of the Lord, I would have stifled this type of spiritual judgmentalism; which is deeply destructive to an actual child of God. And all for the sake of aggrandizing oneself in the eyes of others, and feeding your own sense of grandeur about yourself: assuredly because of the same type of rejection which you have suffered from others and so feel justified in doing the same thing, I suspect. This is horrid to me, anyone who loves the truth of God so much, yet will then castigate others upon being challenged; especially when he falls short of his own expectations’ of what he expects from others (Romans 2: 1-4) !
I think a combination of hurt, rejection and wounded pride are to blame for such an idiosyncratic viewpoint of people, in whom may now consider you an opponent or challenger to their “Narrow Road” legalism, which has unwittingly been used in justifying oneself before the Lord, while condemning others. This poor fellow even speaks about a condemnation upgrade from hades to hell for the wicked, in given that the more scripture they know (truth), (yet they do not do), leads to deeper punishment prior to the great throne judgment. This could be very possible, but I would hate to have a head full of scripture (truths), yet preach it as a heretic to others, only to later suffer the very condemnation which you have preached about, God forbid!
All actual brethren and Elders, need much prayer and compassion in this time of great trail; but instead, the love of many has grown cold, and many believers are tossed upon the ash heap unjustifiably. This is precisely why two or three elders are needed prior to condemning another believer in the church, as it is too easy to misjudge another – even if you claim to be nearly infallible in your walk with the Lord!
I have been walking with the Lord for over 40 years, my Mom was a Bible teacher, my Dad a Deacon.
That in and of itself means little, however I was well-informed about the pitfalls of false teachings, and relativism having crept into the faith by the 1970’s. In the 1980’s on the streets of Honolulu, my spirit within me could sense the presence of the false gospel of scientology being put forth in recruiting troubled souls to their following. A couple of sailors I knew were sucked into this cult by the threatening prognosis that they were suicidal. This is of course manipulative, and dependent on self-preservation and fear.
In the 1980’s after my time in the Coast Guard, I studied for six years under a minister holding a D.D., Th.D., and Ph.D. In phycology. More important however is that the man actually walked with Jesus Christ in faith, and had overcome many obstacles in his life with miraculous results! I experienced much spiritual opposition early on in my life, but later while in street ministry Dr. Gross, the top exorcist in Baltimore City explained much of what had occurred to me. Learning the spirituals things of God, how he operated in his disciples, and demonic oppositions to the pure truth of God was commonplace! At that time, I was worried about my career like many young men; but the Lord showed me a devotional which read: “We are to be “Vessels of Light for Christ”… Frustrated I said, “I know that” and went to bed. Yet the next morning I received a phone call from the Captain of the Lightship Chesapeake, in offering a position to work for him! And this was truly a “Vessel of Light”!
I left the ministry later and the Lightship, and become an Army Reserve “Marine Machinery Technician”. During all this time, I had never realized just how “Rock Solid” my relationship with Jesus Christ had become. I became very lonely in my walk, and having visited many churches by now, it only seemed to compound my loneliness as I had become used to a very personal relationship with other believer’s, with a depth of understanding which still surpasses most seminary trained ministers.
It wasn’t until my late 30’s that the Lord had provided me with a wife, amongst all the fornication concerning others in the world at this time. Despite all my training, I had failed to realize that “sex was marriage” in the eyes of God, so he needed to teach me just how corrupt our “free love” society had become. I had even experienced demonic battles with the enemy, the likes I hadn’t experienced since working in street ministry!
I now lived in a rural area, and it was far and in-between finding an actual soldier in the Lord who knew how to fight such opposition of the devil. And I was about to experience the closest walk with the Lord which I had ever known! I kept a type of personal log book at that time, in an effort to keep myself on the “straight and narrow” path with the Lord as to not become emotionally overwhelmed. I had not had many girlfriends, and the ones which I had, I found to be tricky and manipulative! This was all written down in an effort to cover my hind parts, should things become tricky.
Yet as things progressed, my entries became the greatest testimonial of the Lord at work in my life which I had ever experienced! Every few days I had experienced miraculous events done with perfect timing which only the Lord could have orchestrated! These events were so personal and exacting that it actually scared me in how supernaturally all things were working for good in my life, along with the women I would be married to. I can remember the Lord actually asking me if I wanted this women which he had provided me. In all humility, I was stunned by the question, and answered with a resounding yes!
We were married in 1998 after about a year of dating, yet the events which transpired during that time were choked full of God orchestrated events which would cement our relationship for a lifetime! We had been led to join the Presbyterian Church of America, while meeting in a school building for a couple of years, and were the first married within the new congregation. The Lord was still moving in my life in miraculous ways personally, but when I shared many events with the Pastor he was a bit skeptical of the calling which the Lord had been showing me, while walking in the spirit of truth. About a year later, the Lord reinforced his leading with a spiritual vision of a “technicolor” heart full of rich green grass beating within me! The next morning on a Truth for Life broadcast, Pastor Alistair Begg explained that the word Pastor, was derived from the word Pasture, and that it was only God who gives a man a “Pastor’s Heart”… So now the vision the night before made sense to my mind.
By 2001, Elaine and I had sold our homes and moved to Stevensville, which was a much closer commute to my job. Then came the 9-11 attacks on our country, and my Reserve unit was the first to be called up in Baltimore, to be sent in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, and Iraqi Freedom. It was particular hard on Elaine and I because although Elaine was close to retirement, and had been mobilized before, she was now wanted again for a second mobilization making it that much harder on both of our families, and our home. Elaine was an outstanding soldier and administrator, and it seemed as if others were being retired early who had less time in grade.
This only goes to prove to me, that it is the strength of character and performance which is most cherished by the Armed Forces in a time of need. Just filling the ranks with substandard type people will never replace the need for good soldiers!
Yet again, the Lord blessed us with Elaine’s retirement at that time, despite the resistance of her command; but they knew she had well-earned her retirement and finally granted it, perhaps out of our hardship. Amongst my other duties, we orchestrated the family support role in my unit. The soldiers were thrilled that by Christmas the world hadn’t forgotten them! Although we only had some cards, cold cuts and some covered dishes, it made a world of difference to soldiers, many who were away from home for the first time.
My time in the service was nearly over once I returned home from Ft. Bragg, even though I had no idea of the next trail that was to be given to us.
Although I could have gotten out of my mobilization because of administrative error with the Stevedore outfit I had joined, I made the Army cut me new orders under Operation Enduring Freedom in hopes of making rank while on active duty. This did not happen, so I decided to go back into the unit which I worked for as a technician.
No later than the second day which I had transferred back into my old unit, I was undertaking our annual water survival training at Ft. Meade, MD. It was about noon that I took off my tight-fitting floatation suite, and I felt weak, and if I had severe heartburn. I was smart enough to mention it to the Commander, and they immediately had me lay down poolside.
An Ocean Going Tug commander, CWO 4 Gunport (another brother in the Lord) had called in the Ft. Meade Paramedics and the NSA Police.
It seemed that no sooner had I laid down then the black uniformed police were taking my information, and the Paramedics had arrived just in time to set up their defibrillator, while I was going into cardiac arrest! Everything went black, and yet I felt Jesus pressing shoulder to shoulder against me, and could see him in a ghostly figure lying next to me in a robe, beard and shoulder length hair!
I regained consciousness, and was transported to the hospital. I remember we got stuck in traffic from the hospital I had requested, and had to change the route to Laurel Hospital, so That I could be airlifted to Washington Hospital (Cardiac Center) which saved my life. On the way, I can remember wanting to see outside, and the next thing I knew I was looking down upon my ambulance in spirit! The clarity of mind and vision was perfect, as if I could know anything I wanted to know, yet I pleaded with the Lord to spare my life for my wife’s sake, and so I could complete my mission on earth!
I was not expected to survive the night, being that my heart had stopped about a half-dozen times, and I was told they had to forcefully remove Elaine from my Intensive Care room, as she attempted to hide behind the door.
In a couple of days I woke up, seeing my elderly parents at my feet, my brother and wife beside me! It was good to be alive, and at which point I started sharing my experience. They were perplexed by what I had told them, and asked how I saw outside my ambulance? My mind immediately defaulted to the natural, and I said I must have seen it by looking out the back window, into a bugeye mirror along the highway.
But, that was impossible as no windows were in my ambulance, and I was looking at it from the above front! It seems the natural mind will always default back to reasoning despite the fact it has seen something of the spiritual world, hence the natural mind tends to reject things it can make no sense of.
A couple of weeks later in the hospital my emergency stent in the proximal lad again attracted a clot, they rushed me down to surgery again which terrified Elaine, and had me thinking I had reached the end of the line. I insisted the nurse tell my wife that she was the best thing which ever happened to me! But the nurse spoke softly and said not to worry, I would be OK. Yet I still insisted until the nurse spoke back to me a private prayer from weeks before; she said, “Mr. Dell, the enemy knows who you are, but this will not stop what God has planned for you”! I was completely stunned by this, as I had prayed to be effective for the Lord like the Apostle Paul and Silas in the Bible, and not just a pew warmer in church, as these men were known by Satan by their effectiveness by the enemy.
Satan knew who Jesus, Paul, and Silas were; yet with most believers’ Satan had no idea about them, as they were of no, or little effect in the spirit world in opposing him. This was the prayer the nurse had unknowingly answered for me, while speaking in the Holy Spirit of the Lord! Allot of my spiritual concerns about myself were answered during this great time of trail in my life, along with a greater insight of my importance to the Lord; (although I never have understood why) but what I do understand is, none of it has to do with my natural abilities whatsoever!
By now our Church had been constructed, and people I had never seen before started flocking in. It almost seems to me that the bigger the Church got, the more men started to focus on building something for Jesus, rather than just listening to him in obedience.
When I finally returned to my home church, a fellow deacon and veteran I knew approached me in the parking lot with amazement, it seems the congregation was told I was in critical condition and not expected to survive the night. So this brother was stunned and relieved to see me! The Sermon that Sunday was about the Good Shepherd lying down with the lamb; as the Pastor spoke these words, I had a flashback to “the being” lying next to me in death, it was indeed Jesus the “Good Shepherd” confirmed to me by an anointing by the Holy Spirit, like a bucket of water being poured over me!
I started realizing that our church functioned much more like as business than a fellowship, personal testimonials (especially powerful ones) were not to be shared with the congregation, as it seemed this might take away from the leadership, or even elevate those whom they did not want elevated in status! This type of social behavior reminded me more of High School than it did of a fellowship of believers, and I started to become angry in how certain peoples were marginalized while only the most popular were promoted, despite outstanding performance and service. The bringing in of moneys was often focused upon in the building funds, and although I donated a substantial amount, it never seemed to be enough for all the plans being orchestrated from the top down. Even the Elders course became more regimented upon chapter and verse, than the one I had far surpassed in experience, towards helping others walk in the Lord. It almost seemed to me that Satan was continually sticking his fingers in my eyes.
I remember finally sharing my “Pastoral Vision” about the heart of grass I had seen within me a year after our marriage with the founding Pastor, directly afterwards our leadership classes. When he opened his mouth in response to me, the Holy Spirit came upon me like a great waterfall, in which I could not hear a word that he was saying, and I had to lock my knees to keep from falling over I remember! It appears the Lord did not want me to receive his response to me, probably because it would have helped to destroy my faith in my Lord. I was never allowed to share my near death experience with the congregation, and this really angered me, although my “Shoulder to Shoulder with Christ” (which I shared with the Pastor afterwards) appeared as a tagline in the church newsletter.
I then stopped my attendance, and worked towards getting accredited on the things which I had learned, predominantly from Dr. Gross, in the 1980’s. I finally got accredited in counseling by a Baptist seminary on December 6, 2006, because of my experience while working in street ministry, and studies under Dr. Gross for 6 years. Although I am a poor book academic, I also went on to write a thesis for ordination into a conservative Episcopal Church in America, yet the U.S. Bishop would not accept the terms of falling in with Roman Catholicism. I had even been offered a place with the Orthodox by a Bishop I knew, but then the Lord appeared again to me, opposite my computer room. I could feel the presence of the Holy Spirit, and “dimly” see Christ’s presence in the room, but this time he was in color, instead of the ghostly white image I had seen in death. I had found Dr. Gross’s phone number in a local directory after 20 years, so I gave him a call explaining what had happened to me. He said: “don’t you see Roland, it is Jesus telling you to simply follow him”!
A little later I would start Skyping with Justin Hughes in England (AKA – Lucas Labrador on YouTube), and I would grow to understand the difference in the Spirit of an antichrist (the established Church) spoken about in Revelations 17-18 and quickly start growing in my understanding of the false church and real brethren. The difference was that of an Arminian Minister, who believes in election, in contrast with a Calvinist Minister who believes a Saint is “locked into Christ” after conversion. I was so thrilled to find another spirit filled brother I had prayed for, yet sadly seven years later I would be nearly devastated by him, while getting sick with an infection to my heart’s hardware, which I had gotten in the Military hospital over a decade before.
I was then told that I was being “Chastened of God” for loving America (the world) more than the Lord!
I think this is because I am a lover of history, and the western values which were so cherished in this nation’s past. I was disgusted by the Platform of Romans Chapter 1, which now seemed to be promoted by Barack Obama, and the Democratic Party. When President Trump got elected a wedge would start to form between me and another young brother in Ireland, who had nothing but contempt for Donald Trump, and saw him as a plant by the Catholic Church and Illuminati within the United States. I had attempted to correct this brother’s misunderstanding of history and conspiracy theories by sharing accredited links, and speaking with him: but immediately after the U.S. Elections he promptly cut off all forms of communication with me. I had pleaded with the teaching Elder to intervene, but he would not.
I have since discovered that these two men actually pride themselves in being cut off from others whom they find distasteful, and simply mark them and avoid them as broad roaders from the Lord, and false brethren. In one of my greatest trials for my life, I then was discarded as being “chastened of God” for turning back in my “love for the world”, politically speaking.
I now realize that I had never before been a member of such an exclusive and judgmental group, who could simply justify themselves in discarding others and all in the name of Christ, and who had become distasteful to their spiritual proclivities!
That was simply breathtaking to me after 7 years of daily fellowship, and this speaks volumes about the potential self-delusions possible in people, despite how well read one is within the scriptures!
Now at 60 years of age, and escaping death many times, I need to rethink my being critical of others, especially those brethren who seek to work out their salvation with fear and trembling, while seeking a peace in the world that is only found in Christ! I really wish I could write for people all the miraculous events which have transpired in my life, but my testimonial would then be a book, and I’m sure I could not remember everything pertinent to put into words, so I have rather stayed with the basics.
I don’t speak Latin, but I know Rev 17-18 speaks about the “Mother of Harlots” (a Harlot is an Antichrist or an unfaithful Bride) as in 1 John 2:18-19.
This “Chief-antichrist” introduces Satan or “Lucifer” (that Wicked) to the world, who performs many signs and wonders, and then world accepts him as God. These 7 rivers, hills, and so forth, have to be Rome! So, I am not at all surprised this is being announced so “that wicked – the man of sin”, can be revealed and worshiped as God.
1 John 2:18–19 Who Are the Antichrist?
I have posted before that I believe we are close to seeing “the god of this world appear” and introduced by the false Church… If these latin words really do signify Lucifer as God, we are right on the threshold of Satan’s short reign on earth, who will be destroyed 2 Thessalonians 2: 8 > And then shall “that Wicked be revealed”, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
Of course this post is a few years old, but brethren have been waiting millenniums to see this day, and I am no different..!
Hosea 4:6 (KJV) My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me!
Wake up oh sleeper… Ephesians 5:14, (KJV) “Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.”
So you don’t think worldly knowledge is important? One’s education of history, and specifically western civilization is of grave importance to understand: should our children perish for lack of knowledge, and critical thinking, in that we must all recognize human depravity, and a need for a Savior!
When I worked in street ministry Dr. Gross (holding a Phd in phycology) gave us all a test to see how much we learned was factual ( based on history) and what was fictional in rewritten “social studies” and even high school english. I was surprised to learn that much of what I had been taught was false information, and this was in the 1980’s! Humanism was the new curriculum, which started after WW2 and imported from Europe, as the United States then had a teacher shortage at the time. From that time forward the educational system has been built on the foundation of Humanism (which was ruled by the Supreme Court as a religion) ; yet is anti-God, and now is widely known as Cultural Marxism today. One of the tactics taught by Marxists, was in convincing Christians that it is wrong to be involved in “worldly politics” in an effort to push their most ungodly and anti western ideals on a free people.
It is tragic that some Christians will assert that we only need listen to the Lord, while denying the need for truthful dialog, specifically geared towards our children in this age of great delusion! How selfish it is to become complacent in one’s belief system, simply because you refuse to be involved in the great “politically motivated” delusions taught to our children in an age of delusion which screams out for reason and truth, rather than rhetoric!
Below is a video well worth watching: explaining why historical and even political dialog: is critical for a believer in Jesus Christ!
Don’t become complacent in butt curling up in a corner with your Bible, while the whole of humanity desperately needs truth and light to be taught and understood, and not kept under a bushel basket!
Published on Dec 21, 2018
Dr. Duke Pesta is academic director of Freedom Project Academy, a tenured university professor, and an author. He received his Masters degree in Renaissance literature from John Carroll University, and his Ph.D. in Shakespeare and Renaissance literature from Purdue University. He is one of the nation’s foremost experts on the federal takeover of public education, and has given over 500 talks across the country on the subject. For more information on JBS, visit: https://www.jbs.org/ For more information on Freedom Project, visit: https://www.fpeusa.org/
Published on Dec 14, 2018
My condensed footnotes of the below points:
Point 1) Dwelling with Christ (as within the same home).
Point 2) Not to wait for it till the resurrection… signified to the Philippians 1: 22-23
Point 3) “Rather” is used as (“more pleasing” as the word properly signifies) to be with the Lord than to continue here…
Point 4) Constant light support and comfort in the midst of all…
Point 5) The souls of the saints, when they leave their bodies at death, go to be with Christ.
I. They go to dwell in the same blessed abode with the glorified human nature of Christ.
- 1. The great future privilege, which the apostle hoped for; that of being present with Christ. The words, in the original, properly signify dwelling with Christ, as in the same country or city, or making a home with Christ.
II. The souls of true saints, when they leave their bodies at death, go to be with Christ, as they go to dwell in the immediate, full and constant sight or view of him.
- 2. When the apostle looked for this privilege, viz., when he should be absent from the body. Not to wait for it till the resurrection, when soul and body should be united again. He signifies the same thing in his epistle to the Philippians, chap. i. 22, 23: “But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labor. Yet what I shall choose, I wot not. For I am in a strait between two; having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ.”
III. The souls of true saints, when absent from the body go to be with Jesus Christ, as they are brought into a most perfect conformity to and union with him.
- 3. The value the apostle set on this privilege. It was such, that for the sake of it, he chose to be absent from the body. He was willing rather, or (as the word properly signifies) it were more pleasing to him, to part with the present life, and all its enjoyments, and be possessed of this great benefit, than to continue here.
IV. Departed souls of saints are with Christ, as they enjoy a glorious and immediate intercourse and converse with him.
- 4. The present benefit, which the apostle had by his faith and hope of this future privilege, and of his great value for it, viz., that hence he received courage, assurance, and constancy of mind, agreeable to the proper import of the word that is rendered, we are confident. The apostle is now giving a reason of that fortitude and immovable stability of mind, with which he went through those extreme labors, hardships and dangers, which he mentions in this discourse; so that, in the midst of all, he did not faint, was not discouraged, but had constant light, and inward support, strength, and comfort in the midst of all: agreeable to the 10th verse of the foregoing chapter, “For which cause, we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.” And the same is expressed more particularly in the 8th, 9th, and 10th verses, of that chapter: “We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; always bearing about in the body, the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.” And in the next chapter, verses 4-10: “In all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in watching’s, in fasting’s, by pureness, by knowledge, by long-suffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.” .
V. The souls of the saints, when they leave their bodies at death, go to be with Christ, as they are received to a glorious fellowship with Christ in his blessedness.
- 5. As the wife is received to a joint possession of her husband’s estate, and as the wife of a prince partakes with him in his princely possessions and honors; so the church, the spouse of Christ, when the marriage comes, and she is received to dwell with him in heaven, shall partake with him in his glory. When Christ rose from the dead, and took possession of eternal life; this was not as a private person, but as the public head of all his redeemed people. He took possession of it for them, as well as for himself; and “they are quickened together with him, and raised up together.” And so when he ascended into heaven, and was exalted to great glory there, this also was as a public person. He took possession of heaven, not only for himself, but his people, as their forerunner and head, that they might ascend also, “and sit together in heavenly places with him,” Eph. ii. 5, 6. “Christ writes upon them his new name,” Rev. iii. 12; i.e., he makes them partakers of his own glory and exaltation in heaven. His new name is that new honor and glory that the Father invested him with, when he set him on his own right hand. As a prince, when he advances any one to new dignity in his kingdom, gives him a new title. Christ and his saints shall be glorified together, Rom. viii. 17.
The saints in heaven have communion, or a joint participation with Christ in his glory and blessedness in heaven, in the following respects more especially…
To read this script in its entirety visit: http://www.biblebb.com/files/edwards/je-absent.htm
Published on Dec 16, 2018
Too much finger pointing about 1 John 2:15 is a destructive thing to do to brethren! There are those who use their spirituality in justifying themselves, while at the same time condemn others who may have disagreements with their perceptions. This type of behavior is based in the ego of the soul, rather than the human spirit, which only the Lord is equipped to judge.
Justifying “disbelief” in using the Bible…
2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
Absent from the Body – Present with the Lord
2 Corinthians 5: 6-8
[I believe Paul meant precisely what he said!]
( I added a graphic of the Paramedics @ about 7:00 in, on this VIMEO video )
Often another verse which is “overused” by well intentioned, yet erroneous brethren…
1 John 4 (KJV) 4 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. 2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. 4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. 5 They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them. 6 We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.
Cross Reference… The Fruit of the Holy Spirit is a biblical term that sums up nine attributes of a person or community living in accord with the Holy Spirit, according to chapter 5 of the Epistle to the Galatians: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” The fruit is contrasted with the works of the flesh which immediately precede it in this chapter. (Wikipedia)
For thousands of years men have strived for a deeper walk and understanding of the Lord.
As this basic chart of church history shows, it is full of competing ideas of how to obtain that walk. The Holy Spirit is “the teacher” which Jesus spoke about teaching his disciples, and he always teaches us on a personal level, of what we are to receive in that moment. The Holy Scriptures are “but confirmatory” of the Holy Spirit, who God is, and how he works: so we should always read the scriptures prayerfully in order to be shown greater truths.
The problems arise when men try to take the Lord and have him conform (or fit) into their personal beliefs; instead of simply following him in obedience, like we were designed to do! This is simply what the flesh does, no matter how you dress it! I have taken a couple of verses from Ecclesiastes in the publishing of this graph to show that basically humanity has always fallen into the same doctrinal traps since the beginning of the “church age”, so that no one should be surprised if they hear some type of retread as exhibited here!
If one so chooses to live their life of faith (by the Holy Spirit) yet without an understanding of the past, and sound doctrines (as written in the scriptures); it certainly can be done by the Grace of the Lord alone; yet it is better to be enlightened by others errors who came before us, than us making them all ourselves, and having to learn most by trial and testing.
Yet it seems that each new generation must “taste of and learn anew”; only that which the brethren who have gone before us once learned and understood. My advice is to seek the truth (Jesus Christ – who is the truth) in all that you do, and when unsure if you are walking right; use the “owner’s manual” (Bible)!
In the end days many will be deceived by false teachers, and those who tickle our ears; so the only way to avoid these false brethren is to hold their teachings up in the light of the scripture, which our Lord has graciously provided for us (the people) with the invention of the printing press and of the Reformation!
Of course, we did not receive the scriptures to become scribes and Pharisees or false teachers, but rather to examine our own walks as the Lord be pleased to show us as we grow. Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers and Evangelist are all ministry giftings are given of God. Yet Satan is very capable in stumbling our understanding and “twisting truth” as the father of lies: so we must seek to supplement our understanding, and properly identify heresies’, so as not to perish (be deceived) for lack of understanding about the Lord.
Never think that you have discovered a new a “prescriptive religion” which has never been followed since Jesus Christ; as it is likely a type of belief system that has been tried before, and you may be entering into apostasy unknowingly!
And always remember, Salvation is by Grace alone, not works!
Published on Nov 26, 2018
Dr.Gross used to say; “Don’t put God in a box, or he will not be able to show you anything” ! Yet our flesh has a tendency to do just that, primarily because we are creatures of habits… All men have this tendency, and it is most evident to see in a Church history flowchart... (Above)
When I was in Equal Opportunity school, people like me (Christians) were referenced as “Die Hards’”. Some Progressive have even stated that “Christians” were the biggest threat to their progressive goals and values.
Nowadays I would have a hard time within my soul, of accepting the morality (or lack of) exhibited, and pushed for by political activist groups within the last 50 years. I’m not saying that I couldn’t function, I’m just stating my personal perceptions in how the world has changed, and in my view now call evil good, and good evil!
The traditional family structure is at the root of these attacks, the man who used to be the provider and protector of his household. This is how the creator of the universe, and man and women intended it to be; yet the western male has now become emasculated in even calling it “his household”, or in trying to exert his position as head.
After WWII the United States had a teacher’s shortage, and to fill this shortage many “progressive socialists” from Europe came into fill the ranks. We used to call them Humanists, as they did not believe in a God. Today most call them “cultural Marxists” in identifying their political slant; but no matter, they certainly are anti-God in all that they teach and do. These humanist were most active in the 1960-70’s in breaking down the Christian informed ethos within the family (which they loath).
The results of their teachings can be seen around the globe now, and they are experts in the manipulation of language ensuring that eventually everyone will adhere to their dogmas, without any thought to what has occurred in generations before. Also targeted is re-writing history, and the buying up of National Geographic, and any other media mediums as an as example, which might present a different viewpoint from the past. Even the History channel as another example now glorifies and promotes the LGBT struggle as righteous, and attacks the old Christian informed value system enforcing the roles in the family as bigoted, sexist, and intolerant.
It is a total and ruthless “reboot” of society and any traditional “Godly” values these activist perceive in standing in their way! The rhetoric of these leftists idealists love to invent words such as “Homophobe, Xenophobe”, and of course sexist in an attempt to overthrow any thought process that is not “all inclusive” of every people and every culture, and primarily targeted at the west.
In not making this article too long, I wish to say that despite me being taught that men were the protectors of women (and children); the feminist and homosexual lobbies have not only gained access to the once straight male dominated military, but indeed is in the process of eliminating all conservative thinking “western” males which are perceived as resistant to the change.
The women, used to be treasured above all else, by men who would risk their lives in protecting them and the home front so that they might have families healthy to return to once the threat was neutralized from abroad.
It gave most men strength and purpose, for a nobler cause than themselves, which was constantly on most of their minds, when not in the heat a battle, and something grand to return home to after the war.
I am nearly 60 now, and all you have to do is ask any WWII veteran, and most will tell you that is what they thought about most.
Nowadays it is understood that most young men don’t even have the hope of raising a family or having a devoted wife, it seems this dream for many is just too far gone into the past to do so. Yet this is exactly what the progressive humanist in their viewpoint of a utopia for the world had envisioned!
The all-inclusive worldview of today, is thought to be the best there is in our “evolution” towards perfection, and sin is scoffed at as being almost superstitious rooted in a belief in God. So, how’s that working out for “modern man”, (oops I mean humankind) ? I think it is a turn towards the lowest common denominator within humanity, which is ruled by sin and rebellion against God. Yet these progressive activist only dream of erasing any precepts (and people) holding on to these old “die hard” values, which were once nearly universally understood at least in western cultures!
No, nowadays, it is “apologize for the white man” and all the Christian informed dogmas in orthodoxy which were once practiced by the west.
Teachings and guidance at http://innerworkforspiritualawakening…
Question: Most people live asleep and identified all the time as the work says, with no recognition of God at all. Sometimes it feels like I’m crazy, Am I just making these things of God up in my head? It’s just when you’re not surrounded by like minded people it’s can be hard to keep swimming against that current. Sometimes I think well maybe everyone else is right about this. “Written in our Hearts: The Practice of Spiritual Transformation” is on Amazon and Kindle. https://www.amazon.com/Written-Our-He…
Back during the age of steam, if you were down wind of the locomotive smoke, it was considered the wrong side of the tracks. Nowadays it is a neighborhood which is poor, and goes largely unsupported by money.
Such a neighborhood I used to fellowship in, with one of the Godliest men I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. The man was also a genius and the most well-read man I have ever known, specifically when it came to Bible understanding.
Dr. Gross was rarely accepted by who he used to call the “middle class church system” or the “Ivy League”, in which I was born into, yet rejected by for having substandard learning abilities now commonly called dyslexia. I thank the Lord he has decided to use to simple things of the world to confound the wisdom of the wise, as the ones who are to show his glory by contrast, to the ones who are established in the world by natural means.
Pastor Gross (as I called him) was not your everyday Churchman, but rather a man of God who was converted out of occult science. He later became one of the two top exorcist in Baltimore City, MD. The other was a Police Officer in the 1970’s.
His “Christian” name was (the late) Dr. Michael W. Gross D.D. ThD. PhD. Also having 23 years in seminary, and once the presiding president of a Bible College.
I am writing this testimonial today to this man, who was always a defender of the faith, and a defender of me as well. He used to tell me if ANYONE had a doubt about my walk with the Lord, (or in understanding how he functions) send them to him for some straightening out!
Well, that never happened, but the man was certainly devoted to anyone whom he had instructed. Yet for me, (not being an academic) it took me 20 years after studying under Dr. Gross to finally receive my reformed minister’s accreditation, for the work I had performed under his tutoring by the (old style) Baptist.
This did me little good it seems, as nowadays I have discovered that the only ones willing to be admonished, are the ones who truly have a humble heart in the Lord. Most are like a bunch of Pharisees who will not take instructions by principled men of God, whom hold a proper understanding of the scriptures coupled with an understanding in how the Lord functions spiritually.
Many, many, even devoutly men of God either refuse to see, or cannot see their own shortfalls! This is why the proper assembling of the body of Christ is so needed. I see this problem as an ongoing one (especially in an age of strong delusions) as men (and women) can become “heady” and not open to reproof nor correction. When Jesus spoke there was no questioning of his authority as he was the perfection of God incarnate, yet many only wished to kill him.
The problem arises when mere men try to emulate Christ within fallen humanity. I believe that this is why humility is so very important, rather than being a “know it all” which is based in pride rather than love, and is the very sin which Satan was most guilty of in causing his fall.
I try to be most selective in whom I reveal the deeper levels of my soul with, including (the things of God) as it is important in protecting one’s heart. In contrast I have also discovered that the ones you may fellowship with may indeed turn against you, simply because of their perceptions, or even twisted truths (lies) which are provided by Satan to the unsuspecting brother or sister within any given fellowship; this does happen if not extremely careful, in not confusing their theology with spiritual realities, and deceptions.
This is why a proper balance of the scriptures must be not only understood, but indeed practiced. Any “Cult” (if you will allow me to use that word) is normally based on some knowledge of the scriptures, but the twist comes when not applying them appropriately. Dr. Gross taught me that “Hebrew style witchcraft” was based upon this concept of using the scriptures; yet purposely twisted for the purpose of securing powerful demons for power, in furthering their careers of dirty works in moving up. This is exactly opposite in how a believer in Christ is supposed to function. This is an extreme example of why proper Bible knowledge is needed when teaching scriptures, and sound doctrines of the faith. I am not a Bible teacher per say, yet I have enough Bible knowledge and experience in the Lord in recognizing when someone has gone off track.
Two things happen when one is emotionally invested in people who misread the scriptures or oneself. Either you are deeply wounded by being shunned (like in the Amish community as an example) or you are elated for a time in being accepted by the gathering.
A Bible example of this is mentioned in: 2 Timothy 4:1-4
4 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom. 2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
This is a prime example of why it is so important to understand good doctrines. If not, you run the risk of deceiving those around you who are more vulnerable to misguided teachings. It is my personal belief that the “time has come” when even the best meaning among us can exemplify our misunderstanding of the scriptures, and customized dogmas in deceiving many.
This seems to be a “sign of the times” in an age of strong delusions, and even the elect would (could) be deceived – if it were not for the Holy Spirit himself reproving and correcting us on a personal level.
This is why many churches only stick to the orthodoxy of what they call Bible believing churches, and seem to have an aversion to Pentecostal and Charismatic type teachings. Not because it is a “bad thing” but because so few people understand the proper functioning of the Spirit of God (the Holy Spirit).
Understanding the “spirit world” is complex and complicated, (if not impossible) to the natural mind, and it takes years of experience of the Lord (by the Holy Spirit) to teach a man to walk in a manner which is in accordance with the scriptures, and edifying to the sheep.
The problem is that “natural man” can teach scriptures to nearly everyone; the wheat and the tares alike. So many simply “sign up for Jesus” with the hopes of fire insurance, yet whom the Lord has never done a work within! These are false brethren, and even the same type false brethren who threatened the life of the Apostle Paul. Within the leadership, we must do the best we can to discern 1 John 4 so that we can tell who is of the Lord, and who is not. However, it is the Lord who will ultimately separate the weeds from the wheat in the world, and the world’s church. If we go trying to do the separation ourselves, we may injure and even destroy part of the wheat!
I will simply say that I have learned this lesson the hard way, by being uprooted by those who see themselves as spiritual authorities, but have not the authority, (as the Father alone does) and who attempt to try to rip and tear amongst the tangled roots, thus hurting those who are grounded in Christ. So let us be careful not to make rash judgments towards others by what we may merely perceive to be truth.
I want to thank everyone for their prayers for me! Hebrews 13:5 Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said,“I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Having learned sound Bible doctrines have always kept me from falling into disrepair, even by the strongest and most eloquent teachers, who have decided knowingly, or unknowingly to vary from the sound doctrines of the faith.
I may be deceived (in and of myself) for a short time, yet the Holy Spirit within me is never deceived. He will teach me experientially and practically greater truth: even with the pitfalls or deceptions of the enemy, specifically when dealing with other people’s Biblical understanding (which for a season) I may find comfort or even discomfort with, yet in time I am moved to an even greater understanding.
For me, this is not a four brained calculated thing at all, but rather an intuitive one, which later only reinforces my understanding of scriptural doctrines from dogmas. The reason is, it is not of my natural intellect (understanding) that I rely upon, but rather the Spirit of the Lord, “the teacher” whom Jesus promised would reveal all truth.
In other words, it is not simply a doctrinal position which I may hold but rather a reliance upon the Lord himself, just like a small child.
Recently, I have known some brethren who hold to the same passages in the scriptures I also hold to, and claiming to be following the leading’s of only the Holy Spirit; yet our (spiritual) positioning seems to be in direct conflict, even while hurling condemnation at the opposing faction!
I am a retired soldier, and my personality is such that I am used to people shooting arrows at me, but what I cannot abide is disgruntled brethren redirecting their fire upon an innocent person, who may happen to agree with me! I have been told things like “ I don’t do accusations, as that wouldn’t be Godly”: or that “I am the one” who crushes the “tender shoot” ( the young believer) so on and so forth, in customizing the scriptures to fit into their own belief system, thus justifying themselves and excluding those who take issue with them.
That type of behavior is neither spiritual nor scriptural, but is rather manipulative and extremely dangerous, to both those who engage in it, as well as to people that are taught such deceptive reasoning. Imagine those who claim such a superior walk in the Lord Jesus Christ, in attacking those who may agree with me (even if I was wrong in my doctrine) as having left the Lord, or siding with “The Enemy” (Satan)! Do not children stumble and fall? Do not children misunderstand the bigger world which is around them? The answer of course is that children are not held to account like an adult, nor disowned for what they do not understand!
These type of attacks are only valid however, provided I have been guilty of misleading or corrupting them (the tender shoots) in some manner, who are “unspotted and innocent” so to speak in the eyes of God: which I don’t believe I have done in the least. Anyone in leadership who would assert such a position against another, should make darn sure it is by the direction of the Lord, and not on behalf of themselves that they do so; especially if the one they are condemning is seen as blameless by the Lord, in holding such an opposing position! Even David would not attack Saul who was later out to kill him, as he was God’s anointed for a season – even though David was unquestionably in the right and to be the next King, David would not move in attacking Saul.
The late Dr. Gross, (who taught me in street ministry while still in my youth) would tell us “don’t believe anything I tell you, go back to the Lord and check it out yourselves”. This is because anyone with a more convincing manner or intellect or speech, can easily fool the flesh into believing what they wish them to believe! Yet the Lord’s Holy Spirit within his people, will not be deceived by “false teachers” as He is “fool-proof” even though we are not.
I have learned a new level of deception in all this, sound Bible doctrines being used to paint ones position in Christ as righteous, while condemning those who will not be taken-in by such powerful delusions of self and others. This is most tragic (I can’t think of anything worse) as being deceived at this level and deceiving others, yet it appears to me to be most common to those who think themselves above reproach! I had even shared with the elder, that the most powerful forms of witchcraft are those which use the scriptures (as in Hebrew style witchcraft) that I had learned from the late Dr. Gross, who in my opinion was the most transcendent Man of God I have ever met, or probably I will ever know… although he too was fallible within his own understanding.
Having said all these things, I still love these judgmental brothers – not because it is a commandment of Jesus, but rather as it is but a second nature in having Christ within me, that I do so. I have said I will pray for them, and I will as long as I am led to do so within my spirit.
Apologies for my errors in judgment.
Elders can see if someone is headed down the wrong path.
Yet ultimately, it is the Lord who allows and orchestrates events for his sheep to learn and grow, and not mere men.