Temple Baptist Church - 3-20-2013
A. Much is said about the spiritual deception of the last days. There is the spiritual deception of the unsaved.
1. Deceived by Satan - 2 Corinthians 4:3-4 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: (4) In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. (Satan has done a “job” on the unsaved in this world. From the individual alway up to the top officials in government, the philosophy of humanism has led man to believe that he is his own god and is accountable only to self. We go door-to-door and are amazed at the lack of concern and hardness of heart of the people. Satan has done well!)
2. Soon to be deceived by the Saviour - 2 Thessalonians 2:11-12 (11) And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: (12) That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (According to these verses, all who have rejected the Lord Jesus Christ this side of the rapture will be eternally lost! Once again, the Left Behind Series needs to be “left behind” because it teaches a second chance beyond the rapture which is unbiblical. If you are lost when the Lord comes for His church, you be lost for eternity.)
B. It saddens my heart to know that Christ died for the sin of the world and the world rejects an eternality with Him. We can only warn and witness to them and the decision will ultimately belong to them. But, there is also a spiritual deception of those who know the Lord as their Saviour. I want to look at this deception for a few minutes tonight because it concerns us as end-time believers.
1. The Possibility of Spiritual Deception. I want to use an unusual couple of verses to make an important application. 1 Timothy 2:13-14 For Adam was first formed, then Eve. (14) And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
a. The proper interpretation of these verse are obvious to even the casual observer. God made Adam and gave him commandment concerning the forbidden tree. Then, God made Eve from the rib of Adam. The Serpent beguiled Eve and she ate but Adam knowingly ate because he desired his wife: a beautiful type of Christ dying for His Bride, the church.
b. The practical application that I am going to make goes along with the type, figure, or shadow of the Old Testament teaching on Adam and Eve. Adam is a type of Christ and Eve a type of the Church. God commands us but the church (“Eve”) is always subject to spiritual deception.
c. Spiritual deception has always been since the days in the Garden of Eden but, in these last days, has escalated dramatically. The believer and the local church is being constantly bombarded on every side by unbiblical teaching and ungodly example. Many good churches, pastors, and believers have departed from the Old Paths, the King James Bible, personal holiness, and holy worship. The deception is real and dangerous.
2. The People of Deception.
a. False teachers - 2 Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
b. Wolves - Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Acts 20:29-30 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. (30) Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.
c. False brethren - Galatians 2:4 And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage:
3. The Program of Deception
a. Philosophy: the word comes from two root words which mean “fond of wise things” or the “love of knowledge.” Intellectualism has invaded the local church through schools of higher learning. I have often said that virtually every denomination has fallen through the teachings of their own seminaries! I want to give you a verse to help with this situation.
2 Corinthians 11:3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. (Textual critics have done much to destroy the faith of God’s people in the King James Bible. We need to continue to believe the Bible and mark as apostate anyone and everyone who disagrees with it!)
b. Vain deceit: empty delusion. These are things that have no biblical foundation.
1) The Charismatic and Pentecostal Movements are notorious for this such thing and they place their “experiences” and emotions above the absolute authority of the Bible. If you experience is not biblically supported, then it is vain and deceitful!
2) The Baptist churches have done the same thing by using unbiblical means to attract lost souls. They have caused the local church to lose its holiness, be filled with worldliness, in order to reach the world. The church is to contrast the world, not be conformed to it! (Romans 12:1-2)
c. Tradition of men: the transmission of ordinances. The Bible says to hold fast the traditions that we have been taught, therefore, tradition are not necessarily bad unless:
1) They transgress the commandments of God by violating His Word - Matthew 15:3 But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
2) They are taught as biblical doctrine which is the commandment of God - Matthew 15:9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
d. Rudiments of the world: rudiments means to “keep step” or “keep rank.” It has to do with the elementary or principal order of things.
1) This often arises in our day by misapplying the biblical teaching of the priesthood of the believer. Each believer is an individual priest through the application of the blood of Christ. We have access to come boldly before the throne of God’s grace to confess sin, make supplication for others, individually worship, and to fellowship with God. We need not confess our sins through a knothole to some sinful man but can go directly to God.
2) The misapplication of this doctrine comes when it is taught that we are not under biblical authority or the right “order” of things. Some colleges do not teach pastoral authority or local church authority by saying that you are an individual priest and accountable only to God. This breakdown in biblical authority is contrary to the Bible. The order of biblical authority is found in government, the home, as well as the structure of the local church!
4. The Protection of Deception. How do we know when we are being taught or led in an unbiblical manner?
a. By personally studying the Word of God – 2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
b. By personal observation and biblical comparison – 1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
Matthew 7:15-20 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. (16) Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? (17) Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. (18) A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. (19) Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. (20) Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
c. By following the biblical teaching of your pastor - Ephesians 4:11-14 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; (12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: (13) Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (14) That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
2 Timothy 3:13-14 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. (14) But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;