Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Standing Fast In These Last Days

Temple Baptist Church - 6-12-2013
Colossians 2:18-3:1-2
A. We have seen that we have liberty in Christ which is not to be encroached upon!
1. Paul warning of the possibility of Phariseeism which permeated many fundamental churches as they saw the liberalism creeping in and tried to correct it. You correct liberalism and ungodliness with biblical preaching and must be careful not to try to do the work of the Holy Spirit.
2. The key to separatism or practical sanctification is the preaching of truth and the work of the Holy Spirit. When believers fall in love with the Saviour, they have no problem separating from this present, evil world. Knowledge without compassion can be a dangerous thing!
B. The enemy of Phariseeism can arise from any one of us and we must have the spiritual maturity to stand fast:
Galatians 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.
C. Tonight, I want to look at several verses that show us another enemy from without that becomes within when it is allowed to do so. In light of these verses, we need to remember that we are in the end-time of falling away:
2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, (2) That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. (3) Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; (In the past two thousand years, the church has gone from earnestly contending for the faith once delivered and the Old Paths of righteousness and holiness to a general forsaking of such churches for the liberal, stand-for-nothing, preach-nothing, and “fall-for-everything” churches of our day.)
2 Timothy 3:1-5 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. (2) For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, (3) Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, (4) Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; (5) Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. (In the last two thousand years, the church has gone from being filled with godly, God loving, busy serving, unified people to what we just read: a vivid description of the average local church’s members of our day.)
2 Timothy 4:1-4 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 longsuffering 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. (In the last two thousand years, the church has gone from pulpits from which the Word of God was uncompromisingly preached to the “light” prophets who prophesy falsely and a people who “love to have it so.”)
Revelation 3:14-16 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; (15) I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. (16) So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. (In the last two thousand years, the church has gone from the Church of Ephesus—that left its first love—to the Church of Laodicea—the “Lukewarm Church” – Laodicea means “The Rights of the People” which goes hand-in-hand with the misuse of personal liberty. We are not our own; we are His. We have been bought with a terrible price and are to glorify God in our bodies. We are the temple of the Holy Ghost.)
1. Today, there is a general Fascination among the religious crowd – “worshipping of angels, intruding (to go where you do not belong or have permissions to go) into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind” - Romans 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
a. There is Rejection of the truth - 2 Timothy 4:3-4 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.
b. There is Defection from the truth – 2 Peter 2:20-22 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. (21) For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. (22) But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.
c. There is Fascination with error - 2 Peter 2:1-2 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. (2) And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
1) People are always looking for something special or extraordinary.
2) People who always seeking “some new thing” as the Greeks at Mars Hill.
3) People who are always seeking a “non demanding” religion of carnal comfort.
2. There is the possibility of Infiltration by false prophets – “Let no man”
a. Beware of Legalism– “the ‘do’s and don’ts” crowd: encroachment upon the personal liberties of believers. This is not separatism; it is Phariseeism.
b. Beware of Mysticism or Spiritism – the “angel in my pocket” crowd. Catholicism has slowly crept into most major denominations to some degree.
c. Beware of Gnosticism – the “special knowledge” crowd. Thinking they have a superior knowledge of spiritual things based upon education, pseudo-spirituality, etc.
d. Beware of Asceticism – the “Lenten” crowd. Thinking they are right with the Lord because they “give up something.”
3. There is the necessity of Observation – “beguile you” - Acts 20:29-31 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. (31) Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.
a. Observing the manners and methods of these “teachers.” 1 Corinthians 15:33 Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.
b. Observing the doctrines that they teach. Romans 16:17-18 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. (18) For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.
4. There is the attribute of Qualification – “If ye then be risen with Christ Romans 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
a. The qualification of salvation. - 1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
b. The qualification of discipleship - John 12:26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.
5. There is the affection that brings Obligation – “seek those things which are aboveSet your affection on things above John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
A “Treasure Problem” - Matthew 6:19-21 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: (20) But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: (21) For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Brings about a “Trust Problem” - Matthew 6:31-33 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (32) (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. (33) But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
a. Love for Christ brings about sacrifice - Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
b. Love for Christ brings about service - John 21:15 So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.

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