Sunday, November 23, 2014

The Enemy From Within

Temple Baptist Church - 11-23-2014
Titus 1:9-16
A.  I just finished several weeks explaining why Titus was to ordain elders in every church.
1.  To preach the unsearchable riches of God’s Word.
2.  To maintain order and priority  within the local church.
3.  To set a godly example that should be followed and pointed others to Christ.
4.  To take the oversight of the local church and guard against apostates and heresy.
B.  In verses 6-16, the bible sets forth their satanic purpose and work. 
1.  The local church stays under constant attack from within.  I have often said and will continue to say that the greatest enemy of the local church sits upon its pews.  Satan cannot take our salvation but he can destroy our godly testimony and, therefore, render us useless.
2.  The attack upon the local church is satanic.  Dr. Harold Sightler once said that it was a “planned attack” and a “manned attack.”  Satan uses people and they have to be accepted to a great degree by churches in order to be effective.
C.  Let us look at these verses for a few minutes tonight.
1.  Their Destruction – vs. 9-10  When not recognized, marked, and avoided, they can have a devastating effect upon the church.
a.  Gainsayers – Jude 11  Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.  (To speak against, dispute, or to contradict.) 
b.  Unruly – 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.  (Disobedience not put under or insubordination.) 
c.  Vain Talkers – 1 Timothy 1:5-6  Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:  (6)  From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling;  (A profitless discourse – to major on a minor that makes little difference)
d.  Subvert – 3 John 9-11  I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not.  (10)  Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church.  (11)  Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God.  (To undermine the power or authority; to mislead through seduction)
e.  Greedy – 2 Peter 2:3  And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.  (Filthy gain.  Opposite of the Bishop’s qualification.)
2.  Their Deception – vs. 11  This deception is intentional.
a.  Liars - John 8:44  Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
b.  Evil beasts – 2 Peter 2:12  But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption;  (Depraved, injurious, dangerous.  Beasts have no conscience or moral code and will hunt, kill, and eat with no misgivings.)
c.  Slow bellies – Matthew 23:15  Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.  (Laziness, intemperance, gluttony, eating the bread of others without labor.  Most false prophets and heretics got their theology from the heresy of others without personally “rightly dividing the word of truth.”)
3.  Their Denial – vs. 16  These false brethren or prophets claim to know the Lord but their lives deny Him.
a.  Profess that they know God – Matthew 7:21-23  Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.  (22)  Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?  (23)  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.  (Profession without possession.)
b.  Works deny God Jude 4  For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.  (Practical atheists; they owned there was a God, and boasted of their knowledge of him; but their lives and conversations showed that they had no true knowledge of him, and that the fear of him was not before their eyes.)
c.  Abominable – Revelation 21:8  But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.  (Detestable, idolatrous)
d.  Disobedient – Ephesians 2:1-2  And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;  (2)  Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:  (Obedience is a vital part of conversion.)
e.  Reprobate – Romans 1:28  And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;  (Eternally lost with no hope of salvation.)
4.  Their Detection – vs. 13 “This witness is true”  There are two ways that they become obvious to the believer:
a.  By their lifestyle – 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.
b.   The Bible – 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.
5.  Their Denunciation – vs. 11, 13  They are not to be left unchecked or uncensored!
a.  Mouths must be stopped – Romans 3:19  Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
b.  Rebuke them sharply – 1 Timothy 5:20  Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.

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