Daily Devotional – Known Fruit

Is Judging Always Wrong? - FaithGateway

AMP and RVR 1960 


CONTEXT:

The other day I was watching some political commentary on TV about the upcoming election. There were two participants in the discussion (plus the host) one a syndicated conservative commentator himself and the other a former chief aid to Chuck Shumer. 

Somehow the subject matter got around to abortion and the conservative made a remark something to the effect ‘VP Biden calls himself a Catholic but supports Abortion on demand’ to which the former Schumer aid responded; ‘How dare you question Mr. Biden’s Faith.’

I had two immediate observations: 1) He (the Schumer aid, sidestepped answering the question and 2) He (a non-believer I think) immediately imposed Matthew 7:1-5 upon the the other guy. 

Since I have Previously posted on Matthew 7:1-5, Is Judgment Always Forbidden?,The Most Popular Bible Verse Among Unbelievers, The Whole Counsel of God;  suffice it to say that Biblical Judgement (Discernment) is warranted  at all times and Mr. Schumer’s former aid should know better than to try and deflect answers. 

I will concentrate today instead on a much neglected (my opinion) aspect of our faith, that is How can we tell if someone is saved or not?

Most Bibles are sectioned off somewhat around Matthew 7:15-20 with a Heading of A Tree and Its Fruit. Here the theme is knowing the difference between TRUE FOLLOWERS and FALSE PROPHETS, we will know both by the fruit or works of God they bear. 


BREAKDOWN:

Ye shall – In v.15 Jesus said theses False Prophets would disguise themselves as gentle, innocent sheep. But YOU can see through their camouflage and distractions. 

know them by their fruits. – All false prophets lack Good Fruit. Oh they got fruit, it is just rotten to the core. It goes against the very Word of God. 

Do men gather – When you are hungry Physically or Spiritually, mankind will gather almost anything to eat. 

grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? – But even the most suborn and foolish should know enough that while Grapes and Figs are Good to eat, the little berries found on thorn and thistle bushes are not. Yet false prophets will lead men to these time and again. 


APPLICATION:

Thistles and Thorns can never never produce fruit, it is not in their nature. The same is true for those who claim to be children of God but are just great pretenders or as Jesus said Wolves in Cheeps Clothing. 

Is our “Judging” others Faith Biblical and Important? In a word YES! James dedicates most of Chapter 2:14-26 to the subject. Someone can claim to be whatever they want, in my example above Joe Biden claims to be a practicing Catholic but is pro-abortion, but if their lives (Fruits) do not bare witness to that claim they are Liars and False Prophets.  

The Apostle John in his 1st Epistle 2:3-6 makes the same point only this time with an inward focus. Are we really children of God that we claim? Are we working for the Kingdom or our own Glory? 

As always we need to take in the Whole Counsel of God and no go off half Cocked and start accusing and aggressively pointing fingers at everyone claiming they are False Prophets. Matthew 7 is part of the Sermon on the Mount and earlier in that Sermon Jesus said  “Blessed [inwardly peaceful, spiritually secure, worthy of respect] are the [b]gentle [the kind-hearted, the sweet-spirited, the self-controlled], for they will inherit the earth. 

The Bible clearly teaches we need to be bold and point out the false prophets but doing so with a gentle spirit of humility that shows Christ in us. We need only the Word of God to be our weapon of choice and we need only use it in a manner that mortally wounds the sin while bringing peace to man. 

What type of Fruit are you known by?

 

Deep Moral Chasm in America

For a long time I and many others have been saying the issue in America is not systemic racism, or any other “social” issue, the problem is a MORAL one. We have forgotten the principles this nation was founded upon and followed fairly closely for it’s first 175 years of existence. Since the 1960’s (maybe sooner) we have been on a great MORAL decline and the results are a nation divided like we have not seen since the great War Between the States. Pastor Sam in the article below does and excellent job of laying out the problem and solution. – Mike

Nationwide Unrest Over Tragedy in Minneapolis Reveals Deep Moral Chasm in America

With a police station burned in Minneapolis, calls for the National Guard and a nation in turmoil after the death of George Floyd, American Pastors Network  President Sam Rohrer says the unrest has revealed America’s ongoing moral problem.

“In the absence of moral restraint, sin begets sin,” Rohrer said. “The very word ‘sin’ is not popular in our current culture. But until we acknowledge the reality of evil, sin and lawlessness, we can never obtain what most people want—love, peace and joy. It was sin and evil for the police officer to take the life of George Floyd. It is sin to view any life as less sacred than another. It is sin to destroy other’s property, to be in rebellion to authority and to break any number of laws.

It is sin to justify angry rebellion as legal ‘protesting’ or ‘peaceable assembly.’ It is sin for public officials to justify rebellious rioters as ‘understandable’ actions arising from the sins of previous generations. It is sin to excuse destruction of people’s livelihoods by burning their neighbors’ businesses to the ground. It is sin for public officials to incite lawbreakers and encourage further division among Americans by their callous and incendiary comments. It is sin for the Chinese Communist Party to issue propaganda in worldwide social media by characterizing Americans as hypocrites for condemning the rioters in Minneapolis as wrong while encouraging the protestors in Hong Kong who wish not to live under the iron fist of Communist leaders. It is sin for all people not to condemn these evil actions we see as sin!

“This is the time for all Americans to ask: Do we want freedom to remain in America? Do we wish that civility and respect for others returns to our nation? Do we long to be secure in our homes, property and persons? Do we hope for a return of justice where there is an objective standard for truth, justice and equality? Do we wish for leaders who renounce the sins of lying, deception, bribery, corruption and selfish pursuits? I do.”

For those also answering “yes” to these questions, Rohrer said there is only one solution—and in today’s culture, it’s about as unpopular as “sin.”…

CONTINUED AT: SOURCE

Examining the “10 needs we must understand and live after choosing to serve the Lord” Part 5

Joshua 24:15 - ESV - Bible verse of the day - DailyVerses.net

One of my posts on 28 April, was entitled COVID-19 Is a Slow-Motion 9/11 in it Pastor Sam Rohrer of the American Pastors Network set forth 10 definitive needs every “Christian” must understand and live by after choosing to serve the Lord. I thought I would look at each one individually over the next two weeks.

{Note because of my deployments and the urge to write a typical devotional this is taking an extending time to complete 🙂 }

Be bold to identify and call out the false prophets in the wolves among us. 

(Christ warned of the false prophets and wolves—Matthew 7:15, Matthew 10:16, Matthew 24:24; Jesus warned of mass deception in the last days—Matthew 24:4-5)
Matthew 7:15,Matthew 10:16,John 10:12,Acts 20:29 (AMP and RVR 1960) 

CONTEXT: 

Definitions: 

Teacher:

Prophet:

False Prophet:

For this devotional I will interchange Prophet and Teacher purposefully as I do not believe there is anyone endowed with the specific gift of “prophecy” (Rev 22:18-19) today.  

A false prophets/teachers are anyone who claim to be speaking for God, but whose message is contrary to God. False prophets will not convict people of sin, for they themselves do not feel convicted. While true prophets/teachers speak according to God’s law and testimony, false prophets speak soft, easy things to make them more popular. These deceivers of God’s Word tell people what they want to hear. (modified from Forerunner Commentary)

Matthew 7:15, False prophets and teachers will come as calm seemingly harmless persons. Likable, knowledgeable and saying the “right” things without causing a stir. 

Matthew 10:16, But Jesus said the world is full of Wolves who are ready to eat alive naive immature believers who will listen to their smooth talking fluff. (See Sermon here

John 10:12, Many churches have pulpits filled with those who only see it as a job and not as a calling from God. The difference; one does enough to get by and get a check, the other does all and more to Glorify God, protect and edify the flock. 

Acts 20:29, Was this prophecy, maybe more reality, a simple declaration that false teachers will find a way to mingle among the flock. Try as we may to protect our congregations from them; they arrive and cause their damage. 


APPLICATION:

Why is it so important to be Be bold to identify and call out the false prophets in the wolves among us? I offer I John 2:18-19 (AMP) as a chilling reminder:

Children, it is the last hour [the end of this age]; and just as you heard that the antichrist is coming [the one who will oppose Christ and attempt to replace Him], even now many antichrists (false teachers) have appeared, which confirms our belief that it is the last hour. 19 They went out from us [seeming at first to be Christians], but they were not really of us [because they were not truly born again and spiritually transformed]; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out [teaching false doctrine], so that it would be clearly shown that none of them are of us

Where are the greatest of Antichrist (false teachers) those who will not only cause nominal believers to fall away but non-believers to further mock and reject Christ; from among the church!

That is why we MUST as John says here in 1 John 4:1-6 test EVERY spirit (teacher/prophet/pastor/evangelist, etc. etc.). For their twist and false doctrines will case havoc in the church. 

Here is my list of ways to ID a false teacher. It is not all inclusive but is helps guide me.

Is their teaching doctrinal sound? Does what they preach line up with the Words of Christ not man’s interpretation but solid biblical hermeneutics and exegesis.

Do they use the whole counsel of God? It is real easy to take one verse, or part of one and build a doctrine from it. Many use Ps 37:4 ‘the Lord will give you the desires of your heart’; to say we can all prosper, except that is not what it says. The whole verse is (KJV) Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. There is a stipulation there they never mention, just as they never mention God’s wrath, condemnation and the like. 

They are Prideful.  It may be most easily identified by a outward display of false humility. They appear to be humble in words but their outward appearance and acts give away their true intent. It is easy to see elders/pastors, etc. with overly expensive tailored suits, mansions for homes and they like. Are these trappings of excess really what God calls his servant to achieve? These folks are reading a different book. But they easily distract folks from this by seducing them with flattery. 

They are set in their ways and either avoid controversial issues or start them.  This statement may seem confusing, but maybe an example will help. Take for example Joel Osteen The Houston based mega-church preacher of the so called Name-it-Claim-it Prosperity Gospel, who refuses to preach or teach on Abortion, Same Sex-Union, and a host of other controversial Biblical truths. 

Their motive is always profit. Profit of in some form or another. Whether it is Jesse DePlantus asking for a 56 MILLION Dollar jet or Kenneth Copland trying to explain why he need 3 private jets personal gain is almost always easy to spot if you just look. Even if you do not do due diligence, those that claim you too can be RICH, forget to remind you to be a Berean (Acts 17:11) 

At the Core they reject Christ (Apostasy) At the heart of every TRUE CHRISTIAN should be the reformation slogan Sola Chritus or Christ Alone. Their false preaching and teaching is one for itchy ears, that preys upon the emotions and feelings of mankind. All along we are called to expound the Genuine Gospel one in which Christ is All!!!!

Here is some additional material on the subject for your edification: 

How do you define a false teacher?

How can I recognize a false teacher / false prophet?

7 Traits of False Teachers

False Teachers and Deadly Doctrines


 

The List
  1. Develop a healthy fear of God. (Have no other god before Me—Exodus 20:1-6; Obey God, serve Him and fear Him—Deuteronomy 13:4; Rehearse history and teach of God’s power so your children learn to fear God—Deuteronomy 31:13; It is whole duty of mankind—Ecclesiastes 12:13-14)
  2. Re-embrace the biblical authority of Scripture. (All Scripture is profitable for life and living—2 Timothy 3:16: Living it establishes a person’s path—Psalm 119:11)
  3. Know that the ‘Church’ is disobedient, lethargic and asleep. (Christ’s warnings to the seven churches and to Laodicea—Revelation 2-3; Revelation 3:14-22)
  4. Be aware that 70% of the pulpits in America are occupied by ‘hirelings.’ (Hirelings refuse to warn of spiritual danger and the wolvesJohn 10:12-13)
  5. Be bold to identify and call out the false prophets in the wolves among us. (Christ warned of the false prophets and wolves—Matthew 7:15, Matthew 10:16, Matthew 24:24; Jesus warned of mass deception in the last days—Matthew 24:4-5)
  6. Understand that national blessing or national judgment hinges on the actions of the remnant. (“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”—2 Chronicles 7:14)
  7. Accept the reality that persecution is coming and is normal for the believer and those still standing for truth. (All who live according to God commands will suffer persecution—2 Timothy 3:12; the enemies of truth will persecute you—Luke 21:12; John 15:20)
  8. Discover that the preparation for prayer and meeting God’s requirements for prayer is far more important than the act of praying. (God demands a broken spirit and obedience before sacrifice—Psalm 51:16-17; God demands we pray His way: No unconfessed sin—Psalm 66:18)
  9. Realize that the continuance of freedom is a result of God’s blessing, which hinges on obedience and conformity to God’s commands. (Don’t forget that all blessings came from God and if you forget and become ungrateful, God will replace blessings with bondage—Deuteronomy 8:1-20, 1:19-20; 30:1-20)
  10. Understand that the choice for president or other elected leaders, while critically important, is secondary to repentance toward God and the choice for God. (Obey, and I’ll make even your enemies to be at peace with you—Proverbs 16:7)

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Planned Parenthood Opening Huge Secret Abortion Center Outside St. Louis, Built Under Fake Name

 STATE   MICAIAH BILGER   OCT 2, 2019   |   1:58PM    ST. LOUIS, MO

CBS News reports the new mega-clinic is located in Fairview Heights, Illinois, just 13 miles away from St. Louis, Missouri. The abortion chain also hopes to sell abortions to women in Kentucky and Arkansas at the new facility.

Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion business in the U.S. Last year, it reported a record $1.66 billion in revenue and more than 330,000 abortions, even as patient numbers fell….

Continued at Source: Planned Parenthood Opens Huge Secret Abortion Center Outside St. Louis, Built Under Fake Name

Violence— A Problem of the Heart

Image result for Violence--- A Problem of the Heart

Violence…
is a problem of the heart…
and it’s from this point…
that analysis needs to start.
For the society we’re in…
has been desensitized today…
by things seen on television,
video games and words some say.
And there’s a bitterness…
and anger that seems to linger…
that causes many to become violent…
when something becomes a trigger.
And like a drunk driver’s wrong…
and the vehicle’s not to blame…
the gun’s not at fault…
when a crazed shooter goes insane.
And like a pharmacy is not at fault…
with a drug addict buys or deals…
the problem is in the heart…
of one who kills, destroys, and steals.
For there is much violence…
seen in many homes today…
and children are desensitized…
when they witness any violence this way.
So what can we do…
as a society to make a change…
we need to have God in our hearts…
so our lives will not be the same.
We need to invite God back…
in our schools and in our homes…
then transformation can occur…
when the Love of Christ is known.
For only God can being healing…
to the hardness of any heart…
so He is the Key to our future…
where all violence will depart.

© Secret Angel and The Abuse Expose’ with Secret Angel, 2018. Original Posting

“But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15

 

Living With Blindfolds

Living with blindfolds…
is what most people do…
believing lies and deception…
that have twisted what’s true….

Continued at Source: Living With Blindfolds

© Secret Angel and The Abuse Expose’ with Secret Angel, 2017.

This is not a new phenomenon of course but in the age of computers and such,  there is really no excuse for a “believer”  not living daily as a Berean (Acts 17:11). Yet far to many follow the Jews of old, Jeremiah 6:10 ESV “To whom shall I speak and give warning, that they may hear? Behold, their ears are uncircumcised, they cannot listen; behold, the word of the Lord is to them an object of scorn; they take no pleasure in it.” or those of the modern church Paul warned of 2 Timothy 2:3-4  “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.”  I cannot count the number of times I have heard “my Pastor says or said” and when I ask, great but what does the Word of God say?  It is a rarity when I do not get that deer in the headlights look of confusion. – Mike