Establishing house churches



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EZEKIEL 28
Ezekiel 28 is also often erroneously thought of as referring to Satan. It was the First Adam who was created perfect till iniquity was found in him, not Satan. Verse 12,15. Satan was never perfect. He was a murderer from the beginning, and the father of lies. Jn. 8:44. I Jn. 3:8 says, “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning.” Satan was created by God as Satan. What? God create evil? In Is. 45:7, God says, “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord to all these things.” In Is. 54:16, the Lord says, “Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy.” God is in complete control. Satan could never challenge God. He has to petition God to get to us. Satan doesn’t want us to know this. He wants us to fear him. Satan was never a morning star or archangel. It was Adam who was once a bright, morning star, and God is going to restore to us all that Adam lost:

Verse 16. Eze. 28:2 says, “Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God....” Again, Satan was never a man; Adam was. Verse 8 says, “They shall bring thee down to the pit, and thou shalt die the deaths of them that are slain in the midst of the seas.” Satan is a spirit that cannot die like a man. “Wilt thou yet say before him that slayeth thee, I am God? but thou shalt be a man; and no God,....” Verse 9. Satan will never be a man. The word “cherub” in verse 16 means “imaginary being.” It does not mean archangel.

God promises to give the overcomers back the morning star that Adam lost when he sinned:

And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father. And I will give him the morning star. Rev. 2:26-28. (Underlining added)
We are children of light that shine in the darkness. When we become filled with the Holy Spirit and overcome the world, the flesh and the devil, we will become bright, morning stars once more. Satan will have no power over us. “As the morning spread upon the mountains, a great people....” Joel 2:2. (Underlining added) “(T)he Lord shall utter His voice before His army.” Joel 2:11. “... (T)he land is as the garden of Eden before them....” Joel 2:3. God’s army, the morning stars, are headed back to the garden of Eden to reclaim the land, and God is going to restore everything that Adam once had. Satan doesn’t want us to know that. He wants us to fear him. Instead, it is Satan who fears the morning stars.
ATTACHMENT C
THE TRUE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS
Historians claim that the early church did not celebrate either the birth of Jesus or His resurrection. Josephus, the famous Jewish historian, claims that they may have celebrated Passover. However, Josephus produced his works after 275 A.D. and had no viable evidence of such.

During times of persecution, it would be easy to determine which household was Christian by the decorated trees and other paraphernalia of Christmas. It was probable that early Christians did not celebrate any Sabbaths or holydays. Col. 2:16-17. “Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.” According to 1 Co. 10:11 and Hebrews 8:5, these events served as examples and shadows of heavenly things. Instead of a Sabbath day, Jesus became our rest and our Sabbath. Heb. 4:4-11. We rest in Him, not in a day. We cease from our own works and allow Him to work in and through us. Thus, Saturday belonged to the old covenant and was supplanted by better things to come.

The early Christians were filled with the Holy Spirit and knew how to allow the Spirit to flow through them. They were acutely aware that, “… the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship Him.” Jn. 4:23. They sought spiritual things, not the physical.

In striving for spirit and truth, we need to ferret out all that is not of God and to cast out those things that have diluted the truth once given to the church by the early apostles.


WHEN WAS JESUS BORN?
When was Jesus born? This question seems unimportant at first glance, but represents leaven in the eyes of God. Remember, Jesus warned the disciples about the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees. Mt. 16:6. “Then understood they how that He bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.” Mt. 16:11-12. Christmas and Easter, and some other well-established doctrines of the church are leaven. They were not taught by the apostles of any age and came out of pagan worship. Truth cannot be altered without spiritual consequences.

Jesus was not born on December 25. He was probably born at the end of September, early October, during the Feast of Tabernacles. Under the old covenant, God required three major feasts each year. The first was Passover, that celebrated the time when the angel of death had to “pass over” the Israelite households that displayed the blood of a perfect male lamb on the side posts and lintel of the front door. This was fulfilled under the new covenant by Jesus on the Cross when He became our Passover Lamb.

The second feast was Pentecost, which literally means “fifty days” after Passover. This was fulfilled by the gift of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2:1-4.

The third feast was Tabernacles, which was actually the combining of three different celebrations. The first ten days was the blowing of trumpets (Feast of Trumpets) to call the people; then the Day of Atonement when the chief priest would enter the Holiest Place and sprinkle the blood of the sin sacrifice on the mercy seat. God would then come down and His presence would fill the place. It was the only time during the year when God came down to be with His people. The third phase was living in booths or tents for seven days to commemorate the time when Moses led the people out of Egypt and they lived in tents. This feast was fulfilled by the birth of Jesus who was named Immanuel - “God with us.”

Like many things in the Old Testament, these three feasts were types and shadows of better things to come.

December 25 is too cold in Bethlehem for sheep to be in the fields. During winter, they would be in barns or close to home. The Roman government, known for its logic and good reasoning, would not require people to travel in the dead of winter to be taxed and counted. More likely, they would choose a time when harvest (ingathering) was over and the weather was nice. The Feast of Tabernacles was held in late September, early October right after harvest. It was known as the “in-gathering.”

December 25 is the birthday of Tammuz, the sun god of Babylon (and the reincarnation of Nimrod), whose signs are green trees cut out of the forest, made to stand upright in homes and decked with silver and gold. Jer. 10. The Babylonian legend is as follows:
Ninus was the king of the region defined by the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. His wife was Semiramis and his son was Nimrod. Gen. 10:8-10. Ninus died in battle. The custom was that the kingdom must be ruled over by a male. But if the dead king had a young son, the queen could rule until the son was of age. Semiramis was beautiful and smart. She became addicted to ruling. When Nimrod (Gen. 10:8-10) was of age, she married her own son to remain on the throne. She was a mighty warrior but she and Nimrod were evil. To control the people, they engaged in magic and witchcraft. They became so evil that Shem, one of Noah’s sons, had to kill him. Some time later, Semiramis declared that she had immaculately conceived and when Tammuz was born, she declared that he was the reincarnation of Nimrod. When he was a child, Tammuz died. Semiramis was so heart-broken that she grieved and wept for weeks. She decided to go into the underworld and challenge the gods for the return of Tammuz. She fought so valiantly through the twelve gates of the underworld that the gods announced that if the women would weep for Tammuz at the end of each year, he would be reborn at the winter soltice which falls on the 23rd or 24th of each December. In the spring, he would be a young man, in the summer he would be mature, in the autumn he would be an old man and die. Eze. 8:14. Tammuz became the sun god and the god of agriculture. Over time, the people celebrated his rebirth by cutting down a green tree, standing it upright in their homes on the eve of his birthday, and decking it with silver and gold and other decorations. On the night of the eve of his birthday, they would burn a yule (“child” in Chaldee) log, symbolizing his death. Next morning, they would wake up to a green tree decorated with silver and gold and there would be many gifts under it. They would then celebrate for twelve days. Semiramis and Tammuz were depicted in statues and paintings of a mother carrying an infant, a halo around his head indicating that he was the sun god of Babylon, and a halo around the mother’s head to indicate that she was the goddess of the moon. In all Levantine cultures, the leading deity is a mother who married her son.

The Roman Catholic Church adopted the birthday of Tammuz by calling it Jesus’ birthday. They also celebrated the summer soltice which was the feast of Ishtar, the Babylonian goddess of fertility and witchcraft in early April. Her signs are colored eggs, bunnies, chicks and hot-cross buns. She is called the Queen of Heaven (Jer. 44:17-19) and Madonna (Is. 47:5) (Latin for “Lady”). Read Two Babylons by Bishop Alexander Islop. There is nothing in the Bible about celebrating the birthday or resurrection of Jesus. We worship in the spirit today. The early church never observed His birthday and only Josephus, the historian, mentioned that His resurrection may have been celebrated. But Josephus wrote his books around 275 A.D. We are worshipping Babylonian gods and goddesses.



In Ezekiel 8, God exposes what is going on in His temple. The people are worshipping demons, including Tammuz. In Ezekiel 9, God calls six angels with destroying weapons. One has an inkhorn. He instructs the one with the inkhorn to mark the foreheads of all the men that sign and cry because of the abominations going on in God’s city (people) and temple. Then He instructs the others to go into the city and kill everyone without God’s mark on their forehead. Eze. 9:1-11. Interestingly, both Revelation 7:3 and Revelation 9:4 speak of God’s mark on the foreheads of His true servants in the end times. Those without the mark will suffer greatly. Is God talking about us today?
THE TRUE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS
One evening years ago, I was listening to our church’s music ministry practice Christian songs about Jesus’ birth and the thought ran lightly through my mind, “I wonder what the true meaning of Christmas really is?” Suddenly, the Holy Spirit fell on me and in ten seconds, He gave me the following revelation (paraphrasing):
All the things that happened when Jesus was born were examples and types and shadows to teach us spiritual and heavenly things. I Co. 10:11. Heb. 8:5. When Joseph and Mary went to the inn that night, it was too full and so they were turned away. Lk. 2:7. So it is today. People are too busy and full of the things of the world. They have no room for Jesus, so they turn Him away. Jesus was born of a virgin in a dark and lowly (humble) manger. Lk. 2:7. Before we were saved, we were proud, sinful and defiled. We lived in darkness. The Bible says that when Jesus was born, the people sat in darkness. Suddenly, there was a great light! Mt. 4:16, Lk. 1:79. In order to be saved, we must humble ourselves and become lowly (like that manger) and repent of our sins. When God forgives us, we are washed clean by the blood of Jesus and become pure and chaste as a virgin. At that moment, the Spirit of Jesus is born in our virgin heart that was once black with sin, but has suddenly become white as snow and humble as that manger. Jesus is always born of a virgin (heart). We are born-again of the Spirit of God, which is the Spirit of Jesus Christ. Phil 1:19. The Bible says that when one sinner repents, all of heaven rejoices (Lk. 15:7,10) like on the night that Jesus was born. “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will towards men.” Heaven rejoices each time Jesus is born again in the virgin heart of an ex-sinner.

On that blessed night almost 2,000 years ago, the shepherds and sheep were honored because Jesus came as the Good Shepherd who would die for His sheep. We are the sheep of His pasture. Jesus was born in Bethlehem, the city of David, because God promised to “raise unto David a righteous Branch, ... and He shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.” Jer. 23:5,6. Jesus is “the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.” Rev. 22:16. When we are saved, we too are born into the line of David, having become the children of God and brethren of Jesus, by adoption. Eph. 1:5; Heb. 2:11. We too are children of light.

The star of Bethlehem drew the wise men to Jesus. The star represents the Holy Spirit of God. He always draws all men to Jesus. We don’t know how many wise men there were, but there were three gifts, so we think there were three. They came from a far country. Mt. 2:1. When you and I were saved, the Father, Son and Holy Ghost came from as far away as heaven to bring us the same three gifts: Frankincense, myrrh and gold.

Frankincense is a sweet perfume that was sprinkled on the meal sacrifice in the Old Testament. Lev. 2:1,15. Its represents the sacrifice on the cross that Jesus, the bread of life who came down from heaven, made for you and me. As with the frankincense presented by the wise men, salvation is a free gift. Jesus already paid the price.

Myrrh is a perfume that is sweet to the smell, but bitter to the taste. It is called gall. It is also a narcotic that was offered to Jesus when He hung on the cross. Mt. 27:34. It numbs your physical senses. But, Jesus refused it. He didn’t have to, but He wanted to take all of our pain and suffering so that we would never have to suffer pain again. Myrrh represents the bitter path all true Christians must undertake in order to follow Jesus. Our walk with Jesus always starts off sweet like the Frankincense and myrrh. When we are first saved, we are so excited and happy, we want to tell the whole world. But as time goes on and as we face the trials and problems that perfect and change us into the image of Jesus Christ, the walk becomes bitter-sweet. Many accept the frankincense but few desire the myrrh. Many follow Jesus; few carry their cross. The true walk with Jesus will always lead you up the hill to Calvary to death of the old man. When Jesus rose from the dead, we rose with Him into a new race of people and a new life. His life becomes your life and your life becomes His life. Before you can have His resurrection life, you must first die to self.

Gold represents the heavenly reward at the end of your faithful walk with Jesus on earth. The streets and buildings in heaven are made of gold (Rev. 21:18,21) and there is a crown of glory laid up for you. I Pet. 5:4.

The same three things, frankincense, myrrh and gold, are presented to each born-again Christian when he or she is saved. The frankincense is easy to accept, but the myrrh and gold will cost you your life.
And so, the true meaning of Christmas is not found in evergreen trees decked with silver and gold, mistletoe, eggnog, ham, gifts and parties. Those things are of the flesh and represent Tammuz, the sun god of Babylon. Jer. 10:1--5; Eze. 8:14. The true Christmas happens in the spirit every time one sinner repents of his sins and accepts Jesus as his Lord and Savior. The star of Bethlehem has drawn another sinner to Jesus Christ. Once again, the angels rejoice in heaven. The Bible says that the angels in heaven rejoice whenever one sinner repents. He who once sat in darkness has become humble and washed clean as a virgin by the blood of Jesus. Once more, the Spirit of Jesus is born in a virgin heart. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit come from heaven bearing three gifts: frankincense, myrrh and gold. The walk begins.

That is the true meaning of Christmas!

God is seeking a pure church today, without spot, wrinkle or blemish or any such thing, that He can present to Christ as His Bride. The church has lost its power and testimony because it has become false. It now worships Babylonian gods and goddesses and thinks that it pleases God. Instead, it has become an abomination.
A PROPHECY REGARDING CHRISTMAS
In Ezekiel Chapter 8, God takes the prophet into His temple to show Ezekiel the abominations being committed therein. He find the congregation unknowingly worshiping demons out of their own imagination. Eze. 8:10-12. At the gate towards the north, “there sat women weeping for Tammuz.” Verse. 14. In the inner court the priests were worshiping “the sun toward the east.” Verse 16.

In Chapter 9, God calls six angels, one with an inkhorn. He instructs the one with the inkhorn to go among God’s people and mark the foreheads of all those who sigh and cry because of the abominations going on in God’s temple. Then He commands the others to follow and kill everyone without the mark of God on their foreheads and to begin at His sanctuary. Eze. 9:6. One cannot sigh and cry unless he knows about the abominations going on in God’s temple or church. Now you know.

In Revelation 7:1-3, an angel of the Lord commands the four angels about to bring destruction to the earth to “Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.” Verse 3. In Revelation 9:4, torment was coming to earth. Again, “And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads.” Verse 4. Could it be that during tribulation, only those who sigh and cry for the abominations in God’s church will escape?
ATTACHMENT D
DELIVERANCE AND INNER HEALING
In our war with the kingdom of darkness, there are three distinct yet related areas: (1) spiritual warfare; (2) deliverance; and (3) inner healing. What most churches call spiritual warfare is usually just prayer, corporate or individual, that comes against demonic powers in the mid-heavens or against Satan and his demons, in general. Deliverance refers to casting out of devils from people and cleansing of haunted places or objects. We have found that Christians can have demons and have literally cast out demons from thousands of Christians, both evangelical and born-again, including many pastors. Inner healing refers to the healing of memories and cleansing of the mind. Although inner healing deals with the mind, we have found that very often demons are involved and when memories are cleansed, they come fleeing out of a person.

Spiritual warfare is very necessary for revival/harvest. As has been discovered in Argentina by Carlos Anacondia, in Brazil by Eduardo Silvoso, and by other Christians, binding up of ruler spirits in the mid-heavens can lead to revival. In South Korea, David Yonggi Cho claims that his huge church is the result of binding up the strongmen over South Korea.

Spiritual warfare and deliverance is the topic of a manual produced by this church and should be taught to all Christians. Inner healing is also explained in another manual produced by this church and is very useful. These manuals will be made available to all interested parties and should become standard reading for house churches.
ATTACHMENT E
DOCTRINES OF DEVILS

AND

THE GREAT APOSTASY
A SIGN OF THE TIMES
The apostle Paul warns us in 2 Thessalonians 2:3, “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day (Jesus’ return) shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.” (Parentheses added) So, at the end of the age there will be a falling away from the faith or truth. The Amplified Bible says there will be an “apostasy.” Apostasy means - “an abandoning of what one has believed in, as a faith, cause, principle, etc.” (Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary) It speaks of a turning away from the doctrines espoused by the early apostles and the Bible.

The Body of Christ is already in apostasy. It allows many false doctrines, beliefs, practices and movements to permeate the Church and destroy the purity of our faith. The deception is so subtle and cunning that “if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.” Mt. 24:24. Both Jesus and the apostles constantly and vociferously warned us of the spirit of Antichrist and false doctrines. “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times, some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.” I Ti. 4:1.


NO ONE EXEMPT
Paul feared that if someone came preaching a different gospel, the saints would accept him. “But I fear . . . if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” 2 Co. 11:3,4. Guard against doctrines and beliefs not taught by the early Church or supported by Scripture. Already, some cults and so-called Christians teach a different Jesus. Some teach that Jesus is an angry God and approachable only through His mother, who is higher in heaven than her Son; others claim that Jesus was just a man who was made into a god because of His good works; and still others claim that Jesus was the brother of Lucifer, the devil. Some claim that Jesus is a Filipino living in Manila and others claim that He returned in 1914 and is living in Brooklyn, New York.

The danger of deception through false doctrines is so great that Paul says, “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” Gal. 1:8. Even if one of the early apostles changed the original doctrine, we are not to accept it. Paul did not say “any” angel, but an angel from heaven! Even God’s angels are not exempt. Why then would any Christian be excused? No matter how smart, popular or godly a person appears to be, do not tolerate it if he teaches false doctrines or beliefs. Turn away from such; do not “bear with him.” These appear to be harsh words, but Jesus warns us to “Take heed and beware of the leaven....” Mt. 16:6. “Then understood they how that He bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.” Mt. 16:12. Any wrong doctrine is leaven. “Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? Purge out therefore, the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened . . . Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” I Co. 5:6-8. Leaven must be purged out of the true Church that will be the Bride of Christ, without spot, wrinkle or blemish.

In the end times, false prophets and false Christs will abound. Mt. 24:11,24. They will be able to deceive because they are respected, famous and well-accepted in the Church. Otherwise, who would listen to them? Therefore, even if a prophet is seemingly anointed, do not accept a strange doctrine from him. There have been many “anointed prophets” who ended up in error. You may have already met a few of them. In the Old Testament, Balaam, an anointed and gifted prophet of God, fell from favor in the end. So did King Solomon. The prophets of Ahab (I Ki. 22:12-29) and in Jeremiah’s days were most likely “anointed” and respected. Yet, they spoke lies. I’m not saying that all prophets lie and I am not against prophets (I believe in prophecy); I’m saying that we have the duty to test every prophecy. I Co. 14:29,32.

Miracles are not to influence us. False prophets and Christs will do miracles and through the miracles will deceive many. Mt. 24:24. They will heal the sick, cast out devils, raise the dead, but if their doctrine is not supported by scripture, do not accept it. In Matthew 7:22-23, Jesus says, “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? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work iniquity.” Many unwittingly allow the truth to be adulterated because they interpret “touch not mine anointed” mistakenly. God clearly warns us against such “anointing” and signs and wonders. We have a duty and responsibility to discern good and evil, truth and untruth.


WHY?
There’s a spiritual “poison” in untruths that silently and surely brings death. If Jesus is “the Way, the Truth and the Life” (Jn. 14:6), lies are the opposite. They cause us to veer from the Way and the Life and bring us into confusion and death. Like a fog that becomes ever thicker with each lie, false doctrines blind us from the true way and cause us to stumble and fall because of our failure to see danger and the snares of the enemy. Untruths cloud our spiritual eyes and we drift further away from the Lord Jesus. It is when we contend for the truth and love truth with all our heart that we begin to see clearly. There is no such thing as a partial truth. A truth is all truth or it is a lie.

The Devil is the father of lies. Jn. 8:44. He brings death through his lies and deceptions. (Called the destroyer and waster. Is. 54:16; Ex. 12:23; 1 Co. 10:10.) The Bible says that “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. . . .” With his lies and deceptions, Satan draws us into his kingdom and into darkness. Those who do not accept Jesus, have refused truth; they are deceived by the lies of Satan. “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost. 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.” 2 Co. 4:3,4. Satan, of course, is the present ruler of this world. Therefore, the world is filled with lies and distortions. We are living in an age where truth is an inconvenience and embarrassment because it goes against the grain of friendship with the world, and social and political acceptance. The world is indifferent to truth because truth convicts and changes lives. Man loves sin and truth destroys sin. How can the Church convert a sinful world when the Church itself no longer loves truth and is willing to compromise the absolute truth? It takes courage to speak and manifest truth in the world.

If we are called to change into the image of Jesus (Ro. 8:29), then we must also be true because He is true. Jesus is called the Word of God not only because He speaks and does truth, but because He is true. It is not the possession of truth, but an uncompromising walk in truth that makes us true and pure. That is why we were given the Holy Spirit to dwell in us. Even as we can know truth and yet not live truth, we can also have the Holy Spirit in us and not obey Him. The Holy Spirit is not only the Spirit of Power, but also the Spirit of Truth. Power and truth are inseparable.

When we compromise the Word of God, our concept and knowledge of God is distorted and warped and Jesus becomes a different Jesus from the Jesus in the Bible. Our acceptance of lies changes who He is. I’ve heard New Agers arrogantly say, “I know Jesus. She’s a Negro.” They believe that Jesus is whoever and whatever you say He is. Are we worshiping the same Jesus? That is why Jesus said, “Ye worship ye know not what: . . . (b)ut the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship Him.” Jn. 4:22,23. Distorting the Word of God is distorting the true Jesus.

Romans 10:17 says, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Truth creates faith because the Word is truth. Untruth begets no faith or a false faith. If your faith is not based on truth, it is vain. In the Boxer Rebellion of the early 1900's, the Chinese revolted against the Western powers because they were against the selling of opium to the Chinese. The peasants had only sticks and pitchforks against the rifles and machine guns of the British, Americans, Russians, etc. Kung fu masters convinced the Chinese peasants that if they drank a “magic potion” they would be immune from bullets and bayonets. As they pounded the drums, the Chinese peasants lined up to drink the potion. They had complete faith in it. The next morning, they died by the thousands, cut down by machine gun bullets and bayonets. They had faith, but it was not based on truth. It was vain. So too is our faith, if our faith is based on untrue doctrines and a different Jesus.

The distortion of the Word will be so great in the end times, that Jesus said, “. . . (W)hen the Son of man cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?” Lk. 18:8. There will be so many lies regarding our faith (religion) that our doctrines and beliefs will be perverted and our faith will be vain. The object of our faith is the Jesus of the Bible. He is the author and finisher of our faith, not a female Negro or any other.

In a world that is addicted to pretenses, distortions, facades and falsehoods, people learn to put on a face and an image that is untrue. We love movies and shows that warp, mislead and misrepresent reality and we are so into our “acts” that we actually think we are what we want people to believe that we are. We boast, brag and see ourselves as more than we really are. Peter and the other disciples bragged that they would die for Jesus. But, when the soldiers came to arrest Jesus, they all ran away as cowards. Truth had hit them in the face. It was truth that brought them to reality and completely humbled them. Saul was busy persecuting and killing the saints when he met Jesus on the way to Damascus. Ac. 9:1-7. The meeting changed him completely. He had met truth and reality. Truth changes. We read in Acts 2:1-4 that on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came as a mighty, rushing wind, flames of fire sat on the heads of the disciples and they began to speak in strange tongues. Why then do we seldom, if ever, experience such an outpouring? Perhaps it is because of our lack of truth and humility. We do not see our true selves. Many new believers see themselves as good people who deserve salvation. They do not see their true state as miserable humans who, but for the grace of God, deserve to go to hell. Lies and pretences distort and rob us of all that God wants to give us. Christ the hope of glory is also, Truth the hope of glory. The truth will make us free (Jn. 8:32) and open our eyes to see the wonders of God. Only by loving truth can we avoid deception.

It is truth that sanctifies and purifies. Jn. 17:17. “That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.” Eph. 5:26,27. The Word is truth. God’s truth changes more than a man’s doctrines; it transforms him from deep within. That is why God “desirest truth in the inward parts.” Ps. 51:6. The closer we are to Jesus, the truer we become. Truth is not only something we possess, but who and what we are. As the saying goes, “We are not sinners because we sin; we sin because we are sinners.” Likewise, “We are not made true because we speak truth; we speak and do truth because we are true.” Becoming true is not just a function of possessing truth. We can believe in truth and assent to truth, but still be untrue. To become like Him is to become true. We are true only to the extent that we walk in it.

A love for truth is the only remedy for avoiding deception and it will cost you dearly. If we are not already walking in truth, we will succumb to Satan’s wiles in the end. The truths given to us by God must be worth living and dying for. It is to those without guile (lies) that the greatest rewards are given. In Revelation 14:1-5, the Army of God stands with the Lamb of God on the mount Sion. “And in their mouth was found no guile; for they are without fault before the throne of God.” It is not just a matter of not telling lies, but not having lies in the heart that make you one without guile. “. . . (S)trait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” Mt. 7:14. Ananias and Sapphira lied to the Holy Spirit and died because of it. Ac. 5:5,10. God hates lies and liars. No liar shall enter into the kingdom of God. Rev. 21:8. We die slowly when we accept lie after lie. Truth indeed, is a narrow path.

Finally, we must recognize that the clash between truth and lies will come to a peak at the end of the age. It is not just a distortion of truth that is involved. It is a battle between two kingdoms and kingdom principles. Truth is a principle of the kingdom of God, while untruth is a principle of the kingdom of the devil. The more lies in the Church, the more we stray into the grasp of the evil one. Only a love for the truth and a determined defense of truth will keep us safely outside of the snare of the fowler. Ps. 91:3. Our refuge and fortress is in the Truth. His name is Jesus.

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