Patrick Mosbey: Let no man deceive you

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Mathew Chapter 24 is perhaps one of the most important and significant portions of scripture dealing with end time prophecy. It was spoken by the Lord himself, and it is also quite detailed.

It is known by scholars as the: “Olivet discourse.”

It opens with Jesus’ prophecy concerning the destruction of the temple, which happened in 70 A.D. The disciples asked a very direct question — “When will these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming and of the end of the world?”

I’m sure that there are many people today who would like a definitive answer to this question. Jesus made it clear that no man can know the day or the hour, but we can know the season.

I think it is significant that the first statement made by Jesus concerning the end time condition had to do with deception. “Take head that no man deceive you.”

He repeated that warning in the very next verse and two subsequent places later in this same chapter. The number of times something is repeated in scripture always underscores its importance.

The Apostle Paul also warned us about deception in the last days (2 Tim 3:13): “But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.”

Apparently, widespread deception will mark the last days.

I believe we are living in the “last days” and there are many who are deceived and deceiving others.

Satan has been in the deception business for thousands of years, and he is quite good at it. It has been said that a ship beginning a voyage across the ocean only1 degree off course will end up over a thousand miles off course at the end of its trip.

Satan is very patient — he works at getting us just a little off course. He doesn’t mind mixing truth with error if he can get us to take the bait. Jesus further clarifies these conditions in verse 24 of Matthew Chapter 24: “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.”

That brings me to the purpose of this article.

The spiritual landscape is a virtual “mine field” of error, false prophets, false teachers and false Christ’s. We can’t possibly deal with all of them in the limited space here, but I would like to address two that I feel are particularly widespread and generally accepted and promoted among mainstream Christian groups.

Artificial bait is made to look like a worm, minnow, bug, aquatic insect, crawfish, etc., but it all has one purpose and that is to deceive and ensnare.

It all looks like real food to the fish. Error that has been around since the beginning is still around today. Only the nomenclature is changed. What worked then still works today.

Satan still uses “The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life” to ensnare his prey.

Just as he tempted Eve in the garden, “When the woman say that the tree was ‘good for food’ (lust of the flesh) …pleasant to the eyes’ (lust of the eyes)… ‘desired to make one wise’ (pride of life).”

The enemy has sown the seeds of deceit in the midst of the church today in the form of “mysticism” or “Christian mysticism,” an oxymoron to be more accurate.

Mysticism is the pursuit of communion with God, spiritual truth or other divinity through experience or intuition. It centers in the subjective and usually involves a practice or practices intended to nurture an experience, and thus a “revelation” of some hidden truth known only to a select few. They claim to seek the “hidden meanings” of scripture; they seek the esoteric meanings of conventional teachings.

This, of course, appeals to our human pride. It is always dangerous to embark upon a search for “hidden truth” through subjective experience, like dreams, visions, voices, journaling, contemplative prayer and meditation.

Contrast this with Deuteronomy 29:29: “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong unto us.” What has been revealed is the Word of God, which is objective and does not depend upon our feelings? While we may not understand the entire Bible, we have no need for any further “revelation” outside of what we already have. It is not without significance that most major cults use writings that are said to supplement or lend clarification to the Bible.

The modern day “Christian mystic” often concentrates on the “love of God” and self nullification, giving ourselves for others, identity with God and complete non-identification with the “world.”

Most Christians can identify with these terms — they sound so pious, and even holy — but beware these are also routinely practiced by Hindu, Buddhist, Bahia, and other Eastern cults.

“Enlightenment, illumination and revelation” are all stock buzz words among mystics.

The “Christian mystic” aspires to acquire “spiritual truth” that is inaccessible through intellectual (objective) means. They most often interpret the Bible allegorically rather than literally. Most acknowledge Christ and the Bible, but choose to emphasize things like “works of love,” “self purification” and God’s willingness to reveal himself through “contemplative graces.”

These people claim that they are merely “clarifying” the way to God. They encourage you to turn inward, emptying your mind and inviting the “essence” of God to envelope you.

They even coach you to practice an Eastern style of “meditation,” one that incorporates a single word, thought or sound. The scripture instructs us to “gird up our mind,” “have the mind of Christ,” and to “think on these things.” We are never encouraged to empty our minds, or give them over.

These cultic practices fit rather well within the folds of scripture taken out of context.

More often than not, these folks claim to have received some “new revelation,” usually through subjective experience.

A dream, vision, angelic visitation, a ride in a heavenly chariot, being transported around the world in the spirit, taken on a visit to heaven or hell, being personally instructed by Christ or an angel, the list could go on and on. I did not make these up — I have actually heard people testify to having had these and similar experiences.

They very often have written a book or made a DVD that will re-interpret scripture to support a particular view or practice. These “hidden truths” or “new revelations” I feel the need to add a disclaimer to hear, lest I be misunderstood: Our God is powerful and supernatural. He can and does work through supernatural means, however, He will never act contrary to the spirit of His own Word.

“In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established.”Every subjective experience must be balanced by an objective measure.

Another mark of mysticism is their “acceptance” of other views and teachings. They appear to be more tolerant and therefore more Christian than others. Contrast this with Paul, who named names and listed offenses. He had no tolerance for those who were in error and led others astray also. This so-called tolerance is one of the reasons that “Christian mysticism” dovetails nicely into modern “New Age” teachings and philosophy.

New Age teachings have gone “mainstream” and are not easily recognized. They are promoted in modern education, corporate board rooms, church pulpits and society in general.

Many of the so-called self help books and courses are filled with its influence. “Inner Healing,” “motivational psychology,” “holistic health,” “parapsychology,” “positive thinking,” “new thought,” “life force,” “creative visualization,” and “personal power” are all expressions of this pervasive doctrine.

New agers draw on both metaphysical and Western spiritual traditions, and infuse them with some or all of the above mentioned disciplines. It is pluralistic in that it includes science and religion, giving it a certain legitimate feel.

Although new age teachers often use scripture and religious terminology, they are careful to point out that the Bible and Christ are not the “only sources of truth.” In fact, they proclaim “all roads lead to the top of the mountain.”

Their view of religion is ecumenical: they speak convincingly of “unity, love and getting along.” They also promote “pantheism” (God in nature) as a worldview. This has given rise to the environmental movement and Gaia philosophy. Green politics, global warming, etc., are all expressions of this view. The Bible refers to this as “worshiping the creation, rather than the creator.”

The answer for the Christian, if he should want to avoid falling into the abyss of error, is to consider the “whole counsel of God,” that is the Bible from Genesis to Revelation.

The best commentary of the scripture is the scripture itself. Don’t just go out and buy the latest “Christian” book just because it made the best-seller list or that everyone is talking about it.

We also must avoid pride in all its forms. God hates pride (Proverbs 6) because it was the original sin. Satan declared, “I will, I will.”

We do have a protection afforded to use in the Word, it is found in I John 2:26-27: “These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you. But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you; but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.”

This is not saying that the church doesn’t need teachers, but that the spirit of truth in each of us will bear witness to the truth when we hear it. He is like an internal “alarm” system. When you hear something and you feel a disturbance in your spirit, beware.

Finally, we should not live in fear, but as the storm approaches we should draw close to the One who offers us shelter and protection.

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Comments

taxslave 3 years, 10 months ago

If you attend a 501c3 church, if your church is paying usery to a bank for your building that you borrowed money to have, if your church is not feeding the hungry, if your church is not caring for the widow and orphan, if your church isn't visitng those in prison.....you're already deceived.

I've never seen anything more polluted than the christian religion. Dozens of them in town preaching a "different" Jesus.

How many are in debt? The borrower is subject to the lender.

The church has you in a trap. The church is owned by the state.

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als362 3 years, 10 months ago

I feel very sorry for people like taxslave that are so full of hate and so fed up with their lives because they have no faith in anythimng or any God. That they feel it necessary to lash out at churches and others beliefs in religion. I hope people like this are able to find faith in God before the end ot their life or the end of days so they will be able to share the joys of Heaven where I and my fellow believers will be. As opposed to the terrors of hell where they and the rest of the world will be. By the way, good story Pat, and thank you.

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taxslave 3 years, 10 months ago

On the contrary als, I'm a believer. I'm a true believer who believes what the scriptures say. Churches that are in debt are contrary to the scriptures. Churches do not do what they are instructed to do. They are deceivers for sure with pulpits filled with wolves in sheep clothing. Church is a business, numbers and money.

You're expected to give, give and give some more with the money going to usery, not what the Lord intended.

No dear people, it is all of you that are deceived, not me. I know His voice and I pray that soon your eyes and ears will be opened to the truth.

Show me one scripture where usery is ok by the Lord....just show me and I'll shut up.

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GreyStone 3 years, 10 months ago

Great little story Pat, That stuff they sold me at the grocery store the other day was not fish…it looked like fish but tasted a lot like chicken. One never knows what BS they are trying to feed us from day to day.

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onewhocares 3 years, 10 months ago

Yikes, this is scary stuff to read. All of your information and beliefs are coming from a book hand written by man in a time to create power & slaves through the use of fear, completely disregarding your own inner wisdom and guidance. You have completely entrusted your beliefs & spirituality based on what others wrote, and nothing from divine guidance of your own.

How is this any different from total brain washing, or the extremist Muslim, or Jewish views?

PS. Question of the day: If the Bible were truly written by God, then how does evil work so easily through it? (i.e: genocides of most of the earths indigenous tribes based on Christian views, the unending stories of pedophile priests on Children, the countless wars, parents who beat & terrorize their children because they may not be following the good book and I could list a million other things? It seems to me if God were behind this book, events like this would not be able to occur. But that is just me, I could be wrong)

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als362 3 years, 10 months ago

I will try to answer onewhocares, I hope I do at least a fair job of it. To start with God niether allows or denies the terrible things that happen in this world. These terrible things happen because man has chosen to hate his fellow man, and sin against God. You might say, I don't hate anyone. And you might be right, but like an old friend once told me, "Bad companions, bring bad luck". What that means is because you are one of the human race that like all other humans sin, you must share the disappointments, trials and tribulations that everyone else endures. Take for instance 9-11 or Pearl Harbor, or some of the many natural disasters that occur. These things happen because man has chosen to hate and sin, no other reason. Since no man is holy, we must all endure these things. Not because God allows it, or because God makes it happen, that is simply not true. You see God would be happier if none of these bad things happened to any of us. But because we sin, and hate our fellow man we have chosen that these things happen to us. It is not Gods fault, or choice but our choice because we sin. You might ask, why doesn't God make us holy? That was and is our choice as humans to sin. And we can never enter any place like heaven till we are cleansed of all sin. That will happen when we die and stand before God to accept his forgiveness. This is why there is a heaven and hell. Those that choose to believe in God, will, in my belief, be allowed to enter heaven when they die. Heaven will be a place of eternal joy. Where no pain will hurt you, where your worldly ills will be gone, and no earthly problems will befall you. Hell is for the unbelievers. It is a place of eternal damnation, eternal pain and suffering. Where there will be no comfort, where pain will rack your body forever, and all your wordly problems and ills will trouble you forever. I hope this answers you question, I hope I have explained things well. And thank you for asking.

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GreyStone 3 years, 10 months ago

Organized religion was created by men to control other men, and make everyone feel better about their transience.

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onewhocares 3 years, 10 months ago

I appreciate your explanation als362, but I find it amazing how different religions & cultures could be so opposing yet all believing in a Higher power or God or Creator & how all say they are right & everyone else is wrong or going to hell. Isn't that going to be the ultimate lesson/irony when EVERYONE learns in the end, there are many different paths to GOD & many different choices away from GOD (drugs, fear, control, alcoholism, abuse, destruction of the envir't, etc). Personally, to me a book of GOD, meant for EVERYONE, would be simple, without any help for interpretation by anyone without fear/sin/control involved. You'd open up the front cover which would be called GOD and all the inside would say is "Do Unto Others As you Would Others Do Unto You." End of story.

AND this would include how we treat the environment & wildlife as well (since it is the environment that sustains our life, with food, water & shelter). Without that we are obviously going to become extinct. It is all soooo simple.

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Jack_Cayman 3 years, 10 months ago

Taxslave: Borrowing can be unwise and yes, the borrower is the slave to the lender. I also do not like it when churches borrow to build or expand. Solomon's method seems far better. But, in the end, it is not a mortal sin to borrow.

The church is the Body of Christ. Not every one of them is polluted or corrupt - God gets his will done somewhere and the Body of Christ is His design to get his will done.

You said, "I've never seen anything more polluted than the christian religion." Really?? How about Soviet Russia, or Jihadist Islam, Germany under Hitler, godless liberalism of today, Pol Pot … on an on. Christians have free will so they mess up what God intends but all of the godless philosophies and worldviews are worse.

God encourages the tithe and offerings to advance the kingdom and counteract our greed. Yes, some churches misuse those funds. Nonetheless, all of our resources are given to us by God so giving back is a sign of gratefulness… and to help others.

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Jack_Cayman 3 years, 10 months ago

Onewhocares: Where did you get this line, "“Do Unto Others As you Would Others Do Unto You.” ??

Who said it? Where does it come from? If the Bible is hogwash then why do you live by this statement above?

In the Old Testament, if God killed people due to their own wickedness then why does that offend you? We put murderers and rapists behind bars today... for good reason.

There are very good answers to all of your questions in your post but you have to seek God and His Word with a humble heart and eventually the understanding will come to you.

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onewhocares 3 years, 10 months ago

I can find no greater Church with purer truth, strength and perfection than in the wilderness in places untouched by man. How arrogant for all who put a man made structure as a symbol of Christ/God before the endless miles of unbelievable beauty on this earth created by the highest power of all... for free. The best part is, there are no books, no priests, no pastors, no others to warp & pollute your communication or relationship with Spirit. It's just you & it pure & simple. Why this is such a foreign concept completely baffles me, especially considering it is nature that gives man & all its creatures life. How do books & religions give life, I guess I'll never understand nor will I ever understand how man can honestly place itself above nature?

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Jack_Cayman 3 years, 10 months ago

Onewhocares (about what?) - The beauty and wonder we see in nature and creation is a glimpse of God's glory and handiwork. But none of it is something to be worshiped. It's all created. And it does point to a Creator. And that Creator is revealed in the Bible.

The church is a completely different matter. The church, when under the control of the Holy Spirit, is where the pastor can teach, the people can worship, and those in need can be helped, among other things.

God designed both, nature and the church, as means to accomplish His will and help us live a better life - better by His definitions in the Bible.

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GreyStone 3 years, 10 months ago

Is God actually concerned about the environment, after all, he gave us Hydraulic Fracturing which enables the extraction of natural gas and oil from rock formations deep below the earth's surface. If Hydraulic Fracturing is that destructive, why did he allow it to exist?

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als362 3 years, 10 months ago

To Grey Stone: God did NOT give us hydraulic fracturing. Man gave us that. Because man is born in sin man brings these things on himself. God causes none of these things, they are ALL caused by man and man alone. Read my answer to onewhocares near the top of this page. Perhaps it will help you understand why and how these types of things occur.

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GreyStone 3 years, 10 months ago

To als362 (Anonymous) say,

Just like Man gave us organized religion and the stuff in the bible…thanks for clearing That up.

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als362 3 years, 10 months ago

Money will serve you to no avail when you stand before your maker on judgement day.

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GreyStone 3 years, 10 months ago

als, What about Tithing???, $$ A form of stewardship that God requires of Christians. The primary argument is that God has never formally "abolished" the tithe, and thus Christians should pay the tithe (usually calculated at 10 percent of all gross income from all sources). Tithing money to your organized religious club keeps you in good standing within the club. Paying of club mortgages, insurance, utility bills.

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daybyday 3 years, 10 months ago

Onewhocares,

I don't necessarily think of struggling or striving for interpretation of the Bible as a bad thing. The Bible is as simple and beautiful as you suggest when you know that Jesus said the two greatest commandments are love God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself (the golden rule). It can also get as complicated as one wants when we strive to understand more of the meaning behind the words of simple truth.

Nature can be the same when sometimes gazing at a star-filled sky is beautifully enough, and sometimes it leads to the attempts to understand the unimaginable complexities of life, nature and creation. Physicists estimate that if the strength of gravity were changed by only one part in ten+100 zeros, life would not have developed. Nature can be simple and beautiful, or as complicated as being continually confounding to the most brilliant scientists, physicists and astronomers who ever lived.

Concerning churches, the true "church" is a universal body composed of all believers in Christ, united by Him in spirit with Christ as the Cornerstone. Attending a physical building called "church" doesn't make one a Christian, and visa versa, so there may be many local church buildings, but only one church, and many "buildings" tend to forget that. The church does have its clearly defined purposes, but I didn't want to make this too long.

While it appears there are many different churches, many denominations believe in the same basics of doctrine, but disagree on other things such as mode of baptism, healing, styles of worship, etc. Some people like a service with stronger Bible teaching, some like casual services, differences in music, and location plays a part in larger areas. Again, as simple or as complicated as everything in life can be. Hope that makes sense.

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als362 3 years, 10 months ago

If Grey Stone thinks you can buy your way into Heaven, stick with that thought. Then there will be more room for others. Because you will not be there because of your money. Giving money to the church will NOT get you into Heaven. Only faith in God will give you a place there.

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GreyStone 3 years, 10 months ago

Als362, Tithing, Giving money, keeps the lights on.

Let no man deceive you into thinking you need a church.

Faith in god yes, not Organized religion, which has nothing to do with going to heaven, so we will both get to the same place in the end.

See you there.

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als362 3 years, 10 months ago

I have never mentioned church or organized religion in this post. I have only responded to what I consider hateful responses from some people.
Some people think that they can write their own ticket to heaven, nor possible.
I hope some of these people that have been writting these hateful sounding posts are correct about there path to heaven. Time will tell.

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GreyStone 3 years, 10 months ago

Als362, Oh, OK, never mind we love you nevertheless.

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