Eternal Savior Lutheran Church

A member of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

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Lafayette, CO 80026
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September 19 – False Teaching Remains Prevalent

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” 1 John 4:1

Devotional Thought For The Day

We live in an age of extreme intellectual arrogance and yet one of grotesque dishonesty and ignorance.  I’m referring to the latest reports of Jesus’ supposed marriage.  There are volumes of articles discussing the differences between the Gnostic community – their own unique and anti-christian beliefs – and the early Christian Church, which was well aware of the Gnostics, zealously refuted them, and refused any fellowship with them whatsoever. The Gnostics wrote their own “gospels” and other Scriptures specifically against the Christian Scriptures – and these are never found interspersed with the Biblical documents – the communities were two different, competing groups with literally nothing in common – except for some of the words they used.  This was never an argument “within” the Christian Church, but always one between the Christian Church and an aggressive, wicked, pagan cult.  The reference now being publicized and discussed comes from one of these Gnostic sources, not any book ever used within the Christian Church.

The grotesque dishonesty and/or ignorance comes from the various news sources today which misidentify this piece of literature as “Christian,” and assert that this debate, if any early Christian leader would ever have dignified such garbage-writing with comment and debate, took place “within” the Christian Church as a real, viable, family disagreement.  This simply did not take place and couldn’t have – the two communities of “faith” were separate, distinct, and at complete odds on virtually all basic beliefs regarding God, man, nature, morality, and the future.  John already notes in his first epistle that “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.” [1 Jn. 2:19]  There would have been no need for Christians to read or comment on such Gnostic trash – they were well aware of the source of such nonsense, and that it had nothing to do with the real history – that recorded decades, perhaps even centuries earlier, in the writings of the actual eye-witnesses, the evangelists and apostles, the literature contained in the canonical New Testament, those 27 books alone.

The warnings not to believe these anti-christian “spirits” are numerous and forceful, provided throughout Holy Scripture already before the attacks on Christ and the rewriting [errant revision] of His holy history were in full force a century later.  The warnings are given by Christ Himself, and His apostles – written a whole century before the Gnostics started composing their fictional gospels to set forth their own perverted beliefs.  John writes in the past tense – many false prophets had already gone out into the world.  That generation of false prophets was not the last anti-christian group to attack the church, to invent their own scriptures, and to promote their own immorality and wickedness. There are more recent, latter-day examples of this still in existence today.  The warnings of the real apostles, the eye-witness of all that Christ did and taught, remain in full force today – but sadly, the intellectually arrogant but ignorant are unwilling to do even the least bit of research so that they understand and report the facts accurately.  Instead, they take the part of the false prophets and attempt to trouble the church.  Don’t allow it in your hearts.

My anger and frustration in this is not born of some insecurity or perceived threat to the true church, to true believers in Christ Jesus and our most holy faith – rather it comes from the heartbreaking fact that our media has been cleverly and subtly exploited and recruited to herald gnostic nonsense, to revivify attacks upon Christ and the true church that have lain discredited, dormant and dead for numerous centuries.  It is astonishing to me that they could be so naive and ignorant of the facts [which can easily be ascertained with a mere modicum of effort] as to be so used and abused, that they have become impediments to repentance and faith in God’s great love for us to the many modern, supposedly “educated” and intelligent people who are still living in unbelief and rebellion against the Lord Jesus Christ, and who trust the media to be telling the truth.

The warning is out there – and has been so from the blessed servants of God and His Word for centuries.  We too have continuing need to hear and heed their warnings – even if the work of the false prophets and antichrists is now being broadcast as “the news.”  Lord, have mercy!

Prayer For The Day

Dear Lord Jesus Christ, even as we are blessed to have Your Word broadcast through a variety of modern media, so the evil one continues to cleverly plot ways to get his perverse message against Your Word into the ears and minds of human beings.  Preserve us from this darkness and deliver naive and gullible people from this pseudo-intellectual trap. We pray that it not be too late for a return to repentance and faith for our fellow citizens, our neighbors. Continue to strengthen and sustain us by Your Word, that the bright and beautiful light of Your love continues to shine upon us and within us.  Amen.