Heresy is sin
Vision: I was preaching from the pulpit, when all these swords proceeded from the pulpit to the people, cutting to the people’s hearts and motives. (Heb. 4:12)
"For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and intents of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account."
These swords seemed to represent many powerful teachings for the church, as I watched these swords, I heard the words "Heresy is sin". One of the core teachings the church needs is to understand that heresy is sin. In this vision the Lord was showing me that His people don’t truly fear walking in Heresy ! They do not have the understanding that they need to walk in unconditional obedience to the commands of Christ !
Proverb: "There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death" (Pr.16:25)
This is a vision the Lord showed a prophet I know, after sharing this, the Lord gave me this teaching:
What is heresy?
Heresy is any belief that isn’t truth. What is truth? Truth is the Words of Jesus Christ interpreted and applied correctly in the right context. Heresy opposes or contradicts all the good and truth that Jesus suffered so much to give us.
What is the greatest heresy?
The greatest heresy is persisting to believe that you are right, when there is the possibility that you may be wrong and not making the effort to seek truth when you have the reasoning ability to know the possibility of error.
What causes heresy?
Heresy is caused when a person hasn’t truly died to self. When a person hasn’t truly died to self, elements in their personality seeking to exalt ‘the self’ will release a "justified understanding" in order to keep ‘the self’ alive.
The danger of heresy:
"But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees." Then they understood that He was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”(Matt. 16:11-12)
Heresy is sin because it is the wrong understanding and application of the commands and teachings of Jesus Christ. This wrong understanding is then taught to others, and like yeast, permeates through the dough, jeopardizing the eternal destiny and eternal rewards of anyone subject to the heresy. It is also cowardly to be subject to heresy because truth demands change subject to selflessness in order to bring a person in alignment with truth as taught by Jesus Christ.
Depriving someone of truth means you are depriving them of what is rightfully theirs which also effects their eternal destiny and rewards. On an eternal scale, this is murder (see James 4:17, Jn 3:15) and cowardice, and the Word of God says that the place of cowards and murderers will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur.
"But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death." (Revelation 21:8)
"But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Saducess." Then they understood that He was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Saducees"
For this reason Jesus was so stern in rebuking the Pharisees, because they walked in heresy.
Yeast is a symbol of both evil / corruption and of growth. Here the metaphor teaches that small amount of yeast (heresy) is able to ferment (spread through) a large amount of dough (many people).
GOD THINKS, UNDERSTANDS AND SPEAKS ON AN ETERNAL SCALE.Ultimately on an eternal scale, that pit is the fiery lake of burning sulfur. Therefore any person in error is in danger of losing their salvation.
If believers have the reasoning ability to warn unbelievers about the consequence of hell in refusing to be saved, should they then not also be able to apply this same reasoning ability to ensure that they themselves are not walking in error so that they are not gambling their own salvation? Eternity is a long time to find out and to be eternally reminded that you were wrong about something!
"Seek the Lord now while He may be found." (Isaiah 5:6)
Believers still have time now before it is too late to inquire of the Lord if there is any heresy in their understanding. Gods people need to understand that they shall be held accountable for ensuring that their beliefs are in line with truth as taught by Jesus Christ and for what they teach others.
"But I tell you that men will have to give account on the Day of Judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned." (Matthew 12:36)
In writing this teaching, I sensed the Lord leading me to the following verse in Jeremiah 50:6-7
My people have been lost sheep;
Their shepherds have led them astray and caused them to roam on the mountains.
They wandered over mountain and hill and forgot their own resting place.
Whoever found them deceived them;
Their enemies said, “we are not guilty,
For they sinned against the Lord, their true pasture, the Lord, the hope of their fathers.’
Flee out of Babylon;
Leave the land of the Babylonians, and be like the goats that lead the flock.
Core heresies of today’s church include:
* Once saved always saved
* God is too good to send people to the lake of fire
* Unconditional ‘submission’ to leadership
* Misinterpretation of Truth such as: “There is now no condemnation (Therefore no rebuke or correction)for those in Christ Jesus.”
* “Everything is different now under the New Covenant, therefore this would mean that God is different and works differently.”
But God says"I am the Lord your God and I change not!"
2. How to know if you are in Heresy
“We do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. One the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to every mans conscience in the sight of God.” (2 Cor 4:2)
After writing the teaching "Heresy is sin", I then understood that a teaching on "How does one know they are in heresy" was absolutely vital because no person in heresy can see their error and therefore will not admit error. If people knew they were in heresy, they wouldn't be in it in the first place, because the problem is that people in heresy are deluded by their own justified understanding, and this blocks out truth. The Lord immediately gave me understanding by showing me three jigsaw puzzle pieces.
Pieces a and b lock together V
Pieces a and c have gaps |/
Piece a) is our starting piece, b) and c) both look very similar, and seem as though they could both lock into piece a). But both cant lock. Only one can, b), even though piece c) seems it could lock, it cannot lock.
We take a piece that appears to fit into another piece already in the puzzle, because it is made from the same material, has the right color and shape, but only on application are we able to see if it will lock perfectly into the other piece. Likewise it is the same with heresy. Heresy is made from the same material as truth because it uses the Word of God as its final source, and therefore seems to be truth, but it is shaped in such a way through fine sounding arguments (Col 2:4-8) that distorts truth, and thus only through its application can one see that it simply doesn’t lock into the right puzzle piece.
Heresy is piece c) that tries to lock itself into piece a), through its fine sounding arguments, but all it is accomplishing is standing in the way of Truth, thus hindering the advancement of the Kingdom on earth and ultimately the Lords return !
Truth receives its power in its everlasting ability to circumvent error and thus expose it. Heresy or error receives its defeat from its open gaps that don’t lock into truth. It is these open gaps that permit truth to enter in order to circumvent and thus expose the error. As in a jigsaw puzzle, application must first be applied if one is to see the result, and the result is the ultimate test if someone is walking in heresy. This is why Jesus said "You shall know them by their fruit" It should be understood that Truth always requires something of the person in order to order to challenge them and thus bring them into the likeness of Jesus Christ and the execution of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth.
Heresy doesn’t seem to require anything of the person, resulting in the believer usually being in a state of stupor. It is this state of stupor that prevents the kingdom of heaven from reaching the world in all its fullness, truth, power and glory. So if you are in a position where you are finding that not much or nothing is being asked or required of you, according to the Lords commands, not church protocol or fear of missing out on a church service or coffee meeting, then you can be sure that you are walking in heresy and are without the fear of God or the love of God.
Therefore one can see that the scriptures used in heresy are usually those that do not require much of you.
Here I shall share about the teaching (heresy), "Once saved, always saved."
3. Once Saved Always Saved ?
As Christians, one must ask who is Lord of the faith. Is it Jesus? Is it Paul? Is it some other disciple? Or is it your Pastor?
If we say Jesus who is absolute Truth, then we must also reason that what Jesus taught takes priority over everyone else. If we as believers call ourselves citizens of His Kingdom, then we must take heed and walk in the requirements of the Kingdom, which are the commandments, teachings and warnings of Jesus who is God Himself.
It is important to understand that when God makes promises they are unconditional for eternity; however the means to obtaining these promises are conditional. For example, when Solomon was anointed King over Israel, God told him that if he was obedient as his father had been and if he walked in the statues of the Lord, then he would establish his throne forever. (1 Ch.28:5; 2 Ch. 7:17)
This has always been the way God has worked throughout the whole Bible. His promises are unconditional but the means conditional. This is why with every commandment, teaching or promise that Jesus taught, a warning or condition would follow. If one obeys the if’s then one has the result of the then’s.
If Paul is an apostle of Jesus Christ, then his message cannot contradict Jesus’ message. Therefore, we cannot have the on one hand Jesus giving us conditions and warnings to kingdom requirements affecting our eternal destiny and rewards, and Paul on the other hand giving us unconditional promises irregardless of our standing with God. It doesn’t make sense and would be a contradiction.
Therefore "not everyone who says to me ‘Lord Lord’ will enter the Kingdom", (Matt.7:21) and "there is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus", (Romans 8:1) cannot both be unconditional promises. For those who say that "not enter the Kingdom" means not experiencing the fullness of the Kingdom in this life, that is right, they don’t experience the fullness, neither do they experience the promise – eternal life ! What does "on that day" mean when The Lord will say to some believers "I never knew you" ? It means on the day of judgment!
What needs to be understood is that the verses about predestination and not being any condemnation for those in Christ Jesus etc….are conditional and based on our obedience.
"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus"(Romans 8:1) and "And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified." (Romans 8:30)
In these verses, the Apostle Paul is speaking about what the work of the Cross achieved for those that walk in that obedience, not what it achieved for those who despite being born-again are walking in disobedience. Heresy is caused when the church applies these verses unconditionally rather than conditionally. This would be like God telling Solomon that no matter how you choose walk before me, obedient or disobedient, I will still establish your royal throne. No. God has never worked like that and never will. It has nothing to do with Old Covenants or New Covenants but has everything to do with God’s Integrity, Holiness and Character.
For God says: "I the Lord do not change" (Malachi 3:6)
"For Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8)
Also, there is no scripture in the New Testament telling us that irregardless of how one walks before God, obedient or disobedient, that they have a secure place in Heaven in order to confirm a "Once saved always saved theological mindset". One might argue here that this is works based. No, because when someone truly acknowledges and has the right revelation of the Love of God displayed through the Work of the Cross and is grateful, then they naturally seek to please their Lord without it being works- based. The work of Christ is to obey Jesus Commands and to be Holy !
JESUS PARALLELED WITH PAUL - NO CONTRADICTION
Here are a few of the commands and teachings of Christ. The warnings or conditions are in bold print. These can be paralleled by the writings of Paul.
Gospels: "Then the master called the servant in. 'You wicked servant,' he said, 'I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?' In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed."This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart."(Matt.18:21-35)
Epistles:"To those who by persistence in doing good [ payer, fasting, showing mercy etc…] seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile" (Romans 2:7)
2. DO NOT JUDGE
Gospels:"Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." (Matt.7:1-2)
Epistles:"You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. Now we know that God's judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. So when you, a mere man, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God's judgment?"(Romans 2:1-3)
3. WARNINGS FOR THE DISOBEDIENT
Gospels:Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.'They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?' "He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'(Mat 25:31-46)
Note: This is a warning for those who do not walk as sheep, those who do not walk in mercy shall be judged as goats.
Epistles: Do not be arrogant, but be afraid. For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either. Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off. (Romans 11:20-22)
The above scriptures are self-explanatory. The above scriptures were spoken by Jesus Christ Himself; therefore their authority can in no way be contested. Jesus wouldn’t have given commandments and warnings with conditions if a person who got saved was always saved. Salvation is a gift received by grace, but it isn’t received once and for all. It expresses itself in an ongoing process in which the believer is strenuously involved. Fear and trembling of God is just that - the Fear of God ! (Phil 2:12)
Then the churches throughout all Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace and were edified. And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, they were multiplied. - Acts 9:31
"And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him! - Luke 12:4-5
WARNINGS FROM REVELATION:
"He who overcomes will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches." (Revelation 3:5)
In this passage, Jesus is speaking to those who acknowledge Jesus as Lord, and have the power of the Holy Spirit. These are born-again believers who have received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, who speak in tongues, prophesy, work miracles etc…
Only those who are born-again are written in the book of life. Therefore only born-again believers can be removed from the book of life. (Rev 3:5). This is Jesus speaking to New Testament born-again believers (church of Sardis) and clearly shows that believers can have their name removed from the book of life (which means they can lose their salvation). Why else would the Lord say "never blot out his name." Therefore there is a condition. The book of life contains the names of those whose walk with God is blameless.
Book of life - "Another book was opened which was the book of life" (Rev 20:12)
Rev. 20:15: "And anyone not found written in the book of Life was cast into the lake of fire."
4. Understanding Covenant
This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him.
If we endure, We shall also reign with Him.
If we deny Him, He also will deny us.
If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.
2 Tim 2:11-13
*Salvation through the grace of God (saved, or made born again through the Work of the Cross) is different to right standing (eternal salvation, or making it to Heaven). Why else did the Lord give us warnings about lack of watchfulness, missing out on the rapture, eternal fire and hell prepared for the devil and his angels, and being disowned by the Father at the Judgment?.
A REASON FOR THE DECEPTION:
Romans 11:29 tells us that the gifts and callings of God are without repentance, or irrevocable. This means that when God gives gifts or callings to a person, He doesn’t take them back irregardless if a person is disobedient to the commands of Christ. We can see an example of this with the nation of Israel. Even though Israel is presently in a state of unbelief, and disobedient to God, God doesn’t and won’t change His mind with reference to her call.
God still works powerfully even through disobedient Christians because it is the only way to maintain a lamp of His Presence and workings in the world amongst a wicked people. Without this lamp, there would be no hope for anyone in the world to see His light. This is why those He has called who are not walking in obedience, still receive blessing and God works in order to protect His plans. God will bless them for His reasons, for the sake of others and not necessarily for their reasons. The problem is when Christians through their limited and superficial understanding of how and why God works, interpret the Lord’s blessing over their lives as a sign of favor, rather than understand that God may be blessing them for the sake of others or to protect other plans - despite their disobedience to Him. Many have great gifts, yet no grace and are without mercy; they may prophesy in Christ's name, yet are disowned by him.
This is a prophecy Ailine Baxter recieved when the Lord took her to visit hell:
I found myself in Hell, screaming, hollering, gnashing my teeth..... Souls were around me by the hundreds and thousands, screaming and gnashing their teeth...... The voice of God began to speak to me again. All God would say to me was Romans 11:29, "For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance."
I screamed, "God forgive me!"....
“I called you and ordained you from the foundation of the world. In the same manner that I could not repent of the call on the life of My only begotten Son, I won't repent of the call I have placed on men's lives."
This is a revelation the Lord gave me about covenants (I was instructed to share this with as many people as I could):
"Therefore it is of eternal utmost importance that those called of God ensure that they are not deceived into thinking that they are in right standing with God because God is blessing and working through them for the sake of this Lamp, but prioritize and ensure their right standing which is the only key that will ensure them their inheritance in the Kingdom."
"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand and it gives light to everyone in the house." (Matt.5:14-15)
We often apply this scripture to ourselves / and or the Church. But God also walks in the integrity of His Word and seeing this scripture through the eyes of God should read something like this:
"I am the light of the world. My presence in the world cannot be hidden. Neither will I hide my lamp under the restrictions of My people through any of their foolishness, disobedience, inflexibility or lack of understanding. Therefore My lamp shall stand irregardless, so that it will give light for everyone in the world to see, so that no-one may be with excuse."
God functions on an eternal scale not a temporal one. This means that He will bless even the disobedient for the sake of others even until the final point of mercy so that on the final Day of Judgment when all accounts are closed, His righteousness and mercy cannot be contested!
1 Samuel 19:19-24, is a very good example of how God still blesses someone despite their total disobedience.
Word came to Saul: "David is in Naioth at Ramah"; so he sent men to capture him. But when they saw a group of prophets prophesying, with Samuel standing there as their leader, the Spirit of God came upon Saul's men and they also prophesied. Saul was told about it, and he sent more men, and they prophesied too. Saul sent men a third time, and they also prophesied. Finally, he himself left for Ramah and went to the great cistern at Secu. And he asked, "Where are Samuel and David?" Over in Naioth at Ramah," they said. So Saul went to Naioth at Ramah. But the Spirit of God came even upon him, and he walked along prophesying until he came to Naioth. He stripped off his robes and also prophesied in Samuel's presence. He lay that way all that day and night. This is why people say, "Is Saul also among the prophets?" (1 Sam.19:19-24)
Here Saul is trying to kill David and is informed that David is in Naioth at Ramah. Saul sends a detachment of soldiers to capture David, but they see a group of prophets standing there with Samuel as their leader. The Spirit of God comes upon Saul’s men and they also start prophesying. Saul is informed of this so he sends a second detachment, and they start prophesying too and the same thing happens when he sends out more soldiers. So Instead of seizing David, Saul’s men are seized by the Spirit of prophecy, for they were put into so good a frame by the Spirit of God that they were not able to obey Saul. Saul himself decides to go to Naioth and the Spirit of God comes even upon him, while he is trying to kill the Lords anointed!
One may ask how could Saul and even his soldiers prophesy? Since Saul is in total rebellion to God. God’s Spirit was now on Saul to restrain him. We often expect God to only let his prophecies or blessings come to upstanding godly people, but God is not limited by the limitations of our understanding or expectations. In this way God preserved the lives of all the prophets, frustrated all the plans of Saul, preserved the life of His servant and ultimately the Messiah and showed how He can, whenever he pleases, strike an awe upon the greatest of foes.
"When a person prioritizes the subjecton of their actions or decisions under the scrutiny of any leader rather than under God, they are giving people the honor that is due to God alone. They risk being in sin, for they may be unaware that in the eyes of God that person may be in heresy. A person’s actions are to be always placed under the scrutiny and authority of the Word of God. For those that sin like others must expect to suffer like them; God is unyieldingly just!"
So what can we learn from this? God still has His plans and purposes today and likewise uses the overwhelming power and presence of His Holy Spirit even through a disobedient Church in order to protect His plans for other purposes and peoples sake. One mustn’t be deceived into thinking that the reason for the powerful anointing of the Holy Spirit over a person is that they have the favor of God.
This deception is also what causes people to prioritize leaders over God. God works through a leader to fulfill His plans, so immediately the people think that leader must be approved by God. However in a given congregation where the only person who is allowed to preach is the leader, then of course God is going to release His Power over the one who is preaching for the sake of others, irregardless of the leaders obedience or disobedience.
In order to know what truth is, one must look at the results of a person’s understanding. A "Once saved always saved" mentality or understanding causes Christians to:
* Become complacent ("Well were saved now so we don’t really need to do much, and will use scripture to justify this")
* Not seek Holiness
* Not evangelize with the urgency, zeal and power of God
* Not fear to disobey the commands of Christ
A word of Wisdom: It is wiser to live with the fear that you may lose your salvation and thus obtain it rather than be too confident that you will never lose it only to find out that you have.
Please copy and share this teaching in whole or in part. Also use this teaching as a sermon.