Wednesday, September 01st, 2010 | Author:

Most Christians acknowledge that we are living in the end times, pointing to the declining morality of the culture around us.

But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

Some Christians acknowledge that at least part of the institutional church is in trouble, pointing to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and its official acceptance of homosexuality or the likes of Ted Haggard.

For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist. Watch yourselves, that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward. Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds. (2 John 1:7-11)

A few Christians, myself among them, are convinced that the deception has become so open and so widespread that we are watching many be mislead, just as Jesus forewarned us. [Matt 24:11]

And when it comes to the issue of church and state, America vs. God, many refuse to hear the truth, and choose instead to follow those who tell them what they want to hear, among them Barrack Obama, Sarah Palin, and Glenn Beck.  Like the Israelites of old, they want to follow a flesh and blood king instead of God.  [1 Samuel 8:5] The popularity of these charismatic figures fulfills another prophecy:

preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4:2-4)

They have refused the truth and are being deceived:

Then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness. (2 Thessalonians 2:8-12)

If you are among them, I beseech you to wake up!  Heed the many warnings the Bible gives us about who we follow and who we associate with.  Beware of those who place love of America above love of God.   Do not follow those who, for their own selfish purposes, take advantage of your concern for our country, those who don’t enter by the door but sneak in some other way.  Turn to God, not to a wannabe king.

Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I WILL DWELL IN THEM AND WALK AMONG THEM; AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE. “Therefore, COME OUT FROM THEIR MIDST AND BE SEPARATE,” says the Lord. “AND DO NOT TOUCH WHAT IS UNCLEAN; And I will welcome you. “And I will be a father to you, And you shall be sons and daughters to Me,” Says the Lord Almighty. (2 Corinthians 6:14-18)

Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter by the door into the fold of the sheep, but climbs up some other way, he is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is a shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he puts forth all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. A stranger they simply will not follow, but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers. (John 10:1-5)

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5 Responses
  1. Jim Wetzel says:

    “Most Christians acknowledge that we are living in the end times, pointing to the declining morality of the culture around us.

    But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)”

    I wonder about this, from time to time. It’s all too true that we have plenty of what Paul described all around us. But I’ve lived only in my own time, and can only rely on the written reports of others for what things have been like in past times. I don’t suppose that these signs of the last days have ever been completely absent. Are they much, much worse now? We tend to assume they are, and they may be. But I just don’t know.

    I don’t suppose it matters, in that our task and calling is to be faithful and obedient to our Lord, no matter what the times. Still, I wonder.

  2. akagaga says:

    Why does it not surprise me that my buddy Thomas Jim refuses to be part of “most Christians”? :)

    But I’ve lived only in my own time, and can only rely on the written reports of others for what things have been like in past times.

    Historical accounts are certainly part of what we rely on, as well as the Bible, both of which are written reports. But the other part is that elusive Holy Spirit: Helper, Teacher, Witness, among many titles.

    Without Him, we don’t know if we’re truly adopted into God’s family. The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God,(Romans 8:16)By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. (1 John 4:13)

    Without Him, we can’t worship. But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth. (John 4:23-24)

    Without Him, the Bible is just another written report. [There's a passage that says we can't understand the Bible w/o the Spirit, but it eludes me right now.]

    “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.” (John 16:13)

  3. Amen! If God is not the head of the church, it is not His body. We have a lot of people calling for unity but we MUST be careful that unity is in the Holy Spirit, and not associate with the people described in those above Scriptures.

  4. John A. says:

    I’m afraid all too many, myself included at one time, read passages like the one in 2 Timothy and look to American Culture and shake their heads. Yet clearly, they point to something we should be looking for within the Church. The apostasy isn’t something cultural, as if our society or nation are the Body of Christ. Rather it’s false religion masquerading as true. Now on another level, since so much of the society professes to be Christian, we can to some extent look at the society and condemn many of its attributes and practices, but where we need to be concerned is when those values are within the Church and celebrated as Christian.

    Very glad to see you don’t make that mistake. Usually those verses are quoted and then the rant begins about Obama or Clinton. Rarely does anyone then start talking about the state of the Church.

    In fact the people who thinking in terms of the America construct don’t see that perfectly fits what is being condemned. They’re wanting to stand for righteousness by condemning certain social-sins, and yet blind themselves to much of the evil America has done, and for that matter does all around the world.

    Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not saying we have to hate or despise this country, but we need to try and be honest about how things are. We’re pilgrims here, I find that kind of thinking completely absent from the Christian Right. America is very much their home, their Eden of the past and future.

    Thanks for the post.

  5. akagaga says:

    @Alice Many Christians try to ignore the passages about our associations. Thanks for adding your voice.

    @John A. since so much of the society professes to be Christian, we can to some extent look at the society and condemn many of its attributes and practices, but where we need to be concerned is when those values are within the Church and celebrated as Christian. It’s been a process for me, too, John, and one that I’m sure is not yet complete. We need to make a distinction between “Christian society” and the true church. Unfortunately, I’m finding that many who are “in the church” actually are part of “Christian society,” instead. What a said statement to make.

    And I have been appalled at the number of Christians who have hooked their wagon to Glenn Beck because they want to keep their illusions of God, country, and apple pie. Are we really so desperate for a king that we’ll follow a Mormon?

    As always, thanks for sharing your thoughts. And I almost have a block of time to check out your blog!