DENIALS OF CULTS
by Ed Stevens
Does God's Word predict that in the last days, prior to Christ's second coming there will be great revival with greatly increased numbers of souls desiring the truth and walking in it? To the contrary, it predicts that men "shall turn away their ears from the truth and shall be turned unto fables." "Now the Spirit speaketh expressly that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons; speaking lies in hypocrisy; homing their conscience seared with a hot iron; forbidding to marry and commanding to abstain from meats (Roman Catholicism!) which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth." "This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be . . . (among other things) blasphemers . . . having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof; from such turn away. So do these also resist the truth; men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith." (II Tim.4:4; I Tim. 4:1-3; II Tim. 3:1-5,8). See also II Thes. 2:3.
It is characteristic of humans to "follow the crowd". This is tragically true also in religion.
Christians believe, indeed, all men sense that the last days are at hand. As to virtually all the fast growing religious organizations today, biblical investigation proves that "having a form (semblance or profession) of godliness" (true Christianity) there is denial of "the power thereof". Briefly stated, this is (1) disbelief of Christ's dying words on the cross, "It is finished". That all the necessary work for man's redemption was fully accomplished in the life and death of man's great Substitute, God's heaven-sent last Adam, the Lord Jesus Christ. (2) Denial of the full truth of regeneration either as to its necessity ("Ye must be born again", John 3:7), or of there being thus "a new creature" or "new man" spiritually formed (II Cor.5 :17; Ga1.6 :15; Eph.2 :15;4:24 ), which new man "sinneth not" and "cannot sin because he is born of God" (I John 3:9). (3) That salvation is "everlasting life", "eternal redemption" and perfection, there being no possibility of any future condemnation whatsoever after death or of ever being lost again (John 3:16,36;5:24;10:28; Heb.9 :12 ;10 :14 ; Co1.2 :10 ; Rom.8 :1,30,38,39 ) . Many other references could be added.
All the above truth is denied by the following large and growing religious institutions: Seventh Day Adventism, Roman Catholicism, so-called "Jehovah's Witnesses", Mormonism, Christian (?) Science, and Pentecostalism. It is note worthy that in each of these, except the "Witnesses", there is belief in visions and in revelations additional to God's completed holy Word. Also, behold the number of women founders. Perilous times indeed! Let God's Word explain and warn!
Dire warning to all who deny the deity of Jesus Christ is given in John 8:21, 24, " ... whither I go ye cannot come . . . if ye believe not that I am He, ye shall die in your sins". Christ here identified himself as being "Immanuel" — God with us, "the Mighty God", the One "from everlasting", foretold in Isa. 7:14; 9:6 and Micah 5:2. Bold denial of this truth so essential to salvation is made by the false "Jehovah's Witnesses", "Christian Science", Mormons, Christadelphians, Theosophists, Unitarians, "Unity" cultists and all modernist preachers.
The Word of God was completed by Christ's apostles "that the man of God might be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works" (II Tim.3:17). Then beware of later — much later "revelations" and "visions", which clash with Prov.30:5,6: — "Every word of God is pure . . . Add thou not unto His words lest He reprove thee and thou be found a liar". Col. 2:18 warns against and describes vision seers, having "a voluntary humility and worshipping of the angels, dwelling in the things he has seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, and not holding fast the Head . . . " (Christ, R.V.), Compare Weymouth's translation: . . . "taking his stand on the visions he has seen and idly puffed up by his unspiritual thoughts ... "
Warning against women teachers is found in I Tim.2:11-14 and I Cor.14:34:—" Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach. nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence . . . " "Let .your women keep silence in the churches for it is not permitted unto them to speak (Le., as teachers): but they are commanded to he under obedience as also saith the law." Observe, however, the list of women leaders and teacher-founders: — Mrs. E. G. White of Seventh Day Adventism, Mrs. McPherson of Pentecostalism, Mrs. Mary Baker F. G. P. Eddy of Christian Science (so-called), the Fox sisters of Spiritism, and Madame Blavatsky with Annie Besant of Theosophy. These all rebelled against the law of God.
Finally, God's Word warns against those who preach "another gospel" or "a different gospel", (R.V.). "There be some that trouble you and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we or an angel from heaven preach any other gospel than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed . . . " (Gal. 1:6-9). "This false "gospel" voices the necessity of works in addition to faith in order to finally receive salvation. It is keep the commandments (some stress the Saturday Sabbath), keep up confessions of sin, do penance, etc. To preach thus is to acquire God's curse!
"To the law and to the testimony, if they speak not according to this Word (the Bible) it is because there is no light in them" (Isa. 8:20).
Faith Manifested By Works
James 2:14-26, much used by the above named and described folk, does not teach faith plus works for salvation. Here is taught the difference between dead (so-called) faith which has no "works" and the true living faith with its identifying good works. By his "works a man is justified (this word does not mean 'to get saved' but, to be declared right or just) and not by (professed) faith only" (v.24). The words in v.14, "can faith save him" is properly rendered, "can such faith save him" in the Revised Version. James does not contradict Eph.2:8-10; Titus 3:5; Rom.3:20-30; 4:1-6; Ga1.2:16,21;3:1-3,21. Here we read that only faith in Christ, i.e., faith in HIS finished work for man's redemption, His perfect law keeping and His vicarious (in our place) suffering the penalty for all men's sin on the cross when He cried, "My God! My God! Why hast thou forsaken me?" can save anyone.
To prove error's ever-present inconsistency as found with false gospel preachers this writer has asked several Adventist preachers, for example, who professed to agree perfectly that salvation by grace through faith without works was God's plan of salvation both before and after the cross, whether one would be forever lost if he did not keep the Saturday Sabbath. In each case the answer was, Yes! Plainly, in their particular organized system of religion they must bow to the authority (?) of their founder-prophetess, the vision seeing Mrs. Ellen G. White. The same inconsistency and devil-inspired deception is found in these other systems mentioned above. Roman Catholicism, for instance, increasingly exalts Mary, the human mother of Christ as a goddess, "the queen of heaven" as being the only mediator between God and man. ("There is one mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus", I Tim.2:5) The one system is no more wicked and damning than the other.
God's Clarion Call
Reader, if unsaved, why not heed and accept the gospel of the grace of God as proclaimed in I Cor. 15:1-6: —"I declare unto you the gospel . . . wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved .. . how that Christ died for our sins, according to the scriptures; and that He was buried, and rose again the third day according to the scriptures and that He was seen . . . " of witnesses — the apostles and others.
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that heareth my Word and believeth him that sent me HATH everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation (judgment); but is passed from death unto life". "He that believeth on the son HATH everlasting life, and he that believeth not on the Son shall not see life but the wrath of God abideth on him" (John 5:24;3:36).
Salvation is instantaneous!
Thank God, though our walk may be imperfect, our standing — our life (as a "new creature", or "new man"), our righteousness, our eternal salvation is in Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior. "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto (not by our) good works which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them" (Eph.2:10).
"Wherefore, come out from among them and be ye (believers) separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing and I will receive you" (II Cor.6:17). "And the Lord added to the Church daily such as were being saved" (Acts 2:47, R.V. See also 5:14; 11:24). "So we (believers) being many are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another" (Rom. 12:5). No other membership is authorized in God's Word.
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