What the world is saying and propagating should not worry us but instead we should be concerned with these lies that are also being taught in the Body of Christ. We have more Bibles in North America than the whole world combined yet we remain ignorant of what it contains. How many Bibles do you own? How often are you reading it and studying it other than Sunday? Most Christians do not even consider opening their Bible from Sunday to Sunday so if someone comes along and teaches something similar to what they learned in Sunday School or heard on Sunday morning they will follow along. This is how the lies are spreading. John warns us that we need to be paying attention:
Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. (1 John 4:1)
We live in an age of abundant information but it does not mean that it is all reliable information; do you check the source? We live in an age of abundant teaching but it does not mean that it is all good teaching; do you check the source? John has equipped us with a method to know these false spirits but keep in mind that it was one way that dealt with one set of lies that were going out at the time:
This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world. (1 John 4:2-3)
At the time there were many theories and false teachings going around about Jesus. Some of these taught that Jesus was not flesh but only spirit that took on appearance as flesh. Today we have those who deny he was divine at all and call him a major prophet. To these people I say, you had better read what Jesus said about himself. We also have those who deny that he ever existed on this planet. These are again ignorant people who do not even possess the base knowledge that, at the very least, Jesus was an historical figure, recorded in the history books of the time and listed in the records of the Romans. Regardless of the form of the lies these are all still the spirit of the antichrist, denying Jesus.
This is what you as a believer need to keep in mind as you sometimes face a barrage of this false teaching, even from within the Body of Christ:
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. (1 John 4:4)
Remember where your strength lies and you will never have to worry about going astray. Forget your strength, neglect the Word, concentrate on conformation instead of transformation, and you will slowly be overtaken by the spirit of the antichrist as you are led away from the narrow path with the narrow gate. You have to stop listening to the preachers and teachers of the World; people like Oprah and the modern day representatives of the antichrist. John reminds and warns us:
They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. (1 John 4:5)
We listen to these people in the guise of entertainment and are being led away from Jesus. In fact, most of the world is being influenced by a bunch of actors with opinions and half-notions. They are actors, it does not make them teachers or authorities of any sort. They are entertainers who take us along into the fantasy world of story telling. They are not even the story teller, only people who play a part in someone else`s story. What a foolish bunch of people we are. Let the world listen to them, but we are not of the world:
We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood. (1 John 4:6)
The world looks at such a statement and calls it arrogance and narrow-mindedness. We look at it and recognize the boldness of truth. John preached the Word, the truth; he preached Jesus Christ. There is no arrogance in this but only the truth. It is also how we need to be approaching this truth, not with apologies, but with boldness that comes from being sure of what we believe and knowing the great importance of our mission. As Jesus declared, the only way to the Father is through the Son. The only way to salvation is through Jesus Christ. `We have no other argument, we need no other plea, it is enough that Jesus dies and that he dies for me.` One way, one truth, emboldening us to press on for the salvation of mankind. Make sure you are standing on the Rock of ages and not the sinking sand of this world`s teachings.
- Jesus! the Name high over all,
In hell or earth or sky;
Angels and men before it fall,
And devils fear and fly.
We have no other argument,
We need no other plea;
It is enough that Jesus died,
And that He died for me.
- Jesus! the Name to sinners dear,
The Name to sinners giv’n;
It scatters all their guilty fear,
It turns their hell to Heav’n.
- Jesus the pris’ner’s fetters breaks,
And bruises Satan’s head;
Pow’r into strengthless souls He speaks,
And life into the dead.
- Oh, that mankind might taste and see
The riches of His grace!
The arms of love that compass me
Would all the world embrace.
- Oh, that my Jesu’s heav’nly charms
Might every bosom move!
Fly, sinners, fly into those arms
Of everlasting love.
- Him I shall constantly proclaim,
Though earth and hell oppose;
Bold to confess His glorious Name
Before a world of foes.
- His only righteousness I show,
His saving grace proclaim;
’Tis all my business here below
To cry, “Behold the Lamb!”
- Happy, if with my latest breath
I may but gasp His Name,
Preach Him to all and cry in death,
“Behold, behold the Lamb!”