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Posts Tagged ‘not the Gospel’

Day Seventy-Five
Exposing Another Gospel
(It’s a Different Apple)

“For [you seem readily to endure it] if a man comes and preaches another Jesus than the One we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the [Spirit] you [once] received or a different gospel from the one you [then] received and welcomed; you tolerate [all that] well enough! 2Cor 11:4 Amp

 

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Would you recognize another gospel, if you heard one? Would you register a note of discord with what you know from the Scriptures? Think about it…
I recently encountered a post on Facebook that stopped me cold. It sounded very savvy, very wise, even soothing to a Christian populous hungry for more. This is what it recommended:
“You need to associate with people that inspire you, people that challenge you to rise higher, people that make you better. Don’t waste your valuable time with people that are not adding to your growth. Your destiny is too important.”
On the surface this seems un-offensive, even sounds like sage advice. But I want to show you how to quickly recognize something when it is actually adversarial to the word of God and the gospel at large. We do this by plugging this vague guidance into a Bible reality to see if it agrees.
This above quote focuses you on the importance of your destiny, and the people who can get you there. So let’s look at a great man of Bible destiny, Joseph, son of Jacob. As you know, Joseph went on to literally save the world from famine and death. He became to the Egyptians, Zephenath-paneah, savior of the world (that’s quite a destiny for us to consider).
The quote is also urging you to carefully choose people of influence in your life – people that make you better. It says people that don’t add to your growth are wasting your time. So in Joseph’s case, let’s take a quick rundown of the people who impacted him. His brothers threw him down a well, plotted to kill him, but ended up selling him to traders bound for Egypt. He is sold as a slave to Potiphar’s house (a prominent officer of Pharaoh). In refusing seduction by Potiphar’s wife, he is imprisoned for rape – wrongly. He languishes in prison only to watch the possibility for restoration and release pass him by through the forgetfulness of Pharaoh’s butler and baker. It is only when Pharaoh himself is plagued with dreams that need interpretation that Joseph is remembered and brought before Pharaoh.

This is the changing point for Joseph, but to put it into perspective think of this: Joseph was 17 when his brothers sold him. He is roughly 30 when he is restored with them (13 years after they sell him), and during the second year of the famine he is roughly 39.
Our reality check with this quote then begs the question, how does the quote’s philosophy of choosing people to make you better — work for Joseph? The people who end up contributing to his destiny are betrayers, liars, cheats… ultimately they are seeking his destruction. They are the very people the quote guidance would encourage him to dump all along – yet he really didn’t have the chance. He became captive – not to their agenda, but to God’s. Out of Joseph’s own mouth he later says to his brothers: “As for you, you thought evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring about that many should be kept alive, as they are this day.” Gen 50:20
The point in this discussion is: like Joseph we don’t know our full destiny. We can’t choose a path of people to include or exclude that can help us to achieve our destiny. We don’t have the wisdom or the intel to do so. God’s destiny for us includes an inner work that only He can inspire in us and draw out of us. No amount of selective saturation or posturing with people who I think can make me better can affect that inner change – God has a plan which I am not privy to!
I want to propose the entire tone of this quote is completely opposite of the Gospel message. Here are just a few Scriptures that clarify that claim:
– Rom 12:16 “… do not be haughty (snobbish, high-minded, exclusive), but readily adjust yourself to [people, things] and give yourselves to humble tasks. Never overestimate yourself or be wise in your own conceits.”
– 1Jn2:6 “Whoever says he abides in Him ought [as a personal debt] to walk and conduct himself in the same way in which He walked and conducted Himself.”
– Phil 2:8 “And after He appeared in human form, He abased and humbled Himself [still further] and carried His obedience to the extreme of death, even the death of the cross!”
The quote under examination carries no attitude of humility or sacrifice, obedience, nor love of others. It instead carries a distinct aroma of self-love and self-focus that puts itself and its perceived destiny before all other things. This has no affiliation with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and what He has done for us. It has no reliance on the Lord for the fulfillment of His destiny in us. Instead it strokes the ears and hunger of those who want to believe it, and comforts them in their pursuits and posturings as being in agreement with light – when the attitude of the heart in this quote is instead aligned with darkness.

Today more than ever it is time for believers to become savvy of the wiles of the enemy and his intention to distract, deceive, and waylay us on a route not consistent with Bible Truth. It’s time to part company with arguments, and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and to lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One), — especially every Facebook thought and offering found there… (or anywhere else for that matter).
Shalom

 

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