Devotionals Sermon on the Mount

Spiritual Discrimination

On a human level we may not discriminate against people, be they from amongst our own ethnicity, language or nation or from any other ethnicity, language or nation across the face of the earth.

People may not have our unique culture, speak our brand of language or participate in our specific culture … but together we are all human beings … all descended from Adam through Noah … and more, we all share in the nature of our first parent, Adam. His sinful disposition indwells us all … so apart from skin color, language, ethnicity, nationality and culture, we are all fully human … fully sinfully human.

On the spiritual level there is discrimination, not based upon “I’m better than you or someone else”, but based upon who or what our God is and how we exercise our relationship with our God or god (idol). This does not mean we don’t love (yesterday’s Daily Note), pray for, mix with at home, work, neighborhood and in society with such people … we do and must, but on a spiritual level we discriminate … discriminate Truth from error. This is exactly what our Lord does … He discriminates on the spiritual and religious platform, especially between those who are truly His and those who are imposters. He says:

Mt 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

1) The triplets of deception … prophecy, exorcism and miracles. Many people within and without mainline Churches today say they act on behalf of God doing prophecy, exorcism and miracles. Jesus says these things do not necessary mean the performers (workers) of these things have an authentic relationship with Him.

(1) Prophecy. In the Old Testament God appointed prophets to speak to the people on His behalf because the written Word was not complete and only the religious leaders had access to it. Their duty was literally to say … “This is what God says to you … to do.” Counterfeit prophets arose throughout the life of Israel (Northern and Southern Kingdoms) saying they were from God whilst they were of the devil. God asks the question in Isaiah … and the answer is implied:

Isa 44:25 who foils the signs of false prophets and makes fools of diviners …

Peter tells us such people were present in the early Church Age too:

2Pe 2:1 But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you.

Today many give themselves the title “prophet” … are they for real? Yes as impostures! As we have already seen in Ephesians, of the four offices—

Eph 4:11 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up

—we only have evangelists and pastor teachers left because we have the written Word of God. It is complete. Nothing needs to be added … it is final, sufficient, authentic, inspired, inerrant and authoritative. We don’t needs prophets and apostles because their office ceased by the turn of the First Century as we have the complete Bible.

(2) Exorcism. Where some are still gifted to cast out demonic spirits today … such are seldom found indwelling people in the western world. Normally they would be associated with people in religions who dig into the dark world of evil, idolatry and calling up spirits. But there were and are those who are non-believers who did and do exorcism … evil casting out evil!

Ac 19:13 Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of Jesus, whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.” 14 Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and I know about Paul, but who are you?” 16 Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.

Where this is a ministry that has not ended … some performing it are not part of the Lord Jesus.

(3) Miracles. Yes God can and does perform the miraculous, though such might not be as numerous as people claim because there are many tricks (like a magician uses) used by con-artists these days to give the impression they are performing the miraculous.

2 Th 2:9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders

satan’s agents work “all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders” … and … whatever you make of Revelation 16—

Rev 16:13 Then I saw three evil spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet. 14 They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty

—evil spirits perform miraculous signs.

2) The triplets of deception … prophecy, exorcism and miracles, as used by those who are counterfeit, have a specific purpose.

(1) It is to distract, to take attention away from the real purpose of the Gospel … which is to convict people of sin and their need of Jesus to save their souls from sin, the devil and hell.

(2) It is to attract attention to self so that people stand in awe of their so called “supernatural” abilities. In other words, they become the objects or appreciation, fascination and worship.

(3) It is to rob people of their money. Largely this is the target of the false prophet or false teacher. In other words they are in business … but the business is evil for it seduces people to part with their wealth and possessions deceitfully. Consider carefully …

2 Pet 2:3 In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up

1Ti 6:3 If anyone teaches false doctrines and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, 4 he is conceited and understands nothing. He has an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions 5 and constant friction between men of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain.

Although there will be false teachers, Lord, protect us from such evil spirits. Amen.

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