September 30, 2007
In Part 1 of our series on the study on ‘The End Time Delusion and Pharisee Spirit’, we saw that it is imperative that we take The Lord’s warning about not being deceived, seriously. We truly live in the last days and one of the signs of that we are in the last days will be unprecedented levels of lies and deception in the Church itself.
We are to examine all that we hear in churches today using scriptures as our standard. For most of the church as it is today has been compromised with lies and deception from Satan. Those who refuse to discern using the whole counsel of God’s Word as a standard, are ‘selling’ their souls to Satan the father of all lies and deception.
Pharisee Spirit – They never practice what they preach
(1) Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
(2) Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat:
(3) All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
Matthew 23 is one chapter in which The Lord explicitly deals with the Pharisees of His days and exposes them for who they really are. Pharisees represented the religious leaders and those who were supposed to know the Truth but never practiced it.
These were individuals who believed in an institutionalized form of religion and practicing the traditions of men while rejecting the commands of The Lord. They loved popularity and fame and money just like the Christian religious leaders of today in both the mainstream and evangelical churches.
Pharisees were found of preaching but not practicing what they preached. Jesus Christ gives us a clue here about this Pharisee spirit that we must all stand out and watch…and this is the trait of preaching God’s Word yet not practicing what is says.
We have many Bible Colleges and folks with PhDs in Theology but will not practice what Jesus Christ commanded us to do. All that such folks care about is ‘Intellectual Entertainment’ but not taking action with Truth known – no acting on God’s Word and Obeying His commandments. Such behavior steams from a Pharisee Spirit and a trait of a False Prophet.
The Pharisee Spirit –prides in the Traditions of Men…
(4) For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
This Pharisee Spirit is one that prides in setting Traditions of men as commandment of God yet rejecting the true commandments of The Lord. We have traditions today in the churches that are unbiblical and not supported by Scriptures but rather contradict God’s Holy Word.
Such traditions as ‘Tithes Doctrine’, Praying on Sunday Doctrine, Easter, Christmas, Mega Church Building, ‘Touch not the Anointed’, Submission to the ‘Man of God’ (False Submissions) and many other Traditions which are made to control the masses while exploiting them so as to sustain the palatial lifestyles of the ‘Men of God’. Such is the Pharisee and False Prophet Spirit.
The Pharisee Spirit – Prides in Elitism…
(5) But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
(6) And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
(7) And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
False Prophets will always desire the higher positions among men. They always crave to be noticed and received as important and highly respected people among men. They love to have fame, special status, and recognition as noble people among the sons of men. Though sometimes, false prophets and Pharisees will come in ‘humbly’, yet at the end of the day they will have it in their agenda to seek total control of the masses.
They will use false humility as a vehicle to arrive at their cravings for honor and aristocracy among the undiscerning sons of men. They will do all to retain aristocracy and elitism. Those who dare criticize them are excommunicated and others threatened with doctrines such as ‘don’t touch the anointed of God’… Pharisees and False Prophets will always love to exalt themselves both subtly and overtly…they always love people exalting them too; as Elitism is a desire deeply rooted in them.
Pharisee and False Prophet Spirit – Self Exaltation…
(8) But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
(9) And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
(10) Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
(11) But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
(12) And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
In these last days, Man is out on adventures of ‘discovering self’ and this temptation, the Church has not escaped. Many self exaltation programs are out there dubbed as ‘self help’, ‘positive thinking’, ‘discovering one’s self’, and a host of New Age and Eastern mystic philosophies. It is with this New Age background that many preachers such as Joyce Meyer, Joel Osteen, Robert Schuler, Rick Warren, TD Jakes, and many others are using to preach a ‘Positive Thinking’ gospel.
However, all this has to do with self exaltation and exaltation of Man. It works for the modern day Pharisees in that they prepare their followers to accept Elitism and Aristocracy in the Church through such messages of ‘Positive Thinking’. In other words, if a Preacher is driving a Rolls Royce, lives in a million dollar palatial home, and owns a Gulf Stream Jet, then it was because they ‘discovered who they are’ and are ‘called’ and ‘anointed’ of God and no one should critic their opulent lifestyles…
However, Jesus Christ warned us not to call anyone ‘Master’ except Jesus Christ. The greatest among us should be a servant. We are to call no one Father on earth except our Father in Heaven. Yet today the Catholic Church blatantly disobeys this command. The Evangelicals have followed the ways of the Catholics and are returning to Rome. They too are fascinated with titles, honors and accolades that come from Man. They have been taken over by an Elite Spirit… Brethren, Jesus warned us against this evil Pharisee Elite spirit and we are to utterly reject it…
Pharisees and False Prophets a Hindrance…
(13) But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
Pharisees and False Prophets will knowingly or unknowingly shut the Kingdom of Heaven against men because of the false doctrines that they teach and their resistance to Truth. What they actually do in resisting Truth is that they lead the people of God into rebellion against Truth and against The Lord Jesus Christ.
So, it is very important that believers discern what their pastors are teaching and separate from those who teach false doctrines or teachings that contradict God’s Word. Otherwise, if you don’t separate from such then you are being taught Rebellion against God and His Holy Word.
Secondly the character of many Pharisees and False prophets will always be contrary to God’s Holy Word and as such a stumbling block to many. The Testimony of false Pastors and Preachers is not that of Jesus Christ but always that of worldliness and lusts of the flesh. These always hinder those who would have otherwise gotten saved.
This we also must check ourselves, are there any unbiblical teachings and character traits in us that would stumble people from getting to the Kingdom of Heaven? Let’s examine ourselves to see if we are still in the faith.
Extortion and Fleecing is a Hallmark of Pharisees…
(14) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
One of the hallmarks of false preachers and pastors is the extortion and fleecing of believers. They always device doctrines that seek to gain money and material wealth from the believers. The whole ‘Sowing’ doctrine out of TBN TV is geared towards fleecing believers while promising them ‘Heaven on Earth’.
Jesus Christ has warned that those who are involved in that false gospel of greed will receive greater damnation. In other words among the damned, these extortionist and fleecing pastors will receive a greater damnation. Judgment is coming to the whole prosperity movement and unless they repent, their damnation will even be greater…
False Evangelization and Missions…
(15) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.
While in America, I attend a Church that claimed to be very missionary oriented and the Pastor would claim how large sections of Asia and Africa in the 10/40 Window are becoming ‘Christian’. Another Ugandan Pastor featured on 700 Club with Pat Robertson and claimed that about 60 to 80 percent of Uganda is Christian.
However, being from Africa, I knew that such statistics were false and just an assumption. The folks who they claimed were 60 percent Christians lived lives contrary to scripture and immersed in the False Prosperity Gospel…
So, false missionaries always produce false converts and make them worse than they themselves. The Converts of TBN prosperity gospel in Africa, are worse greedy preachers than their masters of TBN TV…
We have people who travel all the way from the USA, England and Western world and come to Africa only to make converts for their Baptist, Presbyterian, Methodist, Episcopalian, Church of God, Assemblies of God etc and not to make converts for Jesus Christ.
I remember visiting a large Assemblies of God Church in Kansas City USA and the Pastor stood to claim how the denomination was the fastest growing in America. When I cross checked the data that they provided in their Evangel Magazine, the converts where largely from Africa and not America. Worse is that they have not taught them the Bible but taught them Theological views of their American Assemblies of God denominations.
It is sad that American Christian Denominations collect millions of Dollars for Missions and Evangelism yet use this money not to preach Jesus Christ and Bible Truth but merely expand their denominations worldwide and make converts in the likeness of their Baptist, Methodist, or Assemblies of God Denominations. This is not Evangelism but spiritual colonialism and expansionism.
However, there are true missionaries who have come and given their lives in Africa not for any denomination but for Jesus Christ and for such our prayers and support goes out.
Interested in the gift only – godliness a of means of gain…
(16) Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!
(17) Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?
(18) And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty.
(19) Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift?
(20) Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon.
(21) And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein.
(22) And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.
Jesus Christ referred to the Pharisees as fools and blind. They are only interested in the gifts and therefore enact doctrines that bind people to giving a gift and they make sure that it is a very good gift.
They will compromise Bible Doctrine for the sake of money and material gifts. They will create doctrines so people are bound to give them gifts and will feel guilty and condemned if they don’t give to these ‘men of God’.
The Prosperity Doctrines of ‘Sowing’ and Tithing are such examples were saints have been turned into slaves for the Pastors and Preachers. The sad thing though is that many believers will still continue giving to such men even when they know the truth. They are trapped into worship of Man and searching for miracles…
It is important to note here that Jesus Christ was NOT teaching us to swear by the Throne of God or to practice the Law of Moses but was correcting the Pharisees in to things they ought to have done even as they practiced the Mosaic Law. Many use this verse as an excuse to swear by the Throne of God but contradict other scriptures…
(12) But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation.
The Tithing Doctrine and Pharisees…
(23) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
(24) Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.
It is interesting that the Tithe Doctrine was a special interest to the Pharisees and it’s not surprising today it is one of the most pushed doctrines out there in churches today. It has become the hallmark of prosperity preachers and become the foundation through which prosperity preachers promise riches and ‘blessings’ if people tithe to their ministries.
Today’s false preachers and pastors are big on tithing that they have neglected the Teachings of Jesus Christ simply because they love money. They have placed burdens on people that they themselves cannot carry. Tithing, sowing, and giving have become the central doctrines of many preachers today, especially on TBN TV. This they do while they ignore all other scriptures.
These preachers force people to practice the Law of Moses while ignoring The Work of Christ Jesus on The Cross. If Jesus Christ fulfilled the Law of Moses, why then practice it? Why then do preachers choose to practice only Tithing out of the entire Law of Moses? Why not Circumcision or keeping the Sabbath which they hypocritically say was fulfilled by Jesus Christ?
So, Pharisees and False Teachers inside Christendom are interested in Tithing because of greed and gain. It is survival and a living for them; godliness is means of gain for them.
One should note that Jesus Christ was NOT teaching us to tithe and keep the Law of Moses but was rebuking the Pharisees for their failure to keep the Law of Moses and hypocritically choosing only to keep those Laws of Moses that were financially beneficial to them…. Man failed at keeping the Law of Moses…
(1) And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.
(2) When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question.
(3) And being brought on their way by the church, they passed through Phenice and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the Gentiles: and they caused great joy unto all the brethren.
(4) And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them.
(5) But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.
(6) And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter.
(10) Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
(11) But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.
Jesus Christ fulfilled the Law of Moses including the Law of Moses Concerning Tithes. That is why Jesus Christ taught giving and Paul the apostle taught the same but not tithing. Those who proclaim and preach tithing as the only Mosaic Law we are to keep in the New Testament should also preach circumcision.
To them justification for God’s Blessing is through Tithing and not the work of Jesus Christ on the Cross. Jesus Christ taught giving and Paul also taught giving, so should we. Tithing has become a burden upon many Christians and a Law of many Churches and Pastors today, bringing many people into Bondage.
Those who practice it also nullify the work of Jesus Christ on the Cross by believing they can gain Grace and Justification by keeping the Law of Moses concerning Tithing.
(11) But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
(12) And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
(13) Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
(14) That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Justification to receive the Blessing of Abraham is through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior…Amen.
False Humility and False Righteousness…
(25) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.
(26) Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
(27) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.
(28) Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
False Humility and false righteousness has captured many in the evangelical movement, let alone the main stream churches. Many falsely humble themselves so as to be seen in the public as pious and yet inside they are filled with hypocrisy and iniquity. They are filled with greed, covetousness, and materialism. They are champions in speaking half truth as a cover-up for their iniquity and greed.
Jesus Christ described these fellows as washing the outside of a cup yet inside them are full of extortion and excess especially those in the prosperity movement. Jesus Christ went ahead to describe these fellows as white graves that appear beautiful outside but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.
This is what many leaders in the evangelical movement have become – Pharisees with false humility allover them. They appear righteous before men but inside are wolves and evil brute beasts that are in rebellion against the Word of Jesus Christ. That is why they love pious titles and accolades such as ‘Man of God’, Bishop, Doctor etc so they can impose their illegal authority on the people of God.
False Humility and False Righteousness is something that we must all watch out for, that we don’t get caught in it. It is very easy for Satan to attack the people of God with a false security that they are more humble than others and are far better righteous than others. False humility will go further in that people will think they are holy and righteous because they fast 4 times a month, pray 12 hours a day, pay their tithe and do many religious things. We have all the time to examine our hearts in light of God’s Word that we are not taken over by this false humility.
Finally, Pharisee Spirit Seeks To Murder True Saints of God…
(29) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
(30) And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
(31) Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.
(32) Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.
(33) Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?
(34) Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:
(35) That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.
(36) Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.
Those with a Pharisee Spirit will always persecute the true servants of The Lord. They persecuted Jesus Christ until they killed Him but He rose from the dead on the third day. Pharisees and religious leaders persecuted the early saints too in the book of Acts and also persecuted Paul the apostle. Pharisees and religious leaders will persecute and kill true saints of God in this generation of ours.
Jesus Christ prophesied about brother betraying brother in Matthew 24, this will certainly happen in our times as church leaders and members taken over by a Pharisee spirit will be filled with rage and murder the true saints of God, just like Cain murdered his brother Abel. Persecution will begin in Christendom in these last days. Those who stand out for Truth will be opposed, persecuted, and even killed by those so-called Christians who hate the truth and have rebelled against it.
However, Jesus Christ gives a strong warning against the Pharisees and all False Christian Leaders of our day…they risk damnation in hell unless they repent. This is a warning to those preachers and pastors who are engaged in misleading God’s People with false teachings which contradict truth; unless they repent they will end up in hell. We normally preach ‘Hell messages’ to none believers but I have some ‘Hell message’ for False and Idolatrous Christian Leaders that if you don’t repent will not escape the damnation of Hell.
Jesus Christ states that he will send out His servants to these false leaders to warn them but the false leaders will turn around and persecute, crucify, and even kill the servants of The Lord. The false Christian leaders of today will turn against the true saints of God and throw them out of their churches and persecute the saints of God from city to city. It is important to note that Pharisees of today operate under a spirit of rebellion against Jesus Christ and His Truth and therefore are antichrist though they may put on a religious and hypocritical showing that they are Christian.
Jesus Christ further states that the Blood of Abel all they way down to Zacharias son of Barachias will be counted on Pharisees and false preachers. This is a very strong indictment. Brethren, it is time that we check ourselves that we are not in anyway possessed by the leaven of the Pharisees that Jesus Christ is warning us about here. The judgment of Pharisees, false prophets, false apostles is already set – damnation in Hell.
Their House is Left Desolate…
(37) O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
(38) Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
(39) For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.
Jesus Christ spoke of how the Jewish people had rejected not only the prophets that The Lord sent but also rejected Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ spoke of how He had always wanted to protect them but he could not because the rebellious attitude of the Jews towards The Lord. He prophesied that they would not see Him until they say ‘blessed is he who comes in the Name of The Lord’.
Today much of the church has forsaken The Lord Jesus Christ and has embarked on a rebellious journey against the Truth in God’s Holy Word. Jesus Christ has sent His true servants inside Christendom, only to be rebuffed, persecuted, and thrown out of churches.
As a result judgment is coming in Christendom and The Lord will shake all that can be shaken until only those things which cannot be shaken stay standing. Judgment will begin in the house of The Lord and on the false Christian leaders who have mislead the people of God by teaching false doctrines and making the people of God love the things of this world.
Today just like in Jesus’ time on earth, Jesus Christ prophesied that the Jewish House was left desolate, deserted, isolated, bleak, uninhabited, wild, barren and depressing, for other terms related to ‘desolate’. The Holy Spirit had left their habitation and no longer dwelt with them because of their rebellion towards The Lord that was certainly stirred up by the Pharisee Spirit whom Jesus Christ had been rebuking.
Many Churches today have been left desolate and empty, void of The Holy Spirit and with a word written on them that says ‘ICHABOD’ – The Glory of The Lord has departed. This is because many churches, their pastors, leaders, teachers, and Christians are in rebellion against Christ Jesus and have shunned His Commandments. What operate in such churches today are devils, demons, deceiving spirits and doctrine of demons.
1 Timothy 4:1-2
(1) Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
(2) Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
My prayer is that you will repent and flee such churches and seek out believers of the same mind where the whole counsel of God’s Word is taught. The Pharisee spirit is an antichrist spirit, so don’t in anyway submit to such liar preachers and pastors.
To be continued…
In Christ Jesus