Friday, August 02, 2013

Daily Encouragement (08/02/13) "False Prophets"

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Friday, August 2, 2013

Iris (Photo by Georgia)
Bearded tongue iris
(Photo by Georgia)

"False Prophets"

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“An appalling and horrible thing has happened in the land: the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule on their own authority; and My people love it so! But what will you do at the end of it?" (Jeremiah 5:30,31). "Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many" (Matthew 24:11). "But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you" (2 Peter 2:1).

Venus flytrapMany plants and insects have a mutual symbiotic relationship. The plant provides nectar and the insect is a means of pollination. However, one of the most interesting plants in God's creation does not have a symbiotic relationship with insects, the Venus Fly Trap. This plant attracts flies and other insects for food using a deceptive method of easy nectar for the fly but often at a great price! Today we draw an analogy between this plant and false prophets. Their teaching may sound good but it is spiritually destructive!

In yesterday's message we shared a Scriptural teaching regarding traps. In studying for today's message I came across another reference to a trap in the Bible from an intriguing passage in Jeremiah. This chapter is dealing with conditions prior to the Fall of Israel (precisely the southern Kingdom of Judah) and the Babylonian exile, which was the period of time Jeremiah lived. He uses this colorful description, "For wicked men are found among My people, they watch like fowlers lying in wait; they set a trap, they catch men" (Jeremiah 5:26). Today we want to share a word of caution regarding false prophets.

It is critically important for the faithful follower of Christ in each generation to be aware of false prophets. A Bible search using key words such as false prophet provides many instances of warnings. The closing two verses from Jeremiah 5 are incredibly pertinent to our day. It looks like it could be a modern newspaper headline, "An appalling and horrible thing has happened in the land."  If our eyes are open we surely see the unravellings of the moral and spiritual fabric in our land. Can we even project what the next expression of decadence will be?

As Jeremiah states, "the prophets prophesy falsely". There are indeed many false prophets, those who claim to speak for God among us. Based on Scripture it should not surprise us that even the visible church does not speak with one voice in confronting the decay. Sadly there are voices claiming to represent Christ stating that evil is called good and good is called evil (see Isaiah 5:20).

It is vitally important that we be vigilant in our discernment regarding those who claim to speak for God. Jesus in a context of the end times states, "Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many" (Matthew 24:11). There have always been false prophets but apparently there will be an increase in the last days. It sure seems to me we are seeing that.

There are many parallels between modern America and apostate Israel such as the motivation of ease and economic gain, a disregard of divinely imposed moral restraints, the ungodliness of leadership (sin is scoffed at, approved, and even endorsed). Many false prophets spoke against the plan of God. Today we have many weak, compromising churches and pulpits which have succumbed to liberalism and accommodation with the world and are deceived.

Let us be on our guard so that we are not misled, and so that we will not mislead others either by our words or example.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, as the slide to decadence deepens, we see the influence it has on the Christian church at large. Fearing rejection and mockery from the world or appearing as unsuccessful in the eyes of the world, many church leaders become accepting of the current philosophies and lifestyles prominent in our day, rather than holding to the unchanging standards prescribed through Your commands in Scripture. In the gray areas, help us to be gracious. But in the black and white commands of Scripture help us to be brave, strong and unambiguous in our position and consistent in our example as permissiveness, false prophesies, and weakened leaders dot the landscape. When seekers want the timeless truth of Scriptures rather than the changing truth of our times we will be prepared to guide them to Your eternal truths. Keep us faithful in doing so. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.

Lancaster street view 8/2/13
This morning we had a stop in Lancaster and walked the city streets on a pleasant summer morning.

Lancaster street piano 8/2/13
Brooksyne played "Jesus Loves Me" on a street piano that was adjacent to a traffic light in the center of Lancaster this morning. Purposefully she plays "Jesus Loves Me' knowing that it will likely be familiar to passersby and it might just prompt one's spirit who learned this precious song as a child but has drifted from his or her spiritual upbringing. It's nice to hear favorable comments since most of these pianos are used more by children banging on them than people actually playing songs on them.

Lancaster Convention Center
The Lancaster Convention Center was built in the last ten years and used older historic buildings alongside the new construction.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Voice Of TruthVideo  Casting Crowns

Jeremiah 5

Amazing demonstration of the Venus Fly Trap in action  Video  BBC  (You may find yourself feeling sorry for the fly!!!)

Today's photo is taken from my cousin's wife Georgia's photo blog

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Stephen, Brooksyne and Ester Weber 04/21/13
Stephen and Brooksyne Weber

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Our other blogs:
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How to become a child of God

Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
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