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Wednesday, February 25, 2015
THE PROPHET’S HOUR OF DECISION
The man, the vile man, was under the vast woe of the LORD. “Woe is me!”, he cried, “for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts”. Then flies one of the seraphims, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from the heavenly altar, where the blood of Christ has been offered once as a sacrifice. This coal was laid upon this man’s mouth, and touched his lips, and thereby, his iniquity is taken away and his sin is purged! Then the voice of the LORD rang forth, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?”, and this man purchased with the blood of Christ said, “Here am I; send me.” And thus the LORD had put forth His hand and touched his mouth and said unto him “Behold I have put My Words in thy mouth” (Jer 1:9). The Spirit of the LORD comes upon him, and he shall prophesy, for he has been turned into another man (1 Sam 10:6). And thus this anointed man of God, now a true prophet, is sent to tell this people, “Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.” (Is 6:2-9)
This man has most assuredly stood in the LORD’s counsel, and will thus do that which every true prophet does: he will cause the LORD’s people to hear His WORDs, that they that hear may turn from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings. For is He a God at hand and not afar off? Can any hide himself in secret places that He shall not see Him? Does He not fill heaven and earth? (Jer 23:22-24) This prophet is filled with the Holy Spirit of God, who, in His coming, reproves the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they believe not in Christ, of righteousness, because Christ has gone to His Father, and we see Him in the flesh no more; and of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged (John 1:8-11). For this prophet has been set as a watchman unto the house of God, His purchased people; therefore he must hear the WORD at God’s mouth, and warn them from Him. When the LORD says unto the wicked, “O wicked man, thou shalt die” if he does not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will God require from his hand. Nevertheless, if he warns the wicked of his way to turn from it, if he does not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity but he has delivered his own soul. (Ex 33:7-9) And thus the prophet who has the Spirit will carry the reproofs of sin, righteousness, and judgment, the judgment of the SWORD against those who dwell in wickedness. He cries aloud, spares not, lifts up his voice like a trumpet, and shews God’s people their transgression and sins (Is 58:1)
Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him. (Lev 19:17)
As all of humanity pines away under the fierce wrath of God, you have seen beloved remnant, that true prophets, true evangelists, will preach true conversion. You have seen that the false prophets preach false conversion: decisionalism, legalism, and the like. Whatever is the “gospel” of the false prophet, you have ascertained that it is not, in Spirit and in truth, turning the people from their sins, for it is not the WORD of Christ, and thus cannot elicit faith upon hearing thus, and accordingly regeneration of the old man into the new creature made to be like Christ in righteousness and true holiness does not take place upon the infertile words and infertile hearts. For the Spirit who does reprove the world had not been with the false prophet nor in his false gospel. There is no genuine conviction of inner depravity, of moral impotence, of continual corruption. There is no revelation of the righteousness of God, whereby the sinner feels himself falling infinitely short and likewise vile. There is no sense of a fear of the coming judgment, that the devil himself and all who follow his world-loving deceptions are condemned. There is only the arm of flesh manifested, self attempts to better oneself, selfish desires for happiness and comfort, emotional appeals…all manner of fleshly inclinations responsible for the false conversion of the false convert. And thus these false prophets preach peace to those who remain under the wrath of God! For the souls are not fleeing the coming sword through repentance, but remain at ease in sin.
Dear saints, would you then consider the role of a prophet to the people of God, truly regenerated people? Does not the same principle apply? If the prophet is turning the people away from sin, causing them to behold the righteousness and glory of Christ, and instilling within them a holy fear he is a true prophet. For the true prophets themselves have known the terror of the LORD, and so persuade men, and are made manifest unto God, and in the consciences of the listeners (2 Cor 5:11). If the prophet is truly standing in the Counsel of the WORD, hearing WORDs from His mouth, he will be turning not only the heathen, but the very people of God themselves from their sin! Consider how Paul exposed the carnality, envying, strife, and divisions of the Corinthians (see 1 Cor 3), how he proclaimed that those among the Galatians who had sought justification through the law had fallen from grace (Gal 5:4), that the apostle Peter himself was to be blamed when he unrighteously refused to eat with the Gentiles in the presence of the Jews (Gal 2:11)… there are innumerable examples of when prophets exposed the sin of God’s people. The burdens of many of Christ’s parables, the entire burden of the apostles in the epistles, the entire burden of what the Spirit was saying to the churches in Revelations 2-3 are all demonstrating prophets exposing the sins of God’s people, warning them of impending judgment lest they repent!
But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind Me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men. Matt 16:23
34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. 35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man. (Luke 21:34-36)
14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: 15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; (Heb 12:14-15)
Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth. Rev 2:16
The true prophet will turn God’s people from their own sin; his preaching will result in the mortification of the flesh in true saints who hearken unto him. For the true prophet has the Spirit with him. He shines forth the light. Darkness has no place to hide. Deeds are manifest. The two-edged SWORD is brought forth whereby the thoughts and intents of the heart are discerned. For there is no creature that is not manifest in His sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do. (Heb 4:12-13)
10 Therefore, O thou son of man, speak unto the house of Israel; Thus ye speak, saying, If our transgressions and our sins be upon us, and we pine away in them, how should we then live? 11 Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel? (Ez 33:10-11)
And thus, you saints who have feared God, you recall how even after you were converted you were compelled to holy living by hearing Paul Washer preach on true conversion. You were compelled to labor in prayer for revival when Jonathan Edwards and George Whitefield spoke on revival. You were compelled to ardent love for the Savior when Charles Spurgeon preached the power of the atonement to sanctify the believer. Whenever a man of God, Calvinist though he be, was truly filled and anointed of the Spirit of God, he had turned the heathen and the saints from their sin! For He had the unction of the holy One, the savour of Christ, the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ!
Dear Calvinists, would you please consider now as we proceed a certain Biblical reality, namely, that a once anointed prophet of God can digress into a position where he no longer stands in the Counsel of God, and thus no longer turns the people from their sins, though he had in time past? This prophet begins to love mammon and to be enticed by the lusts of the flesh and eyes and the pride of life. He begins to be leavened and intoxicated by false Christian systems around him. He starts to long for fame and accolade from certain other men. He seeks to maintain his established kingdom financially and thus he sacrifices his conscience and his integrity in subtle ways. He speaks certain things, seemingly right things, in an attempt to promote himself before his audiences. He conjures flatteries of other professing prophets with selfish motives. His love goes cold. His ardent fervor runs dry. HIS PRAYER LIFE DIES. His former relentless passion against complacency and aloofness from the LORD’s felt presence dissipates. When once he had only been the darling of a few select honest God-seeking men, he now accumulates unto himself hosts of carnal people, who desire not the things of God, but rather his earthly appeals and Scripture-coated hypocrisy, which altogether allows them to remain in the wicked desires of their hearts! Hear the last words of the Apostle Paul to the Ephesian elders:
29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.31 Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears. (Acts 20:29-31)
Paul had not anointed false converts as elders in Ephesus, but true honest humble God-fearing men of God. And yet he knew that false prophets who rise from among these very men, and thus he did not cease to warn them by the space of three years night and day with tears! Similarly consider the burden of the Apostle Peter against false prophets in 2 Pet 2:
But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. 2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. (2 Pet 2:1-3)
1 Kings 13 describes a very pertinent example of what is being conveyed. There was a man of God who came out of Judah by the WORD of the LORD unto Bethem as Jeroboam stood by the altar to burn incense. The man cried against the altar in the WORD of the LORD saying “O altar, altar, thus saith the LORD; Behold, a child shall be born unto the house of David, Josiah by name; and upon thee shall he offer the priests of the high places that burn incense upon thee, and men’s bones shall be burnt upon thee”. The LORD confirmed His WORD through a sign: the man spoke that the altar would be rent and its ashes poured out. As Jeroboam cried out to lay hold of the man, his hand dried up and the altar was rent and its ashes poured out. This man had the Spirit and was preaching against the wickedness of king Jeroboam. The man prays and the LORD heals the king’s hand after the king pleads that this may happen. The king invites the man of God to come and refresh himself and receive a reward. The man of God refuses because God had told him not to eat bread, or drink water, or turn again by the same way he came. Thus the man obeyed the LORD and went another way. However an older prophet comes and asks him to eat with him. When the man states that the LORD had told him not to eat or drink, the old prophet declares that God had told him to bring the man back and feed and water him. The young prophet is deceived and complies. The old prophet then prophesies to the young prophet “forasmuch as thou hast disobeyed the mouth of the LORD, and hast not kept the commandment which the LORD thy God commanded thee, but camest back, and hast eaten bread and drunk water in the place, of the which the LORD did say to thee, Eat no bread, and drink no water, thy carcase shall not come unto the sepulcher of thy fathers”. Thus, when the young prophet left, a lion met him by the way, slew him, and his carcase was cast in the way. The very man who refused the king in subjection to the LORD, was overcome by the lusts of his flesh, and departed from his former steadfastness!
True prophets can forsake the right way, and go astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who LOVED THE WAGES OF UNRIGHTEOUSNESS: but was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet (2 Pet 2:15-16). They are as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speaking evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; and shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceiving while they feast with you. Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children: (2 Pet 2:12-15). These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a temptest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved forever. For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were CLEAN ESCAPED FROM THEM WHO LIVE IN ERROR! While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. For is AFTER THEY HAVE ESCAPED THE POLLUTIONS OF THE WORLD THROUGH THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, AFTER THEY HAVE KNOWN IT, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, the dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire. (2 Pet 2:17-22) Woe unto them! For they go in the way of Cain, and run greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose FRUIT WITHERETH, without fruit, TWICE DEAD, plucked up by the roots; raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever. (Jude 11-13).
25 See that ye refuse not Him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused Him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from Him that speaketh from heaven: 26 Whose voice then shook the earth: but now He hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.27 And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: 29 For our God is a consuming fire. (Heb 12:26-29)
It is a horrifying reality: true prophets turned into dead men, allured into the spirit of false Christianity, while maintaining the outer rhetoric of this decade’s anointed men of God who preach true conversion, the cross, the ransomed church of God saved to sin no more! For this is the way of hyprocrites, hypocrites of whom Christ said, “all therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not” (Matt 23:3). Did not Christ warn the multitudes to beware of the leaven of the Pharisees which is hypocrisy? For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known. Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed from the housetops. And He tells us to be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But He forewarns us whom we shall fear. We must fear Him, which after He hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear Him! (Luke 12:1-6) There is a Spiritual leavening effect of a man who preaches “true things” and does not walk in a continual abiding relationship with Christ. His congregational most assuredly, by Scriptural principle, will not be turned from sin in Spirit and in Truth. The Words of Scripture will become distorted and sealed to them. The Spirit is quenched. Men assume they are experiencing Scriptural realities that they know nothing of! And this can happen to the very saints of God who are under the teaching of once-anointed men of God who now have made compromises with the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience! LORD have mercy!
And thus, every true prophet will be tried, and he will have his “hour of decision” in which he must chose to allow the lusts of his flesh to be enticed, and fall into sin, and eventual death of himself and his followers (James 1:14-15, 2 Pet 2:19), or to be a true and righteous man who seeks the glory of Him that sent him (John 7:18), who labours, that, whether present or absent, he may be accepted of Him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Knowing therefore the terror of the LORD, the true prophet persuades men, and is made manifest unto God and is manifest to the consciences of men. (2 Cor 5:9-11). What does it mean that he is made manifest to God and man’s conscience? It means that he triumphs in Christ, and makes manifest the savour of His knowledge in every place he goes! For he is unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish: to the one he is the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things? For he is not as many, which corrupt the WORD of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God He speaks in Christ! (2 Cor 2:14-17). He comes to the people not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto them the testimony of God. For he determines not to know anything among them, save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. And he is with them in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling before God. And his speech and preaching is not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: that the faith of his hearers should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God and His wisdom! (see 1 Cor 2:1-7)!
Consider the hour of decision for a few significant prophets in Scriptures:
Moses’s Hour of Decision
24 And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him. 25 Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. 26 So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision. (Ex 4:24-26)
Aaron’s Hour of Decision
21 And Moses said unto Aaron, What did this people unto thee, that thou hast brought so great a sin upon them? 22 And Aaron said, Let not the anger of my lord wax hot: thou knowest the people, that they are set on mischief. 23 For they said unto me, Make us gods, which shall go before us: for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. 24 And I said unto them, Whosoever hath any gold, let them break it off. So they gave it me: then I cast it into the fire, and there came out this calf. 25 And when Moses saw that the people were naked; (for Aaron had made them naked unto their shame among their enemies:) 26 Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Who is on the Lord's side? let him come unto me. And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together unto him.27 And he said unto them, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbour. (Ex 32:21-27)
Joshua’s Hour of Decision
10 And the Lord said unto Joshua, Get thee up; wherefore liest thou thus upon thy face? 11 Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed My covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff.12 Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turned their backs before their enemies, because they were accursed: neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you.13 Up, sanctify the people, and say, Sanctify yourselves against to morrow: for thus saith the Lord God of Israel, There is an accursed thing in the midst of thee, O Israel: thou canst not stand before thine enemies, until ye take away the accursed thing from among you. (Josh 7:10-13
Gehazi’s Hour of Decision
(note: Gehazi was the prophet Elisha’s servant, just as in time past Elisha was the prophet Elijah’s servant. The servant of the prophet was as a prophet apprentice who should eventually receive the mantle of the prophet. Gehazi was no doubt initially converted, and likely went to hell.)
20 But Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said, Behold, my master hath spared Naaman this Syrian, in not receiving at his hands that which he brought: but, as the Lord liveth, I will run after him, and take somewhat of him. 21 So Gehazi followed after Naaman. And when Naaman saw him running after him, he lighted down from the chariot to meet him, and said, Is all well? 22 And he said, All is well. My master hath sent me, saying, Behold, even now there be come to me from mount Ephraim two young men of the sons of the prophets: give them, I pray thee, a talent of silver, and two changes of garments. 23 And Naaman said, Be content, take two talents. And he urged him, and bound two talents of silver in two bags, with two changes of garments, and laid them upon two of his servants; and they bare them before him. 24 And when he came to the tower, he took them from their hand, and bestowed them in the house: and he let the men go, and they departed. 25 But he went in, and stood before his master. And Elisha said unto him, Whence comest thou, Gehazi? And he said, Thy servant went no whither. 26 And he said unto him, Went not mine heart with thee, when the man turned again from his chariot to meet thee? Is it a time to receive money, and to receive garments, and oliveyards, and vineyards, and sheep, and oxen, and menservants, and maidservants? 27 The leprosy therefore of Naaman shall cleave unto thee, and unto thy seed for ever. And he went out from his presence a leper as white as snow. (2 Kings 5:20-27)
Jeremiah’s Hour of Decision:
19 Therefore thus saith the Lord, If thou return, then will I bring thee again, and thou shalt stand before Me: and if thou take forth the precious from the vile, thou shalt be as My mouth: let them return unto thee; but return not thou unto them. 20 And I will make thee unto this people a fenced brasen wall: and they shall fight against thee, but they shall not prevail against thee: for I am with thee to save thee and to deliver thee, saith the Lord.21 And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem thee out of the hand of the terrible. (Jer 15:19-21)
God was telling Jeremiah that only if he returned, only if he took forth the precious from the vile, that is, by the Spirit’s power, he made a distinction between the holy and the unholy, the clean and the unclean, then, and only then, would he stand in the Counsel of God and be God’s undefeatable witness against the people! For He suffers no man to do this anointed man wrong: yea, He reproves kings for his sake saying “touch not Mine anointed, and do My prophets no harm”. The prophet goes forth declaring His glory among the heathen; His marvelous works among all nations. For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praise: He is also to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the people are idols: but the LORD made the heavens. Glory and honour are in his presence; strength and gladness are in His place! (1 Chron 16:21-27)
Is it a “scorning of the Spirit” to acknowledge that former true prophets are now acting as false prophets? You must understand that though Spiritual men acknowledge that this has occurred, they continue to acknowledge the former work of God in these backslidden or reprobate prophets, so much so that their Spirit-filled sayings are still quoted, and their true testimony is still praised. Remember how David cut off a piece of Saul’s skirt, and his heart smote him and thus he spoke of the backslidden King Saul, “The LORD forbid that I should do this thing unto my master, the LORD’s anointed, to stretch forth my hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the LORD” (1 Sam 24:6-7). Likewise in the account of the deception of the young prophet by the old prophet, the old prophet mourns over the young prophet saying “Alas, my brother!” and gives him an honourable burial. After he buried him he says to his sons “When I am dead, then bury me in the sepulcher wherein the man of God is buried; lay my bones beside his bones: for the saying which he cried by the Word of the LORD against the altar in Bethel, and against all the houses of the high places which are in the cities of Samaria, shall surely come to pass.” (1 Kings 13:27-32)
Finally dear saints, you must consider whether your unconditional eternal security preachers are presently filled with Spirit, speaking before God, seeking the glory of God, whether they are sent by God to turn you from your sin. The question being asked is not whether they had turned you from sin in time past, or whether they had been instrumental in your conversion, or whether you had been edified by their preaching in the past, but rather, at the present time, is the burden of their message turning you from sin, not simply giving you a far off longing for God, not simply causing you to think fondly upon the distant shores of heaven while you remain in complacency, but is it filling you with a holy fear, a bold vengeance, to lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily besets you (Heb 12:1), an exceedingly great sense that you cannot go on living without repenting of your current lukewarmness, a convincing of your soul that if you do not repent you will perish! God forbid, but many of you continue in your carnality without even knowing your dire estate because you use each other as the standard rather than the Scriptures! For in Scripture men who are right with God, who are covered by grace, are preoccupied with Christ, His Kingdom, and His righteousness! He is not simply a morning or Sunday or conference fling affair! He overtakes your continuous daily meditations. You are living by the Spirit of God, mortifying the deeds of the body, and thus you are the son of God (Rom 8:13-14)! And because you are born of God you are overcoming the world (1 John 5:4), and the world is hating you for it! For a servant is not greater than his Master (Matt 10:25)! You are experiencing the manifest tokens that you are walking with God: you are being persecuted for righteousness, and you are suffering for the cause of Christ (2 Thess 1:4-5, 2 Tim 3:12)! You are not a friend of the world and thus the world does not receive you or listen to you (1 John 4:5)! ARE YOUR TEACHERS CAUSING YOU TO SEE THAT YOUR CHRISTIANITY AND THAT OF THOSE AROUND YOU IS FAR OFF FROM BIBLICAL CHRISTIANITY!? Or are they causing you to console yourself in the Calvinistic doctrine of the perseverance of the saints while none of you have empowering anointing, or Spiritual gifts, or a deep prayer life, or victory over besetting sin, true boldness to preach and declare the sins of the wicked, joy unspeakable and full of glory, abounding love, peace that surpasseth knowledge, the fellowship of sharing in the sufferings of Christ, a Biblical church with Biblical elders where Biblical church purity and judgment is exercised, infallible assurance of your abiding union with Christ!...?
Furthermore, what if the LORD has chosen to teach His people at the present time, as we approach the darkest hour, with undeniable clarity, by His Spirit, through His TRUE PROPHETS the veracity of the reality that saints can fall away? And if these prophets are truly sent by God, they will compel you to remain in an abiding relationship with Christ, and they will not leave you at ease, with a flawed happiness and assurance when the bride of Christ languishes and has no vital reality with her Bridegroom! In the Spirit of Christ I ask you to seek His face and ask Him if these things be true: is the bride backslidden? Can she be damned if she does not repent? Are the prophets who preach peace to the converted remnant of God standing in the Counsel of God AT THE PRESENT TIME!
Please read Jeremiah 23 and Ezekiel 13 and 33.
Monday, January 19, 2015
AN OPEN LAMENT OF “www.thechurchofwells.org”
May the LORD have mercy. I have recently gone through the content of www.thechurchofwells.org, “Discerning the Church of Wells”. LORD have mercy. It seemed necessary to my soul to openly proclaim that I am grieved, yes, even ashamed, at the behavior of those herein who have made themselves to be judges of this matter: HeartCry, Paul Washer, Marc Glass, Mack Tomlinson, Greg Gordon, Matt Slick, Andrew Rappaport, Tony Miano… I am grieved at the author of this website, who lacked the audacity to name himself/theirselves, as well as the individuals whose public statements are portrayed. I need not even bring up some of their names (e.g. liberal authors Sonia Smith and Leah Caldwell, Wikipedia) for “what have I to judge them also that are without? Do not ye judge them that are within? But them that are without God judgeth…” (1 Cor 5:12-13).
Firstly I am grieved at the conglomeration of spirits that do speak in the statements and articles presented there. Paul Washer, HeartCry, and the rest who acclaim the true Gospel, have you not purposed long ago not to forge alliances with the wicked? Have you not regarded the terrible holiness of the LORD, whereby darkness and evil, and all who reside in such cannot enter His presence for they would be destroyed by the far off rays proceeding from the brightness of His appearance? Mr. Tomlinson, would you let Andrew Rappaport, Matt Slick, or Tony Miano speak at an I’ll Be Honest Conference? Matt Slick, would you let the authors of the Wikipedia page or Sonia Smith speak at your church? HeartCry would you openly declare that the Groves are certainly converted and honest individuals? Have you not purposed, I’ll Be Honest Community, to come out from false Christianity, to be separate in holiness, in doctrines of true conversion, and prayer for revival? I’ll Be Honest Community, when have you ever referenced the heathen to declare something assuredly to the remnant and the world? When have you ever chosen to partner with any and every source and witness available…and simply to justify an unjust condemnation? I am ashamed. I love you all. The LORD knows that I (and the brethren here many of whom do not even know you personally) do bear you upon my heart continually. I will not rest in the travail of my soul until the LORD Himself has chosen to be finished with you or He delivers you safely to His heavenly Kingdom! If only you had video footage of our prayer meetings, the hours of weeping and agony that we have before the LORD—grief that is not self-derived, but granted by the Spirit, who reveals the deep things of the heart of God. The grief is over your backslidings, over the darkness that is coming over you even as you continue to reject us. How will you hear His voice? How will you feel His pleasure? How will you be received by this King when you have chosen to behave in this foolish manner, when you refuse to even meet us and speak to us, when you make statements assuring the world that Leonard Ravenhill, Rolfe Barnard, and Charles Spurgeon would certainly not approve of our doctrine or practices and that they would not worship with us? What exactly have you done? You have openly declared that we are wolves in sheep's clothing, that we are not converted, that we are trying to promote our “error-filled cause”. You accuse us of cutting ties with our families, and yet you have cut ties with us in the name of a righteous separation. But you have not even spoken to us! You believe Greg Gordon who had a personal experience with “two young men” from our church. You believe the online community of slander initially instigated by less than 10 parents, mostly mothers, who have slandered us unrighteously. How will you stand before Him? He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbor cometh and searcheth him (Prov 18:17). The simple believeth every word: but the prudent man looketh well to his going (Prov 14:15)
That be far from Thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? (Gen 18:25)
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. (Ps 1:1)
I committed your same error in the past: I believed the reports of a few witnesses and concluded that the Church of Wells was extreme, unrighteously judgmental and zealous, that they were simply young people filled with a zeal that lacks knowledge and that they had a pride about themselves…exactly as your website does seek to portray them, I once believed this. For I had met several people like this in the past. I believe I know exactly the type of brutish young men that you are seeking to present our elders as: those who love power, who lack the Spirit, who are zealous, but have no brokenness or prayer life, no true nearness to the sweet presence of the merciful LORD Jesus Christ, those who are not actually living off of the fountain of life through the abiding presence of the LORD of the Gospel of grace, those who refuse to consider that they may be wrong in any sense. The LORD knows what you are trying to present them as, and you likely believe in your conscience that they are such. But as I have stated before, I could not continue in my steadfastness before the LORD and in a pure conscience. For I had been foolish to believe these things without even speaking to them, without even hearing their witness. You have not met them! You do not know them! How is it that you claim to be wise, a Spiritual shepherd regarding what the remnant ought to do concerning us, when you do not speak to us? You have not even reproved us to our face. You say you know of “so-and-so” who has? But have you? The pastors will wholeheartedly speak to any of you in the proper environment where a Biblical hearing may be had and truth may prevail. We desire to speak with you, to even host you in our homes, and give you our best Spiritually and physically, if only you may understand the truth of the presence of the LORD with us, and His truth with us, not that we may be affirmed, simply, but that you may not proceed into deep darkness, that you may not continue in your doctrinal prison of Calvinism, that you may not be deceived into rejecting the LORD Jesus Christ, who is Himself eternal life, through the doctrines and traditions of men.
I was once a Calvinist, a very strong one, as were our elders and many of the brethren here. I understood all the logical connectedness and complexity of TULIP. I refused to be taught by anyone who was not a Calvinist. The thought of falling away seemed highly heretical to me. I was like most of you. However, you yourself, Mack Tomlinson, have stated somewhere that you held to the belief that there were many Arminians in church history who are to be had in honor as true saints though they differed on matters of predestination, eternal security, etc. Charles Leiter even mentioned that he has invited Arminian pastors to preach at his church. So clearly, you are not writing off ALL who believe in falling from grace as most certainly heretical and unconverted. [ I must note, in case any of you were unaware: we do not call ourselves Calvinists or Arminians. We believe in predestination as well as in the possibility for true saints to fall ultimately from grace. We do not believe that man has a free will]. But for reasons you state, you believe that we, specifically, have heretical beliefs, that we do not even believe in the true Gospel, that we are somehow trusting in our works and not in Christ…
It appears that some of your main charges against us are that we “cut ties with families” and that we are unrighteously judgmental and proud. Greg Gordon describes how the young men he spent time with would not hear any counsel. Even if that were true, though everything I have experienced indicates otherwise, could you deny that if a young man were truly anointed of the LORD, that any old man’s counsel could deter him? You reply that you could not deny it but that we are not anointed of the LORD. But have you spoken to our elders? Would it not be your basic human benevolence to meet with our elders even if you feel in your conscience that you must reprove them? Do you not desire to hear them out and see for yourselves if they have the Spirit, or if the Spirit would convict you by them? Is this an error in judgment that you can afford to make? Oh may the LORD trouble your souls night and day if indeed we be of the LORD!
He that heareth you heareth Me; and he that despiseth you despiseth Me; and he that despiseth Me despiseth him that sent Me. (Luke 10:16)
We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error. (1 John 4:6)
4 Therefore the law is slacked, and judgment doth never go forth: for the wicked doth compass about the righteous; therefore wrong judgment proceedeth. 5 Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvelously: for I will work a work in your days which ye will not believe, though it be told you. (Hab 1:4-5)
In great hope that you may understand or at least reconsider, I feel that I must bear witness to a few things that I have witnessed here: specifically the prayer meetings, and the personal lives of the elders.
There is a notion among you that we lack brokenness, contrition, poverty of spirit, the heart of prayer to kneel before God. To the contrary one of the greatest blessings of this church is the prayer meetings. There are corporate weekly prayer meetings, and impromptu house meetings and smaller gatherings in addition. The prayer meetings start out with brief exhortations and updates from the elders and a few hymns are sung to prepare our souls to worship. Immediately the meeting begins. They are usually between 5 and 8 hours long. And they are glorious. The vast majority of the brothers and a good number of sisters pray, sometimes once, sometimes 4 times, as the LORD leads, and oh, I cannot describe in words how they do pour out their hearts as wax in the presence of the LORD! It is as in my own personal prayer times, when I am very filled with the Spirit and enabled to pour out my heart to the LORD, but these brethren have learned to do this corporately. There are many tears and many burdens. The burdens vary from world-wide broad prayers for the LORD to revive His church and save His remnant and judge the wicked with the WORD of God that men might repent, fear God, and give Him glory, to specific burdens such as for HeartCry and Paul Washer, the I’ll Be Honest Community, the blasphemy of Joel Osteen and Benny Hinn, and for family members. There is not one of the brethren who is not broken-hearted over a lost/falsely converted family member [why is it so strange to you that we have falsely converted family members? I’ll Be Honest Community, this should not be strange to you!]. Mothers will weep and cry out for their unsaved children. Often we will cry out for the Spiritual burdens of each others’ souls, for particular backslidden souls among the remnant, who once were with us, but have been subverted by Chris Faulkner or Christine Major and a few others [you can contact us if you would like more details about the truth concerning the one-sided tale of these individuals]. Often there are spontaneous givings of praise, thanksgiving, and glory to God. The brethren groan and cry and wail before the LORD. The elders and brothers are often face down on the floor. Tears and mucus covers the floors. Sin is found out. Brethren weep in repentance over sin, over transient backslidings, over slothfulness of soul, and over abating of zeal. I have never seen anything like this! I have never even heard of anything like this! And how the LORD does come near and reside with us, and the convicting Spirit, and His all-surpassing peace, and His outpouring of charity…how He does fill our heart with a holy vengeance against the stumbling blocks of His bride! And then our God rides through the heavens in His majesty to save His anointed people, granting the requests of our lips. Many miracles have happened: God has miraculously sustained us financially. Brethren who were told by doctor specialists that they could never have children have multiple arrows in their quivers. Many who are sick are prayed for by elders and brethren and healed as the LORD wills. Of utmost significance, gates of spiritual iron are opened, bars of imprisonment of souls are cut asunder. Men fall on their faces and repent. Oh how the LORD has heard our prayers are turned the hearts of many whom we have cried out for together. Since I came here last November, this has happened more times than I can remember. And many of these brethren are with us now!
Regarding the personal lives of the elders, I am acquainted with all three, but my husband’s more of course. I wish you could see and behold what I do dear saints. You hear fiery preaching on our website, and indeed our elders preach to us with the fire of God not only on Sunday assemblies but throughout the week in weekday meetings, prayer meetings, and one-on-one, or in small groups in less formal settings. They are filled with exhortations, reproofs, and words of counsel for each of the brethren. They watch over souls with the utmost diligence, for their LORD is Christ, not fame or rising prominence among you all as you deem. You do not see the nights they spend up with saints struggling with sin. You do not see my husband face down on the bedroom floor mourning before the LORD until sunrise. You do not see him praying and weeping with me in my arms to the point of exhaustion that God would make him His worthy servant! You do not see Ryan Ringnald pleading with saints and sinners with Scriptures and abounding love for hours daily! You do not see Jake Gardner leaving the comforts of his family and home to check on the welfare of a fainting saint in another state and having his family vacate their home and stay in the room of another brother’s house so that a brother’s wife and children from overseas could join him in the comfort of a his home. They do not even have cars.You do not see them on their knees, laboring in prayer, in WORD, and doctrine for your sake. You do not see their meetings together, the three of them, crying out to the LORD against false prophets, crying out for empowerment and anointing that only the LORD of hosts can give! We elders’ wives often have to remind our husbands to eat and to sleep! They are spent for the LORD! And you would deign to call them prayerless proud young ignorant zealots! LORD have mercy! You think they are youthful and unlearned. Dear saints, I have spent years laboring in the presence of God to find out the nature of the soul of an anointed man of God, and I had largely chosen to remain with the ancients. But these three elders…they are elderly in their souls; they are no fools in the sight of God! Oh would you ask your God!?
Divers weights are an abomination unto the ; and a false balance is not good. (Prov 20:23)
Keep thee far from a false matter; and the innocent and righteous slay thou not: for I will not justify the wicked. (Ex 23:7)
It is an abominable thing which you have done. May the merciful LORD help you repent. We are here for you dear remnant. All that we have is yours. If the LORD desires that our blood be shed to show you the extent of our love for you, even as we do judge your wickedness, may He make us faithful, worthy, and bold to die the martyrs death for Christ's sake!
Finally ready yourselves, beloved Calvinists, for your wall daubed with untempered mortar, UNCONDITIONAL ETERNAL SECURITY, to be rent and broken! Indeed within the cleft of the Rock of Jesus Christ alone is eternal security!
10 Because, even because they have seduced My people, saying, Peace; and there was no peace; and one built up a wall, and, lo, others daubed it with untempered morter 11 Say unto them which daub it with untempered morter, that it shall fall: there shall be an overflowing shower; and ye, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall rend it.12 Lo, when the wall is fallen, shall it not be said unto you, Where is the daubing wherewith ye have daubed it?13 Therefore thus saith the Lord God; I will even rend it with a stormy wind in my fury; and there shall be an overflowing shower in mine anger, and great hailstones in my fury to consume it. 14 So will I break down the wall that ye have daubed with untempered morter, and bring it down to the ground, so that the foundation thereof shall be discovered, and it shall fall, and ye shall be consumed in the midst thereof: and ye shall know that I am the Lord.15 Thus will I accomplish My wrath upon the wall, and upon them that have daubed it with untempered morter, and will say unto you, The wall is no more, neither they that daubed it; (Ezek 13:10-16)
Please see the Church of Wells' Response to the Remnant: www.thechurchofwellsresponds.com