Understanding Apostasy

An Understanding of Apostasy

Book of 1 John Chapter 2 verses 15-29

In last week’s lesson we learned about Spiritual growth and in this week’s lesson we will learn why we need that growth.

Whenever the Holy Spirit takes the time to warn us about certain things, then we need to pay attention to what He says.

Reading the Scriptures every day is a wonderful thing and we all should do so, but sometimes we need to put our nose to the grindstone and really study to see what the Lord is saying!

This is one of those places!

When we think about “apostasy” in the church, we are talking about those who are forsaking the Lord Jesus Christ and His teachings.

The Apostle Paul says there will be a “falling away” from Christ!

2Th 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
2Th 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

In the Book to Timothy, Paul says “departing from the faith”.

1Ti 4:1 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;
1Ti 4:2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
1Ti 4:3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

Again in the Book to Timothy Paul writes they will not “endure sound doctrine”.

2Ti 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
2Ti 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

These are all Scriptures dealing with “Apostasy” and there are many more.

How does the Apostle John teach us about these things? He says:

*1Jn 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

We cannot experience true victory in Jesus, until we have victory over this world of evil!

This is a world dominated by Satan and we must have victory over Satan and Jesus provides that victory!

Our faith is based upon the invisible things of God’s world, which He offers to us.

If we turn around and seek happiness in this world which will one day end, we are forsaking the truth of God!

This world may seem to be a good world, but it is an evil world!

We live in a world where our worthiness is determined by the amount of possessions we own!

Does this mean we cannot appreciate the wonders of God’s creation? Absolutely not!

God has provided all the things necessary for us to live a comfortable life and have joy in our lives.

The truth is, the heavens and this earth are just temporary things that are aging and passing away.

We live in a corruptible world, as those with powers use these same elements of the earth to indulge in corruption and sinfulness.

We must not become attached to the things of this world which will be destroyed!

There are no perfect governments on this earth.
There are no perfect societies upon this earth.

Even the church has forgotten to strive for perfection!

We may be loyal to some good things upon this earth, but we must stand against all the bad things of this earth!

Col 3:1 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
Col 3:2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
Col 3:3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.
Col 3:4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.

We may live in this world, but we are not to be friends of this world!

Jas 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

What is the real truth of this world we live in?

*1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

We can sit upon a mountain top and view the wonders of God’s creation and just say how beautiful is God’s creation, but when we get back home, we see something for different.

When we look out upon the societies, we see everyone lusting after the things of the flesh.

We see people giving in to the desires of the flesh.

We live in a sack of flesh that will indulge in any sinful behavior if and when it is given that opportunity!

In most cases it begins with the things we see!

The danger of these things is that we desire things that go against the truth of God.

We desire and go after these things to possess that are forbidden by the Word of God.

We may look upon another man’s wife with desire and this is the sin of adultery even if it goes no further than that desire!

Mat 6:22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.
Mat 6:23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!

It may sound unrealistic, but we must make a vow with our eyes!

Job_31:1 I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?

What was the downfall of the great King Solomon?

Ecc 2:10 And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labour: and this was my portion of all my labour.
Ecc 2:11 Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun.

There is no profit from the things of this world!

Then there is the pride of life.

The pride we have that is centered upon ourselves, goes against the Word of God!

When we believe that we are so special that God will just bend over backwards to accommodate our own desires.
When we believe we can do all things without God we will be sadly mistaken.

There is no future without God!

Mat 12:50 For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.

When we fall into these traps, they become so deep they are hard to climb back out of them.

In fact we will not be able to on our own, we will just pass away with the rest of the world!

*1Jn 2:17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

There is only one thing that we need to do every day. We need to do the will of God!

We must understand that there is nothing outside the scope of God’s sovereign rule!

Our own salvation falls under this rule of God!

2Ti 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,
2Ti 1:10 But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:

God does as He pleases and, it pleased God to provide us a means of eternal salvation!

God does not and will not ever adjust His plan to accommodate our will! We must obey His will for us!

But there is the permissive will of God, where God will allow certain things that fall in place with His eternal plan.

The truth is the Lord Jesus Christ died according to the preconceived plan of God for our salvation.

This does not mean that wicked men were not responsible for His death!

God knew there was no other way that we could be brought back in fellowship with Him!

We should stand in awe of our Great God who could conceive such a plan of salvation!

We can entrust our eternal days to our Almighty God!

We should rejoice in our salvation!

We can rest in peace as we observe all the things in this evil world we live in!

God holds people responsible for their sins, at the same time He has a plan of redemption!

Col 1:9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

God proves that He is in total control of this world, but He allows us to make our own choices!

God lets us know that He loves us! It grieves God when we make the wrong choices!

God’s will, will abide forever!

Joh 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
Joh 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
Joh 10:29 My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.
Joh 10:30 I and my Father are one.

We must also realize that we are in the last of the last days!

*1Jn 2:18 Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.

There may not be more people who disagree with the doctrine of Jesus Christ, though I believe there are many more.

What we can be sure of in these last days is, that those who do reject Jesus speak with louder voices drowning out the Church because the Church has become so passive!

All the sinful movements move through our nation and others with much fanfare but if something good tries to do the same things then they are forbidden or drowned out because the Church refuses to take a stand and many even endorse this evil!

These loudly proclaim that God could never be a human and so the Scriptures are so full of errors that to believe we can know the actual Word of God makes us a people who border on insanity.

These antichrists broadcast their message freely, on every level!

There are also more antichrists in the church than ever before, and they too loudly proclaim a false doctrine driven by the world giving in to immorality.

John says we are approaching the midnight hour when darkness will assume to rule our world.

The Antichrist could step onto the stage of this world at any moment. He may already be there but hiding in the shadows!

This Antichrist is not the spirit of antichrist that is in our world now, but this will be an actual person.

This Antichrist will rise to be on the stage as a world leader and the world will listen to him because he will speak with the voice of Satan who has transfigured into a spirit of light.

2Co_11:14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

There are so many today denying the truth of God and the truth of the Lord Jesus Christ, we can be certain that the Second Coming of the Lord is very soon!

What is the truth?

2Th_2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

We are in that day of the great falling away!

*1Jn 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.

Where do antichrist come from? They walk right out of the doors of the church proclaiming they have been misled.

Teachers who proclaim some new doctrine.

Preachers who have mixed the doctrine of evolution with the truth of creation.

Preachers who have allowed the government to dictate the doctrine of the Church.

Churches that have opened the church doors to the world denying the true Christ who is the foundation of the Church!

1Ti 4:1 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;
1Ti 4:2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
1Ti 4:3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

How can we know them?

*1Jn 2:20 But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.
1Jn 2:21 I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth.

That word unction means as believers we have the anointing of the Holy Ghost. The Holy Spirit lives within each of us to guide us and to protect us from false things.

A non-believer or an antichrist cannot have the anointing to the Holy Spirit so they cannot know the truth of doctrines of the Bible!

Joh 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
Joh 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
Joh 14:17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
Joh 14:18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
Joh 14:19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
Joh 14:20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
Joh 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

The Holy Spirit knows all things about Jesus Christ that we need to know so He will lead us away from the antichrist!

*1Jn 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
1Jn 2:23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.

We are God the Father’s “little children” and we need to be warned!

Those who deny that Jesus is the Messiah are liars!
Those who deny that Jesus is a Person in the Personage of God, God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit are all liars!
Those who deny that Jesus was 100% man and 100% God at the same time are all liars!
Those who deny the truth of the Word of God are all liars!
Those who deny that Jesus is God have chosen to believe the Anti-god!

Mat 10:33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

Those who stand against God the Father and His Son are doomed to damnation!

Mat 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

There are really no true Atheists in this world, but the world is full of people who claim some god and the only God is the Lord Jesus Christ!

Mat 10:37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
Mat 10:38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

I think the Holy Spirit answers every question that can be ask about our Savior right here in this passage!

Those who are sure we have a Creator had better know that God the Father sent forth His Son as this Creator and to reject any part of these things is to deny Him!

*1Jn 2:24 Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father.
1Jn 2:25 And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.

What we have heard from the Apostles is the “Gospel” of the Lord Jesus Christ.

It is the “Gospel” that has all the answers of life and life eternal!

If we do not know God, how can we ever say we are pleasing to Him.

“And let’s just get one thing very straight right now, God is MALE and not female”!

How can there be a “Bride of Christ” if there is not the Groom, God the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ?

It is the “Gospel” that must continue in us all our days once He has come into our hearts!

God has given us 66 books all bound up in one and any study of these books will lead you to the Lord Jesus Christ the answer to life, the answer to salvation, the answer to eternal life!

What words best describe the “Gospel”?

1Co 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;
1Co 15:2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
1Co 15:3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
1Co 15:4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
1Co 15:5 And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:
1Co 15:6 After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.
1Co 15:7 After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.
1Co 15:8 And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.

Gal 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:
Gal 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
Gal 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:10 For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.
Gal 1:11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.
Gal 1:12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Joh 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

There is only one “Gospel”!

It is by the “Gospel” that comes eternal life in fellowship with the Almighty God!

As long as we are upon this earth there will be those deny the “Gospel”!

*1Jn 2:26 These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you.
1Jn 2:27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.

John has already taught us that these who would “seduce”(entice, deceive, lead astray) would come from inside the Church.

1Jn 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us;

Those, some inside the church, will teach that there is some other way to restore fellowship with God and this simply is not true.

No one is good enough.
No one is righteous enough.
No one is rich enough.

We must always be on guard against false teaching because there is just too much at stake.

We will never regain fellowship with our Creator if we try some other way than the “Gospel”!

If God the Father, sent God the Son to die for us then, how could we ever believe that there was some other way?

God sent His Son to save mankind, if there had been some other way then there would be no need for the “Gospel”!

God then sent God the Holy Spirit to protect His investment!

Without the anointing of the Holy Spirit to seal our redemption we would still be lost!

Tit 3:4 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
Tit_3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

Rom 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
Rom 8:17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

We cannot deny the Triune God and still say we understand the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ!

We are doomed to failure if we do not abide in our Savior!

*1Jn 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.
1Jn 2:29 If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.

What is the greatest test of being a Christian? Do we rest in the truth of the “Gospel”?

Do we dwell with Jesus?

Are we ashamed of Jesus Christ?

Have we made our home with the Lord?

I can openly confess that Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior!
I fully believe that God has shown His love for me by Jesus Christ!
I can confess that I love God because He first loved me!

1Jn 4:15 Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.
1Jn 4:16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
1Jn 4:17 Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.

I will have boldness in the Day of Judgment because “I know my name is written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life”!

I know the truth of God and this truth has made me free from the penalties of sin!

Joh_8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
Joh_8:36 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

I will never be ashamed of my Savior!!!!!

I am at peace with God because He called me to meet His Son!

I have been “Born Again” into the family of God!

Have You?

Amen

Let’s Pray!