Thursday, June 13, 2024
Thursday, June 13, 2024
HomeAll The NewsJUST THINKING: Last Days Apostasy (part 2)

JUST THINKING: Last Days Apostasy (part 2)

      In my previous article, I wrote about the reality that we are living in the last days and that is evidenced by a falling away by those who have believed the lies from false teachers. In this second part I will share how to prevent becoming apostate.

      While certainly there are some commonsense approaches, I prefer to give you scriptural admonitions.

Focus on Both Old and New Testament Teaching

          Since it is the Scriptures that warn against apostasy, it not surprising that God’s Word provides direction as to how one should avoid it. If a driver sees a sign that reads “Danger: Bridge Out Ahead,” he would be foolish to not heed the warning.

      Scripture provides warning signs too. “The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons” (I Tim. 4:1 NIV). Look around and note that the reason for falling away is dissatisfaction with biblical doctrine. Here is another warning that Paul gave to Timothy to pass on to the church — “For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear” (II Tim. 4:3).

Firmly Stand Strong for the Truth

         When it comes to avoiding apostasy, one must not do what the apostates do. Instead, the believer must stand strong — even contend for the faith that comes from knowing Jesus. Here is another scriptural warning. Jude wrote, “Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people” (Jude 3).

Fervently Test the Spirits

         Sadly, too many today do not believe that demonic spirits are at work. Consequently, they scoff at warning signs, instead saying, “That old bridge has been there for years. There’s no way it is out!” It is that kind of mindset that Satan loves to see.

      Scripture admonishes that we test the spirits which influence the false teachers — “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (I John 4:1).

      Learn to differentiate between true teachers of the Word and evil imposters. That is exactly how Paul warned Timothy — “…Evildoers and imposters will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived” (II Tim. 3:13).

      God’s Word describes those whom believers must avoid in these last days before Jesus’ return. Again, the warning comes from the mentor Paul to the protégé Timothy — “But mark this: there will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God — having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people(II Tim. 3:1-5).

      Each of those are characteristics that are opposite of what strong believers are to possess. They are anti-Christian qualities because they are influenced by the spirit of anti-Christ. Why would people live that way? Because in the last days people will fall away, rebel and abandon the faith to become apostates.

Freely be Reminded and Remind Others

         It’s downright frightening, isn’t it? It’s difficult to conceive, that after 2,000 years since Jesus left earth with a promise to return and after the gospel has reached around the globe, in the last days there will be a worldwide apostasy. But every believer should be reminded and should remind others that such must occur before our Lord Jesus Christ returns for those whom He has saved. As John the Revelator wrote — “He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’ Amen. Come Lord Jesus” (Rev. 22:20).