The Importance of Biblical Judgment

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The Importance of Biblical Judgment

The Importance of Biblical Judgment

Romans 16:17  Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.
18  For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.

As we begin this devotional it is important to remind ourselves that the conflict in the Middle East that is affecting the entire world, is not a surprise to God. God tells us there is a major conflict coming yet where Israel will be in an extremely dangerous position and where Iran and her proxies will come against Israel with such force that it will seem that Israel will be destroyed. At just the right moment, God will intervene and destroy a large number of the enemy and He will protect Israel from destruction as He always has.
In the past 24 hours it has been reported that the president of Iran and the foreign minister and some other key officials were involved in a helicopter crash. Apparently all on board the craft were killed in the crash. It is also reported that 3 search and rescue people were killed in the aftermath of this crash. This too did not come as a surprise to God. Iran is an enemy of God and an enemy of Israel as well as an enemy of born again Christians. Iran attacks its own people who refuse to bow to its ungodly dictates. Iran would love to destroy Israel. There are reports of celebrations among other Iranians following the report of this crash.
God has this to say about this event:

Ezekiel 33:11  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?

The context there is to Israel, but the statement made is for all. God did not create man to go to hell. He created man for His glory. He designed man to be able to choose wisely. Since the fall all are born as lost sinners and God has provided the Holy Spirit to work in the hearts of mankind to help man to see his need to be saved. God has also given us His Word so that we can know the truth. God also has some saved individuals in every generation, who are called to tell others the truth.
Those who died in that crash know now that they did not go to a sweet resting place. They are in torment now and will be for all eternity. God has given another warning that life and death are in His hands. Man chooses his destiny in the short time he has on this earth. It is essential for man to hear the truth and to respond obediently to the truth.
Iran is a major player among the enemies of the Jews. God has again taken them off balance enough to warn of His power. He is slowing down their wicked plans to give others the opportunity to be saved.
Back to our text, we have spent the past two days reminding ourselves of the importance of the only right foundation upon which saints must build. That foundation is Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is eternal. He has no beginning and He has no ending. He took upon Himself flesh for the purpose of going to the cross to lay down His life and shed His blood so that you and I and all of humanity could be saved. He is the Only Saviour. His offer of salvation is open to all. The Iranians could be saved, but most do not want to. A few will be saved, but the majority have no interest in the truth. That is the Bible fact. As we mentioned, there will be a large Iranian army along with the Russians and the Turks and others who will join in an ungodly alliance to try to wipe out Israel. They will fail.
There are many false religions today that are speaking lies in the name of Jesus Christ. The Jesus they speak of is not the Jesus of the Bible. The Jesus of the Bible is prophesied of in the Old Testament and He came to this earth at the exact time that God declared He must come. King Herod tried to kill Him while He was a young child. He failed. The Pharisees tried to discredit Him and kill Him during His prescribed public ministry. They failed.
Jesus Christ went to the cross at His timing, not the ungodly people’s timing. He was not tricked into going to the cross. It was all prearranged before the world ever was created. God’s foreknowledge is not to be confused with Calvinism. God did not force Adam to sin. Adam was created without sin. He was created with intelligence and he was given all the instructions he needed to choose wisely. He chose to disregard God’s commands and he chose to sin.
Calvinism is making a resurgence over the past number of years. Its tentacles have gripped many religions. Calvinism is a religion of convenience. If man has no choice in his destiny, then he might as well live as he pleases and in the end God’s will will be accomplished. Those who must be saved will be saved, and those who must go to hell will go to hell. Those who believe this heresy, do not believe in the severity of hell. They also make God a liar.
As the apostle Paul wrote, false teachers must be marked and avoided. Those who are saved have been placed on the only true foundation. It is their duty to build properly on that foundation. It helps no one to try to be accommodating to false religion.
We have spoken much about New Evangelicalism. There are New Evangelicals who want to be accepted into God’s fold. Jesus declared:

John 10:27  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
28  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
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.
30  I and my Father are one.
31  Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him.

A person can protest what God says all they want. God does not lie. Jesus declared that His sheep hear His voice and He knows them and they follow Him. That is a fact. It is Jesus’ sheep who have eternal life. It is not self-declared sheep, but those who are bought and paid for through the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.
It is important to remember that God has not given authority to any man to set the standards of salvation. God has declared them. He has the final say. It is also important to remember that:

Matthew 7:15  Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
16  Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
17  Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18  A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
19  Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
20  Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

God does not want us to be deceived. As we noted from Romans 16:17, we can know who the false teachers are. If we could not know that, we could not mark them. The way to heaven is a narrow way. It is not well travelled. There have been saints on that road in every generation, but only saints are on that road. That is the sober reality. It is important to be involved in serious, sober Bible Study. Your opinions, or mine do not count. God has already declared the truth. It is up to us to submit to the truth and reject all other teaching.
Paul stated that the false teachers are in it for their own benefit. They love to be praised by men. They have mastered the art of speaking. They go to places like toastmasters and other secular avenues where they can hone their speaking skills.
It is important to be able to communicate. It is important to understand that flattery does not honour God. The truth is what makes us free. The truth is not pleasant to the hardened heart. Saul was converted because God stopped him on his wicked route. He had a further opportunity to consider his course of action. By God’s grace, he saw the his fight was futile. He repented and was saved. God changed his heart and He also changed his name. Paul became a great asset to the world of his day and indeed for us as well. He wrote the words God wanted recorded. We can benefit from his teaching. God is the Author of all truth. It is important to know Him and to serve Him.
Pastor Bartel

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