Some people looked at Persian cat, full of hair and were amazed at it’s beauty. They thought it was the fattest, most healthy cat in the world. But, then the cat was outside when a huge storm came up. The cat tried to find shelter, but could find none. The rain came, and soaked the poor cat. Suddenly, the cat was transformed from a thing of beauty to an animal not much larger than a big squirrel.
Many people think the Church is much bigger than it is. The fact is, there are very few true Christians, and they are the body. There is a lot of fluff, and those who want an easy life and want to set their own direction rather than God’s, they will fall away when the storm comes.
THE TRUE CHURCH HAS ALWAYS BEEN MUCH LEANER THAN PEOPLE THOUGHT. THE FLUFF–THE PHONIES AND THE WANNA BE CHRISTIANS–THEY WILL BE EASILY WASHED ASIDE WHEN PRESSURES COME.
1. FALLING FROM THE FAITH.
A. FALLING AWAY FROM THE TRUTH. Not just ANY faith, but The Faith.
Jude 1:3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
B. FALLING AWAY BECAUSE THEY DIDN’T RELY ON THE LORD TO OVERCOME WEAKNESS.
Luke 8:13 They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.
THESE ARE PEOPLE WHO SOMETIMES LOOK INTO OTHER RELIGIONS AND STUDY WITH THEM, EVENTUALLY ARE PULLED AWAY. ***No matter what they say, they weren’t saved to begin with. A person who has found something he was looking for does not continue to look for it once he has found it !
C. ANGER AGAINST THE CHURCH AND OR GOD.
NOT GETTING WHAT THEY WANT, THEY TURN AGAINST THE LORD AND FIGHT AGAINST HIM. THIS IS APOSTASY.
2 Thessalonians 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;
2. CARES OF THIS WORLD.
Luke 21:34 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.
3. GOD WILL PURGE THE CHURCH, GETTING READY FOR THE RAPTURE.
A. THE FALLING AWAY IS A PURGING FROM GOD.
MARCH WINDS BLOW DEAD LEAVES OFF THE TREES. NOT SURPRISING. IT MAKES LIFE EASIER FOR THE NEW SHOOTS COMING ONTO THE BRANCH.
Matthew 3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and He will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
B. THIS IS NECESSARY SO THAT PEOPLE WILL BE ABLE TO DISTINGUISH BETWEEN THOSE WHO ARE REAL CHRISTIANS AND THOSE WHO SIMPLY WANT A LABEL.
C. WE SHOULD NOT BE SHOCKED AT PEOPLE WHO TURN BACK TO THEIR FORMER WAYS OF WOMANIZING, GOSSIPING, DRUNKENNESS, DRUGS, ETC., BECAUSE THAT HAS BEEN THEIR NATURE ALL ALONG.
IT WAS KEPT UNDER WRAPS AS LONG AS THEY COULD KEEP IT THERE, BUT GIVEN AN EXCUSE, THEY REVEAL WHAT THEIR REAL NATURE IS MADE OF. ***A true Christian hates what he has left behind…his sins and false pretenses–and he wants to become new in Christ.
2 Peter 2:20-22 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour 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.
4. BECAUSE OF AN INCREASE IN EVIL.
EVIL MEN AND SEDUCERS GROW WORSE AND WORSE. (Last Days prophecy)
2 Timothy 3:13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. Plenty of deceivers out there. Must know from Scripture how to identify them, and see the need to stay away from them.
A. LOVE WILL DIMINISH. STANDARDS WILL CHANGE BECAUSE OF THE MAJORITY.
TRUE LOVE UNDERSTANDS THAT EVERYONE WILL NOT SEE EYES TO EYE. TRUE LOVE ACCEPTS THAT THERE WILL BE THINGS WHICH OTHERS DO THAT OFFEND THEM, AND NOT TO GROW ANGRY OVER IT, BUT PRAY FOR PEOPLE.
Matthew 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
B. SOME WILL CAVE INTO THE PRESSURE BECAUSE OF WORLDLY INFLUENCES THEY HAVE ALLOWED.
EITHER FRIENDS, MUSIC, MOVIES, NEWS, ETC. THESE THINGS ENTICE THEM BECAUSE THEY BECOME ACCUSTOMED TO THEM, AND BEGIN TO ACCEPT THEM AS “NORMAL.”
C. WILL DECEIVE THE ELECT, IF POSSIBLE.
Mark 13:22 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.
MANY WILL CLAIM TO BE EXPERTS AND A SOURCE OF AUTHORITY. BEWARE !
2 Peter 3:16-17 — As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction. Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.
***”Expert says that Jesus was insane. Why ? He quotes a Scripture—-
Mark 3:20-21 And the multitude cometh together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread. And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself.
So, the expert concludes that Jesus was insane, and he goes about bashing anything Jesus said. The fallacy to this is that he assumes that just because someone calls you a name or makes an false assessment of your life, it must be true. What if everything someone said about you was taken as fact ? What if everything some people in your own family said about you was taken as fact…would that make it true ? Of course not !
D. WILL TRY TO MAKE CHURCH A PLACE WITHOUT THE CONVICTION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
MANY LEAVE BECAUSE THEY ARE OFFENDED OVER SOMETHING THE WORD HAS BROUGHT TO THEIR ATTENTION, AND BECAUSE GOD WANTS THEM TO CHANGE.
2 Timothy 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;
–THEY SET UP BIBLE STUDIES UNDER PEOPLE WHO DON’T EVEN UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT.
1 Timothy 1:5-7 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling; Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.
5. GIVING AN EAR TO SEDUCING SPIRITS.
1 Timothy 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;
***THESE SPIRITS CAN COME AS NEW REVELATIONS, APPEARING AS ANGELS, AS THOUGHTS, ETC. SINCE THEY ALL REVOLVE AROUND RELIGION, MOST PEOPLE WHO DEPART FORM THE FAITH TIE INTO SOME FORM OF RELIGION AFTERWARDS.
6. LOVING THE WORLD MORE THAN CHRIST. (BRIDE IS DISTRACTED, NOT LOOKING FOR THE LORD).
Why must Jesus be outside, standing at the door, calling and knocking ? Has the bride become distracted ? Yes !
Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.
THE REAL ISSUE IS NOT ABOUT OTHER PEOPLE.
THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IS ABOUT YOU ?
WILL YOU BE FAITHFUL ? WILL YOU BE SERVING ?
WILL YOU BE READY WHEN HE COMES ?
Luke 18:8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?