1 Timothy opens our new series of messages. The Lord has been contending with me to start a series of messages regarding what we know about end times.
The first thing and attitude I like to have is to depart from traditional approaches. They are too well worn and the majority of believers are too busy and anaesthetic to really feel the urgency of studying this issue.
They are not end times for the believer…They are beginning times. It is the beginning for perfection and dealing once and for all a death blow to sin, the world and the devil. It means we enter into the fullness of what we have been called into: union with Christ.
We all have images about the end times as we traditionally call them.
1 Timothy 4:1 NIRV
The Holy Spirit clearly says that in the last days some people will leave the faith. They will follow spirits that will fool them. They will believe things that demons will teach them.
Here is our base text today. Interesting that it specifies who is speaking here: the Holy Spirit.
I got to meditate why the specific. I came up with the answer: the deception will appear to be so like the Holy Spirit that is why so many will be deceived. Therefore it is He that warns. And in this warning comes an enabling! There is given an anointing in this verse! To discern.
Right now let us see what deceptions have come in:
1. Confusing the mission of Jesus, on one hand there is a swing to liturgy and formalism and on the other total licence. Many are being deceived back to old paths and old places which God delivered them from.
So Jesus mission to:
1. Save: has become to be shrouded in rules and rigidity.
2. Baptize: has been obscured by works by flesh being taught as spiritual fruit. Fullness of the Spirit is being inspired and aspired to live a life with intimacy with God and serving Him from a Call from the fountain of love and salvation.
3.Sanctify: reserved and preserved till the day we are presented, whole without fault. Yet what is taught is dependence on liturgy on one side, or obedience to rules which lead to religion.
2. Confusion on manhood:
The image of man, redeemed by Christ has been attacked and destroyed bringing with it a corrupt leadership. God put authority on man so that Christ’s headship can be manifest. Destroying the image of men in the Church means that Christ’s authority is prevented from flowing. Hence the need for study on true manhood in scripture. Without this all sorts of perversions abound throughout society.
3. Confusion of flesh
Today because society has bombarded us with the soulish realm we no longer can discern what is fleshly or spiritual in our attitudes and decisions. That way we embrace what feels good. That definition of “sensual” denotes being influenced on the basis of your senses, what you see, hear and feel. A very dangerous place to be in. There are so many sights and sounds that can lead us into wrong paths. In the Spirit we have a different sense.
At times we embrace thoughts or feelings, even theology because of our feelings. This is “sensual” and not “rational” that Paul teaches in Romans 12. Here we see Paul exhort us to put ourselves as a living sacrifice as being a constant state of being. Putting aside constantly natural inclinations. He talks about being conformed which indicates that we are pressured to adopt attitudes and postures of the majority. Whereas he tells us of our need for transformation. Transformation is an inner work.
Deception robs us of the realization; the revelation and the manifestation.