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         14
      Closed Communion
      James Foley
       
      I Corinthians 11:17-34: "Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you. When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's Supper. For in eating every one taketh before other his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken. What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not. For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another. And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come."

      INTRODUCTION

      Historic Baptists, true Baptists, have believed in and still believe in closed communion. Baptists impose upon themselves the same restrictions that they impose on others concerning the Lord’s Supper. Baptists have always insisted that it is the Lord’s Table, not theirs; and He alone has the right to say who shall sit at His table. No amount of so called brotherly love, or ecumenical spirit, should cause us to invite to His table those who have not complied with the requirements laid down plainly in His inspired Word. With respect to Bible doctrines we must always use the scripture as our guide and practice. For Baptists, two of the most important doctrines are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper. These are the only two doctrines we recognize as Church Ordinances. The Bible is very clear in teaching how these doctrines are to be practiced and by whom.

      We only have two ordinances that we must never compromise or we risk our very existence, they are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper.

      The moment we deviate from the precise method God has prescribed we have started down the slippery slope of error. True Baptists have held fast to the original doctrine of The Lord’s Supper from the time of Christ and the Apostles.

      Unfortunately, in this day of what the Bible describes as the age of luke warmness, Baptists are becoming careless in regard to strictly following the pattern laid out for us in Scripture. Many of our Bible colleges are graduating otherwise sincere, Godly and dedicated pastors and teachers who have not been taught the very strict, biblical requirements that surround the Lord’s Supper. Any Bible college that neglects to teach its students the differences surrounding Closed Communion, Close Communion and Open Communion is not simply short changing its students; it is also not equipping their students to carry on sound Bible traditions. The result is men of God and churches that fall into error. And as we will see, this is serious error.

      Should we as Baptists ignore the restrictions made by our Lord and Master? NO! When we hold to the restrictions placed upon the Lord’s Supper by our Master, we are defending the "faith which was once delivered to the saints" Jude 3.

      The Lord’s Supper is rigidly restricted and I will show this in the following facts:

      IT IS RESTRICTED AS TO PLACE

      A. I Corinthians 11:18 says, "When ye come together in the church." This does not mean the church building; they had none. In other words, when the church assembles. The supper is to be observed by the church, in church capacity. Again this does not mean the church house. Ekklesia, the Greek word for church, means assembly. "When ye come together in the church," is when the church assembles.

      B. When we say church we mean an assembly of properly baptized believers. Acts 2:41-42: "Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers."

      The church is made up of saved people who are baptized by immersion. In the Bible, belief precedes baptism. That’s the Bible way.

      Acts 8:12-13, "But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done."

      When we say properly baptized, we mean immersed. No unbeliever should take the Lord’s supper, and no non-immersed believer should take the supper. Those who are sprinkled are not baptized and cannot receive the supper. The Greek word for baptize is baptizo, and it always means to immerse.

      "In every case where communion is referred to, or where it may possibly have been administered, the believers had been baptized Acts 2:42; 8:12; 8:38; 10:47; 6:14-15; 18:8; 20:7. Baptism comes before communion, just as repentance and faith precede baptism".

      C. The Lord’s Supper is for baptized believers in church capacity: "When ye come together in the church," again not a building, but the assembly of the properly baptized believers.

      D. The fact that the Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, to be observed in church capacity, is pointed out by the fact that it is for those who have been immersed and added to the fellowship of the church.

      E. The Lord’s Supper is never spoken of in connection with individuals. When it is referred to, it is only referred to in reference to baptized believers in local church capacity I Cor. 11:20-26).

      I want to quote Dr. W.W. Hamilton,

      "The individual administration of the ordinance has no Bible warrant and is a relic of Romanism. The Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, and anything which goes beyond or comes short of this fails for want of scriptural example or command".

      “The practice of taking a little communion kit to hospitals, nursing homes, etc. is unscriptural and does not follow the scriptural example.”

      IT IS RESTRICTED TO A UNITED CHURCH

      A. The Bible in I Cor. 11:18 is very strong in condemning divisions around the Lord’s table. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.
      19 For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.
      20 When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's supper.

      There were no less than four divisions in the Corinthian church.
      I Cor. 1:12: "Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ."

      Because of these divisions, it was impossible for them to scripturally eat the Lord’s Supper. Division in the local church is reason to hold off observing the Lord’s Supper. But there are also other reasons to forego taking the Lord’s Supper. If there is gross sin in the membership we do not take it. Here is scriptural evidence for this: 1Co 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us:
      8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:
      10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. 11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

      B. At this point, I want to ask these questions: Are there not doctrinal divisions among the many denominations? Is it not our doctrinal differences that cause us to be separate religious bodies?

      IT IS RESTRICTED BY DOCTRINE

      A. Those in the early church at Jerusalem who partook "continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine" Acts 2:42. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

      B. Those that do not hold to apostolic truth are not to partake. This means there is to be discipline in the local body. How can you discipline those who do not belong to the local body? You can’t. The clear command of scripture is to withdraw fellowship from those who are not doctrinally sound.

      II Thes 3:6: "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us."
      Rom. 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."
      To commune together means to have the same doctrine.
      II Thes. 2:15: "Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle."
      II John 10-11: "If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds."

      C. Some Baptists in our day have watered down this doctrine by practicing what they call “Close Communion.” By this they mean that they believe that members of another Baptist church may take communion with us because they are of the same beliefs. Once again, this is unscriptural.

      The welcome to the Lord's Table should not be extended beyond the discipline of the local church. When we take the Lord’s Supper there is supposed to be no gross sin among us and no divisions among us. We have no idea of the spiritual condition of another church’s members. If there is sin or division in the case of this other church’s members, we have no way of knowing it. We cannot discipline them because they are not members of our church. This is why we practice “Closed” communion, meaning it is restricted solely to our church membership. 
      So then, in closing I would like to reiterate the three different ideas concerning the Lord’s Supper and who is to take it. 
      Closed Communion = Only members of a single local church. 
      Close Communion = Members of like faith and order may partake. 
      Open Communion = If you claim to be a Christian, or simply attending the service, you may partake. 
      It is no small thing to attempt to change that which was implemented by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 
      Mt. 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. 
      Many of our Baptist churches have a real need to consider the gravity of the act of observing The Lord’s Supper. It is not a light thing that is to be taken casually or without regard to the spiritual condition of ourselves or our church.
      1Co. 11:27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

       28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.

       29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

       30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:


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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist
1 hour ago, Golgotha said:

There are two kinds of vessels in God's House;  the pre trib raptured saints; the vessels unto honor; and the left behind saints & new believers after the pre trib rapture which are the vessels unto dishonor.

Okay; thanks for your response.

What denomination are you, or what church do you belong to?

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8 hours ago, No Nicolaitans said:

Okay; thanks for your response.

What denomination are you, or what church do you belong to?

Formerly Presbyterian, but have withdrawn membership due to apostasy & the church's regulations which leads to purposeful procrastination in dealing with any matters of faith only because they do not want to make any waves.

Of all denomenations, I think Baptist is close to what I would relate to in truths, but nowadays, I have seen that Baptists doesn't necessarily mean Baptists since some have gotten to be Pentecostal in nature & practice.  So I am not sure what Independent Baptist represents, and so hopefully, I shall find out soon enough.

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9 hours ago, Golgotha said:

There is the elect;  the vessels unto honor;  and then those vessels unto dishonor that will be left behind.  They were not of us that followed the Shepherd's voice but a stranger's voice;  tongues without interpretation, ( John 10:1-5 ) but Jesus said that there are the other sheep that He has & He must bring them and then they will hear His voice and be of the one fold & one shepherd ( John 10:14-16 )....hint... they will be seeing Him & thus hearing Him in order to be serving Him as the King of kings for the milleniel reign of Christ.

1 Timothy 4:1-2 speaks of those departing away from the faith & so these are believers that had faith, but were led astray by seducing spirits & doctrines of devils.

Titus 1:16 testifies that any work of iniquity denies Him & thus by an inqiuity that denies Him, He will deny us;  2 Timothy 2:12, but even if they believe not any more, having their faith overthrown, 2 Timothy 2:18 by whatever lie that did it, Jesus is faithful & He still abides in them 2 Timothy 2:13 

This is why believers are called to depart from iniquity with His help & by His grace so they can be received as vessels unto honor in His House at the pre trib rapture event.  2 Timothy 2:19-21

Although some have been led astray & snared by the devil in doing his will, God may yet peradventure to recover them before the rapture; 2 Timothy 2:24-26, but if not, He definitely will afterwards because He will lose nothing of all the Father has given Him.   John 6:38-40  

So there will be a sheep that followed the stranger's voice as they are NOT of the fold of the disciples that followed His voice by the grace of God & their trust in Jesus Christ as their Good Shepherd & all His promises to us.  2 Timothy 4:18

I don't see any indication that when Christ calls His people up He will only be calling some while leaving others behind because they weren't good enough.

From your postings you seem to have an over-focus upon the matter of speaking in tongues which you stretch into other areas affecting your view of the meaning of various verses.

In John 10:14-16 Jesus is referring to Gentiles, who are not of the fold of the Jews, which He will bring in and there will be one fold, Jews and Gentiles alike forming that one fold.

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1 hour ago, John81 said:

I don't see any indication that when Christ calls His people up He will only be calling some while leaving others behind because they weren't good enough.

From your postings you seem to have an over-focus upon the matter of speaking in tongues which you stretch into other areas affecting your view of the meaning of various verses.

In John 10:14-16 Jesus is referring to Gentiles, who are not of the fold of the Jews, which He will bring in and there will be one fold, Jews and Gentiles alike forming that one fold.

Hi John81,

Luke 12:40-49 has Jesus warning believers of not being ready since the consequence is being cut off & being left behind with unbelievers.

Luke 14:15-24 shows Jesus excusing believers that love their lives more than leaving it to join His supper.

Luke 14:25-33 shows that the cost of discipleship is to lean on Him for help to be not only ready to leave but willing to leave as well.

Luke 21:33-36 has Jesus warning how the cares of this life can be a snare to believers living in these latter days.

Luke 17:26-33 has Jesus signifying to remember Lot's wife in how the snares of her life made her look back.  Do note how destruction was imminent in relations to the fire being sent on the earth in Luke 12:49 of Luke 12:40-49.

Matthew 7:13-27 is Jesus warning believers of how false prophets will come in & lead many astray in these latter days.  Any believer committing iniquity is denying Him Titus 1:16 & that is why He is denying them in Matthew 7:21-23 as Paul explained in 2 Timothy 2:11-12 BUT Paul points out that those denied are still His even if they have their faith overthrown & do not believe any more because He still abides in them ( 2 Timothy 2:13 ) which is why all believers & former believers having His seal are to look to Jesus for help in discerning the truth so He can help them to depart from iniquity.  2 Timothy 2:18-21  & 1 Thessalonians 5:21-24 & 2 Timothy 4:18 & 1 John 3:3,8

I do point out the significance of a supernatural tongue which is not God's gift of tongues of other men's lips to speak unto the people ( 1 Corinthians 14:20-22 ), because it is just vain & profane babblings.  That tongue is not of the Lord because it is associated with that second supernatural encounter which errant believers believe was the Holy Spirit coming over them "again" bringing this tongue which never comes with interpretation.

It is one of the many of the strong delusions spoken of here when believers believe the lie that the Holy Spirit is falling on them again & again & again bringing a sensational signs in the flesh which is why Paul was reminding believers when they had received the sanctification of the Spirit & the belief of the truth at the hearing of the gospel as it is that tradition they are to hold fast on in preventing from this iniquity causing many to fall away from the faith.

Revelation 2:18 And unto the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire, and his feet are like fine brass; 19 I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first. 

Is God not addressing the believers at Thaytira or not?  And yet, He has a few things against those believers.

20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols. 21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. 22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.

That is proof that believers in iniquity will be left behind to face the coming great tribulation.

23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

God maintains the punishment for the wages of sin is death; Galatians 6:7-9 & Romans 6:23 in the case of the unrepentant believer;  physical death for defiling the temple of God, but the believer will still be saved so as by fire.  1 Corinthians 3:15-17

Here is proof that not all believers in that city was involved in that iniquity as stated below & called to hold fast to the traditions which they have been taught.

24 But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, as many as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the depths of Satan, as they speak; I will put upon you none other burden.

That is a reference to tongues without interpretation as being just vain & profane babblings as that kind of supernatural tongue can be found in documentation involving the demonic possessed.  You cannot abstain from all appearances of evil if God permits the Holy Spirit to use tongues as a prayer language.  

Contrary to modern Bibles that ignore John 16:13 on how the Holy Spirit will only speak & not for Himself, they use the errant translation of Romans 8:26-27 as if the Spirit can utter things to speak for Himself, but the KJV does not support such a falsehood because the groanings are not uttered, hence no sound at all which is why verse 27 exists to show how the unspeakable intercessions of the Spirit are made known & that is by Jesus knowing the mind of the Spirit since He is the One that searches our hearts in Hebrews 4:12-16.

The reason for this being only One Mediator between God & man is because the Son is at the right hand of God the Father in giving our intercessions and the Spirit's unuttered intercessions to the Father so that when the Father says "Yes.." to any of those intercessions, the Son answers the prayer so that the Father may be glorified in the Son for answered prayers;  John 14:6,13-14  Hebrews 7:25

So all those saved believers addressing the Holy Spirit in prayer & in worship to come & fall on them are NOT experiencing the Holy Spirit again & again & again after a sign, but the strong delusion for believing that lie.

It is because of spirits in the world and sinners engaging in spirit worship;  like the Native American Indians dancing & chanting for the Great Spirit to come wherein alcohol reminded them of the experience of communing with the Great Spirit, is why some Pentecostal/Charismatic circles are experiencing a drunkenness in the "Spirit" to explain the apparent work of the flesh as being the fruit of the Spirit called "joy" which it is not.  A house divided cannot stand if we are to have all the fruits of the Spirit in us and so joy cannot be drunkenness when joy is joy in order for us to have temperance which is also a fruit of the Spirit which is self control.

This is why Jesus meant what He said that He is the only way to come to God the Father in anything & why all invitations points to Him for life;  and any other way... especially when no invitation has been given to go to the Holy Spirit, is dishonoring the Son as being the only way to come to God the Father, ( John 5:22-23 ) & then that iniquity will lead to wayward believers following a stranger's voice which is what tongues without interpretation is;  John 10:1-5

The Holy Spirit is God, but even the Holy Spirit & scripture is pointing the bride to keep going to the Bridegroom in living that reconciled relationship with God the Father through Jesus Christ as we are led by the Spirit & His words to do so.

So that tongue which is not of the Lord can be discerned as the reason why so many are falling away from the faith in these latter days when errant believers want that vain & profane babblings by another way other than to the Son, thus committing spiritual adultery.  Matthew 12:39 & 2 Corinthians 11:1-4

May the Lord help you to see all those references to apostasy is being connected to tongues that never comes with interpretation as it is the way the world speaks & the world hears it;  thus the spirit of error;  1 John 4:1-6 & 1 Corinthians 14:20-22

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11 hours ago, Ronda said:

2 Thes. 2:10-12
10 "And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved."
11 "And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:"
12 "That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness."

"a lie" taken literally, would be a (one) singular lie

The one (a) lie would have everything to do with the qualifying statement just previous: "BECAUSE they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved"
What would be the truth they did NOT receive that did NOT save them?

The one singular truth would be belief in Jesus alone for salvation.
No-one (and nothing) else is able to save, but Christ Himself.

The verses include a second qualifier of what this (a) lie would be, by the usage of: "and for THIS CAUSE"

Some would disagree, but I believe that if a person hears the truth that Jesus alone saves while they are yet in the age of grace, and has rejected this truth (as John 3:18 also tells us), they will be condemned.
and further, not have a "second chance" after the tribulation starts.

Being given not just a delusion, but a strong delusion...
That delusion not being given by mankind, nor even from the devil, but from God Himself...
I believe that strong delusion will be far too powerful for them to overcome, nor for them to be able to recognize that Jesus alone saves.
What will they believe in PLACE of the TRUTH? A lie... the lie that someone/something else saves.
The antichrist (whom they will worship) is whom they will believe is their (false) savior.

Most of those who do not agree with this either believe that grace age believers go through the tribulation, and/or that the tribulation has (supposedly) already happened.
However, I have encountered a few pre-trib believers (as I am) who would disagree with me on this as well.

Rhonda, as a post-trib/pre-wrather (is that the proper way to say it?) I completely agree with you. From the context it seems very clear that the strong delusion and the lie have everything to do with having rejected Christ in the time of grace, and thus, the call, as it were, is ceased to those people and the Lord will not just leave them to their own devices, but will actually CAUSE them to believe the lie of the Deceiver, and willingly follow the Antichrist.

Sadly, this also really is sad for such people as 7th Day Adventists and JW's, because they believe the antichrist is coming, they believe he will deceive many, and think, knowing this, they will know him for who he is and reject him---except they reject the Jesus Christ of the Bible and the salvation He offers, and WILL follow the antichrist because they will have no choice.

I believe Golgotha here is very sincere in what he is writing, but I think he is inadvertently doing some wresting of scripture, taking things from their proper context and making it say what it doesn't say. Clearly Paul is speaking of unbelievers who have rejected Christ and live for pleasure, not believers, not even backslidden believers.

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3 hours ago, Ukulelemike said:

Rhonda, as a post-trib/pre-wrather (is that the proper way to say it?) I completely agree with you. From the context it seems very clear that the strong delusion and the lie have everything to do with having rejected Christ in the time of grace, and thus, the call, as it were, is ceased to those people and the Lord will not just leave them to their own devices, but will actually CAUSE them to believe the lie of the Deceiver, and willingly follow the Antichrist.

Thank you Mike. :) I am also thankful we are in agreement on this. May I ask you (Mike) whom you believe this part of  2 Thes. 2:7 is referring to? ".... only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way."? Do you not believe this is the indwellling presence of the Holy Spirit? And (if so) wouldn't that show that the antichrist ("that Wicked" of verse 8) could not be revealed until after the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit is removed along with the grace age believers? Or do you believe the "he who now letteth" is someone/something else? 

Thank you! 

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4 hours ago, Ukulelemike said:

I believe Golgotha here is very sincere in what he is writing, but I think he is inadvertently doing some wresting of scripture, taking things from their proper context and making it say what it doesn't say. Clearly Paul is speaking of unbelievers who have rejected Christ and live for pleasure, not believers, not even backslidden believers.

Thank you, Ukulelemike for acknowledging my sincerity.  I am not sure if the Lord will lead me to share how this is seen as addressing believers since it is on Him to cause the increase, but I shall see as He leads me on.

2 Thessalonians 2:3 speaks of the falling away that will happen first.  This is addressing believers;  not non-believers.  1 Timothy 4:1-2 confirms this as a falling away from the faith in giving heed to seducing spirits & doctrines of devils. 

2 Thessalonians 2:7 has Paul testifying to this iniquity that will cause the falling away from the faith as happening even back in his day.  Who is taken out of the way?  The restraining power of the Holy Spirit when errant believers seek to receive what they believe to be the Holy Spirit again after a sign.  He still dwells within, but the restraining power is taken out of the way for believers to receive the strong delusion for believing the lie.

2 Thessalonians 2:9 speaks of the consequences when the restraining power of the Holy Spirit has been taken out of the way for these strong delusion to occur on wayward believers.

2 Thessalonians 2:9 testimony of after the workings of Satan is tying in with the falling away from the faith in 1 Timothy 4:1-2

2 Thessalonians 2:10 testimony is comparable to 1 John 2:19 as those professing believers went out from among the believers in the faith so that it may be manifest that they were not of that fold that had received the love of the truth.  

This does not necessarily mean that no one can repent of this iniquity, for God may be peradventuring  to deliver some ( 2 Timothy 2:24-26 ), but usually, as the case is in these latter days, they just follow the crowd in following after signs as an adulterous generation.  Matthew 12:39

Did not Jesus warn of false prophets coming in?  Matthew 7:13-17?  Is not Jesus addressing professing believers that claim to do wonderful things in His name in Matthew 7:21-23 ?  Yet many believers say that He did not know them, thus they were never saved, but they forget that any iniquity is a work that denies Him ( Titus 1:15-16 ) even from those that claim to know God. And any professing believer that is a worker of iniquity will be denied by Him ( 2 Timothy 2:12  BUT even if they no longer believe in Him, He still abides, ( 2 Timothy 2:13 ) which is why they are saved still, and why the call to depart from iniquity goes out to even those astray;  especially those astray ( 2 Timothy 2:18-21 if they wish to be received as a vessel unto honor in His House at the pre trib rapture event. ) 

1 Corinthians 2:14 proves that non-believers are already blinded from seeing the truth.  So applying 2 Thessalonians 2:11 of God permitting a strong delusion to occur for believing the "lie" cannot apply to non-believers.  There is no point to do so.  

It hardly explains the falling away event as spoken of at the beginning of the chapter in 2 Thessalonians 2:3.  So the concept of those that "perish" is referring to wayward believers that will be judged by being left behind from the gathering of the elect.  It is not an eternally perishing, but a perishing in this life which will happen when left behind.

Paul speaks of the rapture & the great tribulation;  so the concept of why some professing believers will be left behind to perish has to be addressed in regards to that falling away event.

This is why Paul is reminding believers when they had received the sanctification of the Spirit & the belief of the truth in 2 Thessalonians 2:13-15 to reprove and guard against this falling away from the faith.

Paul goes on expounding on those falling away into the next chapter about how we may be delivered from wicked & unreasonable men for they have not faith;  that do not follow after the traditions taught of us & are in fact, disorderly.  That all ties in with the strong delusion occurring on wayward believers for believing the lie as the case is about thinking one can receive the Holy Spirit "again" after a sign as they do in these movements of the "Spirit" as they are "disorderly".  But as Paul gives the teaching of Christ touching the elect to obey this command to withdraw from every brother that walks disorderly 2 Thessalonians 3:6  ( do note that the verse 6 still calls them brothers ) Paul goes on even more to clarify that we are not to treat them as the enemy, but our withdrawing from them is to admonish them as brothers still.  2 Thessalonians 3:14-15

This is why there are vessels unto honor His His House; the elect; and the vessels unto dishonor in His House that did not depart from iniquity as they will be excommunicated from attending the Marriage Supper, but they will be received later on after the great tribulation as vessels unto dishonor in His House.  2 Timothy 2:19-21

So that is why I see perish in 2 Thessalonians 2:10 as addressing believers in life because they had received the truth, but not the love of the truth which is why they went a whoring away from the Bridegroom. The call to repentance is to return to their first love, hence by His help, ceasing from committing spiritual adultery.

Otherwise, they will perish in this life after the pre trib rapture.  Do consider that application since the warning is given for those saints that should happen to be still alive when that son of perdition be revealed which is a warning for saints in this life as the perishing is a warning to this life.  The warning to the church at Thyatira is a warning to this life to escape the death & thus the perishing coming in the great tribulation.  Revelation 2:21-23

I see all the scripture as tying in with how I am reading 2 Thessalonians 2:10 as physically perishing which will be the results for many saints left behind which signifies why they are called & received as vessels unto dishonor in His House.

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Ronda said:

Thank you Mike. :) I am also thankful we are in agreement on this. May I ask you (Mike) whom you believe this part of  2 Thes. 2:7 is referring to? ".... only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way."? Do you not believe this is the indwellling presence of the Holy Spirit? And (if so) wouldn't that show that the antichrist ("that Wicked" of verse 8) could not be revealed until after the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit is removed along with the grace age believers? Or do you believe the "he who now letteth" is someone/something else? 

Thank you! 

Aww, and I was hoping we'd end in agreement. Okay, here goes.

I actually don't THINK, (let me make that clear), that this is the Holy Ghost. Why? Well, one of the primary jobs of the Spirit is to indwell and seal the believer. When the 144,000 are protected, they are sealed in their foreheads by the Lord-I believe this is the same sealing as any believer receives-the Spirit of God. I don't see in scripture where a duty of the Spirit is to keep the Antichrist from taking power, or to keep Satan at bay. Rather, the one time we see Satan being actively fought against, (other than by Jesus), is by Michael.

Another problem I have with it being the Spirit, and maybe it's just me, but the way it speaks of "Until he be taken out of the way", sounds like something done to someone under another's authority. The Spirit is God-He might move out of the way, step aside, or depart, but 'taken out of the way' sounds like something one in authority, (God) would do with someone below Him, (an angel, and archangel, a messenger or servant).

Also, during the tribulation time, no matter what we see as a rapture time, the Bible says time and again that the Lord seeks for those in judgment to repent, but the refuse to repent. Without the pull of the Holy Spirit, I don't see how God could expect anyone to repent, since it is the Spirit that gives us life in Christ. So repent to what? If there is no Spirit to indwell, to seal, to protect and to teach a person, that person has nothing to repent to. We won't be living under the Law, because the law was given only to Israel, it was a covenant with them, so what would people live to, if they repented and had to live perfectly to be saved? I don't believe they will be able to then, any more than one can today.  No, I believe there MUST be the Spirit. I believe it is MIchael who letteth.and will be taken out of the way.  Dan 10:13 "But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia."  Dan 10:21 "But I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince." Daniel 12:1 "And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book."  Rev 12:7 "And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,..."

Michael seems to be the one who stands against Satan. In fact, every single scripture where Michael is mentioned is related to his standing against Satan, or at least, wicked spiritual powers.

So that is my take.

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38 minutes ago, Ukulelemike said:

So that is my take.

I'm not arguing whether your take is right or wrong; in fact, it makes a lot of sense.

I do want to point out that if it is the Holy Spirit, yet one of your points is...

42 minutes ago, Ukulelemike said:

but the way it speaks of "Until he be taken out of the way", sounds like something done to someone under another's authority. The Spirit is God-He might move out of the way, step aside, or depart, but 'taken out of the way' sounds like something one in authority, (God) would do with someone below Him, (an angel, and archangel, a messenger or servant).

Wasn't the Holy Spirit "sent" by God? Therefore, couldn't God also "take" him back?

Again...not arguing...just pointing out what could poke a hole in that area. 

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1 hour ago, Ukulelemike said:

I know this was directed toward Ronda but while waiting, I wanted to contend on all your points here Mike

I actually don't THINK, (let me make that clear), that this is the Holy Ghost. Why? Well, one of the primary jobs of the Spirit is to indwell and seal the believer. When the 144,000 are protected, they are sealed in their foreheads by the Lord-I believe this is the same sealing as any believer receives-the Spirit of God. I don't see in scripture where a duty of the Spirit is to keep the Antichrist from taking power, or to keep Satan at bay. Rather, the one time we see Satan being actively fought against, (other than by Jesus), is by Michael.

Nowhere in the NT is the new birth and sealing of the Spirit described as "in their foreheads". Revelation demonstrates the first and only mention of this. This would indicate something quite different than what a church age believer receives. In addition what physical "protection" do you think you possess right now that the Spirit provides you? And where else in Scripture could you recall this "protection"?

Wouldn't your own physical senses and common sense of the world around you indicate that no signs, wonders, visions, miracles, demon possessions or anything else as described from God to show Himself and His power to the world in the  OT, Gospels, Acts and in Revelation ever occurred in your lifetime? Why not...because the Spirit has been poured out over all flesh during this age. Not only to convict the world of sin, righteousness and coming judgement but also IMO has kept satan down or subdued during this age. No demon possession have occurred since; no miracles have occurred since either; no wonders, no signs, no visions, etc have occurred since.

Don't get me wrong I have personally witnessed several of what other people claim as "miracles" and even some "demon possessions", none of which were remotely true in reality but only true in the emotionally unstable minds of those professing these events as miracles or possessions. NOT ONE (nor have I ever heard of a claimed event like this) that was even fractionally close to what the OT, Gospels, Acts and Revelation describe as these and all could easily be proved as coincidence. Nowhere in the OT, Gospels, Acts or even in Revelation will anyone attempt to link God's wonders, signs and miracles to coincidence. He made it indisputable that it was His Hand everytime. Just as He will again during the tribulation period.

Another problem I have with it being the Spirit, and maybe it's just me, but the way it speaks of "Until he be taken out of the way", sounds like something done to someone under another's authority. The Spirit is God-He might move out of the way, step aside, or depart, but 'taken out of the way' sounds like something one in authority, (God) would do with someone below Him, (an angel, and archangel, a messenger or servant).

God said in Acts He would pour out His Spirit over all flesh. In the final days He will take Him back out of the way. God describes both the pouring out and taking away in the same tense and tone. God uses the same authority over the Spirit in both cases.

Also, during the tribulation time, no matter what we see as a rapture time, the Bible says time and again that the Lord seeks for those in judgment to repent, but the refuse to repent. Without the pull of the Holy Spirit, I don't see how God could expect anyone to repent, since it is the Spirit that gives us life in Christ. So repent to what? If there is no Spirit to indwell, to seal, to protect and to teach a person, that person has nothing to repent to. We won't be living under the Law, because the law was given only to Israel, it was a covenant with them, so what would people live to, if they repented and had to live perfectly to be saved? I don't believe they will be able to then, any more than one can today.  No, I believe there MUST be the Spirit. I believe it is MIchael who letteth.and will be taken out of the way.  Dan 10:13 "But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia."  Dan 10:21 "But I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince." Daniel 12:1 "And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book."  Rev 12:7 "And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,..."

The tribulation time will be as it was in the OT, God will show Himself to all the world via His Judgments against the world. Revelation is quite clear that all in the world will know it is God's Judgment but will still refuse to accept Him, they will curse HIM instead. Nowhere does it say they will say it is not of God, they will CURSE God. Just as in the OT, the Gospels and Act prior to the Spirit's spread after His pouring out, the world will see God's Hand in all these judgments and they will see God's miraculous Hand in the 144K plus the 2 witnesses who will call down fire and bring the plagues again.

 

 

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1 hour ago, No Nicolaitans said:

I'm not arguing whether your take is right or wrong; in fact, it makes a lot of sense.

I do want to point out that if it is the Holy Spirit, yet one of your points is...

Wasn't the Holy Spirit "sent" by God? Therefore, couldn't God also "take" him back?

Again...not arguing...just pointing out what could poke a hole in that area. 

In context to the verses below, I can see why verse 7 may not be pertaining to the Holy Spirit.

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; 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. 5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.  8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,

Seems like one can read that the iniquity is at work as God will allow it until the source of the iniquity be taken out of the way when His milleniel reign comes?  Since destruction is being announced in verse 8 as a repercussion to that Wicked being revealed, I could see why that evil would be taken out of the way at the end of the great tribulation.

Thus leading into verse 9 in the other thing the Lord will deal with & that is the falling away from the faith at the pre trib rapture event which is prior to His dealing with the Wicked at the end of the great tribulation.

So I can concede that verse 7 may not be about the Holy Spirit as I was influenced by other teachers in reading that popular train of thought into the scripture of verse 7 which in context, may not be the case after all.  It is about the Lord's sovereignty in allowing evil to occur until He deals with it.

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On 6/1/2015 at 0:41 PM, Covenanter said:

Why do we always look for future "end times" fulfilment of Bible prophecy? Paul was writing to the Thessalonians, who knew something we don't. We should of course look to the Scriptures for ourselves & our own situation for principles of Satan's activity, & how the believers responsed. But we should not lift prophecy out of its context, unless there is clear guidance in the prophecy, or in the NT writers application of the prophecy.  

The great lie in the time of Acts was the rejection by the Jewish leaders of Jesus as the Christ. Despite the progress of the Gospel, & the conversion of many thousands of Jews, the rejection of Jesus as Lord & Christ  intensified. That "falling away" intensified despite the faithful witness of the believers in Jerusalem  & Judea. The presence of the Jerusalem Christians delayed the destruction for nearly 40 years - the lifetime of "this generation - but the Olivet prophecy of Jesus would be fulfilled. 

The believers saw the signs Jesus had warned them of, & fled the city before its destruction. Lot was called out of Sodom before the fire fell.

We must apply that situation to ourselves. The "great lie" is still maintained by Jew, Muslim, the world in general &, sadly many who claim to be Christians. Our world is under sentence of destruction, yet with the Gospel of salvation by Christ proclaimed. Let's read on:

11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
14 Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
 
Note simply that "believe a lie" is contrary to "belief of the truth." When the truth is rejected, everything is a lie. The great truth is Gospel truth, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 
Stand therefore ..... Eph. 6:10-20 

 

 

 

But why would God allow a strong delusion to occur for believing that lie if this is pertaining to unbelievers rejecting the gospel when they are spiritually blinded anyway as 1 Corinthians 2:14 testifies?  What strong delusion has befallen every sinner that has rejected the gospel?  I do not see it.

Why did Paul mention the falling away in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 ?  How can this not pertains to believers falling away from the faith?  1 Timothy 4:1-2 ?  I can see the strong delusion when believers believe the lie that they can receive the Holy Spirit again after a sign in all of these movement of the "Spirit".  2 Corinthians 11:3-4  Matthew 12:39 

It is that strong delusion for believing that lie wherein I can see Paul's reproof towards that lie is to remind them when they had received the sanctification of the Spirit & the belie of the truth at the hearing of the gospel in 2 Thessalonians 2:13-15, but I do give the credit to the Lord for helping me to see that so I reckon I should leave this to His ministry to help you all see that as the Lord permits.

 

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2 Thessalonians 2:6-12 The delusion is sent after He (the Holy Spirit) is taken away with the church because the nonbelievers rejected the love of the truth in the gospel of Jesus. So God causes them to believe the lie of the antichrist. What could he say at a time when all the Christians are gone and their clothing lays on the ground? Aliens took them maybe. After all they will have seen the light of Jesus in the clouds when he called us up see 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17.

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10 hours ago, Eric Stahl said:

2 Thessalonians 2:6-12 The delusion is sent after He (the Holy Spirit) is taken away with the church because the nonbelievers rejected the love of the truth in the gospel of Jesus. So God causes them to believe the lie of the antichrist. What could he say at a time when all the Christians are gone and their clothing lays on the ground? Aliens took them maybe. After all they will have seen the light of Jesus in the clouds when he called us up see 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17.

That would explain it if it wasn't for the falling away event that was to occur first before the event of that son of perdition being revealed.

Please explain the event of the falling away mentioned in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 as needing to occur first.  Why do you believe it has nothing to do with believers departing from faith as prophesied in 1 Timothy 4:1-2 when 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 ties that in with 1 Timothy 4:1-2 and why Paul stated the reminder of he faith in 2 Thessalonians 2:13-15?

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13 hours ago, wretched said:

Wouldn't your own physical senses and common sense of the world around you indicate that no signs, wonders, visions, miracles, demon possessions or anything else as described from God to show Himself and His power to the world in the  OT, Gospels, Acts and in Revelation ever occurred in your lifetime? Why not...because the Spirit has been poured out over all flesh during this age. Not only to convict the world of sin, righteousness and coming judgement but also IMO has kept satan down or subdued during this age. No demon possession have occurred since; no miracles have occurred since either; no wonders, no signs, no visions, etc have occurred since.

Don't get me wrong I have personally witnessed several of what other people claim as "miracles" and even some "demon possessions", none of which were remotely true in reality but only true in the emotionally unstable minds of those professing these events as miracles or possessions. NOT ONE (nor have I ever heard of a claimed event like this) that was even fractionally close to what the OT, Gospels, Acts and Revelation describe as these and all could easily be proved as coincidence. Nowhere in the OT, Gospels, Acts or even in Revelation will anyone attempt to link God's wonders, signs and miracles to coincidence. He made it indisputable that it was His Hand everytime. Just as He will again during the tribulation period.

You often put forth this view but countless Christians around the world, both past and present, have witnessed otherwise. From individual Christians to missionaries and others there are credible testimonies of the miraculous. These aren't confined to Charismatics or Pentecostals, but include numerous Baptists and others as well.

By your reckoning, what would be the purpose of prayer if there were no chance of God working some form of "miracle" in order to fulfill certain prayer requests?

Our God is the same yesterday, today and forever, His power working in this world is still present.

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Thank you for answering, Mike. I don't agree, but appreciate your answering.  Just wondering... you seem to see the delineation between the church and Israel, so why then would you think Michael would be the one who would be "he who now letteth" since we are not Israel? His role in the past was specifically in regard to Israel...(Dan 10:21 " Michael your prince" -Speaking to Daniel and Israel). So why would he be popping up in 2 Thes. 2? Verse 6 also states "what witholdeth" (referred to as a "he" there as well). And if the "mystery of iniquity" was already  at work then (as Paul was writing 2 Thes. 2, and I believe much more so now), how could this witholder who letteth be witholdng and letting in the age of grace when Michael is Israel's chief (prince) angel? Not the church (grace age believers)?

I would respond further, but "NN" and "Wretched" have pretty much covered the relevant parts of what my response would have been. Anything else I might have said would have led in a direction which would derail the thread topic (even though I think it would be pertinent). So I will just agree to disagree. 

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Has there been a clear defining here of just what the "falling away" is actually referring to?

How does this compare to previous times of falling away?

We know there are, and always have been, many "in the faith" who were not born again Christians. Today, over 70% of Americans claim to be Christian but we know while even many of these who may appear to be "in the faith" they are nothing more than secular or cultural Christians, not actual born again Christians.

When these "fall away", it's not believers falling away, it's the lost who may have been sitting in the same pew with us since childhood.

 

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21 minutes ago, John81 said:

Has there been a clear defining here of just what the "falling away" is actually referring to?

How does this compare to previous times of falling away?

We know there are, and always have been, many "in the faith" who were not born again Christians. Today, over 70% of Americans claim to be Christian but we know while even many of these who may appear to be "in the faith" they are nothing more than secular or cultural Christians, not actual born again Christians.

When these "fall away", it's not believers falling away, it's the lost who may have been sitting in the same pew with us since childhood.

 

Explain these verses, please.

2 Timothy 2: 11 It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with him, we shall also live with him: 12 If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us: 13 If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.

Does this or does this not testify that even when a believer stops believing in Him, He still abides in them?

In application:

2 Timothy 2: 18 Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some. 19 Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. 20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. 21 If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work.

Another application is that many believers stop believing because of the lie of the evolution theory, but yet He still abides even in those former believers which is why the call to depart from iniquity also applies to former believers if they wish to avoid being left behind at the pre trib rapture to be received later after the great tribulation as vessels unto dishonor in His House.

So this is why every believer should give pause about why some former saints & some unrepentant saints will be left behind as they are still His because Jesus Christ will finish His work even in them as vessels unto dishonor because they are still in His House testifying to the power of God in salvation for even those that just believe in His name, but did not trust Him as their Good Shepherd to help them to follow Him as His disciples.

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Christ is faithful to His word regardless of the beliefs or actions of His followers or those of the unsaved. Those verses say nothing about a born again believer becoming lost again or of a born again believer falling away to a point where they don't qualify for rapture.

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11 minutes ago, John81 said:

Christ is faithful to His word regardless of the beliefs or actions of His followers or those of the unsaved. Those verses say nothing about a born again believer becoming lost again or of a born again believer falling away to a point where they don't qualify for rapture.

So if a believer denies Him by not only his words, but it can happen by works that deny Him ( see Titus 1:15-16 ) will he not be denied by Him as testified in 2 Timothy 2:12?

Do these verses not warn about believers becoming a castaway??

1 Corinthians 9:24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. 25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: 27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

Even Paul acknowledge the consequence if even he, himself, did not keep his body under subjection by the grace of God & His help.

Jesus is warning believers below about not abiding in His words in being His disciples.

John 15:1 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. 5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. 6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. 8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.

Jesus is not bothering to warn nonbelievers to be ready;  this warning are for believers for not being ready, otherwise, they cannot be cut off to have their portions with unbelievers at the pre trib rapture event.

Luke 12:40 Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not. 41 Then Peter said unto him, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all? 42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? 43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. 44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath. 45 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken;

46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.

Do note that those cut off, Jesus still calls them His servants as they will be receiving stripes from Him.

47 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. 48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. 49 I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?

So the warning to the church at Thyatira is a warning to all believers to depart from iniquity to avoid being cast off into the bed of the great tribulation where they will perish by looking to the author & finisher of our faith to help us lay aside every weight & sin in having confidence in Him to finish that race for us.... but not every believer is trusting Jesus as their Good Shepherd to do that.

So I still see perish as being in the land of the living between the falling away event & the revelation of that son of perdition that can happen to wayward believers because those that have fallen away that are still unrepentant & in iniquity will perish when left behind, but to be recovered later on after the great tribulation for He still abides in them as they are still considered His as they are called His servants & why they are receiving stripes from Him.

Why?  The promises of the New Covenant can be seen in prophesy in Psalm 89.

Psalm 89: 28 My mercy will I keep for him for evermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him. 29 His seed also will I make to endure for ever, and his throne as the days of heaven. 30 If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments; 31 If they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments; 32 Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. 33 Nevertheless my lovingkindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail. 34 My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips. 35 Once have I sworn by my holiness that I will not lie unto David. 36 His seed shall endure for ever, and his throne as the sun before me. 37 It shall be established for ever as the moon, and as a faithful witness in heaven. Selah.

That is why Jesus said this;

Matthew 5:19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

The consequence for breaking even the least of His commandments & in teaching others so is by being judged by Him to become the least in the kingdom of heaven;  still saved, but it is obvious that stripes are coming for the unrepentant & for those not ready to leave this life when the Bridegroom comes thus left behind.

The race can only be run by faith in the Son of God to finish, but many believers are not ready nor willing to leave when the Bridegroom comes only because they are not trusting Him to be their Good Shepherd in helping them to abide in Him in preparing themselves to be received by Him.

2 Corinthians 5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. 9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. 11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.

Colossians 1:20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. 21 And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled 22 In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight: 23 If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;

 27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: 28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: 29 Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.

Wayward believers thinking they can receive the Holy Spirit "again" ( the lie ) after a sign ( the strong delusion that can be either tongues without interpretation, or slain in the spirit, or holy laughter, etc. ) is the falling away spoken of in 2 Thessalonians 2:3.  Wayward believers will be left behind & perish unless they repent by His help, but they will be received as vessels unto dishonor in His House after the great tribulation for that reason why they are called vessels unto dishonor as being left behind for not looking to Him for help to depart from iniquity in being ready.

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