Joel’s Army – The Lord’s Army? Or Hell’s Army?

Home Forums Unmasking Deceptions: Occult, New Age, Cults, False Doctrines Joel’s Army – The Lord’s Army? Or Hell’s Army?

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  • #9566
    Moritz
    Participant

    I just finished the new book of Josh Peck and Steven Bancarz “The Second Coming of the New Age”. In this they (as ex-New Agers) share the following thoughts that seem to fit the Jeff Byerly-situation as well since Jeff has repeatedly stated that reading the Bible is not the way to get to know Jesus but instead you have to medidate on smooth music for at least an hour until you supposedly can hear his voice.

    So here is what Peck and Bancarz wrote on page 336/337:

    Additional Teachings from Another Jesus

    Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for professing Christians to claim to receive direct, word-for-word essages from Jesus in ways that resemble channeling and automatic writing. While in deep prayer or a trance-like moment of stillness, they claim to hear the Lord speaking to them they begin to write the words down […that] contain new language that Jesus didn´t use a single time in His earthly ministry, language that reflects New Thought churches and New Age lingo. Phrases such as “divine force”, “divine mind”, “sense-life”, “spiritual plane”, “material plane”, “spirit sounds”, “material manifestation”, and “divine alchemy” are apparently used by the risen Jesus.
    […] This hits on an issue we see creeping into the Church from the New Age movement: New methods of hearing from Jesus that are indistinguishable from “channeling”, “automatic writing”, and “overshadowing” are understood in the occult. The Lord apparently speaks verbatim to or through an individual apart from His revealed Word while they are in an altered state of consciousness for the purpose of bringing forth new doctrine and revelation.

    Jesus is not a person we channel, He´s a Lord we follow.

    In his most recent blog post “Jesus” told Jeff again who the Anti-Christ is – namely Obama. And “Jesus” basically called everyone of us deceived who don´t buy into this exact storyline (unless we actually would see this guy sit in a temple and declare himself to be God, of course. Y’know, like it is written about the revelation of the Man of Sin. But right now at the end of 2018, we can only make educated guesses at best if we want to call ourselves cautious and thoughtful students of this nebulous season we are living in).

    As you all might know, there are numerous people out there who claim to have received this memo about the Anti-Christ by “Jesus” (or “Jeshua” or “Yahashua” or whoever sent them that questionable spiritual mail). James Bailey, who apparantly believes in a work-based-salvation, has gradually transformed his Z3-prophecy-news-site into a giant echo-chamber where it´s already deceided: Yepp, Obama is the one, no further debate needed, we don´t have to check or second-guess ourselves, because God himself just gave a press conference to our chosen charismatic prophetic community.

    In the past years I tended to cut Byerly or Bailey some slack but the more I think about the situation, the more likely the possibility appears, that they in fact might be manipulated by an outside force and they might be either unable or unwilling to test the spirits in a sufficent way.

    Gee, I wonder if the powers that be really have a psyop-plan about setting up a fake Antichrist first. And if so, can there be better channels to spread disinformation than naive Christians whose minds are wide open to New Age channeling techniques
    or even “Christians” who argueably don´t have the true Gospel at all?

    Like I said before, the most dangerous false prophets, even if they are well-meaning people who are just deceived themselves, are not some prosperity-preachers but those who offer 99% interesting end-times intel to plant 1% of misguiding fake-revelation that leads you to develop a blind-spot in an area the enemy is actually preparing his main attack.

    #9567
    Moritz
    Participant

    In addition I just want to wish every (human) reader a happy new year 2019 although it´s still 23 hours away (Central European Time). Kiwis go first if I´m not mistaken. Rejoice for the end of this mess is 365 days nigher than last year!

    I also improved the picture above and attached an artistic rendition (so realistic it´s almost channeled) of the “Charismatic Jesus” to whom you may subscribe for all new daily revelations and the latest rapture dates.

    You can´t spell fundamentalism without FUN, can you? Take care everyone! 🙂

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    #9619
    Moritz
    Participant

    It´s always interesting to read the comment sections under said articles about the manifesting sons of god. The following reaction is also quite, uh, something

    I loved the line- “My children are constantly being transformed from glory to glory but in the days that are ahead this process will be dramatically enhanced and sped up..” Only a couple weeks ago, while laying in bed one night I opened my eyes & noticed a light shining on the ceiling, and a shimmering of light on the walls around me. I sat up in bed, wondering what could be causing this light in my room? Then I noticed that when I moved my hands, so did the light move too! Smiling, I happily clapped my hands together, & WOW!, the light from my finger tips shot out in all directions to light up the ceiling & walls all around me! I soon discovered that the more I joyfully clapped, the more the light shined! So I clapped some more to watch the light dance out all around me. What fun, I thought! On waking in the morning, I well remembered the awesome dream/vision/experience, & also that before going to bed I asked the Lord to show me more of ‘His mysteries of the Light Kingdom’.

    #9633
    Vlad
    Participant

    First,..Matt did a great job with his research and sharing his insights on this “Joel’s Army”.
    Second,…Regarding this theme of deception and delusion as it related to this present point in time I found the entry comments very interesting and thus post this remark.
    I do not follow Jeff Byerly so can not comment concerning him or what espouses but with the multitudes of voices that are able to chime in with this era of global internet it can be distracting or even confusing to try and decipher and filter hay from stubble. One might even say we experience information overload, be it truth or fiction. My personal impression in reading this so called prophetic message was that it smacked of rubbish and foolish babbling—-But as a side note what struck me was the wise diligence by which the AMTM team counselled together as they sought discernment of the Holy Spirit in how to address a message given to the church that had left them with a check in their spirit.

    Prov. 11:14 -Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.
    Prov. 15:22 -Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established.
    I John 4:1 -Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
    Sometimes I have to step back from the rat race and volumes of preaching, teaching and prophesying of others and just sit quietly before the Lord to find rest and renewed and solid spiritual equilibrium to navigate through a chaotic world that seems to be in an advanced state of decay on most every level. Sadly most of the Christian world….western world at least…is awash in utter deception and apostasy it seems to me in their quarry to adopt new and exciting ideas that fit their “anything goes and love wins” motto and life styles.
    Prov. 4:5-7 – Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth. Forsake her not, and she shall preserve thee: love her, and she shall keep thee. Wisdom is the principal thing: therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.
    II Tim. 2:15 –Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
    The 12 chpt. Of Daniel speaks about the time of the end when he writes that men will run to and fro and knowledge shall be increased. Truly we are experiencing an avalanche of all kinds of knowledge…i.e. good, dark, forbidden, some we can not comprehend. etc.
    Eccl. 12:11-13 – The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd. And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh. Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
    It is good to know that at the end of the day we have a real living all powerful God who by His Spirit abides with us always and will lead us into all truth if we have truly been born again through Jesus the Christ. Thankfully I don’t have to depend or rely on Rick, Kenneth, Joyce, john on any one of many super enlightened overcoming saints making up this mighty Army of Man Childs and so on and so forth………
    I find comfort, direction, assurance, hope and renewed living faith in Christ and my relationship with Him and His ability to keep me as I seek Him when I meditate on this verse many so often read this time of year. Isaiah 9:6 – For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The might God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. This my friends is for me where the rubber meets the road. This is my Lord and counsellor who keeps, corrects, directs and leads me and will faithfully do so through whatever 2019 brings to pass. I pray blessings on all contributors and the wonderful AMTM team as we share together and press on toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
    Cheery-O

    #9634
    Sarah
    Participant

    Hey guys thank you so much for this article. I echo what Vlad said about the research and careful responses in making sure everything you said was Holy Spirit lead.
    Moritz, your words describing the deception was amazing. You explained exactly what I have been feeling lately. I pray daily for discernment and this particular web site has been giving me some questions.
    I was a follower of Jeff Byerly’s web site for a while at first I found I couldn’t get enough of it and I was soaking up everything that was posted, but then I started to recognize some odd sayings and then the Obama anit-christ thing really had me wondering. I continued to read everything with a fine tooth comb and began asking God is this web site legitimate? I read the exact same “word” that you posted when Jeff posted it in December. It was really odd to me and I didn’t like it. I knew something was wrong and to see you guys say the same thing about the same passages and sentences just confirmed what the Holy Spirit has been trying to get me to see.
    Thank you!
    I have another web site I want to ask your guys opinions about. Its called SparrowCloud9. Apparently this gal has been visiting Jesus and God in heaven during her devotions. At first she seems very legitimate and she seems to have such a genuine passion for the Lord. Most things she says really speak to me, but this one particular thing. She says that God will gibe her a “transformed body” and when trouble begins she will brining in the Great Harvest.
    Like I said that part just gives me pause. Ive been trying to research “transformed” in the bible and I haven’t had much luck. Ive asked God if she’s truly hearing from Him. Im still researching…..
    I also see another person by the name of Byron Searle and he seems very legit as well, however he too sometimes speaks of “transformed” He uses the Remnant a lot and he seems to genuinely have a passion for the Lord.
    Jeff Byerly use to post Byron’s things, but he hasn’t for a few months now.
    I admit Byron seems more legitimate than both Jeff and this gal from “sparrowcloud9”
    Im curious your guys thoughts on each of these.. let me know if you need their web sites, however im guessing you have a good idea of whom im speaking of…
    thank you,
    Sarah

    #9635
    Tony Koretz
    Keymaster

    Thanks Vlad and Sarah. Both of you have posted excellent comments here. Sarah – I haven’t heard about Sparrowcloud9. But as far as Byron goes…..I can say this: Brook Ardoin voiced concerns about his “prophecies” a few months ago. I have been watching some of his postings and messages on facebook, and I think they are off beam. I become suspicious of anyone who gets long words from the Lord almost every day that they post publicly, and then gain a following of people looking for their latest revelations and words.

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    #9636
    Sarah
    Participant

    Yes Tony, I was thinking the same thing. I am not connected to facebook at all so I don’t see his following, however over the last few months I’ve been getting a check in my spirit concerning the things he says.
    Its difficult because yes things in America are getting very dark and things are heating up, so that part is very believable, The part where I find concern is also in the “3 days of darkness” and then also Obama the anti Christ. I just don’t like it when people say, “thus sayeth the Lord I was told that Obama is THE anti Christ”
    There are many anti christ and i have my eyes open to a lot of them….. and as a follower of Christ who is humbly seeking the Lord i will be sure to keep my eyes open to the many Anti Christs…..

    #9639
    MattS
    Senior Moderator

    Hi Sarah
    Thanks to you and Vlad for your kind comments and encouragement. Thanks, Vlad for all your additional scriptures as well.

    Sarah, thanks so much for bringing these two people to our attention. I have just looked at “SparrowCloud9“, It is a very large website and I will need to spend more time looking at it in detail. Are you able to post a link here in this forum showing the areas that concern you? It might be faster to take a look at them that way, that would be awesome, thanks.

    Sarah, I have just done a very quick look at Byron’s website and looked at the first prophetic word on that page called “Remnant Arise” Within seconds of reading this I found something that sent up a red flag for me personally, I will post the script from the article as follows;

    But each of you, My Remnant, has a divine assignment. As the world spirals out of the control of man, each of you will be transformed into mighty warriors!

    This gives me some concern when I hear terms like “divine assignment” and “each of you will be transformed into mighty warriors”. Folks from the New Apostolic Reformation love to use terms like “divine assignment” and to my way of thinking when you have words saying that you will be transformed into mighty warriors, where is the scripture to back this up?
    This seems like fairly standard Joel’s Army type talk and I would be very wary of how this type of prophetic message is regarded.

    So, just a really good time to warn all you wonderful folks who frequent the AMTM Forum, many of you will already know but there are so many out there now, prophesying this, that and the other thing. Please be very careful and very discerning about what you read. I believe there may be some genuine prophetic voices, but they are being lost in the massive and overwhelming deluge of “fake prophecy”. If someone says “thus saith the Lord” and they are wrong, don’t bother going back to hear anything they have to say again. If someone says “thus saith the Lord” they must be 100% accurate. Always line prophecy up against scripture as much as possible, or if dates or times are set, check that it is accurate.

    So good to see so many folks in the Forum, thank you all for your contributions.

    God bless

    MattS

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    #9640
    Sarah
    Participant

    Matt,
    Concerning Byron’s post you picked out exactly what I picked out! That makes me feel better 🙂
    As far as the sparrowcloud I will search some and give you what I’m speaking of. This may take a bit but I’ll have something for you sooner than later.
    Thank you again for your tireless efforts at exposing we are truly listening!

    #9641
    MattS
    Senior Moderator

    Hi Sarah

    That is great that you spotted those issues in Byron’s post, awesome discernment.
    Just get back when you are able with the links for SparrowCloud9. I had another look at the SparrowCloud9 website before, there is a huge amount of information to go through on the website, but I will keep looking when I have the time.

    Thank you Sarah

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    #9646
    Moritz
    Participant

    I´m not really familiar with sparrowcloud9 yet, but concerning: Byron Searle, didn´t he have a prophetic outlook for 2018?

    Prophetic Word – Events to occur in 2018/5778
    Given to Byron Searle on December 24, 2017
    My son, you have asked what will happen in 2018/5778. I will give you a list of things that MAY come to pass. I say MAY come to pass because some things may be postponed until a later day. There are, however, some things that must be.
    1. War with North Korea – It will be very quick. [after the kick-off event]
    2. War in the Middle East – Nations will attack Israel.
    3. War in the Far East – China will attack Japan.

    Remember when God told the prophet Daniel: “There MAY be a war between Persia and Ethiopia”? Me neither.

    If that´s prophecy then I got one: “In 2019 the New Zealand Dollar MAY be the strongest it ever was. I say MAY be because it could go down as well. Or stay about the same. Or it could be some other dollar from another country I´m talking about.” Bonus-prophecy: „The Antichrist MAY come between 2019 and 9784“. Prove me wrong, guys, I´m about to build an impressive track record.

    But it´s interesting that he´s using the same word “kick-off event” like Byerle does. I guess it´s the same entity talking, to use a neutral term. The “kick-off event” is supposed to be another incoming big false-flag attack. Obvious possibility is obvious.

    And this talk about “being transformed into mighty warriors”. Always sounds a bit like a cop out (“If I´m not raptured out pre-trib, then at least I want to become a glorified being on earth so I don´t suffer during the tribulation”). This is usually linked to the 144k in Revelation whose identity is claimed by a lot of NAR people. But in my opinion these 144k are likely old testament believers who are currently in heaven (since ten of the required tribes of the Israelits are simply no longer in existence as distinct ethnic groups and you propbably can´t find even twelve thousand male adult virgins among the Jews who believe on Jesus and are stunning examples of Godliness worldwide right now).

    Plus the expectation of getting transformed into glorious invincible beings so soon sets people up for disappointment and loosing faith when persecution hits hard and perhas more importantly it´s setting up people for deception. If you are on the run during the tribulation and you encounter a shiny being that tells you “Be not afraid, I´m one of the transformed ones and you have to follow me to stay safe” you could end up in a very bad place. Or some spirit might want to trick you to give you permission to enter into your body by posing as your “spirit man” who wants to take control over your soul to supposedly transform you according to God’s plan (it´s a very clever trick to make your spirit out to be basically a separate conscious entity from your soul who you supposedly have to minister to and whom you would have to obey according to some questionable teachers)

    I can just imagine a whole lot of ways this idea of “little God-men walking the earth during the tribulation” could take a dangerous turn when there will be in fact all kinds of evil supernatural beings with a bunch of glamour walking around in the flesh during that time. The real 144k will probably just be around to primarily preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and defend themselves if attacked like the two witnesses and not to militarily conquer the planet before the return of the King.

    (it would be cool though if God decided to transform us into super saiyans but I´m not counting on it since He´s more into occasionally empowering weak vessels to achieve a certain task if you ask me)

    #9692
    Moritz
    Participant

    I want to give some thought to the Obama issue. Let´s take two prophetic words from two sources who actually were guests on AMTM:

    Dream: The Return of Obama – Marty Breeden

    Dream: The Return of Obama – Marty Breeden


    July 17, 2018
    I had this dream and heard the Lords voice on this on June 30, 2018:
    Dream of the return of Obama
    I awoke Sunday afternoon from a nap…..and immediately heard the Lord say:
    “Obama is still at work, he means this nation and the people GREAT HARM….he’s hard at work working feverishly to bring destruction to this nation and the people he despises!
    He seeks to undermine the remnant of good and of the True God that still resides in this nation.
    His plan is to re-emerge to power and has every intention of doing so, currently working in the shadows to perform his evil will!!”
    “He has no plans of going anywhere and is being willingly led by demonic spirits which is giving him wisdom beyond human understanding!”…
    Obama seeks the supernatural dark side and opens and invites himself to demonic possession!”
    “PRAY AGAINST THIS AND HIM!
    He desires great carnage!”
    “And he means this nation GREAT HARM……Because he feels his work of destruction remains undone!”
    PRAY!!!!
    Note: Now, as a point of clarification, I am NOT saying that obama is the anti-Christ, HOWEVER, but he willingly walks in the spirit of the antichrist and is one of many that has and shall come.

    a.)
    I think this highlighted part is a reasonable position. And it proves that Marty Breeden is careful and thoughtful in handling the informations he received (meaning: “The Lord has not explicitly made a specific statement on Obama being THE AC, so I won´t make one either”). He´s one of the Good Guys. He´s what we could label Good Guy Type A for the sake of argument.

    b.)
    It would explain why some many good people see Obama play an important and wicked role again. But sadly, sometimes even they just jump to the premature conclusion that Obama must be THE ONE AND FINAL Antichrist. So I think there might be even real prophets who went too far on their own and with their own interpretation (example: “I saw Obama coming back to do evil. So I myself conclude that he has to be the AC”). These are cases based on human folly, not on a malevolent outside influence. You might label them Good Guys Type B, nevertheless the effects of their carelessness could be misleading in a very dangerous and potentially devastating way .

    Well, right now there was no public revelation of the AC to the entire mankind in the Biblical sense yet because no man sat in the temple and declared himself to be god. While there is still a theoretical but unlikely possibility that Obama turns out to be the AC later, this would make the statements of the Good Guys B only correct by accident or chance and not because God told them (lucky guessing does not equal divine intervention and does not excuse recklessness in the first place).

    And now let´s make thought experiment: Let´s say that Obama IS NOT the one and final AC. Even then the Good Guys Type B would still be good guys because they simply NEVER CLAIMED: “Obama is the AC because GOD TOLD ME THIS VERY THING”.

    c.)
    This is where I make the distinction between good guys and bad guys. A false prophet says: “Thus saith the Lord” when the Lord in fact has not spoken.

    When it comes to false prophets, the lesser and in fact tragic case is the unconscious false prophet, the Bad Guys Type A, who are being succesfully deceived by an active outside malevolent imposter that feeds them false information and they are either unwilling to test the spirits (perhaps because they don´t care that much for Scripture and dabble into borderline-witchcraft-practices) or are even incapable of testing them (perhaps because they themselves are not saved by the true gospel).

    In our thought experiment (we assume that Obama IS NOT the final AC), this would mean that there would be people who claim and even believe that God told them VERBATIM that Obama is the final AC when the Lord has not spoken to these guys.

    d.)
    The other cases are obviously the dowright evil ones, the conscious false prophets, The Bad Guys Type B. They have an agenda. They know why they (let´s just include evil spirits here) are whispering lies and what they want to achieve by deceiving people directly or indirectly (through the Bad Guys Type A)

    In our thought experiment (we assume that Obama IS NOT the final AC), this would mean that there IS a final AC coming who must not be identified by the Church, and therefore another individual forerunner must take the blame and the heat. And for the sake of argument we take Obama as a decoy or fake AC in this example and this would mean that the evil ones would have a vital interest in popularising and promoting false prophecies about Obama being the one final AC.

    I really hope you all can follow this train of thought because let´s go one step further after reading parts of this word from Kim Weir:

    A Summary of What God Has Shown Me – Kim Weir

    A Summary of What God Has Shown Me – Kim Weir


    Kim Weir
    Wednesday, May 23, 2018
    […]
    The most horrific visions God has ever given me have been about a man who will rise up and desires to rule the world. These visions left me in shock, in tears, speechless and even too affected to write down what I was shown for several days. Some were very detailed. I saw this man in detail and his heart. I will never forget his face. There are 4 others who have shared they have seen this same man. They say they will never forget how he looked either.
    And I still have not seen this man in leadership or on TV.
    A few men I suspected but it wasn’t him. One vision is here called ‘The Dark Leader’ where I Ann given details about this evil man.
    One of the visions I had over 10 years ago is on my blog here about a winged creature that represented a world ruler. The color of light blue (of the UN) was one of 2 colors in its wings. An angel told me it would rule over many nations. I am certain every nation in the northern hemisphere will be under its rule. And though I haven’t heard specifically, portions of the Southern Hemisphere will be also ruled.
    After a lot of prayer I have concluded the leader that’s coming to ‘rule the world’ isn’t alone. He has a vast network of people with wealth and power and his way is being made by them. In 2016 the Lord gave me a vision that lasted for 3 days. In this long vision, I saw many things happen to America. I am only a messenger though. I do not have full interpretation nor can I give any specific times for all I saw.
    In this vision though, I saw this leader looking to us from the east after many calamities occurred after Donald Trump had been president. He is not American. He says he is of the lineage of King David. He says he is a friend to Israel and many conservative Christians here will support him because of this lie. He is a liar. He is evil. He will deceive many. He will have a charisma that is demonic.
    […]

    Doesn´t sound like Obama, does it? In a way (a worldly way), this guy sounds like an antidote to Obama. Could this be on purpose? Just sayin‘

    If memory serves me right, there was also a false prophetic presentation in Israel three years ago, when a Jewish boy called Nathan supposedly had a vision from „the god of Israel“ about the end-times and some Jewish Orthodox rabbis encouraged him to make it public. Neither the boy nor the rabbis believe on Jesus; they don´t have the Son, so they don´t have the Father, so who was the spirit that gave the vision? According to this “prophecy” the true Jewish Messiah, who they say is unknown today, would soon come out of the shadows and rescue the state of Israel from an attack by Gog, the king of Magog, whom the boy “identified” as none other than Obama.

    So let´s run with it, let´s just assume for the sake of argument that Obama re-enters the world stage when the western world is in turmoil; the economy is crashing and there are not only lootings but attacks and even attempted take-overs by radical Muslim migrants in parts of Europe . The chaos in America and the apparant weakness of Europe emboldens dictators and militant forces in the Near East and now suddenly Obama, perhaps residing in Saudi-Arabia, confesses Islam and alligns himself with them in an attempt to overrun Israel. Perhaps he´s even forcing people to take some Islamic pledge or mark. Of course, now the common conservatives everywhere and especially the Israelis are scared to death and face an enormous horde led by the Caliph or Mahdi.
    But then a “miracle” happens and a new leader with Jewish roots arises and “supernaturally” defends Israel. The invaders are shocked and surrender, the fall guy Obama goes down. Jerusalem receives this man “sent by god” as messiah and this shining hero on a white horse promises to introduce a plan for peace and reconciliation with the Arabs plus rebuilding and prosperity in the region as a first step of a new global project. Some amazed western journalists who came to report on the rescue of their greatest ally in the Near East will call it “the second coming of the spirit of loving thy neighbour” or whatever…

    To sum it all up: The artist formerly known as Obama might indeed return and be more useful for the dark side than many think, but this doesn´t mean he´s the one final Antichrist; in fact he might be the perfect decoy as a fake Antichrist playing the fall guy in a sinister charade to set the stage for the real Antichrist appearing as beloved saviour of the state of Israel; so all prophets need to be extra super double careful with their interpretations when they receive something concerning Obama´s role in the last days.

    #9694
    MattS
    Senior Moderator

    This is interesting Moritz, there are quite a few folks who hold the view (including myself) that Obama will probably resurface again in some shape or form. I believe that he is still active in his work against Trump, he was a Community Organiser in Chicago prior to his presidency, so this role falls naturally to him. In what shape or form he will resurface, it remains to be seen, but it will assuredly be antichrist in nature.

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    #9758
    Moritz
    Participant

    Reading the Bible in context is essential because this way we see that certain verses we all know and quote are parts of sermons Jesus preached and the context allows for a refined interpretation. Every sermon usually has a distinct topic.
    So if we read the whole sermon (meaning the summaries as far as they were preserved in the gospels) instead of just single verses we´re able to see core issues that run like a red thread through the sermons. Some bible editions even give you little headlines to these subdivisions inside of one chapter which is pretty neat. For example, in my bible Matthew 7 is divided into five subdivisions according to the five teachings or sermons Jesus had given to his followers at that time. The first sermon here was “About Judging” (Matthew 7:1-6), the last sermon here was “The wise and the foolish builders” (Matthew 7:24-29). Of course we got a very condensed version of the respective sermon but if you look at the single verses inside of them and understand to which sermon they belong to, there should be no or less confusion what they are talking about.

    So let´s look at the sermon “Warning about false prophets” (Matthew 7:15-23):

    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.
    21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
    22 Many [= false prophets!] will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
    23 And then will I profess unto them [=false prophets!] , I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

    You see that? Jesus is primarily talking about false prophets, he´s really focusing on them and hammering them down. Over the last years I must have read that last verse hundreds of times but it never clicked in my mind. In my mind I only read “about workers” in general and all preaching I heard on that last verse was filtered that way. So everytime the discussion went on to be about works in general.

    Don´t get me wrong, Jesus was in fact adding a comment about other kinds of works than prophecies as a sidenote, but this wasn´t the core this particular sermon. But you would never recognize this if you skip the verses before.

    And yes, even on its own and taken as a word about works in general, this verse is super important because it teaches that Jesus “never knew” these people. He didn´t say “I used to know you”. So it´s in no way about people somehow “loosing their salvation cuz poor works” (salvation is not earned by your performance in your life in the first place, it´s by believing in the performance of Jesus in His life; the righteous are sinners justified by faith not by more or less cleaning up their own lives).
    What the verse is about are people who were never saved to begin with because they never believed the real gospel and thus believed on another Jesus. So they serve an unbiblical Jesus, confessing and spreading a false gospel, and are empowered to do a lot of signs and wonders that in return keep and lead more people away from the real deal. That´s far worse than not doing anything. And then they show up in the afterlife and proclaim: “We worked for Jesus!” And the angelic gatekeeper is like: “Okay, which one?”

    Listen to the angel in the book of Revelation:

    “And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, “See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy ” (Revelation 19:10)

    If the spirit of your prophecies doesn´t line up with what the real Jesus was stating and standing for, then, my dear “prophet”, you are operating in another spirit whose words make a mockery of God.

    #9773
    MattS
    Senior Moderator

    Moritz, those are really good points and I agree that these false prophets and so-called miracle workers were never genuine believers. It may tie in with the parable of “The Wheat and the Tares” Matthew 13:24-30 and verses 36-43. The “wolves in sheeps clothing”, the narcissists who are in it for themselves and are convinced of their own righteousness.

    Well written.

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