Over the years as I have watched
the institution of church move farther and farther away from the truth of God’s
Word and the ways of His kingdom; I received a warning from the Lord about big
name ministries and how they had given themselves over to perpetuating the
growth in the business of the institution rather than the spreading of the true
Gospel of Jesus Christ. I had become guarded in my heart to the point where I
viewed all visible or known ministries with suspicion.
During the last ten years, I
felt the Lord shielded me from much false doctrine within the church which has
allowed me to take a fresh look at God’s Word , and given me an opportunity to
cast vision that is hopefully untainted by ones who are “teaching as doctrine
the commandments of men.”
I believe the Lord is now
speaking to me about who to trust among those who are ministering God’s word.
The Lord this day wants me to write to the remnant and say that many in ministry
have run after the folly of Eli and his sons, using the system of church for
their own comforts because their god is their belly. Rather than being content
with the food and clothing the Lord provides, they have lavished many gifts upon
themselves reasoning (as a result of the prosperity perversion/doctrine) that
God wants them to be blessed.
This is true to a point, and
lends itself to the common denominator in all false doctrine… that being – every
lie of satan has an element of truth in it.
Just like the sons of Eli many
false teachers and prophets (because they took more of the offering than they
were entitled to) have caused the people to abhor the offering (see 1Samuel
2:12-17). The Lord would say many, and I emphasize many “have run
greedily in the error of Balaam for profit.”
The Lord says I am changing this
though… I am raising up shepherds after my own heart who will feed the flock and
not themselves. The Lord also said that the pathway for repentance is open to
all who bring forth fruits of genuine repentance.
I asked the Lord then who I
should trust… and how would I know them?
A thought then began to form in
my spirit… what is the criteria for trusting those who are known or have visible
The Lord then showed me
man’s criteria for trusting ministers and ministries.
1) a false sense of
accountability based on professional association.
2) a number of years
as a “senior minister” in a traditional church
ministers and ministries
All these things at least in
principle were among what Paul would have counted as rubbish that he might gain
Christ. Do not misunderstand… I am not saying that someone should not be
trusted because of these things. What I am saying is that Paul understood
by the Holy Spirit; as we should today; “…from now on, we
regard no one according to the flesh (2Corinthians 5:16a)
Here in the U.S. we are about to
experience over the next few years a level of persecution others are currently
experiencing throughout various parts of the world. When this begins to happen,
the only credentials we will need is what the apostles and elders of the 1st
century church emphasized.
Before I share this very short
list, (only one point) let me say first that I am not talking about the kind of
trust that is formed over years as we see someone walkout the lifestyle and
demonstrate the qualifications of an elder… What I am talking about is what we
need to discern in the heat of the battle… Let me also share that I believe the
Holy Spirit is saying that we need to apply this criteria NOW so that we
are no longer subjecting ourselves to hirelings and wolves in sheep’s clothing.
The one characteristic we need
to see in the heat of battle is mentioned in Acts15:25-26
seemed good to us, being assembled with one accord, to send chosen men to you
with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, men who have risked
their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Finding those whose lives and/or
way of life is in jeopardy as a result of standing for the truth of the gospel
will alone show us in the midst of the coming tribulation who are hirelings, and
who will lay down their lives for the sheep. When we find those who meet this
standard, we will be in the company of fellow saints we can trust.
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