Church Apostasy -
Living In The Last Days
2Timothy 4:2-3  Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season;
reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time
will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own
lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears...

The focus of the early Church was to TEACH and PREACH the Lord Jesus
Any teaching that points the listener in the opposite direction of
what the Bible says concerning the fundamentals of the Faith and the
Lord Jesus Christ should be considered "departing from the faith" or

Modern "Christianity" has, for the most part, abandoned the Gospel message
and cheerfully preaches sermonettes geared toward itching ears. Sermons and
books flood the marketplace of Christendom with "new and fresh" approaches
to "biblical principles".

Yet, with every passing decade, the Gospel has been watered-down to the point
where it is almost non-recognizable. And Jesus, Himself, said,
"when the Son
of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?"

Today, there are more "bible websites" and "bible teachers" that one could ever
ask for. But just because something is deemed as "Christian" does not make it
biblically sound. So how does one keep on the right path?
By sticking to the
Bible with the focus ALWAYS being on the Lord Jesus Christ.
He is our
Savior; He is our reason for living.

One of the newest marketing "christian" ploys is the "Jesus is here to help you
do what YOU want to do". Folks, this is not biblical. Nowhere are we to assume
for a moment that our life, as Christians, is our own. When one follows Christ,
that person is on the less traveled path. He or she is on the straight and narrow.
It is Christ Jesus in us who leads us through this life through the power of the
Holy Spirit. We do all things by the grace of God. We have all things because of
the grace of God. Our life is not our own. We were bought with a high price--
the precious blood of Jesus. We are to rest in the Lord. His plans for us are
better than our own.

ALL Christian teaching must point people to the Lord Jesus Christ for He is
the Center of ALL Scripture. He is our life. We cannot live the Christian life
on our own. It is not by our own good works that we are saved. We are saved
by the grace of God. The just shall live by faith. Phil 4:13
I can do all things
through Christ which strengtheneth me.

What is happening these days?

Are Christians growing closer to the Lord in these Last Days before the Lord's
return? No, instead there is so MUCH MORE APOSTASY THAN EVER
BEFORE! How is it being achieved?

Well, what is the root of ALL evil? The LOVE of money. Christian book writing
is at an ALL TIME high. Never before has the bible been so marketed with "fun
filled teaching" and "new topics" and yet Jesus, if He were to walk this earth, He
would take whips and drive so many of them out.  Christianity has become a
"MARKET PLACE" where folks can pick a teaching that best suits their mood
or beliefs. It has become very much like the Temple marketplace of Jesus' day.
Just because one is religious and reading religious literature does not make that
person born again.

Many mega-churches are money-making machines too. They have their fancy
buildings with their million-dollar budgets and their
prosperity messages to
insure that the bills get paid and the Lord Jesus Christ has been replaced with
"prosperity gospels", "purpose driven life", "make your marriage better", etc.
"Let's just throw Jesus in at the end of the sermon just in case someone isn't
saved..." This is the error of many churches today. Preaching the Lord Jesus
Christ and staying true to the Word of God is no longer required. Preach what
you want and
what the people want and throw Jesus in at the end somewhere
to justify it all?

Heb 5:12
For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need
that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of
God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.

Today, we have professing Christians riding the wave of every "new thing" that
roles into the Christian bookstore...whether it is biblical or not. We have the
so called "church" comprised mostly of non-believers who think they are saved
but are not-- for they "got saved" on the premise that Jesus could make them a
"better person" and NOT because they are a sinner, on their way to hell, in
need of a Savior. Consider the erroneous "salvation invitation" of Rick Warren,
author of The Purpose Driven Life:

"Do you have a relationship with Jesus Christ? If you aren't sure of this, I'd
like the privilege of leading you in a prayer to settle the issue. Let's bow our
heads. I'm going to pray a prayer and you can follow it silently in your mind:

'Dear God, I want to know Your purpose for my life. I don't want to waste
the rest of my life on the wrong things. Today I want to take the first step
in preparing for eternity by getting to know You. Jesus Christ, I don't
understand it all, but as much as I know how, I want to open my life to You.
I ask you to come into my life and make yourself real to me. Use this series
to help me know what You made me for. Thank you. Amen.'

"If you just prayed that prayer for the very first time, I congratulate you.
You've just become a part of the family of God."
Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life , pg 59 ( Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2002).

Family of God or family of religion? Though Rick Warren may mean well,
the reader is on dangerous ground. The above prayer all looks great to the
unsuspecting but the truth is that any poor sinner who prays the prayer found
in Mr. Warren's book is not saved...not born again. Why?
Because one must
come to Christ Jesus KNOWING they are in need of the Savior.
has a SIN PROBLEM! They must realize their sinful condition; they must put
their FULL trust in Jesus as Savior.

As we have stated before in a previous article: The person must believe in their
heart the TRUE GOSPEL MESSAGE, and in humility, come to God knowing
that they are a sinner and are on their way to hell apart from the Lord Jesus
If the person accepts the Lord Jesus for any other reason, he is not
truly born again.
Jesus came to save and to seek the lost. One cannot get truly
saved unless he knows that he is truly lost.
One cannot receive Jesus if He
does not know why he NEEDS Jesus. The condition of the heart is such
that man must come to God knowing he is a sinner, knowing that Jesus is
the ONLY WAY to Heaven, and that apart from Jesus, one will spend
eternity the lake of fire for that is what the Bible says. You either
believe the Bible or you don't. One cannot pick and choose verses to fit
their beliefs.

Rev 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was
cast into the lake of fire.


What modern Christianity is becoming is a spiritual Tower of Babel, where
man    is trying to reach God by his own means rather than through the Lord
Jesus Christ. They have gone in the
Way of Cain. They have a bloodless,
powerless gospel...where people are not sinners in need of the Savior but rather
need a
"pick me up" or "self rehabilitation".


John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me
draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day

Hyper-Calvinists use this verse to justify their teaching. [Herein lies the danger
of picking and choosing verses.] But what is missing in the theology of many
today is the Scripture that says,
"for God resisteth the proud, and giveth
grace to the humble."
A person cannot get saved except the Heavenly Father
draws him-- AND God gives grace to the humble.

One must acknowledge that he is a sinner before a holy and righteous God.
When one comes to Christ and says, "Make me a better person."
That person
is not saved for he has NOT acknowledged his need of the Savior.
He has
not humbled himself before God.
No one on earth is good...therefore how
can one be made "better"??

Rom 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

But how can one be shown his sinful, wretched spiritual condition if the message
of the Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ is not preached? Christ Jesus died for the
ungodly. The bible speaks much about the proud and the proud will never get
saved. For
it is the humble who receive grace. Jesus said in Luke 5:32
"I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." God gives
grace to those who are humble. In order for one to be saved, he must first know
that he is lost. One must KNOW he is a sinner in need of the Lord Jesus Christ
who is the ONLY SAVIOR. He must believe that Jesus is the Savior.

Psalm 10:17  
LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt
prepare their heart
, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:

Notice that the Lord prepares the heart of the humble.


Today, the majority within the "church" possess a powerless message...
"having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof." What is the power?
Rom 1:16  
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power
of God unto salvation to every one that believeth;
to the Jew first, and also
to the Greek.

THE GOSPEL IS NOT about mentioning "God" in passing. The Gospel
is NOT "do great things for God" or "be purpose driven" sermons.

The Gospel of Christ IS the preaching of the death, burial and resurrection
of Jesus-- that is the power of God unto salvation. Christ alone saves us
from our sins!

The modern church wants "self improvement" without true conversion. They
are seeking to reach God by their own means rather than by way of the Cross
of Jesus Christ. They want God on THEIR own terms. They want to "build
bridges" with God but it is all in vain. For the undeniable fact remains that God is
holy and man is a sinner. Only through the
blood of the Lord Jesus Christ can
one even approach God, who is holy.

True Christianity recognizes that "self" can NEVER be improved and
that when one truly becomes born again, by receiving the Lord Jesus Christ
as Savior, they are given a completely new nature. They BECOME BORN
AGAIN of God's Spirit. It is ONLY through this new nature that God can work.

True Christians realize that our old self was crucified with Christ Jesus and that
because He arose from the grave victorious... we have a NEW LIFE in Christ
Jesus...a resurrected life. The Holy Spirit indwells the believer and from the
moment one is born again, He begins to transform their lives on a daily basis. He
is our Comforter. He teaches us all things. He points us to the Lord Jesus Christ.


Today, many pastors are seeking to build a name for themselves. They are
seeking to bring more people into their church. "Let's make the church a safe
place for the worldly to abide in...We don't want to offend anyone." It's all about
"correct marketing" and "new ideas". "...Let's give our church a face lift...We
don't care who joins the church as long as they come...let's get as many in

Most Christians have lost the main focus.
"The Lord added daily such as
should be saved..."
God will bring the people in. Preach the saving Gospel
message of the Lord Jesus Christ and not waver one inch from it. The Gospel
must be presented in its entirety to the unsaved. Doctrine [in its simplicity] must
be taught to the congregation so that they will be fed the Word of God and will
be better equipped to discern right from wrong... teaching them to earnestly
contend for THE FAITH.

"Let's persuade them...let's convince them..."

The Gospel message of the Lord Jesus Christ needs no improvement. Jesus
stands alone as the ONLY WAY TO HEAVEN. He is the Only Way to the
Heavenly Father.

John 14:6  Jesus saith unto him,
I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man
cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Do you believe?? Preaching God's Word and the wonderful message of the Lord
Jesus will yield good fruit and that alone. We are to PRESENT the
its purest form. We are NOT to persuade with man-made tactics or compromise
the Gospel.

"Let's create a great worship atmosphere...Let's get a
band that will really pack the pews..."

Biblical worship has been redefined by today's church-- we now have worship
music that is designed for different ethnic groups, age groups and placed into
various musical categories.

John 4:24  
God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him
in spirit and in truth.

They that worship God must worship Him in spirit and in truth. The Greek word
for worship means
"to fawn or crouch to, that is, (literally or figuratively)
prostrate oneself in homage (do reverence to, adore): - worship."

The worship of the Old Testament was that of prostration. The Lord Jesus said
that we would worship "in spirit and in truth." As believers, we bow our hearts.

We worship God because of who He is. Our worship must be in spirit and in
truth--  knowing that He is the One from whom all blessings flow.

He gave us salvation, He gave us life, He is the reason for our being, He is the
reason why we sing.

Modern Christianity has placed the focus on "self". Even when they may try to
give God glory, the end result is glory to themselves for their focus remains on
"self"...(as if they could ever in some way improve God- God remains the same:
yesterday, today and forever.)

Rick Warren is in error when he says,
"Worship is not for your benefit. As a
pastor I receive notes that say, "I love the worship today. I got a lot out of
it." This is another misconception about worship. It isn’t for your benefit.
We worship for God’s benefit. When we worship, our goal is to bring
pleasure to God, not ourselves."
(taken from The Purpose Driven Life)

What is wrong the above statement? For one, the wording, "for God's benefit" is
inappropriate wording.   Benefit in this sense means, "to gain advantage or to
make improvement". God can never be improved upon. He stands alone as the
Great and Only God of the Universe. He is not up in Heaven needful of our
worship. He is sovereign. He is majestic whether we tell Him or not.

The Bible says that worship
pleases God:

Psalm 69:30-32  
I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify
him with thanksgiving. This also
shall please the LORD better than an ox
or bullock that hath horns and hoofs.  The humble shall see this, and be
glad: and your heart shall live that seek God.

Romans 8:8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.

In worship, faith receives the benefits that God wants to give.  God meets us,
He graces our hearts with joy. God does not need our worship.
There is a VAST difference between what the modern-day
preachers are saying and what the Bible has to say. To imply that God benefits
from our worship is to state that we understand nothing of His majesty-- His
glory, His sovereignty.  We worship Him because of who He is-- He alone
deserves our heart-felt worship.

Worship is spiritual-- not physical. So it is our "spiritual man" that is revived
when we worship for the Lord does all the reviving-- He gets all glory. We do
not do things for God's benefit...we cannot. When you read His holy Word,
when you pray, when you fast, when you worship, your soul is receiving
spiritual things from the Lord that He wants to give to you.

A.C. Gaebelein said that:
"Christian worship has for its foundation the
possession of eternal life; the indwelling Spirit is the power of that worship.
Only true believers, those who are born again and have the Holy Spirit can be

Phil 3:3  For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and
rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.

The cross of Christ Jesus separates the believer from the flesh, the religious
forms, and self-improvement, and separates him unto God. And knowing that
Christ is all, glorying in Him with no more confidence in the flesh, the believer
worships by the Spirit of God, and no longer in ordinances. The indwelling
Spirit fills the heart with Christ, glorifies Him, and true worship by the Spirit
is the result. To have no more confidence in the flesh, to expect nothing
whatever from ourselves, to glory only in Christ Jesus is true Christian
attainment and experience."

Ray C. Stedman said, "God looks at a worship service differently than we do
because he reads our hearts. These words reveal that worship is not something
we do. Worship does not deal with what we make our bodies do, (either
singing, kneeling, or praying), but worship consists of who we are..."

And who are we? We are His children, bought with the precious blood of Christ!
We can only worship Him in spirit and in truth.


The focus on most "Christian" teaching today is the word, "I" rather than
"Jesus". Even as we seen above, the statement of "worship is for God's benefit"
is erroneous. As if we could "improve" God by worshipping Him. God is
generous to us at all times. He inhabits the praises of His people. He touches our
hearts in love. We praise Him because we love Him-- because of who He is-- He
first loved us.

A father says to his small child, "Son, I love you so much...I am so glad you are
my son..." and reaches out with loving arms and wraps his child in his arms.  
Days later, the young child then reaches out and says, "Daddy, I love you" and
hugs his father and the father in return looks at his child and says,  "I love you
so much..." There is a reciprocation of love. The father would still be the father
whether his son hugged him or not but the son would not understand what it
was like to be a son if the father did not reach down to his level in love.

1John 4:10
Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us,
and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

1John 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.

Our worship reflects this very fact.

From our observation, Rick Warren has, with the stroke of his pen, changed
worship from the spiritual "in spirit and in truth" to the physical-- the deeds of
the believer-- what we can do for God. This is against what the bible teaches.
For it is the Holy Spirit who works through us and empowers us for Christian
living and leads us into true worship. We can do nothing of ourselves.


Rick Warren writes, "God wants you to develop the kind of character described in the
beatitudes of Jesus, the fruit of the Spirit, the apostle Paul's great chapter on love, and Peter's list
of the characteristics of an effective and productive life...God gives us our time on earth to build
and strengthen our character for heaven."

Notice the "GOD WANTS YOU TO DEVELOP..." is NOT what the Bible
says! Nowhere are we to develop anything. We are nothing without Jesus.
We cannot develop anything on our own ...if we could, it would be messed
up! It is the Lord in us that works the fruits of the Spirit.

Our society is self absorbed and many church folk have jumped on the band-
wagon with the "new and improved" self-loving philosophy. This present world
is not our home...we are passing through and it should be our heart's desire to
tell people the Good News that Jesus saves.

Are we supposed to be Purpose Driven?
What about being lead by the Holy
Christ Jesus is to LEAD you through the Holy Spirit. Nothing is
supposed to "drive you"...we are not as the world with goals of our own. We
are led each day by our loving Shepherd who knows the way before us and will
guide us every step of the way. True sheep follow His voice.


Jesus said in Luke 18:8 "...Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh,
shall he find faith on the earth?"

Faith comes by hearing the Word of God! And these are indeed the Last Days
where there is a famine in the land-- not for Christian literature, oh no, there is
plenty of it. The famine is of God's Word. God's Word is not rightly divided and
it is not taught, in its entirety, in many of the churches.

So what has the modern church become?
Faithless people looking for purpose
and meaning in their own lives because they are ignorant of God's Word.
Many have yet to get saved for they have not been told that they need a
Savior to save them from their sins.
Jesus fulfilled His purpose when He died
for our sins and rose again. He is seated at the Right Hand of the Heavenly
Father, interceding for us as the Great High Priest.  We have purpose and
meaning because of Him. We are in Christ and we are led by His Spirit. One
cannot be purpose driven when one is being led by God's Holy Spirit.

The Bible Must Be Our Final Authority

2Tim 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable
for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good

Folks, you don't need all these new "christian" ideas. You need to read God's
Word and find out TRUTH that God wrote for you. God is the Author of the
Holy Bible and His Word was written for us to READ...not to just look at the
pretty features found in many of the new bibles but we are to
. "What does the Lord think about this and that?" If one is born again,
the final authority must be the God's Holy Word, the Bible.

John 14:26
But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father
will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to
your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

Dear Christian friends, buy a good KJV Bible and READ IT. Ask the Lord to
teach you and lead you into all truth. Join a KJV Bible believing, fundamental
Baptist church where the Word of God is taught (where you can grow in Christ)
and the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ is preached (where unsaved souls can
get saved).

Christ Jesus said in John 15:4  
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.

©2006 Cobblestone Road Ministries
All Rights Reserved


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