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2 Corinthians 11 - Part C

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
May 13, 2024 6:00 am

2 Corinthians 11 - Part C

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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May 13, 2024 6:00 am

Pastor Skip shares a message of warning about false teachers in the church.

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When somebody false comes into the church, they don't come saying hi. I'm your neighborhood cultist. I'm your local neighborhood false prophet.

I'd like to deceive you if I could have five, ten minutes of your time, please. No, they come like Little Red Riding Hood to grandma's house, and they wear the mask, and they're underneath a wolf in sheep's clothing. Today on Connect with Skip Heiting, Pastor Skip shares a message of warning about false teachers in the church. But first, here's a resource that dives deep into the story of who God is, and what that means to you. Does God exist? And if He does, is it possible to know Him?

How you answer those questions shapes how you see the world and navigate life. And Skip Heiting knows how important it is to have an accurate view of God's character. I've noticed that almost every problem that a person has in their life stems from an inadequate view of God. In Skip Heiting's book, Biography of God, learn to recognize and remove the limits you may have placed on your idea of who God is.

The truth is, I am a fellow traveler on the same road that you are on, and we have access to the same information, the same documents, but I hope to offer a fresh perspective on God Himself. Biography of God is our way to thank you for supporting Connect with Skip Heiting as we reach a lost world with the gospel. Request your copy with a gift of $50 or more when you give securely online at connectwithskip.com slash offer or call 800-922-1888.

That's connectwithskip.com slash offer or call 800-922-1888. Okay, we're going to be in 2 Corinthians 11 as we join Skip for today's lesson. Listen to their reasoning. Well, Paul didn't take a dime from you guys. And all that means is Paul himself knows that he's not a true apostle. If he knew he was a true apostle, he would have let himself be remunerated.

The fact that he didn't take money from you shows that he himself knows he's a fake. This is spin. This is how they were spinning it.

This is how they were spinning it. When I was present with you and in need, I was a burden to no one. For what I lacked, the brethren who came from Macedonia supplied, and in everything I kept myself from being burdensome to you, and so I will keep myself. I am amazed at what people will put up with in churches. They'll put up with false doctrine.

They'll put up with people yelling at them, berating them, soaking them, taking offering after offering after offering, and they'll put up with it. Years ago, I was in Scotland. I went to a church. We were invited at a church.

I brought a band with me in those days. We would play music, and often I would also share the gospel and do pastoral meetings, etc. This one particular church we were invited to was headed up by an apostle, he called himself. Interesting. We did our ministry, and at the end, he got up, and I listened to his pitch, his appeal.

You know, these people have come all the way from America, and you need to dig deep and support them. He passed the offering, and then he took the offering again. You know, dig deeper and stuff, and I'm embarrassed, so I didn't know this was coming, but he was an apostle, and by apostolic authority, you know, he's taking this thing, so when it was all done, he made me come up in front of the crowd, and he presented the offering for him, so I thanked him, and then I got the microphone, and I said to the crowd, I want to thank the apostles so much for this, and we feel that you are probably supporting a mission somewhere, and we want to give this money back to your missions fund. You know, we just thought, I'm not going to touch that money with a 10-foot pole, and so we gave it back to their mission fund for them to support people who are sharing the gospel like Paul. They can do it free of charge, so Paul said, I've kept myself a burden, and so I will keep myself.

As the truth, verse 10, as the truth of Christ in me, no one shall stop me from this boasting in the regions of Achaea. Why? Because I do not love you. God knows. In other words, God forbid.

Of course I love you. This is why I'm doing it. God knows. But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things in which they boast. They call themselves an apostle.

I'm not going to let them have that boast. For such, verse 13, now this is where he takes the gloves off. Here's the bare-fisted punch. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers. This is where the gift of discernment kicks in. Deceitful workers transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore, it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness whose end will be according to their works.

Yeah, wow, he's just pulling no punches. Just bam, false prophet, false apostle, deceitful worker. Now Paul is coming there, remember. He hasn't come yet. He hasn't come back yet. He's coming.

And he says, get all this stuff squared away. I'm coming. And if they don't think that I'm meek and mild in person, just wait, I'll be there. They're false apostles. I've got my mark set on them. Got the bullseye on them. I know who they are. When somebody false comes into the church, they don't come saying, hi, I'm your neighborhood cultist. I'm your local neighborhood false prophet.

I'd like to deceive you, if I could have five, 10 minutes of your time, please. No, they come like Little Red Riding Hood to grandma's house. And they wear the mask. And they're underneath a wolf in sheep's clothing.

So Paul is pulling off the mask. Just in case you think that this is, well, this is antiquated. This stuff doesn't happen.

It has always happened. Throughout church history, do you recognize how often old and New Testament, this was a huge deal? Do you realize in the law itself, in Deuteronomy 13, there's a whole chapter devoted to people who speak the name of the Lord, do miracles in the name of the Lord, but are false prophets and how to discern them?

That's in the law. Do you realize in the prophets like Jeremiah and Ezekiel, they talk about false shepherds and people who poison the flock, and God didn't send them, and how to spot them? All the way into the New Testament, Jesus warned of them, John warned of them, Peter warned of them, and Paul did as well. All the way to the end of time, Revelation 13, the Antichrist is accompanied by what's his name? The false prophet. The false prophet, there will be some personage at the end of time in cahoots with the man of sin or the son of perdition or the Antichrist, whatever you want to call him, the little horn of Daniel 7.

The false prophet will help him carry out his agenda. So they've always been around, and by the way, you don't have to look for them. They'll come to you. Jesus said, for they will come to you, and they will. They come to every assembly. I know you're going, hmm, well, who are they?

They'll come to you, but you'll spot them. I've told you before when I had a little Bible study in Garden Grove, California, every Tuesday night. It was in a living room, and I remember it was growing, and the living room was packed, and one Tuesday night, this guy I had never seen before showed up, and his eye was on this beautiful girl across the room, and he has Bible open, but he's kind of looking her way, and just went over to her after the study and said, the Lord told me during this Bible study, during Skip study, that you're going to be my wife, and she held up her hand. She had a ring on it. She said, I'm married, and that would deter most people, right? This is a stop sign for a lot of guys like that, but he said, well, obviously you married the wrong person, and it wasn't the will of God. The will of God.

I am the will of God. Well, she didn't know what to say. She never heard that kind of a... I mean, there's guys with clever lines when they want to pick up a girl, but that was a new one, so she came and found me, and told me what was going on, and this was an easy fix for me.

I just grabbed him by the arm, walked him outside, said, wherever you walked from or a car, get in it, go, never come back, get out of here, conversation over. They should have done that with these people in Corinth. They didn't have enough discernment to do that, so they'll come to you. I say again, verse 16, let's see how we do here. I say again, let no one think me a fool, if otherwise at least receive me as a fool, that I also may boast a little bit. So they were talking about, you know, they believed in the wisdom, the Sophia of the ages, the wise teaching that comes from Athens, etc., and Paul is, you know, he's not as savvy, he's more of a fool, and so Paul says, okay, indulge my foolishness, because I'm not done boasting yet. If otherwise at least receive me as a fool, that I also may boast a little. What I speak, I speak not according to the Lord, but as it were, foolishly in this confidence of boasting. Now don't misunderstand that. He's not saying, okay, I'm going to say a few words now that aren't inspired.

I'm going to get in the flesh. No, I think what he's saying by this when he says, I speak not according to the Lord, but as it were, foolishly. You know, Jesus made very straightforward claims about who he was, and he was not received. Paul is making straightforward claims, and he's not being received, so he's taking a different approach, like an awkward, embarrassing fool to go out of his way to prove that he is an apostle. I think that's the idea behind that verse. For, verse 19, you put up with fools gladly, since you yourselves are wise.

This is called sarcasm. For you put up with it if one brings you into bondage, if one devours you, if one takes from you, if one exalts himself, if one strikes you on the face. Now, this is going to sound really weird to you, but 2,000 years ago, teachers, people in charge, in formal school settings, if their students weren't paying attention or didn't answer correctly, the teacher would slap the student across the face. Now you get sued if you did that today. Although I will tell you, when I went to elementary school, I got spanked by my teacher. I'm not opposed to bringing that back, but I'll get into trouble for saying that, so I never said that.

But in those days, you could get slapped by a teacher upside the face. Paul did. When Paul stood before the Sanhedrin in Acts 23, he said, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day. And when he said that, the high priest commanded those standing next to Paul, slap him on the face for saying that. And Paul said, God will smite you, you whitewashed wall. And the people standing next to Paul said, oh, the Bible says you shouldn't revile the high priest. And Paul said, well, I didn't know it was the high priest.

Now how Paul didn't know it was the high priest is the subject of a whole other Bible study. But he got slapped upside the face. So this is why in Titus chapter 1, when Paul gives the qualifications of pastoral ministry, he says, not a violent man, literally not a striker, not somebody who slaps their student upside the head for giving the wrong answer. So let them be a servant and an encourager.

So you put up with it, if somebody does that to you, even strikes you on the face. To our shame, verse 21, I say, we were too weak for that. But in whatever anyone is bold, I speak foolishly, I am bold also. Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they of the seat of Abraham?

So am I. Are they ministers of Christ? I speak as a fool. I am more, in labors more abundantly, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths?

Often. Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they sons of Aram?

So am I. What is he talking about? It seems the false prophets claim to be apostles sent out from the church in Jerusalem. Church in Jerusalem. And they probably even carried letters of recommendation.

He refers to this in chapter three. Do we need letters of recommendation to you or from you? You are our letter, right?

We don't need letters of recommendation. Apparently, these false apostles were Jewish. We're adding legalistic restrictions onto the Corinthian believers in that town. And well, we're Hebrews. We're sons of Abraham. We're from the Jerusalem church. Paul says, so am I.

And then says, let me give you my real credentials. In labors, more abundant, stripes above measure, prisons more frequently, in deaths? Often. Now, he's going to list his sufferings. As you read through these, here's what I want you to keep in mind.

We have just a few minutes and we're closing with this. Much of what you read in this list is not recorded in the book of Acts. So when you read the book of Acts, if you think, oh, that's all that Paul suffered, no. He now fills in the rest of the story, at least part of the rest of the story.

So he is filling in some of the blanks. Some of these incidences are not recorded in the book of Acts. So Paul, long story short, suffered a lot. From the Jews, five times, I received 40 stripes, minus one. In Deuteronomy 25, the law stipulated if you are brought before a judge and found guilty of certain kind of crimes, you could be beaten up to 40 times.

Like smitten, flogged, 40 lashes. The Jews made a practice of doing it 39, not 40. Probably so they wouldn't miscount, like if they didn't count right and they would give one too many and they would go against the Bible. So just do 39 and that was considered an act of mercy. Well, we'll just do it. We'll beat you 39 times because we love you.

We want to be merciful and show grace, so turn around. 40 stripes, minus one. Happened five times to him. Three times I was beaten with rods once I was stoned.

Of course, you know that doesn't mean anything other than rocks were thrown at him. Three times I was shipwrecked. A night and day I spend in the deep in journeys often, in perils of water, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the perils of the gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren. It's a lot of perils. It's a string of perils.

In weariness, in toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Beside the other things which come upon me daily, my deep concern for all the churches. You want to know my credentials? Paul is saying my credentials? They say, we're super apostles.

We'll come in and we'll slap you upside the head and take money from you. And Paul, he's not a real apostle. He didn't take money from you because he knows he's not a real apostle. He's not a real apostle.

Paul said, I'll show you my credentials. This is how I've suffered. Not just those physical sufferings, but the things that come upon me daily. Deep concern for all the churches. Think of all the heartache in Paul's ministry. He goes to Ephesus. He's starting a work there. Somebody comes from Corinth. It's a church in Corinth, man. You're in a bad way.

There's divisions, adultery, incest, weirdness. Okay, I'll write a letter. I mean, just to maintain that was a daily burden. Who is weak? And I am not weak.

Who is made to stumble? And I do not burn with indignation. Look, I'm human too. I suffer too. I have feelings as well. I'm weak. If I must boast, I will boast in the things which concern my infirmity.

We'll get to that next week. The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed forever knows that I am not lying. And interesting here, after listing all of the perils, he ends the list with how he began his ministry. He began his ministry in Damascus and he ends this list with verse 32, in Damascus, the governor under Aretas, the king was guarding the city of the Damascenes of the Damascus people with a garrison desiring to arrest me, but I was let down in a basket. A very inglorious exit from Damascus.

The basket was a wicker garbage basket. So, here's the great apostle Paul. Put him in a garbage can. Get him over the wall.

I was let down in a basket, threw a window in the wall and escaped from his hands. So, Paul's ending credentials. Warren Wiersbe used to say, when you look for a leader, look for scars. When we look for leaders, well, what seminary did you go to?

And what experience have you had? And how important are you and what degrees do you have behind your name? Paul would say, you want to see my credentials? Look at this scar and this scar and this scar. One of my favorite poems is by Amy Carmichael, a missionary. Hast thou no scar, no hidden scar on foot or side or hand? I hear thee sung as mighty in the land, I hear them hail thy bright ascendant star. Hast thou no scar? Hast thou no wound? Yet I was wounded by the archers spent, lean me against the tree to die and rent.

By ravenous wolves that encompass me, I swooned. Hast thou no wound? No wound? No scar? Yet as the master shall the servant be, and pierced are the feet that follow me. But thine are whole.

Can he have followed far? Who has no wound or scar? As a follower of Jesus Christ, you are given a promise. In this world, you will suffer persecution. If you are his and you proclaim the faithful gospel and live rightly, you will not be loved by everybody.

The quicker you come to grips with that, the more joyful you will become. So that when the scar comes, you go hallelujah. Another scar, another wound for the glory of God. Paul marched through, loving the Corinthians, suffering for Christ. That's Skip Hyten with a message from his series Expound, 2nd Corinthians, Cautioning Against False Prophets in the Church. Find the full message as well as books, booklets, and full teaching series at connectwithskip.com. Right now, listen as Skip shares how you can share life-changing teaching from God's Word with more people around the world. As Christians, we have a calling, and that is to win souls for Jesus, even as we await our glorious future with him in heaven. And so our goal is to come alongside friends like you to encourage you to keep sharing Christ with others as long as you have the chance to do so. That's why we share these faith-building messages. And today, you can take action to ensure these teachings keep reaching you and so many others worldwide. One major push this year is to grow the reach of these broadcasts into more major U.S. cities, and you can help make that possible with your generosity. Can I count on your support?

Here's how you can give a gift today. Wait a minute, you're saying that you saw heaven? You heard things in heaven? You got a vision of heaven?

Tell me more! And all Paul can say is, it'd be a crime for me to tell you. Really, that's the best you can do? I mean, most people, if they had a vision of heaven, they wouldn't hold onto it for 14 years. They wouldn't hold onto it for 14 hours. It would tell you within the first 14 minutes what happened. Connect with Skip Hyten is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never-changing truth in ever-changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-05-13 05:13:01 / 2024-05-13 05:22:08 / 9

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