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Recognizing False Prophets Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
February 28, 2022 1:00 am

Recognizing False Prophets Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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February 28, 2022 1:00 am

Just like the false prophets of Jeremiah’s day, contemporary teachers paint God to be whatever they want and people as supposedly “good.” They diminish God’s holiness, exaggerate their goodness, and hide their real motives. In this message, we learn how to recognize these false teachers and discern their heretical teaching.  

 Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)

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Ancient Israel, false prophets lies about God into the minds of God's. The same is true in our day. They diminish his holiness exaggerate their goodness. I real motive from the Moody Church in Chicago this with Dr. Irwin loose her teaching process.

Make it across the finish line. Today we continue a series on the church in Babylon unleashing the power of the spirit filled witness today will be taking us into Jeremiah chapter 5, to help us recognize false prophet, Dave. I find it very interesting that you introduce this sermon in the way in which you did where you talked about the fact that false prophets tell lies, and they put those lies into the minds of people I've written a book entitled God's devil. It's really a biography of Satan's history. It talks about his fall. It talks about the methods that he uses. It talks about his and how he will be eternally humiliated but I wrote the book to show that indeed Satan tells lies puts these lies into our minds and gives us the impression that they are our own. I believe that this book will be of tremendous help to you for a gift of any amount. It can be yours and I need to emphasize that today is the last day, we are making this resource available. Here is what you do go to RTW that's RTW or call us. You can call us right now. If you wish at 1-888-218-9337 and now let us listen carefully as we think about lies the false prophets behind them. Satan, when a nation is in trouble or when you are in trouble.

What you and I really need is a SH from God and we need that message from God for a number of different is first of all to find out what God is like to find out what he has planned and then most assuredly to plan for the future to find out what lies ahead in the ancient city of Judah. This ancient city of Jerusalem and the land of Judah, I should say in about 2600 years ago 600 BC there was a prophet by the name of Jeremiah. Jeremiah was speaking the word very clearly to a nation that had forgot God they were worshiping idols.

They were into immorality and they were feeling very comfortable in their sin, and so God anointed Jeremiah and said Jeremiah I want you to be a prophet to the nation and so he told the people that the Babylonians were going to come and destroy their city destroy their country and they had better prepare and they had better repent of their sin, but the people didn't want to hear it. And so what happened is there were plenty of false prophets, false teachers who said to themselves and to others. We have a better message than Jeremiah Jeremiah all that negativism regarding judgment. We know better than he does. And so Jeremiah had to put up with false prophets. In fact, the false prophets actually ultimately had him thrown into a well and he was there persecuted by them tell you what I'd like to do in the next few moments and thanks so much for joining me is to talk about false prophets from the book of Jeremiah.

Also using contemporary illustrations and occasionally going into the New Testament to help us to understand what is going on today and I'm doing this for a very specific reason. When you're watching television and you see some of these false prophets on television and not everyone is on television is a false prophet or a false teacher, but there are many of them that you will be able to recognize those characteristics and say I see that he or she is a false teacher. We need discernment in this day of confusion.

Listen to what God said about the false prophets of the time and you can take your Bibles and turn to the book of Jeremiah is a Bible there in the pew in front of you and probably if you're in about page 633. Somewhere along there you would find the text that I'm going to be using, but the Lord says this regarding the false prophets. They appealed the wound of my people like me saying peace peace when there is no peace. Were they ashamed when they committed abomination know they were not at all ashamed they did not know how to blush. Therefore they shall fall among those who fall at the time, I will punish them and they'll be overthrown. What strong words to false prophets who heal the wound of their people to lightly they talk the people that you consult your own problem.

You know, after all you can do anything that you want to do.

You can authenticate yourself.

Your sin really is no problem.

And so what they were doing is basically putting a bandage over a cancer thinking that the bandage would be able to heal the deep rooted sore of the human heart of what I'd like to do is to give you four characteristics of false prophets, then we'll talk about some good news. Now some of you may say to yourself, well, you know this doesn't seem very loving for Jeremiah to make these very strong statements does not seem like the loving thing to do.

May I tell you that love always tells the truth. Love always, is willing to confront and that is the most loving thing that you can do. Jeremiah was a prophet who wept. He cried over the sins of the nation and over the things that he foresaw that was coming.

The suffering that is absolutely incredible that we will talk about in the next couple of messages but for now, false prophets turned to a Jeremiah chapter 5 and you'll notice that it says this in Jeremiah chapter 5 and I'm beginning here at verse 12. They have spoken falsely of the Lord speaking of the false prophets. They have spoken falsely of the Lord and said he will do nothing, no disaster will come upon us, nor shall we see sword, or famine. Jeremiah's message is wrong. It's to judge mental leads to negative. That's not going to happen.

This is God's evaluation in verse 13. The profits will become winded.

The word is not in them. Thus, it shall be done to them. Wow, that's God's view of the false prophets very quickly notice that they diminish the holiness of God. They diminish the holiness of God by saying the Bible says they speak falsely of the Lord, no disaster will come.

God isn't going to judge us. The whole idea of judgment is out of vogue. It's not the kind of thing that you do is a matter of fact, everybody's going to heaven in the end everybody wins. Somebody said that we don't want to father in heaven. What we want is a grandfather in heaven a grandfather who watches the kids play and even if there mischievous and even if they do wrong things. He enjoys it all and at the end of the day. He says that a good time had by all. That's the kind of God we want so people today go God shopping because they want to God that is made in their image so they have the God of self authentication they had the God of health and wealth. They had the God of my sexual preference.

Whatever it is that I want God becomes that to me that's not the biblical God, and God said some harsh things about prophets say such thing. So the first thing is they, of course, diminish the holiness of God, and they exaggerate the goodness of human nature exaggerate the goodness of human nature. They tell humans exactly what they want to hear. By the way, your Bibles are open to chapter 5, notice what it says here in verse 30 and appalling and horrible thing has happened in the land. The prophets prophesy falsely and the priests rule at their direction. My people love to habits so but what will you do when the end comes the goodness of human nature. You don't have to change you don't have to confront your sin. It is more important that you be healed and that you be holy and so people begin to believe that I'm okay you're okay you're okay the way in which you are somebody said we have cows for milk. We have goats for cheese. We have sheep for wool and we have God to come along and to confirm all of our desires. That's the kind of godly bond Bible says that God created man in his own image and now man creates God in his own image. Whatever I want God to be.

That's who God is and so what you have is the exaltation of human nature. There's a false prophet on television who garners a huge audience who tells his people.

Things like this.

We have been born for earthly greatness. In fact, what you should do is to imagine in your mind, prosperity and wealth. And if you have these clearly in your mind thinking about them and speaking the right words will bring them about. You have power within yourself to do all of things just think it so you have the power of positive thinking no emphasis on sin, no emphasis on the need for forgiveness. Nothing like that. All that you need to do is to think the power of positive thinking. Now there is some power and positive thinking. Remember that little engine that went up the hill and said I think I can. I think I can.

I think I can.

All of its optimism probably helped it but if it got to the top of the tracks and the tracks were washed out the top of the hill. It wouldn't matter how often it said I think I can. I think I can and folks today. Human nature is basically sinful. Now there's a good part to us to we can both do good and evil. You know what Jeremiah says about human nature. In chapter 17. He says the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked who can know it, and the very next verses I the Lord try the heart you realize that as you are listening to this message today that God knows exactly thoughts are.

He knows exactly what your thoughts were last week what you thought of this morning. God knows the human heart, he knows us better than we know ourselves, because there are things about us that we don't want to admit God knows them pass called the great French philosopher, mathematician, had some wonderful things to say about human nature by wonderful I mean very accurate. He says that man retains an image of God, but he is plunged into the mystery of his blindness and lust, which is his nature. So there's a part of man that can do good. One day I was watching television and seeing the news and here was a story about a woman who went about with an SUV full of groceries helping the poor and the very next story was a terrible story of a woman who had been brutally assaulted and I thought what a contrast. Yes, we retained the image of God and therefore we can do good, but there's also that part of us that is sinful and that God knows about, and false prophets come along and tell us that we are really wonderful people in all that we need to do is to try harder. And surely God is going to accept that's false prophets so that's the second thing they exaggerate human ability. Let me give you 1/3 characteristic and that is that they have various sources for their knowledge now actually I'm in the 14th chapter of the book of Jeremiah were God says this about false prophets and the reason that I'm asking you to turn to different passages is really because the fact that all's well Jeremiah you have references to false prophets. In fact, chapter 23 almost exclusively is devoted to false prophet. Maybe we'll have time to read a little bit of that as well. But this is what it says in chapter 14 verse 13 that I said, oh Lord.

Behold the prophet say to them, you shall not see the sword, nor shall you have famine, but I will give you a short piece in this place and the Lord said to me, prophets are prophesying the lies in my name. I did not send them nor did I command them to speak, they are prophesying to you now. Here are three different sources of their prophecies. First of all a lie in vision. You often see this on television, don't you the most bizarre thing can be attributed to God and if you question it, somehow you are questioning either the Lord's anointed, or you are questioning this profit of the Lord in a way that is going to be detrimental to years ago I watched some of these false prophets because I wrote about them.

One false prophet sit speak to your wallet and tell it to be full of money. I mean really is incredible. Another false prophet. On one occasion sit.

I'm just having a revelation there actually nine members in the Trinity, or how everybody really during Luther's time there were false prophets also in northern Germany and there were those who are having these special revelations. You know all about God and all about these things and you know in the New Testament.

And so for the Holy Spirit is represented as a dove.

So Luther sarcastically said, I will not accept their prophecies even if they have swallowed the Holy Ghost feathers and all said so God says that one source is lying, visions, notice the second is worthless.

Divination that actually is a cultic yes it is true that one of Satan's most dazzling deceptions is to have people speak and they think that they are in contact with the living God, and they are actually in contact with demonic powers. The apostle Paul in the New Testament says this very very clearly.

Listen to what he says there in the book of second Corinthians, where he talks about false teachers. Second Corinthians chapter 11 verse 12 and what I do I will continue to do in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission. Notice that boasted mission. This will become important in a moment they work on the same terms as we do for such men are false apostles, deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ.

And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of darkness. No, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise that his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness there and will correspond to their deeds. While you see people on television today who say that they have the power to be able to touch people and they collapse you know to be slain in the spirit that this man is so holy he has so much power that if you come under his spell. He'll give you some of his energy.

Some of his God ordained energy and he touches people and they collapse on the platform.

Somebody was a part of the movement did a study of all those who collapsed on the platform to see whether or not it gave the many spiritual power and concluded that there was no measurable difference between them before and afterwards they were still the same people dealing with the same sins. And yet the thought is that this man has so much spiritual power like to tell you there's no doubt, and I don't want to name anybody. There's no doubt that I had watched television and I can see that there are some people you can almost notice it in their eyes that they are demonized people, but they use the name of Jesus all the time, as it will.

How can that be there using the name of Jesus, the apostle Paul in this very same passage in second intense says that they were preaching another Jesus there all kinds of Jesus is out. There's the Santa Claus Jesus. There is the Mormon Jesus. There is the god of your fantasies Jesus and so they they proclaim Christ, but not the Christ, who was crucified for our sins. Not bad.

Jesus is a different Jesus and we don't know exactly what Jesus they were presenting there in second Corinthians. But notice this. The apostle Paul believed that it was so much like the real Jesus that he feared that the church in Corinth could not tell the difference and were living at a time when there is so many Jesus is out there and unfortunately many Christians cannot tell the difference.

It's heartbreaking. Jeremiah says that that's another means is worthless, divination, and then he says the deceit of their own minds. I'm still there in chapter 14 verses 13 and 14 the deceit of their own minds. Basically what false prophets do is they look at their desires and after they look at their desires.

What did they do they fashion God. After those desires. I wish we had time to look at this in more detail.

But you know that in the New Testament. In second Peter as well is Jude there is a reference there to false prophets who follow their own desires and so they look within, and they say I want to do this that or the other thing and so God comes along and becomes to them. Thing they want and as a result of that, they are led into great sin. You know the Bible is very clear that God says I am that I am says and not who you want me to be so that said another way in which false prophets get their particular wisdom supposedly made up in their own minds. There's 1/4 characteristic and that is they hide their true motives. They hide their true motives of the Scripture is very clear about this. In the New Testament. This is the expression that is used for false prophets. It says they are trained in greed trained in greed.

My heart just absolutely breaks when I get to this because what you see false prophets do is they are making money. They encourage you to send money to them and this money is supposed to become seed money that will garner you a big harvest. Now this past week I was thing about one false prophet is on television regularly. Who encourages people to send $1000 to him now.

He never tells you how is going to use $1000 so I saw on the Internet that there was a man there who is looking at some papers to verify the fact that this man was worth about four teen million dollars, money that had been sent in. And if you ever see them on TV. He is powerful he is, even scriptural sometimes and he will tell you that if you send me money. God is going to use this as a seed and you are going to get a great harvest and you are going to be wealthy and be able to pay your bills. Many years ago there was a false prophet on television who told people this and I saw it with my own eyes and heard it with my own ears. He said if you send money to me. Your mortgage will be miraculously paid your get to get a letter from the mortgage company saying that your house has been paid for. You believe that what my friend I certainly hope that you don't believe that there's so much deception out there I need to say that when it comes to the ministry of running to win, we make no guarantee that you are going to be especially blessed in return. What we do emphasize is that every dime is invested to get the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ to as many people as possible. Today is the last day were making a resource available to you that I think will be of tremendous help. I want you to find a pencil because I'm going to be giving you some info that you should write down, and I hope that you will respond to it right away. The name of the book is God's devil. What's unique about the book is the fact that it emphasizes the sovereignty of God and how Satan even does God's bidding today. Here is what you do go to RTW RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337. Remember this is your last opportunity last opportunity that we are making this book available RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 you can call us right now.

1-888-218-9337 you can write to ask, running to when 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614. The true prophets of God, get their message from God himself. False prophets draw their false messages from a variety of sources. Next time to spot those sources and determine whether what you're hearing is from God or from somewhere else. Thank you for listening, running to win is sponsored by the Moody church

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