SERVANTS' MINISTRY, Inc.
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What is apostasy? What is an apostate? There are many
words that describe this circumstance, that describes an apostate.
Take your pick: deserter of one’s faith; one of little faith;
continual backslider; defector; traitor to one’s faith; heretic;
skeptic; dissident; dissembler; nonconformist; rebel; insurgent;
mutinous; defiant; opposing; separatist; radical; agnostic; freethinker;
unbeliever; atheist; hypocrites; idolaters; etc.
Hypocrites are those who put
on a mask and imagines himself to be what he is not; a deceiving
imposter in religion. Our Lord severely rebuked the scribes and
Pharisees for their hypocrisy (Matthew 6:2, 5, 16, chapter 23).
The hypocrite's hope shall perish (Job 8:13). The Hebrew word for
hypocrite means godless or profane, as found in Jer.23:11; polluted
with evil. All disciples are believers, but
not all believers are disciples.
Idolatry is image-worship or any divine honor paid to any created object or person other than the God of the Bible. Paul describes the origin of idolatry in Rom.1:21-25: men forsook God, and sank into ignorance and moral corruption (Rom.1:28). In Scripture, idolatry is regarded as of heathen origin. The first and second commandments to Israel are directed against idolatry of all forms.
In Revelation chapter 3, we see seven churches. The last church is the Laodicean church.
Rev. 3:14-22 And
unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things
saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of
the creation of God;  I know thy works, that thou art neither
cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.  So then because
thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out
of my mouth.  Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased
with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou
art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 
I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest
be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that
the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes
with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.  As many as I love, I rebuke
and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.  Behold, I stand
at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door,
I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 
To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne,
even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto
the churches. (KJV) . . . Laodicea was the richest
of the seven cities, known for its banking industry, manufacture
of wool, and a medical school that produced eye salve. But the city
had always had a problem with its water supply. At one time an aqueduct
was built to bring water to the city. By the time the water reached
the city, it was neither hot nor cool, but lukewarm. The church
had become as tasteless as the lukewarm water that flowed to the
Laodicea was the last and worst of the seven churches of Asia. Our Lord Jesus models Himself, “The Amen” (Rev.1:18), One who is steady and unchangeable in all His intentions and promises. If your religion is worth anything, it is worth every thing! We should be sincere and earnest in our devotion to Jesus. So many people who profess to be Christians are neither hot nor cold; they are lukewarm. Jesus promises a severe punishment if they keep on as they are. They give a false opinion of Christianity, like it were an unholy religion. People around them decide that it could bring no real satisfaction, or its professors would have been more staunch in their stand for the Lord, and not ready to seek pleasure or happiness from the world. Some causes of hypocrisy are indifference, self-conceit and self-delusion. Just because a person says (professes) to be a Christian, does not make them one! There is a BIG difference between what they think of themselves, and what Christ thinks of them. So many people are cheating their our owns souls! There are millions in Hell today, who once thought they were far on their way to Heaven. People just simply refuse to believe God’s Word! Please do not flatter and deceive yourselves. Professors (hypocrites) grow prouder day by day, and they become carnal (of the world); lusting for the temporary treasures the world can offer (Mat. 6:19-20). Their condition is wretched in God’s eyes. The Laodicean church was poor; miserably poor, when they thought they were rich. They were blind to their condition like millions today. They could not see the danger that lay ahead. They were not justified (Rom.3:20; 5:1) nor were they sanctified (John 17:17, 19; Ephes. 5:26; 1 Cor.1:30). They were exposed to sin and shame; their filthy rags (Isa.64:6) would defile them. They were naked, for they were without Christ, because only in Him can the soul of man find rest, peace and safety. Blessed are those who take His counsel, for all others shall perish in their sins.
Christ lets them know where they might have true riches, and how they might have them. We must receive from Christ the white raiment He purchased and provided for us; His own imputed righteousness for justification, and the garments of holiness and sanctification. If eyes are not opened to His Word and His Spirit, ears shall hear the verdict they do not want to hear, Hell! Let us examine ourselves (2 Cor.13:5) by the rule of His Word, and pray earnestly for the teaching of His Holy Spirit, to take away our pride, our prejudices, and our worldly lusts. Sinners should welcome the rebukes from God’s Word and rod, as tokens of His love for their souls.
Apostate Christianity today is like the church in Revelation; lukewarm, indifferent, not concerned with right and wrong or good and evil. They take a neutral position, live and let live, they don’t want to rock the boat, don’t want to cause waves. They sit on the fence, not being able to make up their minds which side they are on. They try to serve two masters (Mat.6:24), God and self (the world, mammon). It cannot work! It will not work! TRUE Christianity is NOT a gray area. You are either black OR white. You are either for Christ OR against Him (Mat.12:30). You are either God’s child OR the devils’ child (1 John 3:8,10; Acts 13:10; Eph.2:1-5).
Apostate Christianity ignores the Bible’s teaching about discipline. Many of today’s’ churches are welcoming homosexuals with open arms, with absolutely NO rebuke of their sin. Some churches even accept homosexual pastors.
Lev.18:22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination. (KJV)
Lev.20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them. (KJV)
Rom.1:26-27 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:  And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. (KJV)
How can anyone say it is OK when God says it is an abomination to Him? In Rom.1:24,26,28, God states three times He “gave them up” in other words, when they deserted God, God in turn deserted them. God will try to reach sinners multiple times but when a person’s wicked and corrupt lifestyle will not cease, God will finally turn away. He lets people do what they please, no matter how vile and despicable.
Also included in ignoring discipline is alternative lifestyles (living as man and wife without the benefit of marriage). This is fornication or adultery! A no-no to God! Apostate Christianity ignores what the Bible states about Jesus being the only way to salvation.
Two thirds of professing
evangelicals doubt Jesus’ Words.
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee,
Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. (KJV)
John 3:15-18 That
whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten
Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have
everlasting life.  For God sent not his Son into the world to
condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth
not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name
of the only begotten Son of God. (KJV)
John 8:24 I
said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if
ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins. (KJV)
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. (KJV) . . . A shocking
number of people who call themselves “born
again” (evangelicals) reject the above
words. 68% believe that “good” people of other faiths
can also go to Heaven (without Jesus).
Idolatry - - - what is it? It is bowing
down to and worshipping images or any other deity. It is the worship
of anything or anyone other that the True and Living Creator God
of the Bible.
Deut. 13:13 Certain men, the children of Belial,
are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants
of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye
have not known; (KJV) . . . Godless people (children of the devil)
mislead people to worship useless gods.
Heb. 3:12 Take heed, brethren, lest there
be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the
living God. (KJV) . . . Many places in the Bible warns us not to
“harden” our hearts. To stubbornly set ourselves
against God is to make it so that we are no longer able to turn
to Him for forgiveness. The Israelites hardened their hearts when
they disobeyed God’s command to conquer the Promised Land
(Num.13-14; 20; Ps.95). Be careful to obey God’s Word, and
not allow your heart to become hardened.
• Persecution tends to make
apostates. Luke 8:11-15 Now
the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.  Those by
the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh
away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and
be saved.  They on the rock are they, which, when they hear,
receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while
believe, and in time of temptation fall away.  And that which
fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth,
and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life,
and bring no fruit to perfection.  But that on the good ground
are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word,
keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience. (KJV) . . . “Path” people, like many of the
religious leaders, then and now, refused to believe God’s
message. “Rock” people, like many in
the crowds who followed Jesus, believed His message but never got
around to doing anything about it. “Thorn”
people, overcome by worries and the lure of worldly treasures, leave
no room in their lives for God. “Good soil”
people, in contrast to all the other groups, follow Jesus no matter
what the cost. Which type of soil are you?
• A worldly spirit tends to
make. 2 Tim. 4:10 For Demas hath forsaken me,
having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica;
Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia. (KJV) . . . Demas had been
one of Paul’s co-workers (Col. 4:14; Philemon 1:24). He had
deserted Paul because he loved this world, loved worldly values
and worldly pleasures. Do you love what the world has to offer .
. . wealth, power, pleasure . . . even if gaining it means hurting
people and neglecting the work God has given you to do?
• Never belonged to Christ to
start with. 1 John 2:19 They
went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been
of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went
out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of
us. (KJV) . . . Some people may call
themselves Christians, but that does not mean they are God’s
children. Going to church could be just a family
tradition. Maybe they like the social and business contacts they
make there. Or maybe going to church is a habit. Unless going to
church is a Christ-centered reason, going to worship Almighty God,
you may as well stop going for it is not doing you any good. Don’t
settle for less than the Best. You can become personally acquainted
with Jesus Christ and become a loyal, trustworthy follower.
• TRUE believers (saints)
do not become apostates. Hebrews 6:9
But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things
that accompany salvation, though we thus speak. (KJV) . . . Better
blessings belong to those who hang in there!
Hebrews 10:39 But we are not of them who
draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving
of the soul. (KJV) TRUE believers (Christians) are not people
who turn back and are lost. Instead, we have faith and are saved.
• It is impossible to restore
apostates. Hebrews 6:4-6 For
it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted
of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,
 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the
world to come,  If they shall fall away, to renew them again
unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God
afresh, and put him to an open shame. (KJV) . . . These verses refer
to professors (people who claim to be Christians), NOT possessors (true born again believers) of Christ! Those referred
to here were enlightened to salvation through Christ. They tasted
and they were convicted by the Holy Spirit, but they fell away because
they were never saved in the first place. Hebrews 6:9 makes this
Hebrews 6:9 But, beloved, we are persuaded
better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though
we thus speak. (KJV) . . . IF a person is TRULY saved, they
may stray, they may backslide, but they WILL come back to God. No
one who is TRULY saved can ever lose their salvation (John
1:12-13; 10:27-29). Actually these verses tell me that it is impossible
for a saved person to be lost. It is impossible . . . . If they
shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance. IF a person were saved, then could be lost, it would be impossible
for that person to ever be saved again.
2 Peter 2:20-22 For if after they have escaped
the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and
Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome,
the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.  For it
had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness,
than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment
delivered unto them.  But it is happened unto them according
to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and
the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire. (KJV) . . . Peter is NOT speaking of “born
again” believers, but of a person
who has learned about Christ and how to be saved, and has been influenced
by Christians, but then rejects the Truth and returns to his/her
sin. A person like this is worse off than before, because he/she
has rejected the only way out of sin, and the only possible Way
of salvation. They are like a person who can’t swim and are
drowning in the ocean, but refuses to grab the life saving rope
thrown to him/her. Anyone who turns away from Christ throws away
his/her only means of escape.
Matthew 12:43-45 When
the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry
places, seeking rest, and findeth none.  Then he saith, I will
return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come,
he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.  Then goeth he, and
taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself,
and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man
is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked
generation. [KJV] . . . Jesus was describing the
attitude of Israel and the religious leaders. To simply
clean up one’s life without filling it with God leaves a lot
of room for Satan to enter. Getting rid of sin in our lives is the
first step, BUT, we must also take the second step: filling our
lives with God’s Word and the Holy Spirit. Jesus
was illustrating our faulty human tendency . . . our desire to reform
often does not last long. It is not enough to be emptied of evil;
we must then be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit to accomplish
God’s new purpose in our lives.
• Guilt and punishment of
apostasy. Zeph. 1:4-6 I will
also stretch out mine hand upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants
of Jerusalem; and I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place,
and the name of the Chemarims with the priests;  And them that
worship the host of heaven upon the housetops; and them that worship
and that swear by the Lord, and that swear by Malcham;  And them
that are turned back from the Lord; and those that have not sought
the Lord, nor enquired for him. (KJV) . . . When Israel arrived in
the Promised Land, God commanded that they completely rid the land
of its pagan inhabitants, who worshiped idols. But Israel failed
to do so, and slow but sure, they began to worship the Canaanites’
gods. The Canaanites believed in many gods that represented many
aspects of life, and the chief god was Baal, symbolizing strength
and fertility. God was extremely angry when His people turned from
Him to Baal. More than just a statue, an idol can be anything
worshipped more than God. Idol worship is common today, for people
trust in themselves, money, or power but not in God. But in the
end, all idols will prove worthless, and the true God will prevail.
Seek God first (Mat.6:33), and have no other gods before Him (Ex.20:3). Israel worshipped the Lord God, PLUS all the other gods
of the land. They added the “best” of pagan worship
to true faith in God. God commands
that He alone be worshiped (Ex.20:1-5); so the people
committed a horrible sin. One of these other gods was Molech, the
national god of the Ammonites. Molech worship included child sacrifice,
abominable sin. From the time of Moses, the Israelites had been
warned about worshiping this false god (Lev.18:21; 20:5), but they
refused to take heed. Because of their sins, God would destroy them.
Hebrews 10:39 But we are not of them who
draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving
of the soul. (KJV) . . . God never is pleased with just an outward
profession, outward duties and outward services of those who do
not hang in there. He sees them with great displeasure. But those
who have been faithful to Him, have reason to hope for His grace
to help them continue to live by faith, till they receive His Promises,
salvation of their souls in Heaven with Him. Living by faith, and
dying in faith, our souls are safe for ever.
2 Peter 2:17 These are wells without water, clouds that are carried
with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. (KJV) The Word of Truth is the Water of Life. It refreshes all souls
that receive it. But ALL deceivers (apostates, false teachers) spread
and promote error. They are like wells without water! There is no
truth in them. As clouds obstruct the sun light, so does the erroneous
counsel of false teachers for there is no truth in their words.
Christians should keep close to the Word of God, and watch against
all who seek to confuse them. A state of apostasy is worse than
a state of ignorance. To speak evil of the good way of God, and
to charge falsely against the ONLY Way of Truth, shall bring heavy
condemnation. Is your backsliding a grief to you? Continuing on
it shall bring on the eternal agony of Hell. Turning back to Jesus,
and staying there, shall bring eternal life in Heaven! Only Jesus
can save you!
• Cautions against becoming
an apostate. Heb.3:12 Take
heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief,
in departing from the living God. (KJV) . . . Our hearts turn away
from the living God (rebellion) when we stubbornly refuse to believe
Him. If we persist in our unbelief, God will eventually leave us
alone in our sin (see Rom.1:26-27 on page 2). But God can give us
new hearts, new desires, and new spirits (Ezekiel 36:22-27). To
prevent having an unbelieving heart, stay in fellowship with other
believers, talk daily about your mutual faith, be aware of the deceitfulness
of sin (it attracts but also destroys), and encourage each other
with love and concern.
2 Peter 3:17 Ye therefore, beloved, seeing
ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away
with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness. (KJV) . . .
Beware my friends, know this. Always be on guard so that you will
not be led away by the errors of wicked people and fall from your
• Apostasy shall abound in
the last days. Mat.24:12 And
because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
(KJV) . . . False teaching and loose morals brings a destructive disease
. . . the loss of true love for God and others. Sin cools your love
for God and others by turning your focus on yourself and what the
world can offer you. You cannot truly love if you think only of
2 Thes. 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any
means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling
away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; (KJV) . . . If our faith is strong, we don’t need to be afraid
of what lies ahead, Antichrist is no threat to us. God is in control,
and He will be victorious over the Antichrist. Our job is to be
prepared for Christ’s return and to spread the Gospel so that
even more people will also be prepared.
1 Tim. 4:1-3 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly,
that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving
heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;  Speaking
lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which
God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which
believe and know the truth. (KJV) . . . It is not enough for a teacher
to appear to know what he/she is talking about, is disciplined and
moral, or says that he/she is speaking for God. If his/her words
contradict the Bible in ANY way, his/her teaching is false. We must
guard against any teaching that causes believers to dilute or reject
any aspect of their faith. Much false teaching can be very direct
OR extremely subtle. False teachers were/are hypocritical liars
who encouraged people to follow deceiving spirits and things taught
by demons. Satan deceives people by offering a clever imitation
of the real thing. False teachers often give strict rules (such
as forbidding people to marry or to eat certain foods). This makes
them appear self disciplined and righteous. Strict disciplines for
the body, however, CANNOT remove ANY sin (Col. 2:20-23). We must
NOT be overly impressed by a teacher’s style or credentials;
we must look to his/her teaching about Jesus Christ. What he/she
teaches about our Lord Jesus Christ reveals the source of his/her
Assorted Scriptures relating to apostasy:
Deut. 32:15; 1 Chron. 28:9; Isa.1:16; 1:28-65:11; Jer. 17:5-6; Eze.3:20;
18:24; 18:26; 33:12-13; 33:18; Mat.13:20-21; 24:10; 24:12; Mark
4:5-17; Luke 8:13; 11:24-26; John 15:6; Acts 7:39-43; 1 Cor. 9:27;
Gal.5:4; 2 Thes. 2:3; 2:11-12; 1 Tim. 4:1-2; 2 Tim. 3:1-9; 4:3-4;
4:10; Heb.6:4-8; 10:26-29; 2 Peter 2:1; 2:15; 2:17; 2:20-22; 3:17;
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Leaving God's Word