Saved or Deceived?
Many people today, especially in America, believe that they are saved. Most people you approach and ask them if they've ever been saved will say “yes”. If half of the people who say they are saved were really saved, then we would be seeing the second Great Awakening taking place in our nation. But the majority of those that say they are saved are deceived. Being raised in church your whole life or going to church every week doesn't make you saved. Many sit in churches and “do” church but they have never had a true born again experience with the Lord. Many people believe that because they “believe” in God they are saved, not true. Many that work in the church or do good deeds in their community believe that their works makes them saved, again not true. In Ephesians 2:8-9 it says, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Its not what we have done “for God” that saves us, “all our righteousnesses is as filthy rags,” (Isaiah 64:6). But the Bible also tells us that “ so also faith, if it does not have works (deeds and actions of obedience to back it up), by itself is destitute of power (inoperative, dead).” (James 2:17 Amplified). The good things we do aren't necessarily bad things, but without faith in Christ, without the born again experience they are worthless and of no use to God. Your works must come out of your faith, not the other way around. “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.” (Titus 3:5) One of the greatest deceptions today are preachers who stand in pulpits and preach a watered down gospel that is not what God ordained Christianity to be. In days past when our country was still young and pure we had men of God such as John Wesley and Peter Cartwright who stood on the naked word of God, they didn't lower the Word of God to their level, these were men that lived and died and sacrificed for the gospel. Today we have humorous comedians in the pulpit, men who wear shorts and Hawaiian shirts in the pulpit. Men and women who preach eloquent sermons, who know a lot “about” God, but have never really had a true life- changing experience with God. They preach a user friendly, sleazy grace gospel where anything and everything is allowed in the church. That is not God's way! God is a God of order, discipline, purity, righteousness, and holiness. When a man is born again he stands on the Word of God, he doesn't compromise to sooth those in the pew. We need but lack preachers that will preach a gospel that cuts men and women to the heart, that puts a fear of God and His judgment in our hearts again. A carefree, laid back, worldly, carnal spirit abides in our churches today. We think because we show up at church and pay our tithes that we've done God a favor. If you have ever been born again going to church and paying your tithes is second nature, its just like breathing, you don't even have to think about it you just do it. Today we may or may not go to church, we may or we may not pray everyday, we fit God into our busy schedules. Christians are God-centered they are all about God and His Kingdom. Its not about my job, my family, my kids, my reputation, its about God.
A born again Christian is on fire for God, he has a burning passion in his heart for the Man Christ. He follows the laws of the Bible, he goes where God tells him to go, says what God tells him to say. Most today sit in church and appease their conscience by saying “we've come to church”. But that is all we have done is gone to church. We haven't sacrificed anything for Christ, we have given nothing of ourselves to this Man that died for us. We give Him a hour of our time Sundays and we say we have done good. A saved man gives God his all. Why? Because God gave His all for us by giving His only Son. We have accepted this cheap, easy way of church and have substituted it for what Christianity really is. We have been deceived by preachers in pulpits and by our own minds into thinking and believing that we are Christians, that we are “good”, that we're going to heaven. Only those that have lived for Christ on this earth will go to heaven. Only others who have given their entire lives over to the control of God will go when the rapture of God's true church takes place. In Revelations 3:17, “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.” We who sit in churches every week, we who “do” all these things for Christ, but have no true understanding of what it is to be born again by the Spirit of God, to have a life-changing experience that never gets old. We have all the eloquent words, all the trappings of church, all the works, but we do not know the Man Christ. We have never given our whole hearts and lives to Him. We truly are wretched and blind, we are deceived!