How the World and Christianity Were Deceived #5

Don't be deceived by philosophy! It all starts with "a little leaven leavens the whole lump"!

Fred R. Coulter—January 5, 2019

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Greetings, everyone! Welcome to Sabbath services! I got a very interesting report based on the law that is before the Iowa Senate and Judiciary and governor, which is 'life begins at conception.'

The argument is that if it can't live outside the womb it's not viable. What's wrong with that argument? There's a spirit involved, because you are viable from the instant of conception!

In that case, the baby is not part of the body of the mother, but is within the body of the mother, but a separate body. That's the argument that should be made.

Leviticus 19:29: "You shall not prostitute your daughter to cause her to be a whore, lest the land fall to whoredom… [and violence] …and the land become full of wickedness."

Look at what we have today after 60-million abortions. Are we filled with violence? And now violence against the unborn! Believe it or not, here's the headline, and it lists all the churches:

66 Methodist, Lutheran, Episcopalian and The United Church of Christ Signed a Letter Supporting Abortion by Micaiah Bilger, Mar. 19, 2018 {}

If the churches go that far, you know that the heavy hand of God's correction cannot be very far away.

  • What should we look for? The first thing I would look for is what is going to happen to the swine population in Iowa!
  • Could they come down with some sort of sickness and disease?

People don't understand God. God is a God of love, mercy, kindness and goodness IF you accept it, believe it, love Him and keep and His laws and commandments. But if not, His hand is against you for evil!

Think about how your life was before God called you! That's when God's hand was against you. It may have been light or it may have been very heavy, just depending on how you were living. You see, God's Laws operate just like the law of gravity, automatically! That's what happens!

Then it lists every single one of the churches in Iowa that support abortion. Let's wait and see what happens there.
I want to mention again the New Testament Scriptural Comparison by Joseph Ackerman, which compares the Faithful Version with 27 others and also the King James Version. Though it has some mistranslations—and some of them very bad when it comes to law and grace—the KJV still had all of the proper words from the Greek received text. If you want that be sure and order it.


In understanding how apostasy sets in, and how Satan always works. There are three steps:

  • theses: the Truth
  • anti-theses: the challenge and against the Truth

so the outcome is:

  • synthesis: a combination

Once they give themselves over to Satan, you end up with what we had here with this report. It's not how it starts. What's the lesson of everything? A little leaven leavens the whole lump! That's how it all starts! It's doesn't start out with a full-blast attack to destroy. It starts out with a little leaven and then grows and develops.

In understanding what we're understanding here, let's remember that when the New Testament Church began, they only had the Old Testament. All of the prophecies concerning Christ and everything that He would do, was already pre-prophesied before it happened.

If they would have read the Scriptures and believed Jesus Christ, then they would have understood the Scriptures that are there.

How did Jesus help the apostles to understand those Scriptures? He opened their eyes to understand (Luke 24)! He pointed out the things in the Law and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Himself.

As we have covered, you go along in the Psalms and there this about Christ and that about Christ, then something about David and something about something else, then more about Christ.

In the Old Testament it's 'here a little, there a little, line upon line, precept upon precept.' That's how you understand.

What we're covering now is that when they didn't have the New Testament. Just think about how easy it was for false doctrine and division to come in! No telephones, no iPhones. Several of you have the Bible on your iPad or iPhone and I look down and wonder where your Bible is. You look up at me and wonder why I'm using the hardcopy.

There's no way to check! The Apostle Paul comes into town (Acts 13). There was a big rally, a whole bunch of people believing the things that he taught. There's the division within the synagogue there and they were fighting against the Gentiles who believed (Acts 14). Think how easy it would be for strange doctrines to come in.

Then after that, they went to another city and there they healed a man who had been impotent from birth and the high priest of Zeus and Jupiter came down and wanted to offer sacrifices to Paul and Barnabus, because they said 'the gods had come to visit us.' They're there and that happens, then they're run out of town.

How much do the disciples have to understand what they need to do? Very little! Then we come to another problem. We will see that there are many 'trigger points' where apostasy can come in.

What do the Jews mean by the word 'Torah'? All their traditions are also 'Torah'! so, when you hear a Jew speak of 'Torah' they're speaking about the five books of the Law plus their traditions and how the Law is interpreted by the traditions.

How many Protestants know that? Hardly any! But that's the crux of Acts 15. Am I talking about the 'Mishnah'? No, it includes what's in the 'Mishnah' that also includes all of the traditions of the Jews! Just to give you one:

With the roasting of the lamb for Passover: the way it should have been roasted is on a spicket and you turn it. But they had where you could put it on a grill. If you put it on a grill and there's a little juice coming out of the meat, you cut that off because that is water and that constitutes boiling. It says in Exo. 12 that you're not to boil it.

That's why when you read in Exo. 16 that those sacrifices were to be boiled, that couldn't be the Passover lamb, though it's called a Passover Offering, because it was an offering made on the Passover Day for the redemption of the firstborn of both humans and animals. That would prepare all of the meal for the feasting for the Night to be Much Remembered.

Acts 15:1: "Now, certain men who had come down from Judea…" Remember, this was about 12 years after the resurrection of Christ.

"…were teaching the brethren, saying, 'Unless you are circumcised after the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved'" (v 1).

What did we reading Acts 10 & 11? They don't have to be circumcised! Here they're coming down with the interpretation of the Pharisees.

Verse 5: "But there stood up certain of those who believed…" What is meant by believed? Remember, this is the transition from the old to the new.

"…who were of the sect of the Pharisees…" (v 5). Did the Pharisees have their traditions? Yes, they did!

"…saying, 'It is obligatory to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the Law of Moses'" (v 5). This means their interpretation of Moses with the traditions! How do we know that? Peter stands up and explains what happened with Cornelius and so forth:

Verse 18: "Known to God are all His works from the beginning of the world." This is James the brother of Jesus, because by this time James the brother of John was already beheaded. Peter came back to Babylon for this conference for this particular reason.

Verse 19: "Therefore, my judgment is that we do not trouble those of the Gentiles who have turned to God; but that we write to them to abstain from pollutions of idols, and from sexual immorality, and from what has been strangled and from blood. For from the generations of old, Moses… [I want you to see the difference here in James' interpretation of Moses] …has had in every city those who proclaim him in the synagogues, being read every Sabbath Day" (vs 19-21).

Here we have the true Law of Moses being read in the synagogue out of the scrolls so the Gentiles knew. What happens is that people come along and say, 'Look at this, you don't have to keep the Law of Moses' when they read the first part of it. But we have to come down here and read:

Verse 21: "For from the generations of old, Moses has had in every city those who proclaim him in the synagogues, being read every Sabbath Day."

Then they sent the letter out. This gives an opening and a wedge, because unless you heard the letter being read in whatever synagogue you were in, how would you know the difference? If someone came down and said that you had to be circumcised in order to be saved… 'We were there in Judea and we saw everything that Jesus did and everything that He taught, and we're Jews and salvation is of the Jews, so here we are.'

See the arguments that come along with that, and we have some similar to that today. This sets up a possible very strong argument that you don't have to keep the Law of Moses, which then does away with the Sabbath!

But they didn't have the Scriptures where Jesus said, 'The Sabbath was made for, or on account of, man!' Because of man needing rest and contact with God, God created the Sabbath Day, blessed it, sanctified it and made it Holy. They don't have that!

How many Protestants read the Old Testament? Who knows! All of these that are listed in the noted article supporting abortion certainly don't read the Old Testament.

Sidebar: What's going to happen in religion today that's going to be the greatest deception and diversion of all? Speculation: They're going to make Mary 'god' and they will worship her! I've got a book called When God was a Woman by Merlin Stone. That's where it's heading.

  • What's another Scripture that points toward that leaning?
  • How do we see it coming to pass today?

Women shall rule over you!

  • How many women are representatives in the House of Representatives? 89!
  • What will it be next time?
  • And the time after that?
  • What will it be when people are demanding a woman god?

They want to get rid of the patriarchy of the male god!

God the Father and Jesus Christ are not going to conveniently go away just for them!

I'm doing a survey rather than an in-depth study, because it would take all the time between now and Passover to do it.

Acts 16—they went the Thessalonica, thrown in prison. They got out of there and left from there came to Corinth.

That was quite a thing in Corinth. Paul went in there and spoke for three Sabbath and then proclaimed that Jesus was Christ. He split the synagogue down the middle and then they had their meeting house right next to the house of the synagogue, because that's where the chief of the synagogue lived. Imagine what they had!

We're going to see because of all the divisions in 1st & 2nd Corinthians, a lot of seeds sown for division.

Acts 17—We see part of it here in where Paul goes down to Athens and speaks on Mars Hill. Remember, they believed in the immortality of the soul. That is also brought into the Church by the pagans. A little later on we'll see it, and they still believe it today. They wanted to know what this new thing was.

Acts 17:18: "Then some philosophers…"—tie this in with Col. 2; don't be deceived by philosophy! Another thing to remember as we go along: All truth is logical, but not all logic is truth! I'll give you an example:

  • What are the arguments that you can use for Sunday-worship?
  • When did the Church begin? On Pentecost!
  • What day was that? First day of the week, Sunday!
  • Did God punish the Jews? Yes!

You don't want to be like the Jews—do you? No! Therefore, 'we Christians will keep the first day of the week so that we won't be persecuted by the Romans when they come after the Jews and those who keep the Sabbath.'

  • Doesn't that sound logical?
  • Wouldn't you want to avoid persecution and death?

Especially if you can say, 'Look what the Jews did to the Sabbath with all of their traditions and everything. Therefore, Sunday God gave for the Gentiles and those Christian Jews.'

If you don't know the Bible, you have no answer for that. That's the basic reason they have Sunday, philosophy!

"…philosophers of the Epicureans and the Stoics encountered him. And some of them said, 'What will this babbler have to say?' And some said, 'He seems to be a preacher of foreign gods,' because he was preaching to them the Gospel of Jesus and the resurrection" (v 18).

Remember, they're very superstitious and they didn't want to offend any single god.

Verse 19: "And they took him [Paul] and brought him to Mars Hill…" That's like taking him to the Senate of the United States and give a speech.

"…saying, 'May we know what this new teaching is that is spoken by you? For you are bringing certain strange things to our ears. So then, we desire to know what these things mean.' (Now, all the Athenians and the strangers sojourning among them spent their leisure in nothing other than to tell and to hear something new.)" (vs 19-21).

Think about this: If it's new, it's better! Is it really? Always?

Verse 22: "Then Paul stood in the center of Mars Hill and said, 'Men, Athenians, I perceive that in all things you are very reverent to deities; for as I was passing through and observing the objects of your veneration, I also found an altar on which was inscribed, "To an unknown God."….'" (vs 22-23).

They wanted to cover all bases so they don't offend any god, even those they don't know.

"…So then, He Whom you worship in ignorance…" (v 23). Think about Paul talking to these educated big-brained people who think they know everything!

"…is the One that I proclaim to you. He is the God Who made the world and all things that are in it. Being the Lord of heaven and earth, He does not dwell in temples made by hands" (vs 23-24).

  • Where was Paul standing? Right on Mars Hill!
  • What was right behind him? The Parthenon!
  • What was in the Parthenon? Statue of Zeus!

And there was a place for Apollyon and so forth!

Verse 25: "Nor is He served by the hands of men, as though He needs anything, for He gives to all life and breath and all things."

This is quite a statement! What a thing to tell them! Here you have this temple, all these gods, all these philosophies and you have "…To an unknown God…" Yet, He is the One Who made everything there is, even you!

Verse 26: "And He made of one blood all the nations of men to dwell upon all the face of the earth, having determined beforehand their appointed times and the boundaries of their dwelling; in order that they might seek the Lord, if perhaps they might feel after Him and might find Him; though truly, He is not far from each one of us, for in Him we live and move and have our being…" (vs 26-28). Think about that! That's quite a statement!

Everything we have: we live, we move, we have our being, we have everything that God has given so that we can have life. That's why you look and it's raining.

  • What do you think of the rain? We need every drop!
  • What's the most abundant thing on earth? Water!
  • Do we need it? Yes!

You can't live very long without water! You can live longer with water but no food. God gave it all! Everything that there is! Everything that we need! Even our mind so that we can think. It's an amazing thing to me; I think about this quite a bit: that from a speck of dust, when we were conceived, is so small that we can't see it, and here we are! Look at everything we have! You whole body. What about the eye? The heart? The lungs? What about all the internal digestive things that go on in you body. Right now you're digesting your breakfast and what you ate before you came to services. That's going on, you heart is beating and your lungs are working, you liver is working, everything is going and here you are.

  • Who gave you all of that?
  • Where did it come from?
  • From that small speck of dust!

Think of that! And for all human beings! That's why God is no respecter of persons. Here's why He made us:

Verse 27: "In order that they might seek the Lord, if perhaps they might feel after Him and might find Him; though truly, He is not far from each one of us, for in Him we live and move and have our being; as some of the poets among you also have said, 'For we are His offspring.'" (vs 27-28).

This sets up a real thing, because look at the idols that are in the Catholic Church today. There's nothing but idols: pictures, statues.

Verse 29: "Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we should not think that the Godhead is like that which is made of gold, or silver, orstone—a graven thing of art devised by the imagination of man; for although God has indeed overlooked the times of this ignorance, He now commands all men everywhere to repent" (vs 29-30).

That is not only a statement for that time, but a prophecy clear down to our time. Look at what this sets up: The thing that you have with philosophies is:

  • What do you think?
  • What is your opinion?

Try and logically put all things together so that you have a mindset that you can agree on. When you don't know the true God you're in total error.

When I was first called I was attending the University of San Francisco. I had gotten the Plain Truth for a while and I was reading the series that they had The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop. I come to the University of San Francisco, a Catholic institution! The first mandatory class I had to take was Philosophy 101. What was that? The philosopher's division of humans, animals, insects and different things like this. The order of life! Not a word mentioned about God creating.

After about six weeks I said I had to get out of there. I went down to the registrar's office to get out before any grades came out. I walked in and here's this big picture of Christ with the thorn crown on Him, and a drop of blood coming down and some tears coming down from His eyes.

I was reading all about idols and pictures and things like this, and I said, 'I've got to get out of here.' I went in and said that there wasn't anyway that I could continue other things I have to take care of. I was able to get out of it.

But Paul, with his explanation of these things, nails down perfectly—even to this very day—the way that people think.

Acts 19—the beginning of Corinth, and Paul stayed there for 18 months. Then he goes to Ephesus and stays there three years. He had a run in with all of the statue makers there. Alexander the coppersmith started a movement against Paul because so many people were repenting and they would have local bonfires and burn their idols and books having to do with the occult.

All of these religions are satanic! If they have some parts of Truth, so what? That doesn't make any difference! You need the whole Truth for salvation. Anyway, that was quite a thing. Then they had a great riot and they were going to kill Paul. Everyone said not to go in where they were rioting, which was in a colosseum there and saying, 'Great is Diana, goddess of the Ephesians and so forth. So, he got away from there. He left and went to Philippi (Acts 20).

Acts 21—Paul goes back to Jerusalem. All the way along everyone is saying that 'you're going to have trouble and difficulty in Jerusalem.' This helps set the stage of a principle that can be a step to apostasy, which is a political decision for a spiritual problem!

Acts 21:17: "Now, when we arrived in Jerusalem, the brethren gladly received us. And on the following day, Paul went with us to see James…" (vs 17-18)—the brother of Jesus!

Think of the prestige that he had, the half-brother of Jesus! Would people listen to him? You know, if people come to someone important, a say you're brand new, 'this is Jesus' brother.' Really? 'Yes, he's the head of the Jerusalem Church.' Is that so?

Let's see the difficulty involved, and it also shows us that not everyone who believes is chosen. You have three steps:

  • the called
  • the chosen
  • the faithful

"…and all the elders were assembled" (v 18). Sound a little bit like a Sanhedrin? Yes, very much so!

Verse 19: "And after greeting them, he reported one by one the things that God had worked among the Gentiles through his ministry. And when they heard this, they glorified the Lord. Then they said to him, 'Brother, you see how many thousands of Jews there are who believe, and they are all zealous of the law of rituals'" (vs 19-20).

I added of rituals because that had to do with the sacrificial laws. The temple had not yet been destroyed, and they were still able to offer sacrifices.

Verse 21: "But they have been informed that you are teaching all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to apostatize from Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children, nor to walk in the customs." Not true! Customs are the traditions in most cases; not every case.

Verse 22: "What then is going to happen? A multitude is going to assemble, for they will hear that you have come. Therefore… [notice the solution, a political solution]: …do this that we tell you: there are four men with us who have a vow on themselves; take these and be purified with them, and pay their expenses, so that they may shave their heads; and everyone will know that what they have been informed about you is nothing, and that you yourself also are walking orderly and keeping the law of rituals" (vs 22-24).

  • Would it have been absolutely wrong for Paul to do that? No!
  • Would it have be absolutely right for him to do that? No!

You see how this can lead to different versions and interpretation, and apostasies! What we're trying to do is see how apostasy was set in. It set in when there were problems and divisions.

Paul when in with them, some of the Jews saw him and they ran and got him and they were going to kill him. The Centurion and the soldiers came down and rescued him. Paul told the Centurion when they were ready to take him up. Remember, they had different rooms there, plus they had Roman soldiers guarding the temple all the time, because they were always prone to rioting.

Verse 39: "But Paul said, 'I am a man who is indeed a Jew, a citizen of Cilicia from Tarsus, which is no insignificant city. I beseech you, allow me to speak to the people.' And after receiving permission from him, Paul stood on the stairs… [so he could preach to them] …and motioned with his hand to the people; and when there was great silence, he spoke to them in the Hebrew language, saying" (vs 39-40),

Acts 22:1: "'Men, brethren and fathers, hear now my defense to you.'" Then he told them what happened.

When Paul mentioned the word 'Gentiles'—God sent the word to the Gentiles—they all rioted and came to take him and kill him.

Does that sound like all those Jews were converted. Numbers do not mean anything unless you're converted. That's what's important!'

We will see how to developed because they didn't have the written word of the apostles and we'll see what happened because of that.

(go to the next track)

I'm doing sort of a fast overview so that we don't get bogged down in all the details. But wherever there is a problem and difficulty that can also be fertile ground for heresy or apostasy, or the leaven that begins it! There are so many different things that can happen.

Today you would think, since we have to whole Bible, that it would be an impossibility to do. However, if you only take part of the Truth, some of the Truth, only what you agree with, you never have the full Truth! You have what looks like it's true, but it's not. The closer it is to the Truth, but is not, it's just like a counterfeit bill; it's still a counterfeit!

Referring to Chronology V—From the Crucifixion in 30 AD to the Destruction of the Temple in 70 AD (The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, a Faithful Version):

33-46 AD—first evangelistic journey, 2-1/2 years from late spring 44 AD to fall 46 AD (Acts 13:4-52; 14:1-25).

46-49 AD—Paul and Barnabas stay in Antioch for a long time—autumn 46 AD to late summer 49 AD—2-1/2 years (Acts 14:26-28).

49 AD ministerial and elders conference

49-52 AD—Paul's second evangelistic journey (Acts 15:40 through 18:23), three years, from late autumn 49 AD to late 52 AD

50-52 AD—Late summer 50 AD to spring 52 AD Paul at Corinth

1) Paul preaches in synagogue every Sabbath; Timothy and Silas join him (Acts 18:1-5)
2) Paul writes 1-Thessalonians from Corinth 50 AD

Stop and think about that. From 42A.D. to 50A.D. the only thing that they could have would be whatever the apostles had written concerning the Gospels and the Epistle of James. The Epistle of James had to be written before there was that conference in Acts 15 in 49A.D.. It had to be written before that because in the Epistle of James there is no mention of a Gentile conflict.

All dealing with Jews scattered in the Diaspora. So, here we come to Paul. He writes 1-Thess. from Corinth; that's his very first writing. What we're going to see is that at that time they were expecting Christ at any time. They had no idea!

1 Thessalonians 2:4: "But even as we were approved by God to be entrusted with the Gospel, we speak in this manner: as those who please not men, but God, Who proves our hearts."

We're going to see this magnified considerably when we come to Galatians.

Verse 5: "For neither at any time did we use flattering words with you, even as you know, nor a cover for covetousness—God is our witness; nor were we seeking glory from men, neither from you nor from others, though as Christ's apostles we had the power to be burdensome" (vs 5-6).

Here's what Paul did, and this created a problem—and is still a problem to many people today—because he did not collect tithes and offerings from them. One of the reasons that he didn't—as we find in 2-Cor.—is that others were. Many of them were the false preachers!

How many of those false preachers were Levites? Don't know! But there were many of them who said they were Jews. He brings that out here.

Verse 13: "Because of this, we give thanks to God without ceasing: that when you received the Word of God, which you heard from us, you did not accept it as the word of men, but even as it is in truth—the Word of God, which is also working in you who believe. For, brethren, you became imitators of the Churches of God in Judea which are in Christ Jesus; because you also suffered the same things from your own countrymen as they also suffered from the Jews" (vs 13-14)—who killed Christ! So, they had some communication.

1-Thessalonians 3:8: "For now we live, if you stand firm in the Lord." How much did they really have. Well, wherever there was a synagogue they had some truth from the Old Testament. But there was no New Testament.

How much of the Gospels were written, and how much were they dispersed out to the various Churches? We know that a least the book of Matthew had to be written quite early. So, they may have had that. As a matter of fact, I have a comparison between the Gospel of Matthew and the writings of the Epistle of James showing that they are almost identical in their content and approach. So, they must have had some of that. But they didn't have very much. Here's their first letter.

Think about how that opened up the way for false prophets.

Verse 8: "For now we live, if you stand firm in the Lord. For what thanksgiving are we able to offer to God concerning you, for all the joy with which we rejoice before God because of you, praying day and night fervently that we might see you again, and might perfect the things that are lacking in your faith?" (vs 8-10).

Therefore, they knew that they didn't have enough to be perfectly grounded in the faith. In 2-Thess. we get a glimpse of the things that are happening.

2-Thessalonians 1:5: "Your faith and endurance are a visible testimony of the righteous judgment of God, so that you may be counted worthy of the Kingdom of God, for which you are suffering. Since it is righteous with God to recompense tribulation to those who are persecuting you; and to you, who are persecuted, rest with us, at the revelation of the Lord Jesus from heaven with His mighty angels, dealing out vengeance with flaming fire upon those who do not know God…" (vs 5-8).

So, Paul was talking in the first person about the return of Christ very soon. He was telling them that Christ was going to return and take care of them.

Verse 9: "Who will suffer the penalty of eternal destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His strength, when He shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired in that day in all those who believe (because our testimony was believed by you); for which cause also we are praying continually for you, that our God may count you worthy of your calling, and may fulfill in you all the good pleasure of His goodness, and the work of faith with power; so that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and of the Lord Jesus Christ" (vs 9-12).

The whole thing changes right here! Notice how this came about. Everyone was believing that Christ was going to return. Look at the setup of what happened from 30A.D. to 70A.D. Read the books of Matthew, Mark and Luke and you see all the things talking about Jerusalem and how Christ was going to come.

They were looking upon this, the events that would be taking place—this is in 52A.D.  so we're getting ahead of ourselves—and they were looking for Christ to return in their lifetime.

We find in the research that John Guenther has done with those in the 1100s and 1200s, they were expecting Christ in their day. They had wars, crusades, black plague, the Mongols coming from the East.

You read the book of Revelation and you look at the invasion of the Mongols, what do you see? If you're at the time that was happening—1100s & 1200s, what do you see? Oh! Christ is going to return! They didn't know that there would be a second fulfillment.

Here we are all the time, all the saints in every generation had some things to think that Christ would come while they were living.

Delores and I used to look at each other and say we're not going to get old! That was in 1965. So, here we are not quite so young anymore.

Notice the change, 2-Thessalonians 2:1: "Now, we beseech you, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him… [present tense, going to happen] …that you not be quickly shaken in mind, nor be troubled—neither by spirit…" (vs 1-2).

  • How do these things come? Demon spirits!
  • What do you think the thing we covered in part 5 concerning 'the rock'? That voice did not come from God!

"…nor by word, nor by epistle, as if from us…" (v 2). Think about this: there were those writing epistles and signing them: the Apostle Paul.

Verse 3: "Do not let anyone deceive you by any means because that day will not come unless the apostasy shall come first, and the man of sin shall be revealed—the son of perdition." That's what they were looking for!

As Luke wrote, 'You know the day is coming when you see Jerusalem surrounded with armies.' What are you going to do if you're in the Church of Thessalonica and you hear that the armies of the Romans are surrounding Jerusalem? What are you going to think? Christ is going to come!

That's why you've got Matt. 24, the key thing that tells you when it's going to happen. So, there was no 'abomination of desolation' that stood in the temple when it was destroyed in 70A.D. Now you have to go back and read Matthew and Mark and both of them say 'that generation'—meaning the end-time generation—will not pass away until all things have been fulfilled.

Here you are, look at beginning about 71-72A.D. and Jerusalem is destroyed and Christ hasn't returned. Doesn't that open the opportunity for more heresy to creep in? we will see that it intensifies a little bit.

Here's how the apostasy comes: by letter, by word, be epistle and so forth! Then you have to tie that together with Matt. 24 for the 'abomination of desolation' and so forth.

2-Thessalonians 3:7: "For you yourselves understand that you should do exactly as we have done because we have not behaved irresponsibly among you, nor did we eat food at someone else's expense, but we were working day and night with labor and toil so that we would not be burdensome to anyone among you. We were not obligated to work…" (vs 7-9).

Part of his thought was that 'Christ is going to return so we don't need to take any tithes and offerings. Let's get everybody converted first.' The parallel of this follows along with those of us who were in the Church in the late 60s and early 70s, because we were all in 1972 to flee to Petra.

In the late 60s and early 70s we had cities burning down by riots, we had wars—the Vietnam War—all of those things, and then, lo and behold, the first part of the 70s it smoothes out. Now you're stuck. How do you explain it? There were a lot of people who sacrificed so much that they didn't even take care of their teeth because they thought they would be in a place of safety and the resurrection would be pretty soon after that, and they wouldn't need to worry about their teeth. For some of them, their teeth were falling out.

I remember that I was speaking in Boise, Idaho, at the time, and we had to explain why it wasn't going to be in 1972 to flee, and the return of Christ in 1975. What happened? A lot of people gave up and left!

Just like we saw, in Jerusalem we had thousands. How many were converted? They wanted to kill the Apostle Paul, were they converted? Don't know! That's why it's the church of the few!

That's why Paul chose not to collect tithes and offerings. He covers that in 1-Cor. and he says he did that to set a pattern.
The next one is Galatians, and we will see that there's an increased number of those who are preaching a false gospel.

Gal. 1 is one of the most powerful chapters against those who would want to change the Gospel. Look how easy it would be to change. What if you had one of those false epistles, supposedly from Paul, that not only went to Thessalonica but also to Galatia? What about the problems that would be with that?

The thing we need to realize is that Satan doesn't come with one apostasy. He comes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8—as many as can be. If this one is knocked out, then he brings in another one, it's the same pattern.

There were a lot of churches in Galatia. It's different today. You could pick up the phone and have someone drive you over there and you'd be there in a matter of hours. Notice how Paul establishes his authority. One of things that had to qualify as being an apostle, you would have had to seen the Lord and been with him! That's why anyone who says they're an apostle today, they're not. Maybe they could be an evangelist, but not an apostle.

Galatians 1:1: Paul, an apostle, not sent from men nor made by man…" That's why Christ did it the way that He did!

"…but by Jesus Christ and God the Father, Who raised Him from the dead; and all the brethren who are with me, to the churches of Galatia" (vs 1-2).

Apparently, those who were coming back from these other locations were telling Paul what was happening. So, he wrote this epistle.

Verse 3: "Grace and peace be to you from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave Himself for our sins, in order that He might deliver us from the present evil world, according to the will of our God and Father; to Whom be the glory into the ages of eternity. Amen" (vs 3-5).

What he's doing is establishing that there is nothing of Paul of he himself is doing. That's what it has to be with everyone who is a minister and teacher. It has to be of God! By the way, if you're going to serve the brethren, did you know that the verb means to 'deacon'; to be 'deaconing'; serving means 'deaconing.

When Christ served He was 'deaconing.' What Jesus a deacon? or the Savior? He was a Savior Who was serving.

Verse 6: "I am astonished that you are so quickly being turned away from Him Who called you into the grace of Christ, to a different gospel."

What might that include? You're going to find that from the death of the Apostle John nearly everything that we find in Protestantism today was already working! Including Sunday!

Verse 7: "Which in reality is not another Gospel; but there are some who are troubling you and are desiring to pervert the Gospel of Christ."

That's why maintaining the Truth of God is the most important thing for the Church to do. Without preserving the Truth of God, to serve the brethren so that they know what God wants, what are you doing?

Verse 8: "But if we… [including himself] …or even an angel from heaven, should preach a gospel to you that is contrary to what we have preached, LET HIM BE ACCURSED!" There can't be any stronger language than that!

Verse 9: "As we have said before, I also now say again. If anyone is preaching a gospel contrary to what you have received, LET HIM BE ACCURSED!"

This is something to always know and remember, especially those who are serving and teaching, v 10: "Now then, am I striving to please men, or God?…." Think about that!

  • How did Jesus please the people? He healed them!
  • How did He please the scribes and Pharisees? He didn't!

He called them all Pharisees and seekers after physical things, contrary to the Word of God!

I did a sermon years ago called Would You have Liked Jesus? What if you were standing in the crowd, and remember that this nice young man came up to Jesus and said, 'Lord, I'll follow you wherever you go, but I have to go bury my father, for he died.'

  • What did Jesus say? Let the dead bury the dead!
  • What if someone important said that today?
  • Was Christ important? Yes!
  • In the middle of big crowd? Yes!
  • What if you had television there and you had the commentators that we have today when He said, 'Let the dead bury their dead'?

Just think what MSNBC and CNN would say about that! 'How could He be the Son of God? Such mean language!' You can't please men!

Verse 11: "But I certify to you, brethren, that the Gospel that was preached by me is not according to man; because neither did I receive it from man, nor was I taught it by man; rather, it was by the revelation of Jesus Christ" (vs 11-12)—and personal teaching three years in Arabia!

Verse 13: "For you heard of my former conduct when I was in Judaism, how I was excessively persecuting the Church of God and was destroying it; and I was advancing in Judaism far beyond many of my contemporaries in my own nation, being more abundantly zealous for the traditions of my fathers. But when it pleased God, Who selected me from my mother's womb, and called me by His grace, to reveal His own Son in me, in order that I might preach Him as the Gospel among the Gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood" (vs 13-16).

Why is he doing this? Probably those who were coming down and bringing a different gospel were from Judea, Jerusalem! He was establishing!

  • I didn't come from Jerusalem
  • I didn't come from Peter or Paul
  • I came from Christ!

Verse 17: "Nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went away into Arabia, and returned again to Damascus. Then, after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to become acquainted with Peter, and I remained with him fifteen days" (vs 17-18).

Let's see why it was important for the book of Galatians, and this is one of the very key things that we need to understand.

Galatians 2:11: "But when Peter came to Antioch, I withstood him to his face because he was to be condemned."

This Epistle of Paul, a copy of it ended up with Peter. What did peter day concerning Paul's epistles? That there are some things hard to be understood! Peter had all of Paul's epistles and he didn't excise and edit out this section of Galatians because Peter knew that he was at fault. This tells you that God does not want politics in the Church.

What happened in Pasadena in the closing days that? A party here, a party there, politics here, politics there, and so forth!

Verse 12: "For, before certain ones came from James…"—the brother of Jesus! Would those certain ones go back to Jerusalem? Yes, they would! If Peter was eating with the Gentiles guess what they would say when Peter was to be and was the apostle to the circumcision, and that was over in Babylon? That's why he was in Antioch on his way to Babylon!

The word got back and they would say, 'James, did you know that Peter was eating with Gentiles?' He didn't want to be caught in that trap!

"…he was eating with the Gentiles. However, when they came, he drew back and separated himself from the Gentiles, being afraid of those of the circumcision party" (v 12)—politics!

Verse 13: "And the rest of the Jews joined him in this hypocritical act, insomuch that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy."

Imagine what a Sabbath or Holy Day that was! Here it was all set up and here come the ones from James, they set up a separate table and Peter and Barnabas and other Jews go over there and here are all the Gentiles sitting there with empty chairs all around. What on earth is this?

You ought to read some of the thing in the book Code of Jewish Law—there is some of it in the sermon series: Scripturalism vs Judaism—all the things that the Jews were to do to avoid Gentiles.

How did that get started? Because after they came out of Babylon—especially the priests and Levites—they were marrying into the Gentiles! Then they said they had to have laws, because you're not to marry them, have anything to do with them, so they had all these laws. They even had it this way: If you were walking down the road and there's a Gentile you go to the other side.

Imagine that kind of thing getting into the Church! It couldn't be allowed! This is a major step of apostasy and that's why Paul was so strong with it.

Verse 14: "But when I saw that they did not walk uprightly according to the Truth of the Gospel…"

  • What was the Truth of the Gospel? The laws of disassociation are null and void!
  • Who did God use to establish that? Peter!

You talk about double hypocrisy!

If you get into the land of Judea, Galilee, you have complications. This is not that, this Antioch, way up north.

"…I said to Peter in the presence of them all, 'If you, being a Jew, are living like the Gentiles, and not according to Judaism… [he was following a law of Judaism rather than the service of God] …why do you compel the Gentiles to Judaize?" (v 14). To separate from the Jews!

Verse 15: "We who are Jews by nature—and not sinners of the Gentiles—knowing that a man is not justified by works of law…" (vs 15-16).

Stop right here! This is one of the worst translation in the King James Version. It says 'the works of the law.'

  • What do you think of when you read that?
  • What do you think the Protestants think when they read that?
  • They think that they don't have to keep the Law; if you keep commandments you are trying to work your own salvation!

In the Greek the literal translation is "by works of law…" there is one translation that has done it correctly, and I did not know about this until about a year ago: Young's Literal Translation!

What are works of law? The traditions of Jews and the ritual sacrifices at the temple! That's what works of law are. It has nothing to do with the commandment-keeping of God. That's the hardest thing for people to understand, especially if their minds are blinded and they don't know.

This bad translation sets up the whole premise for the Protestant religion. Think of that! That's why you need to study Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law and Commandments of God (The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version). That will help you a lot.

"…but through the faith of Jesus Christ, we also have believed in Christ Jesus in order that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by works of law; because by works of law shall no flesh be justified" (v 16). There are two kinds of justification:

  • in the letter of the Law to the temple; that was accomplished with the Old Testament
  • a change of heart and mind by repentance and receiving the Holy Spirit of God to have God's laws and commandments written in our heart and mind (New Testament)

It's written in our heart and mind so that we automatically let the rule of Christ in lives guide us in what we do. We are forgiven of sins that we have in the mind and heart, not just the sins that we have without. That's what's important!

We read in Acts 13 that there was no forgiveness and justification by the Law of Moses for the things that are justified by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Nowhere do you read in the Old Testament with any of the sacrifices that now your conscience is clean! Nowhere! Only in the New Testament. That's why God gives the Holy Spirit to be united with the Spirit of our mind.

Verse 17: "Now then, if we are seeking to be justified in Christ, and we ourselves are found to be sinners… [by doing the works of Judaism] …is Christ then the minister of sin? MAY IT NEVER BE! For if I build again those things that I destroyed…" (vs 17-18).

What did Paul destroy? Everything of the teachings of Judaism! Not the Laws of God, because Paul tells us to keep the commandments

If he did that, "…I am making myself a transgressor" (v 18).

Scriptural References:

  • Leviticus 19:29
  • Acts 15:1
  • Acts 17:18-30
  • Acts 21:18-24, 39-40
  • Acts 22:1
  • 1 Thessalonians 2:4-6, 13-14
  • 1 Thessalonians 3:8-10
  • 2 Thessalonians 1:5-12
  • 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3
  • 2 Thessalonians 3:7-9
  • Galatians 1:1-18
  • Galatians 2:11-18

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Luke 24
  • Acts 13; 14
  • Exodus 12; 16
  • Acts 10; 11
  • Colossians 2
  • Acts 19; 20

Also referenced:

Article: 66 Methodist, Lutheran, Episcopalian and The United Church of Christ Signed a Letter Supporting Abortion by Micaiah Bilger, Mar. 19, 2018 {}

Booklet: New Testament Scriptural Comparison by Joseph Ackerman


  • When God was a Woman by Merlin Stone
  • The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop
  • Code of Jewish Law by Ganzfried and Goldin
  • Young's Literal Translation!

Sermon Series: Scripturalism vs Judaism

Appendix Z: Understanding Paul's Difficult Scriptures Concerning the Law and Commandments of God (The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version)

Transcribed: 1/9/19

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