Col 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Messiah.
This solemn warning was given by the Apostle Paul in his letter to the Colossians. This was sound advice then and it is even more critical that we take heed to what he was saying today. Obviously Paul was addressing this letter to the members of the church of Colosse specifically and not to the lost person in particular. The very contents of the statement in Col.2:8 make it clear, that he is referring to them as fruit that is good and acceptable. If they were in a worthless or deteriorated state they would not have been in danger of being spoiled; they would have been spoiled already. Never has there been a time when so many human philosophies are spread around and proclaimed to be the Gospel. The true Gospel declares and demands that we live in a state of blessed Holiness, and we are to generate works that are worthy of Holiness. The Gospel that we normally hear preached today would probably be hard for the Apostle Paul to recognize. Modern Theology, in all likelihood, would be considered a perversion of sound doctrine. However, I do not believe Paul would be at all surprised at this state of affairs; the age in which he lived also produced many who tried to twist the Gospel to fit their own desires. The Greek word that was translated “beware” means to look literally or figuratively. Paul was telling us to look and keep alert to what we are entering into, lest we be spoiled through philosophy.
Deception is a very dangerous condition. We as human beings are very much at risk when the spirit of deception is operating. When a person is deceived, he always thinks he is right on the mark. If he knew he was in error, he would not be deceived; rather, he would be in rebellion. Therefore, it becomes obvious before the spirit of deception can have success, the condition of ignorance to the word must exist. If ignorance does not exist, then it is impossible to be deceived. Is it possible that what should have been the biggest blessing to this nation and its populous: the abundance of the Word going forth, has now become a curse?
Never before has there been such an abundance of assemblies supposedly teaching the theologies of Yahveh’s (God’s) Word. From television’s extravagant evangelist to the super church ministries, there has been placed a most palatable, predigested meal right at your fingertips. You don’t even have to pick up a spoon or open your Bible; just lay back on your couch and they will feed you. If that’s not bad enough, they will bring a whole smorgasbord of spiritual cuisine expertly prepared and served with a very personable nature. There are so many options available to you; if you don’t like what’s on this plate; simply move on down the serving line and change channels until you find your favorite food. You are not required to expend the energy to prepare your meal: neither are you required to spend time familiarizing yourself with ingredients that the recipe calls for, or the ingredients that are included in the meal you’re eating. The attitude is I don’t have to know every spice as long as the taste is pleasing.
This has created such an attitude of spiritual laziness that we put little or no effort into our spiritual sustenance. The society we live in is the generation of people with the highest rate of obesity in history. There are two reasons for the magnitude of this problem. The first is: we pay no attention to the contents of the meals we eat. We have such a focus on either making a living or having fun, we eat the fast-food and do not take the time to plan and fix proper meals. The truth is: it’s much easier to go to the fast-food place; it doesn’t take as much energy, or time, to eat the pre-prepared food. Therefore, many times a perfectly healthy body develops conditions that cause symptoms to come forth, and prevent itself from having the ability to perform at its peak. This condition, if ignored, will result in serious illness, or perhaps, at the extreme, premature death.
The second condition that exists may be even more devastating than the first: it’s called the lack of exercise. When the body does not get enough exercise, it cannot burn off all the cholesterol and fat cells that are stored because of improper diet. Most everyone knows the importance of exercise, but not many are motivated to get involved in a regular physical fitness program. There is so much conversation about proper diet and appetite, but so little zeal about actually adapting or making any changes to improve the condition of one’s body.
I see a vast majority of people going the fast-food route when it comes to their spiritual meals. They do not take the time to get into the storehouse of Yahveh’s Word and prepare a meal that their spiritual body needs. It’s much easier to attend The First Church of instant Gospel. Here your spiritual meal is prepared and placed before you by a man that could be more concerned about how many came to lunch, than the quality of the food on your plate. The food may be tasty but is the nutritional value there? Or is it full of deadly chemicals?
It seems it was the turn of the century that the God of all grace, all love, no judgment and no wrath came forth: a God so co-dependent with His creation that He would tolerate any behavior just to be able to fellowship with the people on planet earth. I believe it was Charles Spurgen that said, “Satan has come up with a different trick.” (I wouldn’t have believed it.) “There is a new sect that is coming on the scene that is teaching grace apart from the law of Yahveh.” Charles Spurgen…who is considered by many to be the prince of preachers stated, (paraphrased) Cheap grace came from Satan. Grace, apart from the law of Yahveh, is a perversion of the Gospel. Phinny said, “There is a proper mix in teaching the Gospel and that mix contains 90% law and 10% grace.” I believe the church as we see it today, is a direct result of the things Paul was talking about. It is almost like some fantasy has fallen on the church and we believe Yahveh can be worshipped anyway we choose.
My dear brothers and sisters, that is the error that Cain made. Cain tried to worship Yahveh in a manner that pleased Cain, but was contrary to the ways of Yahveh. Cain tried to worship Yahveh in a convenient manner, by giving of those things that were readily available to him. The truth is our Father does not except the after-thoughts of our life. Many times the things we try to give him, are out of the dirt of our lives. Our brother Paul tells us in Rom 12:1(KJV): “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Bible Scriptures record and declare that Yahveh has never accepted anything common as a sacrifice. The creator of Heaven and earth has always demanded the sacrifice you bring to Him, to be without blemish. Lev 1:3 (KJV) “If his offering be a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish: he shall offer it of his own voluntary will at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before Yahveh.”
If this has been the nature of Father Yahveh and His requirements from the beginning, how dare we take it on ourselves to change the standards? Paul was merely reiterating what the law tried to teach prior to the stake: “let him offer a male without blemish.” Present yourself a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to Yahveh. In some manner we have to turn around the messages that say: ‘It’s all right to sin a little bit; no one can be perfect; Yahveh expects you to fail.’ These are all lies straight from the pits of Hell. The lie is sent by Satan to delude the mind of the saint and to bring about liberality and sin in this generation.
When I hear pastors complain about the sin and immorality that reigns today, I want to say to them, “The reason for its existence looks back at you from the mirror every morning.” It is the pastors that have allowed themselves to be intimidated by assembly boards and peer pressure to soften the requirements of the Gospel to let this condition exist. I have even heard pastors say, “I preach as strong a message as the assembly where I pastor will tolerate.” When did we come to a place where the assembly dictated biblical doctrines and concepts rather than the Holy Scriptures and the man God called to expound them? On occasion I have been able to share this revelation with other ministers and the response is almost always the same: a reluctance to take responsibility for the spiritual condition of the nation.
There was a time back in the early fifties and sixties when the seminaries were turning out ministers who did not believe the virgin birth. It was considered to be too gory for the sermon to make reference to the blood and to speak in detail about the crucifixion. Now we have a whole generation that knows how to join a church; but few know how to have a relationship with Father Yahveh. If you do not know how to have a deep relationship with and be committed to Yahveh, how are you going to have a deep relationship and be committed to a marriage? The truth is you probably won’t. Therefore, we have a nation with a fifty percent divorce rate. Killing millions of babies and having debates on whether it is Godly or not. Many churches feel the issue is too political to speak out on. Father please help us! The Church of Yahshua needs to speak out and take the persecution or heat for its stand. Rom 12:2(KJV) “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God (Yahveh).”
There is a serious deficiency that enshrouds this country; knowing how to be complete in Yahveh. When all the world is acting in a liberal and immoral manner, you need to know in whom you have believed and what Yahveh requires of you. Father Yahveh requires you to renew your mind. Take it off the things and pressures of this world and fasten it on the things above. Therefore, being renewed in your mind. The renewing of the mind makes it possible to be transformed into the image of Yahshua (proper name for Jesus Christ the name Yahveh and Mary gave him). Without such a renewing, you have no hope of achieving the image Father Yahveh has chosen for you.
The absence of the renewed mind is the chief cause of people joining the church and never coming again. You walk up to someone and ask them if they’re saved and they will tell you: “Yes; I was baptized ten years ago.” Ask them if they go to Church and many times the response is: “I used to go, but I don’t go anymore.” “Why not?” I would ask. They would respond, “I don’t believe you have to go to Church to be saved.” You are absolutely right, but, if you are saved, you are going to want to go to Church somewhere. When was the last time you went to Church? “Oh–about ten years ago.” What you hear the person saying is; “I haven’t been to church since I was baptized, but I am saved and on my way to Heaven.” Now I ask you: Is this person better off now or before he ever had an experience with the church? In all likelihood the experience with the Church is the only experience he has had, there has been no experience with Father Yahveh and there is no habitation of the Holy Spirit. The sad truth is: he probably knew before that he was lost and needed help, but now he feels like he is OK with Yahveh. Forgive us, Father, for lowering the standards to meet our requirements, that we may feel good about ourselves and walk after our own ways. Forgive us for making it easy for Satan to deceive and take people off to Hell.
Heb 12:14-16 (KJV) gives us very explicit instructions and once again we are solemnly warned to: 14 “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: 15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; 16 Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright.” We are told in this scripture that there are two things we have to follow and one is peace. We are required to be of a peaceable attitude with all men. A good example of that is: the Word of Yahveh states that homosexuality is an abomination before Him and except the homosexual turn from that sin, they can’t make heaven their home. However, Yahveh loves the person and desires that they come to repentance that they might be saved. This being the case in point, Yahveh will not hold blameless those who persecute or mistreat the homosexual. In the same manner Yahveh hates abortion, but, also forbids us to react violently to any of these things.
The second item is to flee the lusts of the flesh and to be holy as the Yahveh is holy. We are given a list of behaviors in which we are forbidden to practice such as bitterness (it can defile or spoil you), fornication, lying, stealing, backbiting and many other immoral practices. We are also given practices we must implement in our lives, such as love, compassion and living our lives as a slave to Yahshua; thereby becoming a free man in holiness. I want to leave you with this instruction: 1 Pet 1:15-16 (KJV) “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; 16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” Yahveh is calling His people to return to holiness, so I am saying to you: Be holy in all things.