13 Dec 2015
Timothy 3:1-9 False Teachers and False Believers Pastor Paul Choo 13 December 2015 We live in a world that is full of fakes. Everything that is good is quickly imitated and mass produced. Satan is the Master Counterfeiter,Therefore, we need to learn how to discern the false teachers and false believers. Slides Audio **Right Click to Do
We live in a world that is full of fakes. Everything that is good is quickly imitated and mass produced.Satan is the Master Counterfeiter,Therefore, we need to learn how to discern the false teachers and false believers. Slides Audio
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Today I want to speak on false teachers and false believers. We live in a world of fakes, anything good, will almost be immediately imitated and very soon produce mass that the imitations exceed the number of originals. That's quite normal. Whereas a handbag, a shirt, a watch, whatever, the imitations are more than the originals. Even right here, I'm sure there are a lot of fakes right. People pretending that they don't know what I'm talking about. Right? You have stolen copyright today. You have stolen patents and some of these fakes may be harmless, you steal somebody's income into someone's life, but some of these fakes can cause deaths. Fake medicines in the third world countries are very common. People try to save a little bit of money and they buy fakes, and they die. Alright, so fakes are dangerous, and they are part of life today, everywhere there are fakes right and I believe fakes out number originals in most good things. And what about in the church? You say, oh pastor, fakes are from China, you know everything is made in China. All the terrible imitations and stuff like that right. Tell you. The Chinese are good counterfeiters. I tell you who is the master counterfeiter. Right, who is the master counterfeiter, said he is the original. He counterfeits all the time. What God does; he imitates. What God does; he tries to counterfeit. And that brings us to a question. If Satan is the master counterfeiter, where do you think the most fakes are? In handbags, watches, microchips? Or in the spiritual realm? If Satan is the master counterfeiter, I can tell you this, there are more counterfeits in the church, more fakes in the church than you would like to believe. Plenty of fakes, fake teachers, and fake believers. Wow, this is a scary thought.
Could we be fakes? Could this guy here be a fake? Could you be a fake believer? Alright, so today, let us ask ourselves three questions. Why are there so many fakes in the church? Who are these fakes? We do not want to be found to be taking fake medicine and die, right? We better have the skill of learning how to identify fake stuff. In this generation, you better learn the skill of identifying fake stuff, or you will be duped, or you may die. And the most important to identify is not whether it is a fake handbag, so be it. But am I a fake believer? And then the last question is, what do fake teachers look like? What do they do? Alright, so there is a why question, why so many? Who are these fakes? And what do fake teachers do? Alright, so I hope we can answer these three questions today.
2 Timothy 3:1-9
Today's text passage is from second Timothy chapter three. Alright, let's read this. That's a pretty depressing passage, horrible bunch of people: arrogant, proud and all those things, right? Let us read it together. And just have a little picture of this horrible bunch of people described in this passage. “But understand this that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness but denying its power. Avoid such people. For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women burdened with sins, led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men corrupted in mind and disqualified regarding the faith. But they will not get very far, for their folly will be plain to all, as was that of those two men.” (2 Timothy 3:1-9 ESV) What a horrible bunch of people, are you glad you don't make these kinds of people. Brutal, swollen with conceit, arrogant, disobedient, reckless? Who are this bunch of people? Gun guys, drunkards by the nightclub, gangsters sitting down to terrorize people, this brutal, uncontrolled people, who are these horrible people? Who are people having a form of godliness, that is church folks, this is describing a congregation. Gangsters don't have a form of godliness, they curse the name of God, they swear the name of God, they are proud. They do not care about God.
These are people who come to church. This is describing a congregation, describing this, crowd of people here. Form of godliness, we all look pretty good. You don't look brutal; you don't look swollen with conceit. You look pretty obedient, your parents sitting next to you. For these two hours, at least. But outside the kids may know a different story, the maid may know a different story, your employees may know a different story, your colleagues may know, your classmates may know a different story. Wow. You know, it says here in these last days. What does that mean? And the Bible says last days, does not mean just a moment before the Second Coming, it doesn't mean that. It means when Christ died on the cross, ascended, and from that time till now, it has been 2000 years, the church has always been like that: full of horrible people in them. You know, so often people say, I will never be a Christian, you know, I met this Christian in, my office, terrible Christian. Many employees will say, I never want to be a Christian, my boss is terrible. He calls himself a Christian. You know, it's nothing new, folks. It has been around for 2000 years. But you know, we live in the last of the last days. And in the last of the last days, things do get worse, worse, gets worse and worse. Horrible things until Christ comes again. So I think we are living in the last of the last days and some pretty much all that describes a typical congregation. Wow. Sometimes you begin to ask yourself, how is that so? It's so terrible, I mean, there's so many people like that. Of course, there is a form of godliness in a Sunday morning, please. Sunday morning. We do not get drowned. We do not fight. We look decent on Sunday morning. But what is the reality? Right, what is the reality right here? In another church and the other churches, what is the reality? Right?
First Question: Why are there so many false believers?
First question, why are there so many unbelievers in the church? Are you sure there are many? Are you kind of exaggerating? Are you prone to exaggeration? Look at this verse. The Bible tells us, “Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day, many,” look at the word, not a few, “many will say to me, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in a name?” And then I will declare to them, “I never knew you, depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.” (Matthew 7:21-23 ESV) Many, hey, these are people who were convinced they were saved. They went to the Lord and said, “Lord, how dare you shut us out of heaven? Do you know who we are?” They were not trying to con God on that day. You do not try to con God when you stand. You do not try to pull a fast one. They were really believing they were believers. They were deluded to think they were believers. And it's not a handful of them. It says many will be shocked on that day. Will we be one of the many? That is the question. Wow. This is serious stuff. And a bit too late, when they stand before the Lord and said, “Excuse me, hey, do you know who you're talking to?” “Lots I never knew, go”. Scary, why so many? I put four reasons.
First reason: Generational Christians
Reason number one, generational Christians. What do I mean by generational Christians? Some of you are second generation, third generation Christians. The time you are little, you are brought to church. I was one of them. I was brought to church. I did not have a choice. I came to church, I learned how to behave in church. I learned when to stand out when to sit when to sing. I learnt how to look very proper on Sunday morning. I behaved myself pretty much on Sunday morning. I had a form of godliness. But you know what, I never got saved until when I was 33. For 30 over years, I thought I was a Christian. Many thought I was a Christian. I went to Christian school, I went to Christian church, I went to religious knowledge classes, I scored A in all my RRK (Role-Related Knowledge). And I went to church every Sunday, for a while. Do you know going to church doesn't make you Christian. Going to KFC doesn't make you a chicken. You go to KFC every week, you can sit every week in all the chicken, you will never be a chicken you know that. And yet, many people assume if I keep bringing my kids to church every Sunday, he is a Christian. He will be a Christian, sooner or later. God has no grandchildren, folks. That's why God is called father, not grandfather, great grandfather. Everyone has to be born of God. not born by your papa and your ancestors. So, the question is this, many here are generational Christians, you've come to church, you've gone through the motions, you have decent lives, at least on Sunday. And most of your public life is decent. You know, there are many, you know, every Sunday. This is my second Sunday in GLCC this year. For some of you who do not know me, I will introduce myself alright. I am Paul Choo. I have been in this church for a while, right? It is true. Some of you do not know me. Some of you saw me this morning and wondering who I am here or is this guy a coat? Some of you thought I work here. I do not work here. I am not from Furama, alright. Every Sunday I preach in Indonesia, almost every Sunday, in different churches, right? What do I preach in these churches? Almost every Sunday, I preached the same gospel message. Why? Because these people in these churches that I go to are generational Christians, generally the fourth to fifth generation. That tribe was saved 150 years ago, that 10 million of them, their tribe. They come to church every Sunday, not like our church you know, when they are singing the first few songs, Jonathan is literally doing a solo, all of you ambling drinking coffee outside. You know, in those churches I go to, 10 minutes before service. Everybody seated. Sunday best. Everybody dresses like this, the farmers dress like this, suit and tie sitting down. Reverence for God, when they sing is like angels. When turn the Bible, everybody's pages turn. Nobody's fiddling around, nobody twitches, but you know what? 99% of them. And I mean, are not saved. Including the leaders. They thought, going to church, being faithful, no gross in their life, no visible outward sins, I am okay. Churches are filled with such people. People say 1.3 billion people are Christians, really? Maybe 90% of those are generational Christians. Number one problem, right? People who come and sit and believe it is sit quietly and reverently for two hours a week, it makes them a Christian.
Second reason: Modern Evangelism
Number two. Modern evangelism. What's modern evangelism? It is marketing. Some articulate guy, with some slick words. Of course, accompanied by mood music. You know, music can move your moods, can make you cry, can make you laugh, can make your jump, can make you dance, can make you sleep, but usually, they make you feel religious. Repetitive stances, it is like repeat, repeat. repeat. That is called hypnosis. Folks. This is fact. I am a doctor, I am telling you, this is clinical hymnals, repeated: You are sleepy, you are sleepy, you are sleepy. And you are religious, and you are religious, and you are religious, and God loves you, and God loves you, and God loves you and the next thing you are asked to raise your hand and then crowd psychology. Every eye close, every head bowed. Amen, I see Henry's, praise God, praise God, praise God, after the 15th praise God, you wonder why I did not raise my hand yet. Everybody's raising their hand and next thing you know; your hands are up. And Hallelujah, you're a Christian. And you go home and tell everybody you are Christian now. Are you surprised, the church is filled with unbelievers, who were not save by the biblical methods? What's the biblical method: the gospel, preach Christ, preach Christ and Him crucified. Not with eloquence of words. By the power of the spirit, not in the mood of music, not in the wisdom of psychology and crowd, mass psychology. Easy to get crowds to do this if you want to. 99% of our people are followers, they need someone to lead them. It is no big deal. Surprise? If you don't use biblical methods, would you get unbiblical converts? Yes. What else?
Third reason: Prosperity “Gospel”
Prosperity gospel. Everybody wants to be healthy and wealthy, who does not want that? Normal. We work hard to be healthy and wealthy and suddenly your toll, “Come to Jesus and you will be healthy and wealthy.” Wow, that is a great shortcut. Just like that. And next thing you know, droves go there. 1000s go there. Christians, maybe some, can be neither. But many on that day will say Lord, Lord, and the Lord say I never knew you. You never knew me because you knew another Christ. You knew a Christ who gives you money and health. I take your sins on the cross. I suffered and died for your sins. I didn’t come that you will look flashy and spend money like a rich guy. I came to die for your sins. Wow.
Fourth reason: Hyper-grace “Gospel”
It's a new one hyper-grace. Big. The biggest church in Singapore is hyper-grace today. Christ died for your sins, come get a passport to heaven and then you can continue in your sin. You do not need to confess your sin. You do not need to struggle to be obedient to God, all your sins are settled at the cross. Go ahead and sin if you need to. Save to sin. What kind of doctrine is this but who does not like that? I have a passport to heaven and a passport to the nightclub. I have a passport to heaven, a passport to sin. Dual citizenship. Wow. Are you surprised the church is filled with unbelievers? Is it shocking? Alright, so the why question, why so many? Four reasons.
Second Question: Who are the Unbelievers?
Who are these unbelievers? Ah, at this point, everybody is saying, that people in that church I know a lot. It is a lot like that, you know, but you know, be careful, we do not do that. Bible tells us before you learn to judge anybody else. judge yourself. (Matthew 7:1-5 ESV) Right? That is the way to judge. We are very good at judging everybody. You know, I have seen the most impatient drivers drive and they judge the other people being impatient, impatient, impatient guy himself. We love to judge other people. We are quick to judge other people. Before we even start judging anyone. Let us judge ourselves today. Today, we are not looking at other churches, look at ourselves. And you are not going to look at the guy next to you look at yourself today. Right. You know, I believe in checkups. So, doctor always check how you are doing. Most of you go for regular checkups. Let us do a regular checkup today. Check how am I doing today? Alright. So, who are these people who are false believers? Let us go back to our text today. “For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving, good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God” (2 Tim 3:2-4 ESV) There is a lot of adjectives. But I just want to focus on three phrases: lovers of self, lovers of money, and lovers of pleasure. We are lovers of self, lovers of money and lovers of pleasure. We will be all of the rest. If I love myself, I am heartless, I do not care about other people. I will be heartless, I will be disobedient to my parents. Why should I worry about what my parents think? I love myself. I want to do what I want to do. So, the rest will fall in place if you understand these three common problems of the unsaved men. Right? lovers of self, lovers of money, and lovers of pleasure.
Lovers of Self
Lovers of self. What age do we live in now? The selfie age? Have you thought about it? Everyday people take pictures. Same face, same stupid face. Have to take 10 times of the same stupid face. Why? What's up? Your face changes every day? Are you a chameleon? Are you a snake? In the same face, why do you have to take it 10 times? Because I love my own face you get it? And after I love my own face, I have to tell the whole world my face. Put in a Facebook, Instagram, whatever. You know I have a Facebook; I refuse to open it for one year, I have not touched it. I am sick and tired of watching the same face keep popping up, what I eat for breakfast, what I eat for lunch, whatever. Who cares what you eat? Stop it. You know they love themselves so much. They have to do it. You know many of you have fallen into this trap of lovers of yourself. Some of you just do it unthinkingly. Nonsense. Wow, I say this is ridiculous. They go to the most beautiful mountain in the world, and they take a picture of themselves. A mountain is somewhere there. What's up man? What do you think doctors do? When you graduate as a doctor, 50% chance, we will not save a life, we will save some wrinkles. 50% of doctors, I believe will be beauticians. The noble professional medicine. I am glad I am out of it. I do not want to be a beautician. You know, this is what this world is about, lovers of self. You say, Pastor shouldn't we love ourselves? Yes, I believe it is. But do not obsessively. This is what the Bible tells us. Love God, commandment number one. Love your neighbor as yourself. (Second commandment) There is no third commandment, love yourself. No need. We all love ourselves; it is in need to take care of ourselves to be reasonable about taking care of ourselves. That is innate. Even a guy with low self-esteem. You think he really does not like himself? Don't kid yourself. If you look at yourself in the mirror, I've seen people who are very ugly, look themselves mirror every time they walk by the mirror you know that? Even if they are ugly, they have to look at themselves again. And again. Just to scare themselves, I guess. You know, there is something about us innately that we love ourselves. We do not have to go and learn more how to love yourself. You do not need it. To love others to love God you need to learn that. So stop all this excessive, obsessive love of self. It is right here in this church.
Lovers of money.
Lovers of money. So, a lot of people here worship money, the god of money. You know how I know that? Because they are willing to sacrifice their health, their family, their ethics for money. They will not sacrifice for God. They will sacrifice for the god of money. You tell me they don't love money; they love money. You say pastor, are you against money? Let me tell you, I spent half my time raising money you know that? How do you help the poor? How do you work, do outreach to the poor if you have no money? You need gasoline, you need tickets. You need to go and feed them you need to do so many things. Alright, there is nothing wrong with money. We need it. I am not against money. Right? “But those who desire to be rich.” (1 Tim 6:9-10 ESV) You know why they desire to be rich? They believe that if I am rich, I will be happy. If I am rich, my future is secure. Liar. Money can buy things, can’t buy happiness. Can buy a nice house but you can’t buy peace in your house. You can buy your nice bed and a nice air-con, soundproof room but it can’t buy you sleep. It can buy you the best vitamins or the best medical care, but it can't buy your health. And it can’t buy you a future. Love of money, people sacrifice so many things for this thing, believing that, that god or money will take care of me. The god of money will give a lot of problems. Many families I know are struggling because some fellow in the home is so obsessed with money and is willing to make so many sacrifices for money. And when he makes money he's so arrogant and makes money gets in so many temptations, blah blah blah. I don't need to elaborate you know, you read, with your mind, your eyes you can see. I tell you what true riches are. “The blessing of the Lord makes rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.” (Proverbs 10:22 ESV) Wow. You know, as a doctor, very few medicines, I tell you have no side effects. The best medicine has some side effects. Almost none have no side effects. I tell you the blessing of the Lord has no side effects. He blesses you and it doesn't come with afterwards side effects. My friends, right here, a lot of people still wake up in the morning, their devotion is how am I doing in the market? Or am I doing whatever.
Lovers of Pleasure
Lovers of pleasure. You think the church is people who are lovers of God, committed to God, willing to sacrifice for God, willing to serve God? You think this church is full of such people? Don't kid yourself. I feel sorry for Pastor Jason sometimes. This church is full of lovers of pleasure. Go to Punggol so far. They want convenience. They want comfort. They want a pastor to preach something nice and entertaining. Hebrews every week, Hebrews every week, so chim (difficult in Hokkien). They want something entertaining or the music doesn't suit me. You think what, this whole world must suit you? You think what, we are here to give you pleasure? Is this a spa, is this an entertainment place? Please come on man. This is a church, we come here to serve God. We come here to make sacrifices. We come here to make commitments. Lovers of pleasure. You say, pastor I am not a lover of pleasure. Check yourself, check yourself. I want things to please me. I expect things to please me. Wow. Excessive folks. I like pleasure too. I don't like pain by the way. I don't think we all, or anyone of us likes pain or, or agony or suffering. But I tell you, you want to find pleasure. There is a source, a very beautiful source. “You make known to me the path of life; in your presence, there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Psalm 16:11 ESV) You want pleasure? Go to the source: God. You know the difference between joy and happiness. Many people don't know the difference. Happiness is when things work your way. Nice friends around you, nice music, nice food. I'm happy. I go to church. The music is great. I'm happy. They call it joy; they kid themselves. When they walk out when the beat cannot be heard. The drum beat stops. It's all dependent on the circumstances around you, what's around you makes you happy. Joy is what is in you. No music, fine. Jesus loves me, I'm his child, I'm going to heaven. He never leaves me nor forsakes me. Whether there's music or no music, whether there is food or no food, whether got cancer, no cancer. You can't take my joy away. But happiness, come and go in seconds. You guys want happiness? You get depressed when you want happiness. Look for joy. Look for pleasures forevermore. In a Christ, in a God who loves you. I go to Indonesia; you say why pastor you go there? Squat toilet, no hot water. So, suffering. I feel sorry for you guys. Because you know what? I have perfect joy, perfect peace. Yeah, it aches there but the joy is still there. Here does not take my joy away. I'm sorry, it can’t. Cold water makes me shiver a little bit but doesn't take my joy away. You know, my friends. You want to find pleasures forevermore? Love God. Don't love pleasure. You love God, you will have the pleasure forevermore. You know God, you walk with God. You're sure that he is in you, and you belong to Him. That is joy, folks. Those are pleasures forever. Alright. So here we see three traits. That if you find it gripping your life, you have to ask yourself, am I a believer? Or am I a churchgoer? Am I a fake? Am I a real thing? Listen to these things, folks, these are life and death issues. These are not frivolous discernment.
Characteristics of a True Believer
What are some of the characteristics of a true believer? Those three things seem to dominate in the life of one. What about some of the characteristics of a true believer? Alright, if you’re a true believer, something happens in you, it tells you that Christ lives in you. Galatians 2:20. When you receive Christ as your Savior, you don't receive some facts in your head, some promises in your head. That is religion, folks. When you receive Christ as your Savior, you receive a person, not doctrines. You receive Christ and not receive the 10 commandments. You receive Christ as your Savior; he lives in you. Christ lives in you. And when Christ lives in you, your DNA is like Christ. I just give an example. If the great basketball player, you know the guy was almost eight feet tall, you are know if he had a son and he worship in GLCC, I would quite easily say that's Yao Ming’s boy. How do you know? Okay, seven feet six. He is got his papa’s DNA. No need rocket science to figure that out. If you are white skin guy, I know you got white skin DNA and it's logical. If you're totally white, you say, I'm an African you say. I doubt it. You don't look like it. Because there's a DNA in you that comes out. It has to be. If you have Christ in you, it will come out in some character. You cannot say Christ lives in me, but I still live the same way. That's not possible. If we could clone new DNA into you, we could make you a hybrid. You know what happens? You will be different. This is what we worry about GM, GM food modified by putting other genes into the plant, scary because new characteristics come out in that plant. If Christ lives in you, new characteristics will come out. Let's see some of these, I name five.
Less of Self, more of God
Less of self, more of God. If you are truly born again, you won't be taking a selfie of yourself every day. But when you wake up and you see a clear blue sky you will say wow, son how beautiful I am is how great God is. Your focus will shift, less of me, more of God. Do you see that in your life, have you seen at some point, less of you more of God? Or it is still me, me, me, me and myself, me and my breakfast and my lunch and whatever else and my dress and the parties I go to. If your life is still full of me, me me. question yourself. Be honest with yourself. Alright.
Less ‘I’m ok,’ more ‘I’m a sinner’
Number two, less I'm okay and more I'm a sinner. You talk to unsafe men, it is okay pastor, everything is okay. Don’t worry, I'm okay. I'm okay. I'm okay. I'm okay. Sure, by your own standards, you must be okay. Every man judges himself okay. Who doesn't judge himself okay? He was a criminal how he thinks: I'm okay, by his standards. But when you have Christ in you, your standards change? Wow. I'm not that okay. I'm a sinner. I'm selfish. I’m impatient. Wow. At that point, have you had that point somewhere in your life? Was it for a fleeting moment? DNA is not for a fleeting moment, folks. It stays.
Less ‘I know’, more ‘I need to learn from God’
Less of I know. You tell most people they seem to know all the answers. The people who know least seem to say, I know I know more. We talk to a little kid, he tells me I know, I know. I know. He knows nothing. You talk to a PhD who knows everything. He knows nothing. Because the more you know, the more you know you do not know. But you know, when you become a Christian, you realize how little you're able to order your life. And then you really begin to appreciate the Word of God and begin to realize I need the Word of God. My scope, my perspective, is this narrow there is a world out there, spiritual things I do not understand. I need the Word of God. You know, if you never had that point in life, if every morning you just look at the Bible, like another book, reading your devotion for five minutes, 10 minutes every day. Let me tell you this. Check yourself seriously. You will begin to appreciate the Bible and say I need this. I need to learn from God, or I am in trouble.
Less ‘I can’, more ‘I need God’
Less of I can, I can, you know I've run my life for years. I'm okay. I've been running my life. When you have truly been born again, you say? Wow, I can't stop sinning, I can't stop bad thoughts, I can't stop my impatience, I can't stop my unreasonableness, my parents, I can't stop my looking down on the poor. I can't stop all these things. I can't, I need help. Wow. That is hope. Then you learn to pray. You appreciate what wonders of prayer. You know, all of us, I believe, say prayers. In fact, all religions say prayers. In fact, everyone except animals say prayers. I tell you the truth. Even an atheist, if his ship is sinking, he will say a prayer. But you know what is saying a prayer. Is it like in the morning say a few things, at night say a few things? That’s what we do, ritual, that doesn't make you Christian. I tell you my brothers in Indonesia, they pray five times a day, for at least five times a day every day. But you know my friends. When you realize moment by moment. I can't, I need God. Then you won't say a prayer. You will pray. I don't mean this kind of thing (crossing fingers). No. You to God, asking help from God.
Less comfortable in the world, more comfortable with God’s people
Number five, then you get less comfortable in the world. Before you became a believer, before you became a true believer. You see the world is beautiful. Cool, man. There are cool dudes out there. Wow. I wish I can be like them. My dream is to be like them. dress like them, act like them. You know Wow. When you get saved, you see, all empty. Lot of show, nothing. Form, just form. Empty promises, that is what the world does. “You rich, you will be happy” Haha. Really? You rich, your life will be fine. Huh, really? When you get saved, you will say huh really? You think I was born yesterday? God give me new eyes to see. But more than that, you really grow in grace, you don't only feel sad for this world, you feel horrible for this world that they're going to hell, then you know you're a believer. I hope some of you can say I've seen that pastor. Yes, I've seen that. It's a journey, but it has begun. I say Praise God. But if you say I don't see this. I've been in church year after year. Everybody assumes I'm a Christian. I know it myself. That's my journey. I was 33 years old. People asked me a Christian, I said of course I say. But was I? Never was. I hope today you will diagnose yourself. Be honest, nothing to be ashamed. Nicodemus was an old man when Jesus told him. Paul Choo was 33 years old. What is the big deal? God gives us another chance. But grab the chance. Let me today tell you the danger of what I call the most dangerous traffic jam in the world. You know the traffic jams in Jakarta, in Manila. But I tell you the biggest traffic jam is right here. Between here and here. (Between the mind and the heart) Because all of you know what I said. You all know it's nothing new to you. Nothing I said is new to you. Christ died for my sins. I heard it pastor since I was a kid. We sing Christmas songs. I heard it since I was a kid. Christ rose from the dead. I heard it since I was a kid. JOHN 3:16. I heard it. But let me tell you, so did the devil. Satan also heard these things. Satan knows all these things. Satan knows John 3:16 in every language and every dialect. Satan was at the cross when he heard Jesus say, it is finished. He knew all these things. knew was in the head. But whosoever believes, that's in the heart. In my case, barely 20 centimeters between here and here. This is a traffic jam pose. Check yourself today. Do you know all these things I told you? If so, so does Satan. Question today is not do you know; question is do you believe? Do you believe that on that cross, Jesus died for all your sins, past sins, present sins, future sins, He paid it all. And he said it is finished. Three days later, he rose from the dead to prove it. Do you believe that? Believe in the heart, not here. When you believe you say, Jesus, I receive you as my Savior. I receive you as my Savior. Not I received some truth from this guy preaching today. I receive you, Jesus as my Savior. And you know, you will see the change. May take a while. Yau Ming’s son doesn't look like Yao Ming when he was a baby, I can tell you that. But he will in due time. Because the DNA is there. Today, my prayer for everyone here is, you will check your hearts, do a checkup, and ask yourself how am I? Am I in danger? No danger of getting cancer and dying folks. Sooner or later we'll all die. That's the truth. Just a matter of time. It's where you will go. So, my prayer today is you can say, “Pastor. I know where I am going, and I hope everyone can say that today. I know.” Nothing complex. Don't keep saying when I need to fully understand and all that, nobody can fully understand the mystery of the cross. Nobody can fully understand the wonder of the gospel. Not possible. I don't even understand it. Eternity I cannot understand how one man, all the sins of the world were taken, how he paid for every sin, I cannot understand, and I don't need to. I'm not asked to understand it. I must believe it. Will you believe it today? Right, no excuses. Alright, so today we have dealt with who are the unbelievers?
Third Question: What are the Methods of False Teachers?
What are methods of false teachers, very quickly. The three things these false teachers would do. And I want you to know it because they're going to be around for a while. They have always been around; they have been around for 2000 years so what's new. You think they are going to go away? You think one guy goes to jail and the story's over? No, folks, it's going to continue.
Satisfies unsaved man’s passions
Number one, these false teachers know how to satisfy man's passions, right? As in the anniversary we read, “for among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women” (2 Tim 3:6a ESV). Please, I know a lot of women are very strong and many things, right? A lot of you are stronger than your husbands in many ways. But generally, women are more emotional, and it is easier to deceive an emotional person than a logical person. Alright. Satan knew that in the Garden of Eden. “Burdened with sins and led astray with various passions,” (2 Tim 3:6b ESV) right? So, what do you think these preachers would do? They will tell you, you come to church, your sins will be settled. And you can still enjoy your passions. You love yourself, good. You will be more beautiful, you'll be healthier. You love money, good. You will have more money. I know your passions. I will cater to it; I will meet your needs. Any marketing person will tell you when you meet a customer's needs, he will come back for more. So number one, they will tell you, you come. You have sin. Don't worry, we'll take care of it. But you have passions, don't worry, we will fulfill it.
Caters to man’s desire to learn
Number two, they cater to our desire to learn. Ever learning. Men love to be smart. If you can’t be smart in smart things, be smart in stupid things as soon as you can show you're smarter. You know what I mean? Oh, that actress ah, just divorced yesterday you know, wah so clever. You know everything ah. Wah, her dress ah, $2,400 you know, why are you so clever? Everybody likes to be smart. They like to learn new things. They like to be one up on other people. That's the way we are. That's the way with DNAed. I want to know the latest. You don't know ah, I know. You know the football match, what is the score, you don't know. I know I really know. And so they will cater. They will learn and learn new dreams, new prophecies, new things, new methods, or new man, the latest. Not like our church, every time preach the same book Hebrews, so old book from the Bible. 2000 years old, nothing new here. But you know what? They never come to the knowledge of the truth. (2 Timothy 3:7 ESV) Why? Because they don’t go to the Bible and what is, why is the truth? Where is the truth? Tell me what is truth? Can anyone define truth for me. What is truth? How do you define truth? Most definitions that which is deemed, that which is deemed to be true, or kind of logic is that? What is truth? That which is deemed to be true? I tell you what is truth, alright? God's Word is truth. (John 17:17 ESV) That's the standard, by which everything else has to be measured. But you know what? They will learn everything: dreams, prophecies and all these things except the Word of God. Because the Word of God will expose them. Ever learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Impresses man with the ‘supernatural’
Number four, they are impressed with the supernatural. Men are always impressed by something supernatural, some miracle. “Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth.” (2 Timothy 3:8a ESV) How did Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses? Jannes and Jambres were traditional names of the two magicians, that Pharaoh column, alright, this is a story. When Moses stood before Pharaoh, Moses was going to prove that he was from God, he throws the rod down and became a snake. Pharaoh called his magicians, Jannes and Jambres. And they threw their rod down and became a snake. One problem. Moses’ snake ate up their snakes. In other words, the miracle was inferior. I don't know whether they did it by supernatural means, demonic means, or by sleight of hand, it doesn't matter. The point is, right. Men are always impressed by these things. Miracle must be from God. Let me tell you, Jannes and Jambres did not come from God, yet they produce a miracle. You know what, demons can do miracles too you know. Demons have power too you know, Satan has power, you know, every miracle doesn't need to come from God. And they will do something and who got healed or whatever, I am not even denying it. So be it. So, you did a miracle. So did the temple, some things happen there, some amazing things happen in the temple. I can guarantee you; the demons have power. They're not figments of imagination. The spirit world is real. So, when you see these things, promising to take care of sin and feeding the passions, teaching and teaching but teaching from dreams and things other than the Bible. What God spoke to me, God speaks to me too, you know, but through the Bible. And then miracles, what kind of pastor you have here and there's no miracles from him. How do you attract people here? Every transformed life is a miracle. That's the kind of miracle I want to see transform lives. Whether the cup can jump so what, what's the point? But I see a man get saved and transformed. That is the real miracle. And now what will happen in the end of this right? Comes a point enough, all the folly and sins expose, they go to jail, whatever. But the story doesn't end. Somebody else will take their place. Decent, decent, right? Be aware is our job. We live in a world of fakes. Learn to discern what is fake. But most important, yourself. The most important diagnosis is not about others. It's about me. And is it well with my soul? Am I a fake? You fake others, it's not too bad, don’t fake yourself.
Conclusion and Prayer
Alright, so today, my plea to you is this: Check your heart. This is something too serious to take for granted. Even my physical health I check every year. Hey, it is a responsibility. What about your spiritual well-being? What about your eternity? Is it not worth a check? So today I say to you all check yourself, nobody can check you. No MRI can check you today, no CT scan can check you. You have to check yourself. Don't check the guy next to you. Check yourself. And at the end of it all, I hope you can say, Pastor, thank you. It's well with my soul. And if you can't, you're one step away folks. Trust in Jesus who took all your sins on the cross. Just trust him. Let us pray. Father, thank you for today. Thank you for warning us. There are false teachers, and they are false believers. Thank you for warning us the devil is a master of deceit, a master of deceiving people. He is the Great Deceiver. Help us not to be deceived today. We pray today that everyone will be able to leave and say thank you God that you have given us your son. Thank you, Jesus, taking all our sins. Thank you, Holy Spirit, for convicting us of sin, of righteousness and judgment to come. We thank you, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
More Episodes from Pastor Paul Choo:
03 Dec 2023
26 Nov 2023
18 Jun 2023
12 Mar 2023
27 Nov 2022
20 Nov 2022
24 Dec 2021
16 Jun 2021
Episodes from other sermons:
03 Dec 2023
26 Nov 2023
23 Jul 2023
18 Jun 2023
28 May 2023
07 Apr 2023
12 Mar 2023
25 Dec 2022