Friday, July 16, 2010

Beware of False Preachers and Teachers!

8) Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. 9) For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; 10) and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power. (Colossians 2:8-10)

In verse 8, Paul writes against any philosophy of life based only on human ideas and experiences. Paul himself was a gifted philosopher (Acts 17:1–34). So he is not condemning philosophy. He is condemning teaching that credits humanity, not Christ, with being the answer to life’s problems. That approach becomes a false religion. Paul was warning the believers not to be taken in by any philosophy that does not conform to a proper knowledge of Christ.

The false teachers at Colosse had combined worldly philosophies with the gospel. These philosophies are spoken of by Paul as the basic principles of the world, which some have interpreted as “spirits” or “angels” who supposedly control a person’s life (Gal. 4:3,9). There are many man-made approaches to life’s problems that totally disregard God. To resist heresy you must use your mind, keep your eyes on Christ, and study God’s Word. Paul’s strongest indictment against the heretics was that their teaching was not according to Christ, and thus they were not walking with Christ (Colossians 2:6-7).

In verse 9, Paul clearly proclaims the Incarnation; the fact the God became a man bodily. This contradicts the Gnostic idea of the inherent evil of physical bodies and the claim that Jesus is merely a spirit. The Gnostics thought the fullness of God had been divided among a number of angelic beings, the last creating the material world. In contrast, Paul says that the fullness of God exists in Christ. When we have Christ we have everything we need for salvation and right living.

Word Focus:  of the Godhead fullness (Gk. plērōma tēs theotētos) (Colossians 2:9) G4138; G2320: The Greek word plērōma indicates “plenitude” and “totality.” The Gnostics used the word to describe the totality of all deities. Both Paul and John used the word to describe Christ, who is the fullness, the plenitude of God, for all the fullness of the Godhead dwells in Him bodily (Colossians 1:19; 2:9). Since all of God’s fullness resides in Christ, every spiritual reality is found in Christ. In Him, we lack nothing. The Greek word theotētos for Godhead is used only here in the New Testament and designates the totality of God’s nature and person. All the fullness of the Godhead “dwells” or “permanently resides” in the body of Jesus, the God-man.

In verse 10, Paul illustrates the adequacy of Christ by demonstrating how the Colossian believers are complete. In Christ, the Colossians have put off the power of sin and the flesh (Colossians 2:11), have received new life (Colossians 2:12-13), have been forgiven, have been delivered from requirements laid down by human traditions (Colossians 2:14), and have been freed from the powers of spirit beings (Colossians 2:15). There is nothing that the Christian needs to add to what was received in Christ at the time of conversion. Paul emphasizes the sufficiency of Christ in order to refute the Gnostics and the Judaizers who respectively believed that special knowledge or works were necessary to make a Christian complete.

When we know Jesus Christ, we don’t need to seek god by means of other religions, cults, or unbiblical philosophies as the Colossians were doing. Christ alone holds the answers to the true meaning of life, because He is life (John 14:6). Christ is the unique source of knowledge and power for the Christian life. No Christian needs anything in addition to what Christ has provided to be saved. We are complete in Him.

Salvation by faith in Christ sounds too easy for many people. They would rather think that they have done something to save themselves. Their religion becomes one of self-effort that leads either to disappointment or pride, but finally to eternal death. Christ’s simple way is the only way, and it alone leads to eternal life.

Heavenly Father, it is my prayer today that I continue to keep my eyes upon your Son and my mind indwelled upon Your Word. Lord, watch over me as I walk from day to day in this world of unrighteousness that continues to water down Your Word and mock Your very existence. Lord search my heart and rid me of all the pride, envy and resentment that would influence my witness for You to the lost souls that I may come across today. Continue to give me the joy, peace and comfort that only You can give. I pray this all in my Savior, Jesus' name. Amen.

References: NKJV Holy Bible, Life Application Bible (NIV), and the Nelson Study Bible.


GODthinker said...

Great post!! Thanks!

nannykim said...

Hi, I came over from the linky on WOW. May we all run after Jesus. It is so good to know we are complete in Him.

sunnycalgirl said...

Great prayer...Thank you!

One Heart said...

POWERFUL truth. You know that I stand in complete agreement. Interesting enough I received a weekly email I'm registered with and the verse was Colossians 2:8. Oh, how our Father alerts us of that which is not of Him. It is so important to abide with Him in constant communion and remain anchored in His Word.

Blessings to you dear one. Thanks for linking up with the WOW blog-hop. All unto Him.

DeanO said...

Yes - the world today is full of false prophets, wolves in sheep's clothing. Indeed - Christ alone is the only way. "Not of works, lest any man should boast"

Denise said...

Such wonderful teaching brother.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Wonderful to read.


Charlotte/For Such A Time As This said...

I came here through the "Spiritual Sundays" link...a bit late (or early!)but either way, I'm glad I did. Your message is one that needs to be heard. There is a lot of "stuff" being preached today that is fluffy and easy on the ears, but isn't the truth of God's word. Thank you for stating clearly that Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

God Bless~

Gorges Smythe said...

Good post, good music!

RCUBEs said...

Amen bro. Lloyd! Great post and prayed your prayer with you. God bless. Have a great weekend.

Joe said...

Amen, brother!

Happily Cheesy said...

I'm going to fundamentally disagree and completely agree with you at the same time. There is nothing beyond turning to our Savior which can save us in this life. Nothing. Still, I have to think he wants us to try and become like him--which means works that mimic his own. Yes, works.The issue becomes when we're helping the poor or downtrodden for our own pride and gratification as opposed to a true love for humanity, our brothers and sisters. The only way to salvation is through Christ, but why not try to walk the same path he did--as much as possible.

Julie Musil said...

Lloyd, this is a powerful post. I believe it's true, that we Christians have to be on our toes for false information that's out there (especially when it comes to schools for our children).

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog!

Lloyd said...

I want to personally thank each one of you for your visit and gracious comments.

NannyKim: Thank you for the visit. WOW is a blessing for all that use it. We all need to emulate our Lord, but while in this earthly tent, sometimes it is hard too do. God’s blessings too you.

Sunnycalgirl: I am so happy you liked my prayer… it is from the heart and I give all the glory to our awesome God.

One Heart: It is so good to see my friend in Christ visiting my blog. I am always so humbled by your comments and your strong faith in our Lord. It is always amazing too me how God uses other believers to communicate His will. Colossians 2:8 has been on my mind all week. I see so many “Christian” blogs out there that are misleading and this weighs heavily on my heart. But you are right…constant communion with our Lord and meditating on His Word will keep us safe from false teachers. God’s blessings to you.

DeanO: Your visit is always cherished. I agree with you totally and we need to stand firm in our faith.

Denise: Thank you for your visit and kind comments. The glory goes to our awesome God.

Charlotte: Thank you for your visit. Spiritual Sundays are such a blessings that honors our Lord. I am so happy that my post touched your heart and soul. You are so right about there being a lot of ungodly teachings out there, but we can keep our guard up by always meditating and studying God’s Word. And, YES! Jesus is the WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE. Amen.

RCUBEs: Thank you so much for your visit and comments. I really enjoy coming over to you blog and reading your posts. Thank you for praying with me….God’s blessings too you.

Happily Cheesy: Thank you so much for your visit and comments. I have to agree with you. God’s will is for His children to be like His Son. If we have the love of Christ in us then we also have the fruits of the spirit. Having said that…we want to go out and do “good works”. This is what the Book of James talks about in depth… “Faith without works is dead” – This means, that if you are a Christian and refuse to go out and do “good works” then how can the unsaved world know that you are a Christian. This has nothing to do with salvation, but everything to do with your witness to the world. God’s blessings too you.

Ian Curtis said...

Amen to the truth of salvation with Jesus Christ as its only and sufficient object of our faith! I love meeting other like-minded believers; it is encouraging to see the same Spirit in me working in someone else and bringing them to the maturity and perfection found in our Lord alone. By this all will know that the Father sent the Son, that we have love one toward another. Your love is demonstrated by your concern for others' eternal welfare, and the preservation of God's pure word. May God receive the glory! If you need our prayers or counsel, please just ask. Love, Ian and Gillian.

elizabeth mueller said...

Lloyd, what a beautiful post. I can feel your love for our Father in Heaven. He, too, has blessed my life so richly, though I do not have the 'comforts' of this world that would stray my spirit. I think leading a simple life is the best kind as Jesus taught when he roamed the Earth.

Thank you for following and leaving a comment on my blog!

Will T "Buzz" Grant said...

Glad to see you spreading the Word!!

Lloyd said...

Ian Curtis: Thank you for your kind comments and offering your prayers and counseling. It is my desire that this blog reflects Christ in me and that the truth of God’s Word will be available for all who seek it. I have a side-bar prayer room for all to use. God’s blessings too you.

Elizabeth: I really enjoyed visiting your blog. Thank you for your kind words and may our Lord continue to shine through you and your blog. God bless

Will: With the help of the Lord, God’s Word will be broadcasted over cyberspace.

Starry Dawn said...

I do enjoy reading your posts in your awesome blog.
Thank you for sharing your Christian wisdom with the world, Lloyd!! Thank you for visiting my blog, dear!!
God bless you and those you love!!
Best Regards,

Razzgospel said...

Hey, Cheesy: You got that right. If our works are done out of love for God and those we are serving, then they are blessed. The more natural it becomes, the greater the blessing. Sometimes it's best not to think too much.

Now, I want to sit back and listen to the song. We sing this in the Men's Chorus I sing in and I never tire of it.

Razzgospel said...

A wonderful commentary Lloyd. A lot of meat on this bone.

Jessica Nelson said...

Truth! :-)

Thanks for stopping by my blog the other day!

Elizabeth Mahlou said...

The problem sometimes is that the false preachers and false teachers SEEM to make sense and are quite charming! Thanks for the all the good advice in this post.

(BTW, I should let you know that the Blest Atheist blog went down and I replaced it with the 100th Lamb []; I explain why there. The content is the same, and I am moving the old BA posts there.)

Nature Nut /JJ Loch said...

AMEN! Great post and needed blog.

Blessings, JJ/Nancy

Lloyd said...

Starry: Thank you so much for your visit and kind comments. I credit everything on my blog to the Lord giving Him all the glory that He so justly deserves. Your blog was such a blessing too me. God bless.

Razz: I am so happy that you enjoy listening to the back ground music on my blog….Lots of folks find it distracting, but I feel they can turn down their volume if they do not want to listen to it. Thanks again for the kind comments and yes there is a lot of meat on this bone to chew on and digest. God’s blessings too you.

Elizabeth: I always enjoy your visits. Yes, you are totally correct when you say that false preachers and teachers are sometimes very charming. That is why so many unexpected Christians and lots of unbelievers get “sucked into” their churches and organizations. That is why it is so important to check out anything THEY say with the Word of God (Bible) to see if what they say is true. God bless.

Nature Nut: Thank you for your visit and kind words of encouragement. God’s blessings too you.

B. J. Robinson said...

Beautiful blog, so inspiring and uplifting. Love the one about your mom. Blessings, Barb

Gregg said...

Great post! Anchors Away? Well, I guess not everyone can be a Marine, Huh?

We have such a proliferation of false teachers. I shudder at the judgment they will face.

sja said...

Yes ... Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3:5-6 ...

Momma2James said...

Thank you for sharing! It feels good to read some one elses post it gives us encouragement. I have also shared your post on facebook if that is ok?

Ruth said...

Wow what an excellent post. a must for all to know! Thanks for posting this.. and Amen to the beautiful prayer!!

Underneath His Wrapping

Angela said...

Hello Lloyd,

I am grateful for the left admiration for my work ... actually, I'm just a person trying to express what you feel, in a very simple, just beginning the path of painting, and the incentive is something very, very important!
required, it is a pleasure to be here!
a big hug!

Jesson And Rey Ann said...

you're right!

Emeila said...

What a beautiful prayer. Amen

Philip Robinson said...

A great message and a prayer to match, Lloyd. God bless you too.

Alicia Isaacs said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog Lloyd. Thanks for sharing your inspiration and insights.

Have a great evening.


phylliso said...

What a beautiful blog!What a good reminder in this age of new life,new world beliefs,that Jesus is the only way to eternal life.We must walk with God inside us as He would have us do,following you now,& thanks for sharing,phylliso

Celestina Marie Designs said...

Hi Lloyd,
Beautiful post and so inspiring.
Thank you for stopping by and leaving a kind comment. It is nice to meet you and I so enjoyed my visit to your blessing of a blog.
The hymn is one of my favorites.

Blessings to you,
Celestina Marie

Linda said...

Lloyd, thank you for stopping by my blog and leaving such a nice comment. I am so glad you did because I was able to find your inspirational and uplifting blog.

God Bless You and Your Family,

Karen said...

Lloyd, thanks for following my blog. Great post! I never can wrap my mind around the fact that Jesus is God in the flesh. And that He did that for us. Amazing!

Dean Spencer said...

Lloyd -

This is a really great post. I totally agree with everything you said. Somehow, whether through philosophy or plain higher learning, man begins to think of himself as wise and all-knowing.

Nothing can be further from the truth. You help clarify the faulty thinking that there's nothing man can do. It's all by in Jesus!

Thanks for being faithful to the truth! God bless!


Lloyd, I so appreciate your taking the time, prayer, and effort to share the critical issue of keeping our eyes and our hearts focused on Jesus Christ. Do we really realize how easy it is to get sidetracked? Posts like this let us know how easy it is to get our eyes off Him. Thank you for the much needed word. God bless you, Bobbi

Dee said...

It is so important to be anchored in Gods word in these last days. Sadly many will be decieved.

Chris said...

God told us that there would be more false profites and once again He told the truth. The false are coming out in droves as of late. Who knows maybe we will see the end soon.

Lloyd said...

BJ: Thank you Barb for the kind words. I will miss my mom, but know that I'll see her again when I get to heaven.

Gregg: Unfortunately you are correct....There are so many false teachers out there peddling a Jesus that is foreign to the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And, yes, it was Anchors Away for me as a lad... God's blessings too you.

sja: I love that Proverb.... God bless, and thank you for visiting.

Momma2James: I am happy you enjoyed my blog. And, yes, there is no problem in sharing any post you see on this blog if it will bring glory to our Lord. Blessings too you.

Ruth: Thank you for your visit and kind and encouraging words.

Angela: I really enjoyed looking at your paintings. Thank you for your visit and kind words. God's blessings too you.

Emeila and Phillip: Thank you for your visit and comments. Prayer is so important in a believers life.

Alicia: It was a pleasure to visit your blog. Thanks for stopping by.

Phylliso and Celestina: Thank you for stopping by and giving me encouragement. For those who are perishing, the Gospel is rubbish, but for us who believe, it is everlasting life and the power of God.

Linda, Dee and Karen: Thank you both so much for stopping by and leaving such encouraging comments.

Dean: Thank you for your visit and comments. You are right about man always wanting to know everything about what's going on in his life, including everything about God. But God is so much more then man can ever imagine and the human brain just cannot comprehend all the power and Glory our Lord and Heavenly Father possess. It is all by FAITH alone that we trust in His Word.

Bobbi: I want to thank you for visiting and that you are always in my prayers... It is so easy in this fallen world too lose sight of our Lord Jesus. The devil is always working overtime in convincing true believers that they really don't need God. God's blessings too you and may our Lord continue to shine through you and your blogs.

Chris: You are right....the Word of God has prophesized that in the end times there will be those who will preach and teach a false Jesus. As you can see, just by surfing the internet for Christian blogs, there are so many different viewpoints and personal opinions on who Jesus is and what it takes to be saved. Who do you believe? I say, read and meditate on God's Word (Bible) and pray for wisdom to know what His Word is telling you. God bless.

ma thet zin said...

Very nice

Holy Events said...

I would also want people to be careful who they get their teachings from, because not every pastor is holy. :)