Unconverted and Unconcerned

Unconverted and Unconcerned
Robert WurtzII

“The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?” (John 3:2–4 KJV)

Nicodemas came to Jesus by night, perhaps, to ask some questions. Many people today are asking questions like, “Why is there so much evil in the world?” or “Why are so-called Evangelical ministries compromising on homosexuality?” “Why are Christian ministers more afraid of holiness than sinfulness?” Nevertheless, our generation must insert itself into this passage in John 3:2-4 in order to understand what is happening in our times. 

Jesus, knowing the thoughts of all men cut to the very heart of Nicodemas’ lack in understanding. No need for Jesus to answer a hundred questions and the man end up as confused as ever or even arguing the finer points. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Jesus is saying that until a person is Born of the Spirit, they have no perceptive and reasoning capacity- nor experience in the things pertaining to the Kingdom of God. There can be no aliens in the Kingdom of God; one is either Born Again or they are not a partaker of it. To try to explain the principals of the Kingdom of God to the unregenerate is to speak gibberish to them. However, this reality changes the moment a person is Born of the Spirit. 

Blind to the Main Thing

It is shocking to hear the Lord asked Nicodemas, Are you a teacher of Israel, and you do not know these things? Jesus reveals the main problem with mankind as a sort of “master key” to all relevant subjects, and yet dear Nicodemas did not have a clue. He was a teacher but did not have a grasp of the very subject he was teaching. I recall how one of my son’s math teachers in High School was a genius and had such a grasp of the subject that he did not need or use the text book to teach. He could explain the subject to even the most difficult students so that they could grasp the concepts. This is what happens when the teacher actually understands what they are teaching. Nicodemas was a teacher in Israel and did not know the main subject.

I don’t believe the Lord was angry that he did not know, maybe disappointed. Nevertheless, the Lord suggests that Nicodemas should have known. It would almost be like a doctor not knowing something as basic as CPR or that a person needs food and water to live. New birth is as basic to Christianity as it gets; however, like Nicodemas, many teachers and ministers simply do not understand. Multitudes of Christians have never been told “you must be born again” from a person that actually understood the statement. It became cliche between the 50s and 80s until everyone that “started to church” and “agreed with basic evangelical doctrine” was considered a “born again Christian.” This fact has muddied the waters to the point that only a miracle of God’s grace will once again bring clarity to the subject. 

Born of the Flesh

Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous. He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God. In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother. (1 John 3:7-10 NKJV)

There are two categories of people in the world: they who are of their father the Devil and they who are of their Father in Heaven. It is a hard saying, but we have to come to reality. We are all born into this world in a sinful, selfish-state. This selfishness manifests first as rebellion against authority, and later as full-on rebellion against God (usually about the time a person becomes a teenager). People generally spend their whole lives doing things that they know are wrong (we call it sin) – resisting every dealing of God and conscience. When the person knows they are doing wrong, they just push on through the uneasiness. This hardens the person into a sinful, calloused person who needs a whole lot more than a new years resolution or a makeover. They need new birth.  

As a consequence of the fall of man, we are all born “in Adam” by first birth. That is, we are born “in the flesh” and “of the flesh.” God is bringing many sons unto glory, but to accomplish this we have to be reborn of the Spirit. Perhaps you are asking now as Nicodemas, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? This is where modern evangelistic practice proves itself to be in a spirit of Nicodemas that has taught many things without understanding what they were teaching.I suggest, this is why we are losing Christianity.

Shoddy Evangelism


Nobody knows better than God that people must individually be born again. Nobody knows better than God that man is totally helpless to accomplish this by himself. The principal of New Testament scripture is that God knows what we need and desires to give more than we desire to receive. God does not pass out stones where He knows we need bread, etc. So we need not stress on the thought that God is somehow up in heaven playing games with people telling them they must have something – and then refusing to provide it. The question is not on God’s end – it is on man’s end. Paul asked the great question, “How shall they hear without a preacher?”

In the last 120 years the goal of preaching changed from getting folks genuinely born again, to convincing them to pray a little prayer and start to attend church. I trace the history of this fact in my latest book Televangelicalism. When the evangelist does not know the purpose for which he is preaching, how could he possibly achieve the goal? Moreover, if he downplays the necessity of being born again, because everyone else is doing it, how long will it be until absolutely nobody is being born again? If Jesus says, “you must be born again” how dare a man come along and undermine the emphatic nature of the fact. The problem over the last 120 years has been than men got bolder in repackaging the words of Jesus until it has made the word of God of no effect. You must be born again is a stand alone fact. How we get to that reality can be discussed, but it is an absolute truth that we cannot side step. it is a necessary process that cannot be substituted or circumvented. 

Unconverted and Unconcerned 

If ten generations of preachers in a row decided to follow the popular trends until few now live that still believe in regeneration (New Birth), it is the responsibility of those who rediscover the discarded truth to begin studying and preaching it. More importantly, they must know with certainty that they are in fact born again. Take John Wesley for an example. He began preaching at a young age having been raised to know God and his word from his mother Suzanna’s knee. It was finally at the age of 35 (thirty-five), on board a storm tossed ship on the Atlantic that he finally realized that he was not truly regenerated. What a shocking revelation! He had never truly placed his faith and trust in Christ. He was raised in church and even preached. He had strict codes of living, but he was not truly changed. Converted at 35 he preached for 53 years and died at 88. However, he had had 88 years of teaching with 35 years of them in an un-reborn state. 

Likewise many today are in the same boat. They have been in church all their lives, but cannot tell of a time when they truly surrendered to God, repented of their sin, and placed their 100% faith in Christ alone for salvation. Many have a “learned faith” in which they figured out how to do it and because they can imitate Christian conduct they believe they are one. How about it? Have you ever come to a place in your life where you realized you were not really born again? Can you remember a time when you were in anguish for your sinful condition and cried out to God to change you? We mustn’t fool ourselves. Are you concerned that you have not really been born again or are you trusting in the powerless words of a well intended, but incompetent evangelist who told you to pray a prayer and you will be born again? The first step is to be concerned. Take yourself to the night where Nicodemas came to Jesus and let God lead you to truth from there.      


Drug To Church

Drug To Church
Robert Wurtz II

But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. (2 Timothy 3:13-15 NKJV)

During the meeting last evening, as is customary, we had a time of testimonies. This is often a very fruitful time as believers share things the Lord has done in their lives or insights He has shown them in their Christian walk. As things were drawing to a close a dear brother stood up and testified that he had been one year serving the Lord. He spoke passionately of being liberated from many dreadful, unfulfilling years of drugs. He ended his testimony with a statement I shall not forget. He said in effect, “the best drug I ever knew was being drug to church as a child.” 

This dear brother had come to learn the value of a Christian upbringing. Although I wish this was a universal sentiment, not everybody shares his perspective. The phrase “drug the church” is obviously the language of the cynic, who is typically in rebellion. We have all heard it, have we not? “I never had a choice, my parents MADE me go to church! They forced religion down my throat!” I’m reminded of a conversation I had a few months ago with another brother who was dealing with being abused and cursed out on his job by a so-called “atheist” who was angry because his parents “drug him to church.” So he’s angry and bitter because he was made to go to church? Hmmm. Let’s see. His parents made wipe himself after using the restroom, brush his teeth, bath, comb his hair, put on deodorant, change his underwear, eat his dinner, go to school, ad infinitum. I wonder which of these he has also boycotted? 

It must be a dreadful experience for kids to be raised in church to know the Lord. Perhaps someone will someday see the need and start a support group. Solomon would have probably named it “Fool’s Anonymous” if we consider how frequently he spoke of the subject in Proverbs. The time would fail to even start to list the verses where Solomon is trying to train his sons in the ways of God and how he contrasts that reality with the one who despises instruction. Poor man. In all his wisdom nobody ever told him that raising your child to know the Lord was child abuse. 

It is a shame that none of these mentally scarred children of Christian parents were ever afforded the luxury of having to pray themselves to sleep at night. They never laid in a darkened room hearing the regular sounds of screaming and cursing after another bad fight had broke out. Perhaps, none of their uncles ever tried to corrupt their mind with vulgarity and filth? They missed out on so much! God bless, em. How do they cope? They were never blessed with having a gun put to their head by a deranged dad, who had to be talked down by an interventionist (as one person I have known). They never watched their drunk parent attempt suicide before their eyes. If only they could have been punched in the face a few times or had a cigarette put out on their arm, maybe they would be better men and women today? At least, that’s how I take it. I could go on for days.

It all seems like so much satire, perhaps? But what is a man to say when he was never raised in church and has to hear so much bleeding and complaining by those who resent having experienced it? You know, it’s a funny thing. Not funny as in comedy, but funny as in peculiar. I almost never talk about my childhood, even though I was raised in sin. I don’t know many kids that were raised in church in my generation. I don’t mean to boast in evil, but most of us have seen it all. We have been in the bars and the smoke filled living rooms that would be rated “R” at best. In fact, sin was so thick at times, it would almost penetrate your skin. I don’t know. Perhaps now as an adult after trying to raise my own children to know the Lord and hearing all of this complaining by so many, I can finally understand the lyrics of an old bar song that stands out in my memory. It was written by ole Johnny Payday, I mean Paycheck, who was apparently “drug to church.” Blinded by sin and bombed out of his mind he had a moment of clarity. With a microphone in hand he made a sobering confession:

I sing ‘Precious memories’, take me back to the good ol’ days
Let me hear mama singing, ‘Rock of ages’ cleft for me
She tried to turn me on to Jesus, but I turned on to the devil’s ways
And I turned out to be the only hell my mama ever raised.

        

Because He Had No Joy

Because He Had No Joy
Robert Wurtz II

Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. (Psalm 51:8)

Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. (Psalm 51:12)


It is impossible for a Christian to find lasting happiness in any kind of sin, for it cannot answer the basic inward need for genuine heaven sent joy. David, the great king, found this out the hard way. He had started backsliding we might say, and in the process committed a terrible crime (sin) against God. He committed adultery with Bathsheeba and then ordered Uriah the Hitite to his death. The effects of his sin were manifest in almost unspeakable horrors. His own son raped his own daughter. His son Absalom heard about it and killed his own brother. Before it was over with Absalom was dead too; strung by the hair of the head between heaven and earth where he exited this life to stand before God. 

All of this was prophesied in advance as the consequence of David’s sin. The details were not given, only a summary; “the sword will not depart from your house.” For years David struggled with lust and everybody knew it. In fact, when he lay dying his body started to get cold so they tried to bring a beautiful young woman into his bedroom to warm him up. He had been reeling from the effects of his sin(s) for decades perhaps, and it has all come down to this. I don’t know how you feel about it, but I say, “how embarrassing?” To have such a reputation for being with women that such a tactic would be tried in the first place. Her name was Abishag, but “he knew her not.” (1 Kings 1:1ff) “He gat no heat” says the KJV, so they sought a damsel. This ought to get his temperature up. Nay verily. After a life like he had lived, he had had his fill of it all. 

You will notice in Psalm 51 that David asked God for joy in two different verses. Some have taken this to mean that David had already lost his joy before he ever committed those terrible sins. Leonard Ravenhill once said that “entertainment is the Devil’s substitute for joy.” I suggest this is true, but I would like to add to it. Sin is the Devil’s substitute for joy. It begins with a simple lie planted in the heart and mind of an adulterer or adultress; Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant. (Proverbs 9:17) I once knew a man that liked to quote this verse. Unfortunately he walked out verse 18 too; But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell. (Proverbs 9:18) Indeed he found that a willing subject can be found almost any place. There are no shortage of people in the world that have no scruples. I don’t know where this man is today. I only know he sacrificed his wife, family, ministry and all of his Christian friends for a glass of “stolen waters.”

You can tell when you’re getting cold in the Lord. You get rebellious and unwilling to listen to counsel. Once the process begins of trying to substitute entertainment for joy it will not be long until sin is used as well. Why? Because nothing can substitute for joy. All those things can do is serve as a place marker- holding you over until the next vile thing comes along. It’s all a sham and a lie. David would have understood this because he was a man of God’s word; nevertheless, for some reason he ran roughshod over all that he knew was right. I suggest that reason was joylessness coupled with selfishness. 

Who ever said that a child of God is supposed to be happy all the time? I’ll tell you who- many TV preachers. It is a lie. God wants us to have joy, but that is a very different thing than self-seeking happiness. Joy can be present in the most violent personal storms imaginable. Paul told the Philippians to “rejoice!” He wrote that from a dirty jail cell. Joy is what we need, not entertainment. Joy is what we need, not self-seeking sin. David cried out to God for it, Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. (Psalm 51:8) Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. (Psalm 51:12) If ever he were to get his life together it would have to begin with a fresh infusion of joy. 

Let me say that many Christians are locked in a vicious cycle where they are resisting the Holy Spirit and as a consequence have little or no joy. Joy is a fruit of the Spirit, and there is no substitute for it. If you resist the Holy Spirit –  you resist joy (along with love, peace, etc.). A person in this condition is on a slippery slope to total destruction. They will seek pleasure to compensate for the missing joy until they end up in a similar scenario as David was in. I once heard a famous preacher say, “When the joy of the Lord is gone in my life I start heading down to the miry places.” He was suggesting that joylessness leaves a void in our life that the world and the Devil will tempt us to fill with gross sin. 

Because he had no joy- David found a sin to fill the void. It didn’t happen over night, but eventually it did. Because David sinned, he completely lost the joy of his salvation as well. How can you enjoy anything when your conscience is eating at you day and night and the hand of the Lord is heavy upon you? You risk becoming the most miserable and unreachable person on earth if you continue in this state. David did a terrible thing, but God restored him when he truly repented. But I think of Judas as well. He did a terrible thing too, but the outcome was very different. It was bad enough that he betrayed the Lord, but added to this he took his own life. This is very instructive. The Devil is not just interested in ruining our lives and drowning us in our sins consequences, he wants a person to despair to the point that they take their own life. 

All of this can be traced by to the one phrase, “because he had no joy.” May the Lord sober our minds to the need to have His Holy Spirit working in us, bringing us joy and love and peace. Without joy we become capable of anything in our quest to find a replacement.  

The Conversion-less Church

The Conversion-less Church
Robert Wurtz II

Act 3:19    Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of The Lord. 

There was a time when mainstream Christianity neglected the necessity of conversion and regeneration, but it seems evident that in 2014, they are lost altogether. Therefore, we are losing our identity as Christians in the mainstream. Today a person can simply start attending church, and it is assumed they are right with God. The question is almost never asked, “have you had a conversion experience?”

Before Billy Sunday, people were expected to pass from death unto life, in reality, not merely doctrinally. Today, if a person expresses interest in church or Jesus, or makes a public profession of faith, they are assumed born again. Sadly, we have almost completely lost the doctrine of new birth. The late Leonard Ravenhill used to lament this fact and gave many illustrations to drive the point home. One stands out, “I can’t get my car through a car wash in a few minutes, how can a person pass from death to life, put on Christ, etc.?”

I had a thought come to mind while walking out of an auto parts store the other day. “Have you ever heard of a class designed to teach dogs to bark?” How about, “Chase the mailman?” What if we decided to hold night classes to teach cats to “meow.” You might be thinking, that would be absurd! Why? Because you should not have to teach what should come naturally. Nevertheless, today, you have to teach professors of Christ not just the difference between the holy and the profane or what it means to be in the Spirit, but you have to debate them on it. It is so “not who they are” that they can’t even relate to basic Christian principals. Why? It is not natural. You are trying to teach the cat to bark and the dog to meow. 

There is a great consequence in the churches for abandoning new birth. If people are not being converted in such a way that they can convincingly explain that they are now trusting Christ, have repented and have been changed by the power of God, then they are probably not a Christian. I can almost hear a chorus of a thousand guns proclaiming, “you’re being judgmental!” Well, we need to know those that labor among us and measure their experience by the word of God, especially before placing them in ministry. 

God does not need and I dare to say want talented people, but talent is what we have replaced true conversion with. The world worships talent, but God can accomplish His will without it. The scripture does not say that it is by our might, power and talent; rather, it is not by might nor by power but by my Spirit says The Lord. And we need to quit calling everything “anointed” that is really only talent. That is most of the problem. The masses are being duped into thinking that the talented motivational speaker is anointed, the talented musician is anointed, etc.; anointing happens when a person is truly, and I mean truly, (not in the repeat a prayer or start to church style) born from above. When they have had a genuine conversion experience, they have taken the first step. 

I sometimes wonder whether the day will come when the elect will be surrounded by an angry and almost militant  unconverted visible church. If you think about it, we are fast heading there. There is not a day goes by when a brother or sister tries to take a stand for the faith, holiness, righteousness separation from the world, etc., and not have to argue with so-called Christians. It’s like a whole generation doesn’t even know what team they are on. Why? Lack of genuine conversion. The nature is still of sinfulness. They are in a carnal state, and they argue from that vantage point. It’s all they understand. The world’s point of view makes sense to them, and their only defense is to declare the elect as critical and unloving. 

It’s time for those who are left that have experienced and understand genuine conversion and new birth to start preaching and teaching it. The Gospel is being reduced to a means of getting sins forgiven – coupled with your best life now. The churches are being filled with people that have never truly been converted and almost nobody is even talking about it in the main stream. Genuine spiritual change is being substituted with all kinds of counterfeits. Time is winding down. Christ is returning for a Church without spot or wrinkle; what will He do when He finds multitudes unconverted and unconcerned? 

Serving Acceptably

Serving Acceptably
Robert Wurtz II


“See that you do not refuse Him who speaks. For if they did not escape who refused Him who spoke on earth, much more shall we not escape if we turn away from Him who speaks from heaven, whose voice then shook the earth; but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.” Now this, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. For our God is a consuming fire.” (Hebrews 12:25–29 NKJV)

In our passage the writer to the Hebrews is bringing his teaching to a close. He reminds us of a time when the earth trembled at Mount Sinai and then turns our attention to the fact that someday God will shake – not just the earth (as He did there), but also Heaven. 

God has not changed since the time of Moses. In fact, He has never changed. The way in which He has dealt with man has changed, but He has not. Therefore, one truth still remains; our God is a consuming fire. The Israelites learned this when Nadab and Abihu presumed to offer strange fire before the Lord. This ought to arrest our undivided attention. However, some would say that that was the Old Testament God and our New Testament God is much nicer. Really? What if we tell that to Ananias and Sapphira? They were smitten dead one by one by God in Acts 5. Then there was Herod in Acts 12 that was smitten dead by the angel because he gave not God the glory. One chapter later Elymas the sorcerer tried to stumble a man in the faith and Paul, being full of the Holy Ghost, smote him with blindness for a season. These and other events led what the book of Acts describes as the fear of God “coming on” or “being upon” the people (Acts 2:43, 5:5, 5:11, 9:31, 13:16, 19:17).  

A Right Attitude Towards God

In Hebrews 12:28, Godly fear is described as follows: The word deos (fear) is the apprehension of danger as in a primitive forest. “When the voice and tread of a wild beast are distinctly heard close at hand the deos becomes phobos” (Vincent quoted in Robertson). Some believe this is too strong, but that is more the result of the enemies success in redefining the characteristics of God in this crisis hour. A cursory read of the Gospels will set our mind aright if we will allow the plain reading of the text to impress us. Consider these verses:

And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him. (Luke 12:4-5 emphasis added)

But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me. (Luke 19:27 emphasis added)
Luke was Paul’s right hand man. In fact, he was the only person still with him near the time of his martyrdom (2 Timothy 4:11). Theologians would call Luke’s approach to the Gospel “Lucan Theology.” Some theologians believe he also wrote Hebrews, but this is debatable. Nevertheless, can two walk together except they be agreed? Luke wrote the Gospel of Luke and the book of Acts. The theology is consistent- even unto the writing of Hebrews and elsewhere. 

Paul summarized the wicked in one sentence; There is no fear of God before their eyes. (Romans 3:18) By implication, the righteous have the fear of God before their eyes. How does it get there? It has to be cultivated by reading God’s word and refraining from influences that originate in the wicked. If we entertain ourselves with their drivel, it won’t be long and the fear of God will be gone from our eyes too (see Romans 12:1ff). It’s all part of the enemies strategy to encourage people into defying God. The demons believe and tremble, but they do everything in their power to keep you and eye from doing it.  

 Why Should We Worship Acceptably With Reverence, etc?

We are all headed for a great meeting. John the Baptist asked the question, “who has warned you to flee the wrath that is to come?” Likewise, the hymn writer Augustus Toplady penned the marvelous words… “Rock of ages cleft for me, let me hide myself in Thee.” Flee the wrath? Hide myself in Thee? Flee and hide from what? It is a terrible thing to consider. 


Nevertheless, the Kingdom we have received cannot be shaken. As a consequence to this we are to be gracious (thankful) to God and are to serve Him acceptably with reverence and godly fear. In light of who He is and what He has done, it is the only sensible thing to do. But what does it mean to serve God thankfully in a way that is acceptable?

Acceptable Service 

Our Greek word for acceptable is only used once in the New Testament and it means to serve God in a way that is well pleasing to Him. This is the great truth of the New Testament. We are to live our lives so as to please God. This is Bible based, God-centered service. Worship is not a form of entertainment because entertainment is for our enjoyment- not God’s. So when we think of service being acceptable, we need to employ means and methodology that assist us in pleasing God- not ourselves. What does God accept? What does God want? 

Moreover, we ought not to think of worship and praise as a pastime. The enemy is very sneaky. He has managed to package so-called worship in the most shocking ways. He has twisted the minds of people to think that God desires the same type of glorification as is given celebrities (men and women). This is why some forms of so-called praise are very similar to the high energy workouts of the weight loss videos of the 80s and 90s. Other forms are similar to the dance clubs where the DJ calls the people to the dance floor to get their praise dance on. It is a profanation of holy things and a redefining of a sacred Godly service. We have to be discerning enough to see how these things are man-centered and man-pleasing. If they are done for our enjoyment or to help us feed the need to emulate past worldly activities with a sterilized version of the same, we are in error. That’s not being critical, it is common sense. 

If God and heaven are being shaken until only what cannot be shaken is left, how ought we to approach the service of God? Would you accept advice from the enemy? How about this world that hates God? Why would we ever allow something to influence our service to God that originated in the enemies camp? That would be like trying to please your wife under the advice of your ex-girlfriend. Peter said it more authoritatively; Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? (2 Peter 3:11-12 NKJV)
  

The Battle For The Gospel

The Battle For The Gospel
Robert Wurtz II

Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ. (Jude 1:3-4 NKJV)


Jude wrote this epistle with a Holy Spirit inspired urgency. He states, “I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you…” The Saints were in danger; the Gospel was being threatened. This is a picture of our times. The same enemy keeps on with his tactics. The Saints have to position themselves to guard him step for step and block him blow for blow. 

I once heard a minister say that we are just one generation away from losing our heritage as Christians. All it takes is for one generation to believe a different gospel, and the faith of our fathers is in jeopardy. Many are even now waiting it out hoping the old timers will die off so they can fully implement their plans. The progressive ideas of philosophy and politics have infiltrated Christendom – leading to the notion that we must abandon the old ways and embrace a new day. Nevertheless, its the same old dog with a new name. Satan has been trying to overthrow the common faith since the day of Pentecost. 

Earnestly Contend for the Faith

As Weust has pointed out, “The faith here is not faith as exercised by the individual, but Christianity itself in its historic doctrines and life-giving salvation.” The book of Acts would have been the historical account of the faith being once and for all committed to the Saints. So it is “that faith” that we have to earnestly contend for. Not the watered down forms of the last 120 years, but the faith as Peter, Phillip and Paul preached it. To understand what is meant, one needs to make a fresh study of the book of Acts. Romans explains the Gospel, but in Acts we see the preaching of it playing out in real life. Not the theoretical, but the practical. men and women are called to repent and believe the Gospel. That is, change your mind about your sinful life and turn from it. Renounce it and confess it. Then, believe the Gospel. This means our complete faith and trust in Christ alone for our salvation. It means being baptized in water and receiving the Holy Spirit.

Earnestly Contend for the Faith
 
“Earnestly contend” is the Greek word epagonisomai, and it is a hapax legomenon (meaning it is found only here in the New Testament). The verb was used of athletes preparing for and contending in athletic games. It speaks of a vigorous, intense, determined struggle to defeat the opposition (Wuest). We get our English word “agony” from the noun form of this word. This means that the ancient Greek athletes exerted themselves to the point of agony trying to compete and win in the games. This implies great determination and discipline. Simply put, it was very difficult to compete in the games and it is very difficult to earnestly contend for the faith that was once and for all delivered unto the Saints. This type of approach (akin to the athletic discipline and  intensive effort) is what Jude says the Saints must employ in defending “The Faith” (i.e., the New Covenant). 

Prophetic Foresight

God is never taken off guard by the enemies antics. in fact, it was prophesied hundreds of years before the writing of Jude’s epistle that this would happen. He writes, For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ. Long ago God called out these deceivers. You will notice that the second half of the sentence uses Lord twice, and it is two different Greek words. The emphasis here is on the Lordship and supreme authority of Christ. This is in opposition to those who preach grace as lewdness (unbridled lust). In other words, one can be saved without having to be crucified with Christ and come under God’s absolute authority. Many people today “made a decision” for Christ, but never truly repented of their sins and placed their complete trust in Christ. They never knew godly sorrow for their sins such as brings about a repentance that remains. 

We must earnestly contend for the faith of the New Testament. The world is infiltrating with a paradigm that says, “Its a new day and its all up for grabs.” Nay verily. We must contend- step for step and blow for blow. We must battle to the point of agony if necessary. Souls are at risk and the soul of the churches are at risk. If we ignore our duty and fail in our mission, we will reap a ruin incomprehensible within the churches. We have the orders to carry out and we have the grace to get it done. This is a crisis hour and as Jude put it, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.

The Spirit of Antichrist

The Spirit of Antichrist
Robert Wurtz II

And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. (Daniel 7:25)

Irregardless of how deceived and deluded the world becomes under the spirit of Antichrist, the Saints must hold their ground as lights in a darkened world. By “Saints,” I mean the regenerate; those who have been born again by the Spirit. By “world” I mean people of this present evil age under the influence of the spirit of Antichrist. Indeed, there is a spirit that now works in the children of disobedience. That spirit is seeking to speak great words against the Most High God, wear out the Saints of the Most High God, and change times and laws that have been set in place by the Most High God. 

And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:7-8)

The situation today is not unlike the widow who pressed the unjust judge to avenge her of her adversary. The Saints are vexed (worn down and tormented) from day to day with the unlawful deeds of the world around us. Some dear saints are suffering unspeakable persecutions in their countries. Between real persecution in the East (and other non-Western areas) and the daily vexation of highhanded sin in the West, the Saints are being worn out. As with the widow in Luke 18 the Saints cry out one way or another for relief. Both the unjust judge and the Lord delay in answering; the unjust judge out of indifference, the Lord out of long suffering and compassion for the lost.

Will He Really Find Faith?

Each day we wake up to another round of madness coming from all directions in this present evil world. Short of a revival unlike has been witnessed since Pentecost, the world is on the fast track to total perdition. The thoughts and imaginations of the disobedient are becoming only evil continually. Nevertheless, the Lord Jesus asked, And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?” This is two questions. Will God avenge His elect? Answer: absolutely. Will the Son of Man really find faith on the earth? No answer. We are left to think about the implications of the question so as to fortify ourselves in our own faith. We get the impression that the answer is up-in-the-air. Will He find faith? It’s up to you and me.

What Will He Find?

 Happy that servant, whom his lord, having come, shall find doing so; truly I say to you, that over all his goods he will set him. `And if that servant may say in his heart, My lord doth delay to come, and may begin to beat the men-servants and the maid-servants, to eat also, and to drink, and to be drunken; the lord of that servant will come in a day in which he doth not look for him, and in an hour that he doth not know, and will cut him off, and his portion with the unfaithful he will appoint. `And that servant, who having known his lord’s will, and not having prepared, nor having gone according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes, and he who, not having known, and having done things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few; and to every one to whom much was given, much shall be required from him; and to whom they did commit much, more abundantly they will ask of him. (Luke 12:43-48)

The spirit of AntiChrist is working relentlessly to bring as many people as possible into the mindset, “the Lord delays His coming!” He wants the Saints to slowly allow themselves to be conformed to this world- if even ever so imperceptibly. To eat, drink and be drunken is to live as if there were no eternity. It is to live as if the Lord will never return. Notice the part of the sentence, the lord of that servant will come in a day in which he doth not look for him, and in an hour that he doth not know, and will cut him off, and his portion with the unfaithful he will appoint. Will the Lord find faith on the earth? Clearly, if the faithful turn to unfaithful they have cast their vote of “No!” If they succumb to this world’s madness and begin imitating their disobedience, “No!”… He will not find faith on the earth: at least not in them. 

We are in a warfare. Ephesians 6 spells it out. Everyday we wake up to a fresh spiritual Normandy or Gettysburg. It’s not enough to declare victory with our mouths while we look on and the faithful’s uniform and deportment is transforming before our eyes into the enemies. The spirit of Antichrist is wearing out the Saints, changing God ordained laws and remodeling the very definition of Saint or Christian.Faithfulness for a Christian means we remain on the right side of the battle. It means we continue to agree with our Commander in Chief. It means we continue to conform to Christ and not to this present evil world. 

 How long will this continue? Until everything that can be shaken is shaken- so that the things that cannot be shaken will remain. How long will this continue? Until it is clear who will remain faithful and who will defect to the enemy. Will the Lord ever avenge the martyrdom, sufferings, and vexations of His saints? And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:7-8)

 

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