Religious Pride and Deception 40

Jeremiah 8:8 “How can you say, ‘We are wise, And the law of the LORD is with us’? But behold, the lying pen of the scribes has made it into a lie.

Matthew 22:29 But Jesus answered and said to them, “You are mistaken, not understanding the Scriptures nor the power of God.

Mat 6:5 “When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. 6 “But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you. 7 “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. 8 “So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.

I Timothy 4:7 But have nothing to do with worldly fables fit only for old women. On the other hand, discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness; 8 for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.

If we could imagine what it would be like to view those who arrive at the “pearly gates” clothed in what they see as their near perfect morality and thinking that they were prayer warriors. We can imagine (in a sense) what it would be for them for the light to shine in and on them and for them to see that all their prayers (each and every one) were works of the flesh and as filthy rags. Can we really imagine what it would be like for them to realize that all that they thought of as righteousness was nothing but casting logs upon their eternal fire? Is it the case that so many in our professing churches are doing that to some degree? Are men and women being stripped of all their righteousness that they may be naked and helpless in the arms of sovereign grace alone? If not, then vast numbers of people are trusting that their prayers make them acceptable (whether or not they would say that or not) while all they are doing is increasing the torment of their own damnation.

Jesus instructed His disciples not to be like the hypocrites. This means that there were hypocrites in that day. Later on in the Sermon on the Mount (the very next chapter, 7), Jesus taught the people this:

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’

If we apply this teaching of Jesus to prayer, it should alarm us and move us to look in our own hearts to see our true loves and motives in prayer and in all we do. Many people start off their praying by addressing either the Father or Son as “Lord.” It is not enough to say “Lord” in prayer or for any other reason, but instead it is vital to do the will of the Father who is in heaven. This is to say that regardless of whether a person is orthodox or not or if a person prays a lot, a person must do the will of the Father which is seen as one as a new heart and so will enter. It is not the doing of His will that allows one to enter, but instead that is by grace alone. But only those with grace will do the will of the Father and so enter.

Men will point out that they preached or that they cast out demons or that they did miracles in His name. It should be noted that Charismatics should take great warning there too. Preaching, casting out demons, and performing miracles are not infallible signs that a person is converted. One can do all of those things under the influence of demons and without true love. Prayer can be done for many motives and many reasons, but apart from a new heart a person’s prayers are lawlessness. A prayer apart from love for God with the whole heart is a violation of the Greatest Commandment and as such a violation of each of the Ten Commandments as well. It is vital that we pray in truth and love and in the name of Christ (in truth and not just in words) or our prayers will be the basis for our torments in hell. Oh how the proud and self-righteous are so deceived about religion.

2 Responses to “Religious Pride and Deception 40”

  1. Patricia Mills Says:

    I appreciate your blogs, when I take the time to read them. I need so much to be constantly faced with truth and changed as a result. Thank you.

  2. francis Says:

    He that has any ground to believe besides Christ himself, does he not make Christ imperfect, by adding some other thing to him?

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