Christ Preparing our Hearts 13

Be persuaded that your soul is far more valuable to you than the whole world and there are only two places (heaven and hell) that you will spend all eternity in.

You can count on it that it is very difficult to come to heaven, but the way to destruction is broad and easy. Take it to heart that you have a deceitful heart with you, a wicked devil close to you, and snares and hindrances around and before you.

It would be a terrible thing if our souls were for more valuable than a thousand worlds and yet we were deceived about how valuable our souls were to us and about the two places that are the only options we will spend eternity in. If someone set himself to deceive us about ourselves and about eternal dwellings, that would be as wicked and evil a thing as a human could do to us. But then think of an entire worldly system that is set out to provide ways for our hearts to deceive us and we are in big trouble. But even more, that worldly system is set in place by the master deceiver who wants to deceive human beings. He deceived Eve and she ate of the fruit. He has been deceiving ever since then. But again, it is the objective truth that we will spend all eternity in either heaven or hell. We will spend all eternity in eternal bliss or eternal torment. Our souls are of far greater value to us than the world. But our own hearts deceive us about that and it appears everything else around us.

But perhaps worse than those things, the modern, professing church appears to be a major way of deceiving people. 2 Corinthians 11:13 sets this out and leaves no room for doubt: “For such men are false apostles, deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ.” It is clear enough that men deceive themselves and want to deceive themselves regarding the things of religion, but when they do that they are also deceiving others. But there are also others who purposefully deceive others. There are some who are false apostles and deceitful workers who are self-deceived, but there are others who know what they are doing and want to deceive. We know that the Pharisees were terribly deceived and they went about deceiving others as well. It is a terrible thing when a person with a deceived heart, has others around him who are deceiving him, has the worldly system deceiving him, and the devil deceiving him. But even more, when that person attends a local professing church and the deception there can be even worse. The deception there can be one that deceives the person into thinking that he has the truth and is a converted person. That person will be helped into hell and have his slide there greased by the teaching of modern religious people. This is true of liberals, of conservatives, and of any in between.

Now this appears terribly judgmental with railings against the modern, professing church. But Jesus Himself told us (Matthew 7:22) that there would be many who would cry out 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?’” There will be many who prophesied (preached) and yet will hear the words of Christ spoken to them: “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’” Let us not be deceived about the many religions and the many professing churches in our day. We must have Christ Himself teach us in our inner man and yet we are to look for those who are teaching and preaching the Truth of Christ. Yet all of them claim to do so and many of the false teachers are kind, nice, and very smart and learned people.

When Christ came to this planet 2,000 years ago what did He find? He found a religion that followed many of the externals, but hardly anyone followed Christ Himself. The religious leaders of the day had the appearance of great wisdom and great holiness, but they were fakes and frauds who taught something other than the Truth and Christ. When Martin Luther burst on the scene 500 years ago (round figures), what did he find? He found a religious system set in place that had virtually no Gospel and no true holiness. What did people find in religion just before Christ came? They found deception and emptiness. What did people find in religion during the time just before Luther? They found deception and emptiness.

I am not trying to argue that our modern day is as bad as the days of Christ or of Luther. I am saying, however, that it certainly appears to be quite bad. Men must learn that only Christ can give them eyes to see and ears to hear. Men must learn that they need new hearts and not just new information. Men must learn that they need an inner instruction as well as an outward instruction. Men must learn that their proud hearts are their enemies and are not their friends. They must realize that Christ alone can teach them and that Christ alone can deliver them.

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