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Commentary by Roger Oakland
Understand The Times International: Roger Oakland Ministries

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Every Christian wants to see the church grow. Jesus made it clear before He ascended to the Father that His followers are to be His witnesses. Believers are called to share the good news of the gospel until He returns. We want to see our churches filled to overflowing. This is right. But what happens when the Christian church, in its zeal to reach the unconverted, begins to embrace methods to attract the lost that are extra-biblical?

We must always remember that a zealous Christian leader, who has the ability to communicate, can be a subtle deceiver if he or she mixes truth with error. That is why everyone needs to be open to correction from God’s Word. Further, it is a fact that when those who are deceived (yet convinced they are standing on the truth) are confronted with biblical truth, they simply cannot see their error.

In the book of Proverbs, we are told why. Solomon wrote, “All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits.” [1] Then to make the point even more evident, a few verses later we are admonished, “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” [2]

The Bible clearly warns us that we are to be cautious about following the ideas of men, when the men who are promoting the ideas may be ignoring what God has said in His Word. In other words, there is a danger when we pay attention to what men are saying if what they are saying does not line up with what God has already said in His Word.

At the present time, there is a trend well underway that is enticing many Christians. They perceive that this present generation is attracted to experience and not impressed by biblical exegesis. If a church can provide the “Christian experiences” that attract their attention, Christianity can be expanded. Sensory, experiential, liturgical, and sacramental encounters, they say, can be effective.

However, based on church history, such methodology has been around for a while. While it may attract those who are looking for a spiritual experience, experience without a biblical basis can be very deceptive. What’s more, if that experience has an occultic premise, it is downright dangerous.

Once more, the Scriptures shed light on what happens when human ways are promoted without God’s endorsement. Jesus said:

This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. And he called the multitude, and said unto them, hear, and understand.[3]

It’s as simple as this: Methods based on man’s views can be right in the eyes of men but in opposition with Jesus and His Word. That is why we must be like the Bereans who “searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” [4]

Remember - the last days will be days when deception will grow stronger and stronger. Deception means that truth can be compromised. Let us thank God we have His Word to keep us on track.




[1] Proverbs 16: 2

[2] Proverbs 16: 25

[3]  Matthew 15: 9-11

[4]  Acts 17:11

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Understand The Times is accountable to a board of directors in the United States and Canada
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