In Today's Reading:
How to test the spirits; an appeal for brotherly love; the witness of the Spirit
The Holy Spirit directed the Apostle John to write: Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try (test) the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world (I John 4:1). Doctrinal deception is widespread and often difficult to discern. Jesus warned: Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven (Matthew 7:21).
Jesus also warned that many who believe they are the children of the Kingdom shall be cast . . . into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (8:12). The consequence of deception is horrifying. Just think! The majority of "religious" people will be cast . . . into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth (13:42). Nothing could be of more importance than to remove all doubt that we are included with the few there be that find it (eternal life) (7:14). Since it determines our destiny for eternity, we are told: Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith (II Corinthians 13:5). Jesus warned: Take heed that ye be not deceived (Luke 21:8). We are also warned: Seducers (imposters) shall wax worse and worse (progress from bad to worse), deceiving, and being deceived (II Timothy 3:13). John said: This is the love of God, that we keep His Commandments. . . . For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? (I John 5:3-5).
Being born of God is far more than just becoming a member of a church or believing certain doctrinal facts about Jesus Christ. It affects the whole life — the heart as well as the head. It molds character and guides conduct. If we have genuinely put our faith in Jesus as the Son of God (4:15), we will have a desire to be obedient to His Commandments (5:2).
Jesus said to them all, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me (Luke 9:23).
5:18 he that is begotten of God keepeth himself =b> he that is saved will not become involved in sinful activities.
Pray for Bible Pathway Accountant: Joe Sarsfield • Country: Trinidad and Tobago (1 million) two islands seven miles off the coast of Venezuela • Major languages: English and Hindi • Religious freedom • 34% Protestant; 29% Roman Catholic; 25% Hindu; 7% Muslim • Prayer Suggestion: Pray for your adversaries (Psalm 109:4).
Memory Verse for the Week: Hebrews 13:20