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<< Discover the Book, with Dr. John Barnett

Discover the Book - Apr. 16, 2007

  • 2007 Apr 16
  • COMMENTS


This devotional is one day of a 365 days devotional book entitled Living Hope for the End of Days that explores Revelation, the final book of God's Word; and is available at http://www.dtbm.org/

 

 

Understand the True Bride of Jesus

(Revelation 17)

As the end of days approaches, you can find hope as you understand the true bride of Jesus!

 

MONDAY: Satan’s Plan Exposed

 

And no wonder! For Satan … transforms himself into an angel of light.

— 2 Corinthians 11:14, emphasis added

 

The seventeenth chapter of Revelation describes the doom of the Babylonian system. This system is seen as a woman portrayed as a harlot. She seems to be a symbol of Satan’s world religion. This chapter records the demise of the counterfeit church Satan founded at Eden—the one he has worked on ceaselessly ever since. The beast (Satan’s incarnation as a false Jesus) finally destroys the apostate church and sets up unhindered satanic worship (via the beast and false prophet’s work). To make this happen, Satan’s ultimate goals in the world today are to forge global unity politically, religiously, and financially.

In Revelation 17, as God’s Word unmasks the apostasy of false religions, we discover the true bride of Jesus. God reveals that the true bride is made up of His own saints who are “called, chosen, and faithful” (17:14). They are Christians who are called by God to salvation, chosen by God because He placed His love on us, and faithful to the One who called us. What a beautiful description of the church!

There is a very significant contrast between the two women of Revelation: God’s saints are seen in Revelation 12 and Satan’s church is revealed in Revelation 17. God’s way is a narrow path, but Satan’s way is a broad path. Yet both are seemingly headed in the same direction. God’s way is narrow and straight—it is a hard path and few find it (Matthew 7:13-14). However, Satan’s way is broad, and the path is easy and level. In fact, the devil gives you a nice little slant so you can coast along. In contrast, God’s path is slanted upward, and it is difficult to climb.

God’s way is exclusive, which is what bothers people so much. In fact, in a United Nations forum on global religion, the members discussed the bothersome exclusiveness of Christianity. In San Francisco there is now a group seeking to unite all the religions of the world. As they see it, a hindrance to such unity is the small part of religion in Christianity that they call “exclusive”—those who are devoutly committed to following God and His Word. The Bible, God, and His church with its so-called exclusiveness are thus continually attacked; satanic inclusiveness—where anybody can believe anything and go Satan’s way—is lauded.

God’s way is the true church; Satan’s way is the false church. God has a true bride; Satan has a false bride. God says there is no other name under heaven whereby you must be saved. Satan says the way is ecumenical: Muslims, Mormons, and Jehovah’s Witnesses believe in one god, so that is good; Hindus, down deep, don’t believe in one god, but they believe in truth, so they are also good. They find a way for every belief to fit in, and that is called ecumenical inclusivism.

God says there is one way; Satan says there are many ways. God says that we are to look for a heavenly destination; most satanic, ecumenical religions put their focus on the earth. It is an earthly way, and most of the people in these religions are involved in preserving and worshiping the planet Earth.

God’s way is Jerusalem; Satan’s way is Babylon. God’s way is the city of peace; Satan’s way is the city of confusion.

God speaks in spiritual terms; Satan speaks in fleshly terms. God talks about an internal transformation; Satan talks about an external reformation. God is the God of Creation since He initiates; Satan is the god of evolution as things just somehow happen. God is a God of love; Satan is a god of hate.

In God we have spiritual worship that is invisible; no images are involved. Satan is always associated with idolatry. Look at even the self-professed, not-idolatrous Muslims: how do they worship? At the Kabala they worship massed around a black stone in Mecca. Spiritual worship is at the heart of God’s true church; idolatry is at the heart of all earthly religions.

God’s way is divine; Satan’s way is humanistic. God’s way leads to contentment; Satan’s way always leads to covetousness. God’s way is appropriated by faith; Satan’s way is merely intellectually appropriated.

God’s way is through the Spirit; Satan’s way is through religious rituals and works. God’s way put Christ on a cross of shame; Satan’s way puts a crown of pride on men. God’s way is a pure bride; Satan’s way is a wicked, unfaithful, impure harlot.

Which way have you been following?

 

 

 

 

 

For more from Discover the Book Ministries, please visit  discoverthebook.org.

 

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