The Emerging Apostate Church and False Grace
Apostle Paul exhorts the citizens of God’s kingdom to follow the pattern of leaders who walk upright before the Lord. His Epistle to the Philippian Church was to encourage the church to aspire to grow in maturity in Jesus Christ, and not to become complacent in their spiritual walk. Paul warned the citizens of God, not to follow in the footsteps of the Libertines. The Libertines were leaders in the church and they did not walk upright before the Lord Jesus Christ, and they had great influence over the congregation with their doctrinal error. The church today has been plagued with the false grace doctrine and many people have fallen away from the true Word of God.
Infiltration of the Libertines
Libertine is an unclean spirit that operates under the ruling deity name Beliel. Beliel is the devil Satan. This spirit causes man to disregard God’s moral rules and standards. Those who succumb to this spirit lacks moral restraint and are given over to licentiousness. Jude says, “For certain men whose condemnation was written about long ago had secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign King and Lord.” (Jude 1:4) The libertine’s assignment is to bring destruction, shame, immorality and wrath to God’s people. It entices and allures God’s leaders and the body of Christ into a web of sin. Paul warns the church, not to live as strangers to the gospel of Jesus Christ, by indulging in sinful and immoral acts that satisfy the flesh. A sinful and immoral life is an enemy to the cross of Jesus Christ, because He died to make His chosen people holy.
The Beginning of the False Grace
The Libertines plagued the early church after Jesus Christ death and they taught the doctrines of false grace. The church fathers of the early church identified the Libertines as: individuals who live as an unregenerate that have not been born again. These individuals are false teachers of the gospel of Jesus Christ who have not received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. It is the indwelling Holy Spirit that strengthens the spirit of God’s people so that once they have repented of their sin, they are able to live fruitful lives that gives glory to God. “So, I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:16-21)
As the Libertines continue to indulge in their sinful nature, they manifest a form of godliness by preaching and teaching the gospel. However, they do not manifest the holiness of Jesus Christ’s character. Libertines are more interested in the things of the world (i.e., sex, money, and power), and pure confidence in their flesh. Those afflicted by these unclean spirits did not heed to the warning of the Holy Spirit. They allowed their hearts to become hardened, their conscience became seared as they turned away from the truth and listened to the teachings of deluding and seducing of spirits. These people are self-centered—their appetite and desire come first. Nothing can convince them to give up their worldly concerns, even when God, Himself demands it. They are opposed to God’s holy standards, nature and character. They oppose their responsibility to live in obedience to God and as holy priests, prophets, and kings in God’s Kingdom Embassy (the earth), and pervert the truth of God’s holy words. Paul says, “Their god is their stomach.” They worshiped their sensual appetites, not the Lord. Every time one indulges in sin, they are building spiritual altars, shrines and temples for the kingdom of darkness, and they are making sacrifice up to Satan. For every sexual or immoral act committed by them, they give glory and honor to the god they serve, Satan.
The Danger of the False Grace Doctrine
There are many followers of the false grace doctrine that have been lulled into a false sense of salvation. They were deceived by the “lie” that they could continue to live a life of sin and be saved, and they would become citizens in the kingdom of God when they die. If that is true, why did Jesus die? Why did He leave the Holy Spirit? He died to wash away the sins of man, and He left the Holy Spirit for those who accepted Him to be born again of the Spirit of God. It is the grace that was bestowed upon us of God’s Holy Spirit that gives us the power to become overcomers of sin. If we continue to live sinful lives, then we have no faith in Jesus Christ, and we deny His power—the power of God to live a holy life. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9) “If we say we have fellowship with Him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.” (1 John 1:6) “For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure of or greedy person—such a person is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient.” (Ephesians 5:6)
Beware of those Teaching
- Teachers of the law.
- Teachers of traditions of men make the Word of God ineffective through their traditions. Anything that nullifies the Word of God is not of God, but traditions of men.
- Those who handle the Word of God deceitfully (2 Corinthians 4:2), and twist the Word in their trickery of error (Ephesians 4:14).
- Those who wrestle, misconstrue, distort and misinterpret the Word of God. (2 Peter 3:16)
- Jezebel the teacher/prophetess of false doctrine. Jezebel can be a male or female. (Revelation 2:20)
- Teachers that turn the grace of God into lasciviousness (Jude 3,4; Revelations. 2:20)
- Teachers of material prosperity for gain. (1 Timothy 6:6-19, 2 Peter 2:3; Titus 1:10-11)
- Teachers of the Doctrine of Balaam. (Revelations 2:14)
- Teachers of the Doctrine of Nicolaitans. (Revelations 2:6, 15)
- Teachers that cause division contrary to sound Biblical doctrine.
What Should We Do?
The Bible tells us to weep for these people? Their destiny is hell. They are doomed and their fate is eternal misery (perdition), their god is their stomach. “The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:19-21)
Let the intercessors arise and let us pray for the souls of the leaders that teach this heresy. “They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised.” (Romans 1:25) Pray for the souls of the people who have been victimized by the lie, that their souls may be saved. Lord please remove the scales from their eyes so that they may see and hear the truth, the true Word of God.
The Bible speaks about teachers who handled the Word of God deceitfully (2 Corinthians 4:2), and twisted the Word in their trickery of error (Ephesians 4:14). There were those who wrestled, misconstrued, distorted and misinterpreted the Word of God (2 Peter 3:16). They brought destruction on themselves and others. Beware of the teachers that come in the form of false apostles, false prophets, false evangelists, false pastors, false priests, and false teachers.
I pray that this message touches your heart and you accept Him as your Lord and Savior too! Become a life-long learner by joining Immanuel International Assembly Social Learning Network. We also provide free Bible courses at Immanuel International Institute.
Apostle Rosalind Epps, Immanuel International Assembly