February 26

Deuteronomy 13-14, Psalm 57

Many state if they were to only witness a miracle then they would believe. They question the reality of Scripture citing if there were so many supernatural events then, why do we witness so few now. This deep desire for the supernatural is witnessed by those movies which thrive in the movie theaters. The largest blockbuster movies usually involve a superhero bestowed with supernatural abilities: Superman, Batman, etc. Those in danger place their hope and trust in the superhero. Other movies highlight the supernatural from the dark side or wizardry. Consider the blockbuster series of Harry Potter involving wizardry orTwilight involving vampires. When it comes to faith, how many have been led astray by adhering to the teachings of a man over the teachings of God to their own peril, for example Jim Jones who was responsible for the mass suicide in Jonestown, Guyana in 1978, or David Koresh who claimed to be a prophet and the leader of the Branch Davidians with his adherents perishing in a wave of gunfire in 1993. Though Jesus, Himself, never claimed a denomination, so many believe that unless you belong to their specific denomination you will not be saved.

We read in Deuteronomy 13:1-3, "If there arises among you a prophet or a dreamer of dreams, and he gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder comes to pass, of which he spoke to you, saying, 'Let us go after other gods'- which you have not known-'and let us serve them,' you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the Lord your God is testing you to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul." It goes on in 13:5 to say, "But that prophet or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death, because he has spoken in order to turn you away from the Lord your God,...". In 13:6-9, it shows the seriousness in which God considers this, in that even if it should be your closest family members who are guilty of this you must bring them forward so that they would be killed. If these punishments seem too severe, consider the current situation in our nation. Though our nation was founded on Christian principles, we have allowed the unbelievers to take control such that the Name and Word of God has been eliminated from every public sector of our society: our schools (even though at one time the Bible was the primary Book used to teach young children to read), our government and our courts. Jesus warns of this in Matthew 24:24-25, "For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand." Paul cautions about the coming Antichrist in 2 Thessalonians 2:9, "The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,".

If any teacher of the Bible causes us to follow anyone other than the Lord, he is a false prophet. If anyone calls us to rely on a specific church or denomination for your salvation, that man is a false prophet. A man can't save us, a church can't save us, and a denomination can't save us. The only One that can save us is Jesus Christ. Jesus always used miracles to draw people to Himself or to use as a means to convey a lesson. We must beware of sideshows that exalt anyone other than Christ, no matter how magnificent the miracle might be. Jesus in Matthew 7:24-27, described the difference between those who put there trust in Him as opposed to anything or anyone else. For those who choose to follow another, they are like the one who built his house on the sand. When the storms of life come, they will be washed away. May we keep our eyes on the only One with the power to save, Jesus Christ. The world will preach a different reality and back it up to sway many, but the only true reality rests in Jesus Christ, and in Him alone.

Messages from Pastor Lloyd Pulley:

Marj Lancaster