A Voice in the
Wilderness

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February 21, 1999

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False messiahs claiming to be Jesus?

Q.
Hi, I was just wondering about all these false Messiah's who proclaim themselves to be Jesus. Why do people get caught up and even worship them when they are soooooo not like Jesus at all. What do you think about these people like Maharaji, the Pope, Dali Lama, Maitreya (who by the way I happen to catch a glimpse of his picture on the net and he really looks 'strange' to me), Sai Baba and Buddah who people are comparing them to Jesus.

A.
In Jesus' own words, "Take heed that no man deceive you. For many will come in My name, saying, I am Christ, and will deceive many." (Mt24:4-5) And He is speaking this about the section of that chapter dealing with the "Church" age vs4-8. This is the time of wars and rumors of wars, earthquakes, etc. And He says that these are the "beginning of sorrows".

To answer your question, people are getting caught up in these people because they are not "the elect". (vs24) If it were possible to deceive the Elect, the false Christ's and false prophets would do so. They try. But the way that verse is worded, we understand that a True Believer will -not- be deceived into accepting them.

Both times Jesus comes, He will do so "in the clouds". The first time to receive the Church -to-Himself-. (Jn14:3,1Ths4:16-17) And the next time, at the end of Wrath, He will come 1) to the Mt.of Olives (Acts1:11Zec14:4) 2) -with- the saints (vs5b) He describes this 'next' one... "as lightning comes out of the east and shines even to the west, so also will be the coming of the Son of man." (Mt24:27)

Neither of these promised comings of Christ is anything these others can claim.

Q.
What do you think about them, are their powers supernatural and is the devil working through them to convince people to have false hope or is it something else?

A.
These are obviously -some- of the "many antichrists" John speaks of. (1Jn2:18) We are told that -THE- Antichrist will be "according to the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders." (2Th2:9) Just as satan's "ministers" transform themselves as "ministers of righteousness" (2Cor11:15) we can expect that their 'power' is from the same source, to do 'signs and wonders', too.

Are one of -these- (you listed) THE antichrist? Or is someone even more sinister to arise? We don't know. And won't, until after the Church (and Holy Spirit) "comes out of the midst" (2Th2:7) and -then- he will be revealed. (vs8)

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Ouija board & other occult 'fun'?

Q.
A lady from a different church than mine, called me this morning and told me that the kids in her youth group called her. They were really scared. They are 5th and 6th graders. They had gone to a party and they did some occultic things. Two of them put their hands on someone's head who was seated and pushed down. They then put one finger each under the person's thigh and one under the knee. They picked this person up to head level with only 4 fingers total.

They played with the ouigee board, or however you spell that. I don't have much advise to give her on this. Do you have any messages in your archives that would deal with this matter? ...I told her to wait, play it down or the kids will really get scared. Don't give Satan too much credit, but don't deny the power he has either. Just teach them about the protective power of Jesus and the proper things to think on as descibed in God's Word. I feel that if we talk about Satan, it's like when we talk about the power of God, we give glory to the one we talk about. So, let's not glorify Satan. He can't hurt the Christian anyway. About all he can do to us is give us fear, unless God permits him further access.

So much of this just looks like physics or something. Like an experiment of some type. These kids from this youth group who were messing with this stuff late that night, after doing these things for a little while, pictures fell off the wall and some other things happened to really scare them. That might be enough to chase them away from it. But, others may decide to experiment further, to look for real power.

A.
Hmmm. For all the talking we've done about demon/occult things, we haven't addressed these specific things. It's tended to be more related to the charismatic manifestations...things going on in the 'church'. I don't know if the Lord is going to direct such a topic in the future or not.

A very good book on this topic is by Dave Hunt, "Occult Invasion."

However...briefly...

It is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT that kids be -warned- against such things. On the surface they seem like 'innocent games' to have 'fun' with. But they are -demonic-. (as the things falling off the walls should illustrate) I don't know if you remember the Matthew study 12:43-45, where we considered the matter of the 'open/empty' heart which demons come and dwell in. The same thing/s happen when people 'dabble' around in occult activities. The ouija board is manipulated by spirits. The person is 'thinking' with the mind...making the 'connection' with the spirits (demons) on the spiritual plane. At what point does a demon coming -in- to 'dwell' in an individual? Well...if no communication is going on with them, and rather, they are told to "flee" (Jas4:7) there will not be any "likelihood" of that happening. But if a person is playing along the 'edge' of the pool, splashing the water, eventually, he's going to fall in...at least, the likelihood is much greater than if he is -away-from- the edge. And what is the state of a person inhabited by demons?

No...not to get paranoid over this, or freaked out. Just...don't do it. And...it's not giving satan "credit" or "glory"... but realizing the "truth". Satan's enticements look attractive. But once lured in, for many it's too late, and they never come back out. Like that passage says, "..the latter state of that man is worse than the first..." (Mt12:45) 'first state" ... 'last state' ... when it involves satan, it's deadly. He is, after all, in the realm of the "power of death" (Heb2:14) Christ won the victory over death. But if a person is not "in Christ" (2Cor5:17) and is in satan's domain, it is a domain of "death". And in a (typical) youth group, or bunch of kids, what percentage are truly "in Christ"? A very low percent.

Not only do we tell satan to "flee" ... we don't even dabble around in his presence. "..neither give place to the devil" (Eph4:27)

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