““And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write, ‘These things says the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet like fine brass: “I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first. Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. And I gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, and she did not repent. Indeed I will cast her into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. I will kill her children with death, and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts. And I will give to each one of you according to your works. “Now to you I say, and to the rest in Thyatira, as many as do not have this doctrine, who have not known the depths of Satan, as they say, I will put on you no other burden. But hold fast what you have till I come. And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations— ‘He shall rule them with a rod of iron; They shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’— as I also have received from My Father; and I will give him the morning star.”
Revelation 2:18-28 NKJV
Time has made me more than a little cynical and jaded. There was a time when I looked for the best in everything, when I believed that the world was full of good people, who truly desired to do the best for you.
The pressure of these present times has revealed the true nature of humanity and the world that we have created. As the true nature of the world has hit home, I have found myself increasingly at odds, choosing to life as far from the status quo as possible.
The corruption of the world is like air pollution, as we breath it in each day, through media, through day to day interactions, and through all manner of infusions from the culture. The only way we have to resist is through a constant washing by the word, regular prayer, and fellowship with like minded followers of Christ.
Jesus had a mixed message for the church at Thyatira, for they had done some things right, and He gave them accommodations for all the good. But He had a few things against them. This church had allowed Jezebel, a fleshly carnal teacher to have an influence. Jezebel is an archetype of the harlot, the system that has dominated the world since babel.
Jezebel has been a force for immorality in humanity, having been in the flesh as Queen Jezebel, the wife of Ahab. She had led there people of Israel into Baal worship, a religion based on human sacrifice and sexual immorality. She was the epitome of everything against God, at one point she had massacred many of the prophets of the Lord.
“For so it was, while Jezebel massacred the prophets of the Lord, that Obadiah had taken one hundred prophets and hidden them, fifty to a cave, and had fed them with bread and water.)”
I Kings 18:4 NKJV
The spirit of Jezebel is active in the church today, as there are many teachers and preachers who have brought in fleshly philosophies, drawing ever closer to the views of the world. Those in the pews are seduced and enticed after concerns of the flesh and not the Spirit.
There are a multitude of mens and womens conferences that leach sweet poison into the hearts of believers. They go unnoticed until the day they say or do something so outlandish that it stands out. Sadly there are church bodies giving their members a steady diet of such poison.
Such churches are often marked by a taste for the spectacular, with big glorious structures, complete with a well coifed pastor. There may be many good works, and much charitable giving. On the surface these churches appear loving, accepting everyone, affirming all, regardless of where they are. But the word of God is not taught, or at the very least, it is twisted to make room for the sensual. There is no love for the Gospel.
These days, many teachers, both male and female have bowed down to the idols of the society, whether it be social justice, marriage equality, or the right to choose. In every case, their first reference is the world and not God.
Their names are many and very notable, if I were to prepare a list, I am sure I would be stepping on many toes. But we desire to have our egos stroked and our ears scratched.
Pastors are facing many challenges in these perilous times.
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.”
II Timothy 4:3-4 NKJV
This is happening in many churches, and in a host of para church ministries. But God is faithful, as many of these wolves in sheep clothing have been exposed for who they are, and it is only those who desire to be deceived who continue to follow.
As in the church at Thyatira, there were those who had not bowed to the teachings of Jezebel, and stood as beacons within their congregations.
Brothers and sisters, let us be those beacons, shedding light for those trapped in the darkness of false teaching. Let us contend for the faith.
Pray for the pastors who are resisting the desire to fall, seeking to meet the temptations of those in the pews are seeking comfort in their sin.
“I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.”
II Timothy 4:1-2 NKJV
This walk of faith is a race of endurance, and the finish line is nearing. Let us be faithful to keep running, never letting up. May we be as Paul, nearing the end of his race.
Let us resist the corruption of the world.
“For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.”
II Timothy 4:6-8 NKJV
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