We like it when good things return to us, visiting us once again. Perhaps it’s an old friend who stopped by or called when you were least expecting it. Maybe you were cleaning out that ‘catch-all drawer’ only to discover a sweet note from a loved one that was long forgotten.
Just the opposite rings true about bad things when they come back for an encore, called onto the stage of life for one more stanza—one more time for the lights to shine upon it and showcase its perceived merits from every angle.
One more moment of our attention. One more round of applause. One more standing ovation.
The world gives it attention and accolades a little bit longer, refusing to believe it will truly be the final curtain call. It refuses to die.
It is rotten to the core, but it refuses to die.
If it’s not a good thing, why do we want it yet again?
A false belief surfaced around the turn of the first century Christian church called Gnosticism. Most adherents claimed to be Christians as well; but in their basic fundamental beliefs about God; Jesus; the Holy Spirit; salvation and the afterlife, no two beliefs could have been more diametrically opposed.
Basically, the premise of Gnosticism was non-Christian and boasted of self-salvation and enlightenment. In my studies and basic understanding of the Gnostics, I can say this without hesitation: This belief system is rotten to the core, false in every way, and the complete opposite to true Christianity. If a doctrine is a departure from the truth of God, it is considered heresy.
Gnosticism qualifies in every way to be heresy. Here is heresy clearly defined in Bible terms:
“This word also denotes divisions or schisms in the church” (1 Corinthians 11:19). In Titus 3:10, a “heretical person” is one who follows his own self-willed “questions,” and who is to be avoided. Heresies thus came to signify self-chosen doctrines not emanating from God” (2 Peter 2:1).
Source: Heresy Dictionaries – Easton’s Bible Dictionary – Heresy.
Unfortunately, this heretical belief is back on tour in recent years. It is no longer called Gnosticism, but its core beliefs have been repackaged and rebranded for the day in which we live. It runs true to its original form:
-It is a self-chosen doctrine.
-It did not come from God.
According to the scriptures, we are to stay away from those who spout beliefs that are contrary to the known truths laid out in the Bible.
Maybe you’ll recognize some of its newer phrases we hear all over the place these days:
#1- “empowerment” especially used in the context of females. This is implying that something other than the Holy Spirit can empower us.
Response: As Christians, He is our source of power.
#2- “self-awareness” is used in the context of being more aware of one’s self than any other being.
Response: We are to be Christ aware and walk by the Spirit.
#3- looking for the next “spiritual high” or great awakening, possibly a spiritual quest, never feeling satisfied spiritually.
Response: Jesus got it done for us on the cross…it is finished. His finished work on the cross should be more than enough to satisfy one’s spiritual needs and fulfill the requirements for righteousness.
Someone recently asked me when I thought the next spiritual awakening was going to take place. I responded and said, “The next spiritual awakening, for me, is when I hear the trumpet blast and I awaken to the fact I have raptured and I am now in the glorious manifest presence of Jesus Christ in the air, along with the rest of the bride of Christ.”
#4- having no need for a Savior—the person of Jesus Christ. The Gnostic feels they are perfectly acceptable to God and will deal with Him, both in life and in death— “on their own terms.”
Response: I cannot tell you how many obits I have read lately that quoted the dearly departed as saying, “I/he/she left this world on my own terms.”
#5- self-knowledge is how one becomes acceptable to God.
Response: This is contrary to our salvation of grace through faith in Christ.
Basic fundamental errors I see in Gnosticism:
-Denies the Godhead— God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Just this one thing should make you run away and never look back. If you hear this nonsense in a church, grab your clan and run for the door!
-Denies the human, fleshly existence or physical life. This is perplexing to me quite honestly. Do these folks not eat, work, live and breathe the same air we do? This denial of the physical world also denies our Lord and Christ because Jesus came in the flesh. He was both God and Man. He is God incarnate.
-Denies mankind’s need of salvation from sin. Again, it is my acquired self-knowledge of God that makes me acceptable to Him according to this dark doctrine.
-Denies the Holy Spirit as the way to grow spiritually. It promotes self-enlightenment and the self-acquired knowledge of God. It’s all about self; and as we see in our culture today, the lost world at large is self-centered.
-Denies the righteousness found only in Christ. This false doctrine promotes self-righteousness.
-It maintains that knowledge is the only way to attain salvation.
-Truth is subject to individual interpretation depending on my level of consciousness. Only a few can be enlightened, mind you, as not everyone is able to figure out this mystical false religion and get to that perceived relationship with the Almighty.
The Bible says Jesus is the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father except by Him.
Here’s the bottom line about this recycled false religion that has resurfaced once again in these last days. It is just as false today as it was when the early church was coming against it. It stinketh then and it stinks now.
You see, this Gnostic belief is laced among modern-day Secularism, New Age followers, Atheists and Agnostics. I am also amazed at how much of this false belief is resounded among the liberal left here in America. For an interesting read, check out an article online from The Daily Mail titled, “Leftism as a Secular Religion” by Dennis Prager.
Jesus is the true gospel of salvation – a beautiful picture of God’s love and intentions towards mankind to be brought near to Him. Jesus made the way for that to happen. He did something for us that we could not do for ourselves. We cannot save ourselves no matter how hard we try— it will never happen.
Dear readers: Accept no substitutions for Jesus Christ.
The perfect God-man did it for us. All that is required is to confess and believe in Him. He gave his life as a sacrifice for our sins, standing in on our behalf. However, we must respond and receive the marvelous gift that Jesus is more than willing to give us. Believe and receive, confessing him as Savior and Lord right now if you have not done so.
You’ll be glad you did.
“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).
“That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10: 9-10).
“Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, ‘Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.’ Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized” (Acts 16:30-33).