“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)
So here’s this guy who holds up a Bible and has people repeat a noble phrase with him as they also hold up their bibles. This is followed by a cutesy joke and then a non-offensive message on how to be kind, nice and sweet to others. It’s about how people can be blest, to do good for other people. Thousands attend the meetings and millions of viewers and readers are enamored, having their ears tickled with stuff they like to hear. This perhaps is a “Christianized” form of pop-psychology, and the message boils down to being successful. And who doesn’t want that??
Then there is the Old Testament prophet by the same first name, Joel. Here’s how one commentary describes the message of this Book:
That “the Day of the Lord” is coming, is the central teaching of the book – – the day when the Lord will manifest himself in the destruction of his enemies and the exaltation of his friends. This day will be accompanied by great convulsions of the earth and a display of extraordinary phenomena in nature (2:30, 31). The attitude of a man’s heart and life before the Lord will be the factor that will determine his reaction to that day. It will be a day of terror to the sinner (1:15; 2:11) and a day of blessing to the saint (2:12-14, 19-29). Those who call upon the name of the Lord will be delivered, but the enemies of the people (of Judah) will be annihilated (ch. 3).
- Derward Deere in The Wycliffe Bible Commentary. Moody Press, 1962 (p. 820).
No comparison! But who is right? I’ll pick God’s prophet (not man’s profit)!!
Beware of False Teachers
“But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them and bring on themselves swift destruction” (II Peter 2:1)
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. (Matthew 7:15)
We live in a day when multitudes of people are more than happy to have their ears itched with palatable, yet false teachings! Incredibly, a number of these falsehoods are perpetuated by those who claim to be “Christians.”
For example, there is this guy in Michigan who just wrote a book not too long ago, advocating that the love of God will ultimately save everybody. This is better known as “universalism.” Then there is this other fellow who has men from other religions teach from his pulpit. This gives the distinct impression that these other beliefs are on an equal par with Christianity. (By the way, all these teachers I am referencing are high profile individuals)! Another very popular preacher advocates and accentuates positive psychology. He begins his lectures with holding up a Bible, telling a joke, and the rest is a “feel-good” type of message. After all, we don’t want to offend anybody, right? (especially not with the Gospel of Jesus Christ). Let’s not forget another character – – this guy had the judgment day falling on May 21, 2011. If I’m not mistaken, that date came and went; and gullible, naïve people still follow this either false and/or senile advocate. Well, we don’t have the space to mention thousands of false belief systems (as judged by the Word of the living God), nor mention the numerous insincere peddlers of “truth” for personal financial gain.
My caution: make sure you measure all you hear and read by the eternal standard – – the Bible – – the Word of the living God! Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away” (Matthew 24:35).