Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Unbiblical Practices of the Russian Orthodox Church

Saint Basil's Cathedral, Red square, Moscow
During Moscow's Victory Day parade on Red Square in May 2015, the Kremlin cleverly staged a deceptive publicity stunt. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu entered the square to inspect the awaiting troops, standing in the back of an open car. He was driven through the gate in the Spasskaya Tower, and the car slowed down as it passed beneath the giant icon of Jesus in the tower. There beneath the portrait with St. Basil’s Cathedral to his right, Shoigu, made the sign of the cross before putting his headgear back on. Since this man is not a Christian, but a Buddhist, this carefully orchestrated act of veneration was probably not an expression of sincere devotion on his part. Rather it shows how important it is to President Putin to promote Russian Orthodoxy. Putin, a former KGB member, claims to be a man of faith and his administration has also consistently sought closer relations with the Russian Orthodox Church.

Although there is currently a resurgence of interest in the Russian Orthodox Church, it is just as much of a false religion as the Roman Catholic Church.  In fact, these two major religions are inseparably connected. The Russian Orthodox religion has most of the same unbiblical practices and doctrines as Roman Catholicism. Don't be fooled by it. The primary difference is that Russian Orthodoxy refuses to recognize the pope in Rome as their leader, and instead has its own patriarch in Moscow. However, Putin himself, an Orthodox Christian, has gone to meet with the Pope three times in the past six years, most recently in June 2015, demonstrating his desire to strengthen ties between the Vatican and Russia, and improve relations between the Roman Catholic and Russian Orthodox Churches.

While there has historically been a great division between these two religions, they have the same sinful practices of Mary worship, image worship, and priests as mediators. Therefore, if you are in this Russian Orthodox religion, I am here to warn you that it is not of God. If you stay in that Church, you will not make it to heaven. Please take the time to read my previous article about the Unbiblical Practices of the Catholic Church. The same things I said there apply to your religion, too. And please also read Messages from the Lord for Catholics Worshipping Idols.

One Mediator
The way to God is through Jesus Christ alone, not through Mary, the saints, or the priests.

"Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.'" (Joh 14:6)

"For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." (1Ti 2:5)

No Idolators in Heaven
In his 2013 visit with the Pope, Putin brought him an icon of the Madonna as a gift, and they both took turns kissing it, joining together in their idolatry. However, no idolater will inherit the kingdom of God.

"Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God." (1Co 6:9-10)

The use of titles
The Orthodox Church is very hierarchical and uses many titles. For example, every single priest is called "Father." All such titles are completely unscriptural.

This was another main point in my blog on the clergy-laity distinction. As I stated there, we have only One Leader, and His name is Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself taught us not to use titles like “Father,” “Leader,” or “Rabbi” to distinguish ourselves or set ourselves apart from other believers. He said, "But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers. Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ. But the greatest among you shall be your servant.” (Mat 23:8-11). So we should not use titles of any kind, such as “Father,” “Bishop,” "Reverend," "Most Reverend," "Right Reverend," etc.  The Lord doesn't know you by that.  He knows you by your name. You shouldn’t let anyone address you with titles, and you should not address anyone with titles.

You Must Be Born Again
"Jesus answered and said to him, 'Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.'" (Joh 3:3). Please read You Must Be Born Again.

Repent for the kingdom of God is at hand!

Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. The photo of Saint Basil's Cathedral, Red square, Moscow by Ludvig14.

Author's note:  Don't miss Unbiblical Practices of the Catholic Church, Angelica Zambrano's First Visit to Hell, Angelica Zambrano's Second Visit to Hell, Messages from the Lord for Catholics Worshipping Idols, and Visitation of Jesus to Samuel Oghenetega. You may also like the other posts in this blog, such as Exposing Heresy, Accurately Handling the Word of Truth, Tradition vs. Truth, and Former Pope in Hell Declared a Saint. You may access more of my articles on the Main Directory of this blog, as well as my complete blog directory at "Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
_________________________________________________

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.

Monday, January 4, 2016

The Cult of Mormonism

Today I would like to expose the cult of Mormonism. Regrettably, I don't think preachers in churches are exposing cults like this. If preachers don't warn people about cults, then they will become easy prey to those who actively work to bring people into these false religions.

One thing that makes the Mormons even more deceptive to unsuspecting Christians is that they claim to be genuine Christians. In fact, they call themselves the Church of Jesus Christ, the Latter Day Saints (LDS). Therefore, I would like to give you some solid proof that Mormonism is indeed a cult, in order to remove any doubts you may have about that. Just before my conclusion below, I have posted three videos that are well-worth watching, and are the highlight of this article. But first let me make a few brief points in preface to the videos.

Another Testament of Jesus Christ
They do believe in Jesus Christ and in the Holy Bible, God's Word, "as far as it is translated correctly." However, they do not believe the Bible has been correctly translated, but that it has been corrupted. That essentially negates the Bible as far as they are concerned, since they don't believe it is reliable.

Moreover, they have added another book -- the Book of Mormon, which they claim is "another Testament of Jesus Christ." However, that is a lie. It is not another testament. It was written by Joseph Smith, the founder of their religion, who is a false prophet that claims he received an angelic visitation with this revelation.

The Book of Mormon is full of lies that contradict the Word of God, and the Word of God is our sole rule of faith. The reformers referred to this guideline as Sola Scriptura. For more on this, please read my article, Scripture Alone.

The Bible warns us about adding to Scripture.

The apostle Paul said, "But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!" (Gal 1:8-9)

In the Book of Revelation, the final book of the Bible, we are warned not to add to or take away anything from the words of that prophecy. "I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book." (Rev 22:18-19)

Little gods
Mormon Temple in Utah
They believe we all become gods. This goes completely against Scripture, which says there is one God. Jesus answered, "The foremost is, 'Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord...” (Mar 12:29). The apostle Paul said, "There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all." (Eph 4:4-6). For more on this, please see my article, Are We Really Little gods?

Mormonism teaches an infinite regression of causes.  This means it teaches that each god was made a god by a previous god. This is refuted by Matt Slick: Logical Proof that Mormonism is False.

Polygamy Required to Become Gods
Although Mormons have abandoned the practice of polygamy in order to attain Utah's statehood in the United States, polygamy and eternal marriage are still required to become gods. For more on this, you can read about their beliefs on polygamy here.

Lucifer and Jesus
They believe Lucifer was Jesus’ brother. This is a lie, because Lucifer is a created being, originally created as a high-ranking cherub angel. Jesus is God and was not created. So there is no way they can be brothers. Please see my articles: The Origin of Sin, Satan, and Secular Music and The Rise and Fall of Lucifer the Musician.

Official Doctrines Not to Be Questioned
The LDS Scriptural Canon
Its early leaders made it very clear that the doctrines they taught were official doctrines, and were not to be questioned as Mormonism’s leaders do today. This topic is covered by Let Us Reason (my sharing the link to this article does not constitute endorsement of the "Let Us Reason" ministry).

Adam was God
Brigham Young is Mormonism’s ‘prophet,’ who taught in his official capacity that the first man Adam, and God the Father, were one and the same being. That is also false, according to the Bible, since Adam was a created being, who fell into sin. On the contrary, God is eternally existent and holy, without sin. This topic is covered by Let Us Reason.

Christian or Cult?
Biblical Discernment Ministries has an excellent article refuting Mormonism and proving that it is a cult (my sharing the link to this article does not constitute endorsement of "Biblical Discernment Ministries").

The Bible vs. The Book of Mormon
This is a thorough and scholarly analysis that puts the book of Mormon to the test against the Bible. In the following video documentaries, both books are examined. Geography, archaeology, history and geology are some of the points analyzed in these documentaries.


MP4

How Mormonism Contradicts the Bible


MP4

Unveiling Grace: The Film 
Eight former Latter-day Saints share about their life-changing encounter with Jesus Christ.

MP4

I highly recommend watching these videos. I cannot see how any true Christian could continue to be a Mormon after seeing these.

Putting it All Together
In this article, I have provided you with irrefutable proof that the Mormon religion is a cult. Joseph Smith was a false prophet. Anyone who is a part of this religion will not see God's face. It will take you down to hell. If you are a Mormon, then please repent right now and give your life to Jesus.

I challenge you to read the Bible as a child and ask God to show you the whole truth and nothing but the truth. See if you can prove solely from Scripture that the gospel of salvation by grace through faith alone is not true, and that Mormonism is the true Church.

There is the only one way to be saved. The Lord Jesus Christ said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (Joh 14:6, NIV). You must be born again by repenting of your sin and putting your faith in Him to save you. He died on the cross for you and shed his blood for your atonement. But your faith must be solely in Him, and not in anything else to save you, including your own good works. Repent and give your life to Jesus now before it's too late. And if you know someone who is a Mormon, please share this article with them, too.

There is no hate here or malice, but only love and the hope that precious souls whom the Lord Jesus died for will be saved.

Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB, except where noted otherwise. The photos are in the public domain.

Author's note I also recommend reading You Must Be Born Again, Are We Really Little gods?, Scripture Alone, Accurately Handling the Word of Truth, Exposing Heresy, The Rise of Antichrists, The Origin of Sin, Satan, and Secular Music, The Rise and Fall of Lucifer the Musician, Michael Thomas Sambo's Revelation of Heaven and Hell, By Grace Alone, and Righteousness by Faith not Law. You can access the Home page of this blog for more articles on Truth and heresy, as well as my complete blog directory at "Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
_________________________________________________

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Not Enduring Sound Doctrine

The apostle Paul prophesied of a time that would come when people would not put up with sound doctrine, and we are living in that period now.

He said, "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths." (2Ti 4:3-4)

Rather than endure sound doctrine, most Christians these days want to have their ears tickled. In other words, they have their own desires, lusts, and passions that they want to fulfill. They love their sin too much to part with it. So in order to suit their desires, they accumulate for themselves teachers, who will say what their itching ears want to hear. Since they have turned aside from the truth, they surround themselves with teachers who do not preach against sin or offend them, but tickle their ears with myths.

They listen to these teachers in their church, on the TV, the internet, and the radio. Any time they want to be soothed, comforted, or made to feel good, they listen to one of their favorite teachers. They also read the books and online articles of these teachers, too. They buy their DVDs or watch them online.

These are the teachers that have departed from sound doctrine and rather than teach the truth, they say what is popular with people. Their teachings include things like the following: once you are saved, you are always saved (eternal security); prosperity messages; antinomian messages; grace (as a license); freedom (from the moral laws of God); self-help messages; no-hell messages; social action; equality; human rights; social justice; world peace; being relevant to the world; adopting the world's cultures; tolerance; acceptance of all lifestyles, orientations, and religions; New Age; one-world religion; and ecumenism. There are many more myths they teach, but this list will suffice to give you the basic idea.

Not only do they fail to preach against sin, they fail to emphasize holiness, righteousness, and truth. They defile the Lord's pulpit by no longer carrying their Bible but using a phone instead. They no longer uphold the Word of God as supreme. Popular opinions and feelings have taken a much greater place of importance. It's no wonder the Church has gone astray with teachers like that.

The remedy to all this is Paul's solemn charge to Timothy in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus to "preach the Word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction." (2Ti 4:2). We need to return once again to preaching the Word. We need to reprove as necessary, which is to express disapproval. We need to once again rebuke those who need it, who are practicing sin in the house of God. We need to exhort the Body. And we need to do all of these things with great patience and instruction.

In order for teachers and preachers to do these things, we must watch our lives and doctrine closely. Keep your doctrine accurate and true to the Word. Keep your life pure and free from sin. This will save both you and your hearers, too (1 Tim 4:16). There are two aspects to this, one being your life, and the other being your doctrine.

This will require diligence on your part. As Paul said, "Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth." (2Ti 2:15). You don't want to be ashamed when you stand before God, but approved as a workman who accurately handles the Word of truth. Learn to rightly divide the Word of truth. Preach it just as it is without adding to it or taking away from it.

And as you watch your life, in order to keep it pure, here is an important admonition. "Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, 'The Lord knows those who are His,' and, 'Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness.'" (2Ti 2:19). You personally need to abstain from wickedness. That means you need to revolt against sin. You need to remove it from your life, withdraw yourself from it, depart from it, cease and desist from it, and refrain from it (Strongs). And that is what you need to teach your hearers to do, so that they can reach heaven.

You need to become a vessel for honor that is holy and useful to the Master. Paul said, "Now in a large house there are not only gold and silver vessels, but also vessels of wood and of earthenware, and some to honor and some to dishonor. Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these things, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work." (2Ti 2:20-21). In order to become a holy vessel of honor for the Lord, you need to cleanse yourself from everything in your life that dishonors Him. And then you need to teach your hearers to do the same.

I am not going to deceive you and tell you that this is going to make you very popular or attract crowds. This is not by any means a popular message. It is not a recipe for developing a mega church. In fact, it may bring suffering and persecution into your life. But as Paul said, "Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus." (2Ti 2:3)

Becoming this kind of preacher may bring persecution into your life. But after all, that's expected if you desire to live godly in Christ. As Paul said, "Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." (2Ti 3:12)

While others are being foolish, silly, and taking everything in the Word lightly, you need to be serious in all things. You need to do the unpopular work of an evangelist. Paul said, "But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry." (2Ti 4:5). If you have been called to teach or preach, you will need to endure hardship for the King. You and I must fulfill our ministries. Discharge all the duties of your ministry.

As we do so, our hope and prayer for those to whom we minister is that "they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will." (2Ti 2:26).

So although we live in a day when people will not endure sound doctrine, there is hope as long as there are still those ministers who will do these things. As long as the servants of the Lord live like this, and conduct their ministries this way, there is great hope. While most people will rebel and not listen to you, that is not what determines your success or failure. Your success will be determined by whether you do the will of God.

Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. The "Deception" painting © 2012 Danny Hahlbohm all rights reserved by the artist. Please view it on his official website, Inspired Art.

Author's note I also recommend reading Ask for the Ancient Paths, Holding Fast the Faithful Word, Avoid Becoming a Corrupted Christian, What's Wrong with the Prosperity Gospel?, The Law of Christ, Deleted Scriptures in the Bible?, Costly Grace, Is Obedience Optional?, Is Practical Righteousness a Lost Truth?, Practicing Your Righteousness, Sins That Will Keep You From Heaven, Faith Works!, The Ways of Life, Keeping Sundays Holy - Part IScripture Alone, Accurately Handling the Word of Truth, Exposing Heresy, Are We Really Little gods?, The Rise of Antichrists, The Origin of Sin, Satan, and Secular Music, The Rise and Fall of Lucifer the Musician, Michael Thomas Sambo's Revelation of Heaven and Hell, Striving to Enter the Kingdom of God, The Cult of Mormonism, and Righteousness by Faith not Law. You can access the Home page of this blog for more articles on Truth and heresy, as well as my complete blog directory at "Writing for the Master."

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"
_________________________________________________

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org