When we finish this section of Scripture, there will be no doubt as to what Jesus taught about His return. This will be interesting to see because at this point, most American Christians believe that the saints will be resurrected seven years before Christ reveals Himself to the world.
I made up my mind to believe Jesus no matter what He reveals, which should be your attitude as well. If you’re prepared to believe Jesus over anything that man might say, then read on!
The first thing that Jesus does is to give the disciples the short version.
Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in may name, claiming, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.”
The initial warning that Jesus gives us is about deceivers. The word deceiver in the Greek literally means those who cause others to leave the path. People will come who make it their goal to remove you from the path of following Christ wholeheartedly. Their methods may vary from time to time and from place to place, but the outcome is the same.
These imitations claim to be the anointed one, which is what Christ means in Greek. They want to convince you that they have the lock on God’s power or His anointing. Many Christians are all too willing to follow these signs from revival to camp meeting to healing service. They never seem to want to settle down under godly teaching.
Please realize that I’m not knocking the revival meeting. I love being a part of the move of God. What I’m saying is that every believer must be plugged-in to a local church body where they’re constantly being fed from God’s Word.
If not, they’ll end up remaining a baby Christian their whole life. Of course, some prefer it that way since they never have to take on the responsibility of ministry. Then, they can just go from place to place getting fed their spiritual bottle.
If deception is a big part of living in the Last-Days, then how do we guard ourselves?
But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.
It’s through the mutual encouragement of the body of believers that we keep from being deceived. That’s one of the benefits of being connected to a local church.
But wait! The writer of Hebrews also said…
Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another — and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
This verse explains why there is such deception in the Last Days. Believers will be attending church less and less frequently. One of the reasons I feel we’re close to Christ’s Return is because this is an epidemic in the body of Christ right now.
Don’t open yourself to the deceptions of this age. Be an active part of a local body of believers.
Question: Why is church attendance by Christians in such decline in our generation?
© Nick Zaccardi 2014