Monday, February 26, 2024

Hypocrisy of Church Denominations


Hypocrisy of Church Denominations

We’ll praise Jesus today, brothers and sisters. I wanted to make a message about just the hypocrisy of church and the denominations that are in the world today. A certain brother brought this up to me again, and I've made some messages regarding this in the past, but this certain brother also brought up some very good points which all of us have seen that are Christians, but many of us look over. And so what I wanted to touch on in this message is the hypocrisy regarding denominations that in the Bible is also called sectarianism. And we know from the Scriptures that Jesus condemned this, and so did Paul, and it's quite obvious. And anyone that is a Christian that knows their Bible, such as a Catholic or any Protestant, should know this if they've ever read their Bible. So it's pretty hypocritical that we have so many church denominations and pastors and the leaders in church uphold this as if God wants it, yet in their own Scriptures, obviously, Jesus condemned denominations, sectarianism, and so did the Apostle Paul.

I want to point this out to you because so many people are deceived into thinking they cannot give up the fellowship with their denomination, they think that they have to be in church giving tithe, and all of these things are actually clearly manipulation, fleecing the flock. The pastors are hirelings who make their congregation feel like they have to go and be loyal to them, to their denomination, and they encourage people to be baptized only because baptism in our modern times equates church membership. So the more people that a church baptizes, automatically they become members of that church, and of course you have to go through their doctrination, their Bible study, to become a member. I also, when I was very young, about 8 years old, was baptized into a certain church. It was technically non-denominational, but it was essentially Baptist, and of course I became a member of that church due to baptism. That is pretty much how it works, but interestingly enough, this idea that if we are baptized under a certain man, we're part of that denomination, goes all the way back to like 2,000 years ago when that happened during the time of the Apostle Paul, and this was strictly forbidden. The Apostle Paul spoke against it clearly and loudly, and Jesus also spoke against this, yet the ridiculous and hypocritical thing is, the churches today still partake in this hypocrisy to no end.

So let's get started in talking about this topic, and hopefully your ears and eyes can be opened to the truth, so that you can see the difference between the true children of God that have love in their hearts for the truth, versus the wolves in sheep's clothing that are pretending to be leading God's flock, yet they're really just fleecing the flock and hirelings.

So the first thing I want to bring up is the fact that there are over 45,000 sects of Christianity globally. So the three main big sects of Christianity, they narrow down to basically three different groups or three different churches, and it would be mainline Protestant, it would be Protestant Evangelical, and then of course Catholic, Roman Catholic. Now under each of these big organizations are hundreds and hundreds of other smaller denominations, but pretty much all of the sects come down to you are either Catholic, that has a hierarchy that comes down to the Roman Catholic Church and their priests, or you're Protestant. The Protestants, as we know, they broke off from the Roman Catholic Church, the reason why they're called Protestant is because they were in protest against the Catholic Church. We know about the Wittenberg door and Martin Luther that posted those 95 theses against the Catholic Church. One of the big reasons guys that the Protestants broke off and started baptizing in full water immersion was because the Catholic Church was not doing this. So that became one of the first dividing factors in the church, that the Catholic Church was not baptizing and they were doing a bunch of other things like keeping the scripture from their congregation, only teaching in a language that people didn't understand. So they were keeping the scripture from the laity, the people in the church, and you know it was a good thing that people broke away from the Catholic Church to protest against those ungodly things. But then what ended up happening is there's all these different sects. You have mainline Christianity, that basically they are not like evangelicals because they don't really care to spread the gospel. Mainline Christianity says this is what I believe but you can be whatever you want. These sorts of Christians don't really care what you believe, they just claim to be Christian from birth. Many of them are once saved, always saved, but they don't really care to evangelize anyone. They're happy just being lukewarm Christians.

And then you have Protestants that are evangelicals. These are your Christians that are very dedicated to going door to door, knocking on people's houses. Many of them have a workspace gospel that they think that the more people they bring into their church, the more godly they will be. And so they are very set on evangelizing the world, going on mission trips. That's why they're called evangelical, is because they are trying to evangelize. The only problem is they're making proselytes that are serving the churches of men and they're bringing people into churches of men rather than into the kingdom of God. But that is a discussion for a different time.

And then of course you have the largest group of Christianity, the Catholic Church with over one billion adherents. They make up a huge portion of Christianity, false Christianity of course. You know, up to like 25% of the world's population is Catholic. And so out of these three main sects of Christianity come an enormous amount of religions. Yes, of course, also Orthodox, not just Catholic. But that's also a discussion for later. There's Eastern Orthodox which broke off from the Roman Catholic Church in 1054 AD. So that was the first, they call it the Great Schism. But anyhow, we have all of these different denominations within Christendom. And you have basically a brand of Christianity for whatever you want to believe. Now if you're homosexual, they have homosexual churches. If you're right-winged American, they have a church for you that they go out and they shoot guns on the weekend. And if you're, you know, whatever you want to believe, they have the perfect religion for you. So all of these different groups to the world sound great. And in order to be part of these groups, you have to be baptized into them, you have to pay your tithe to them, and become part with those specific groups. Pay your homage to them in other words.

 Now first off, I want to read what Jesus says and what is recorded in the scripture that is against these sort of churches and this sort of idea because it's pretty plain and clear that all of this sort of thing is, it's counterfeit and it's false. So let's just read it because it's pretty plain and clear in the Bible that these sorts of churches are condemned. So the first one we want to look at is what Jesus said against sectarianism and this is found in Mark chapter 9. And we're going to look at it starting in verse 38.

38Now John answered Him, saying, “Teacher, we saw someone who does not follow us casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow us.”

So in other words, there's a different sect of people, there's a different denomination, and they're not part of our disciples. So we told them, no, you can't do that. You have to be walking around with us 12. So what does Jesus say to that?

39But Jesus said, “Do not forbid him, for no one who works a miracle in My name can soon afterward speak evil of Me. 40For he who is not against us is on our side. 41For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in My name, because you belong to Christ, assuredly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.

So all of us could suppose that if there was the perfect church on earth, and the perfect leader, obviously, it would be Jesus. So if anyone could condone the perfect group of people and condemn everyone else, it could have been Jesus. Yet Jesus did not do that. In fact, he did the opposite. He told his disciples, if some other guy is, you know, baptizing in my name or calling others to follow me, even if they're not with us, don't condemn, don't condemn him. So right there, right in the scripture, we see Jesus forbidding sectarianism. The next obvious passage against this would be the Apostle Paul that speaks about this in Corinthians. So if you do have your Bibles, you could look with me at 1 Corinthians, chapter 1. I'm going to look, starting in verse 10. And this one is interesting, because this goes all the way back, you know, this whole deception of saying that if you're baptized by a certain man, then you belong to that organization, and now you're Baptist, or now you're Catholic, or whatever religion you're part of. So let's look what the Apostle Paul says on it, because it's so plain and simple. So Corinthians, 1t Corinthians, chapter 1, verse 10.

“10Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you…”

So again, condemning denominations, condemning sectarianism,

“…but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”

Now obviously, the worldly church is in great disarray. They're definitely not in the same mind, or the same heart. All of them have different ideas, and different spirits, even though they say they all belong to the same God. But clearly, the only way it's possible not to have sectarianism, or divisions, is if we really are in the true church. If we really have Jesus as our head, then all of us bow down to Him, and whatever Jesus says goes. But as soon as you put a man as your head, and your pastor, and your leader, then there's going to be divisions, because that man is going to say, well we believe in baptism like this, so we believe in sprinkling, we believe in doing the Eucharist like this, so we believe in doing communion on this day, or that day, or we believe in doing worship on Saturday, the Sabbath. So you have suddenly all these denominations.

11For it has been declared to me concerning you, my brethren, by those of Chloe’s household, that there are contentions among you. 12Now I say this, that each of you says, “I am of Paul,” or “I am of Apollos,” or “I am of Cephas,” or “I am of Christ.” 13Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?

This exact same thing happens today. If people get baptized in one church, and if they listen to one pastor, then they are a disciple of whoever that pastor is. Maybe John MacArthur, maybe you have gone to some specific church, maybe you were under Billy Graham, and you were baptized into his ministry, so now you say, well I follow the Jesus Billy Graham taught, or I follow the God that John MacArthur teaches, or I follow this pastor, or that pastor. And again, obviously the Bible and those who spoke truth during the biblical times, all were against this sort of denomination and sectarianism. So the apostle Paul says,

13Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15lest anyone should say that I had baptized in my own name. 16Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas. Besides, I do not know whether I baptized any other. 17For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect.

So right here you see Paul condemning people for making a man on earth their pastor, or the one that baptized them as their leader. This is forbidden by Jesus, it's forbidden by the early church leadership, and we should also be against it as well. It's false.

So why do you have pastors and denominations today who adhere to this? It's because they are money preachers, or it's because they are prideful and they want you to be a notch on their belt. I had someone in my family that loved to baptize people. He wasn't paid to do it, but he wanted to baptize my sisters, he wanted to baptize us, and the main reason this particular person in my family wanted to baptize all of the grandchildren and all of the people in my family was because it gave him spiritual authority over those members of his household. He didn't really care to do it, obviously, for money, he wasn't making a dime, but it was spiritual power and authority. He wanted to be their spiritual father. And when we started realizing this, we knew that it was from the pit of hell.

A lot of Christians are this same way. They are baptizing because as soon as they baptize you, they feel that they have ownership over you. Churches do the same thing, and that is why one of the main ways to become a member of whatever church is out there is to be baptized by that pastor. So let's say you walk into a certain church, you talk to the pastor, and you say, I'd like to be a part of this organization. He may say to you, well, welcome here. Are you from this neighborhood? And if you say yes, then he'll ask you, well, do you already have a group of people that you fellowship with? And if you say no, then immediately he says, he says in his heart, perfect. This family doesn't belong to another group of people, so I can win them over and I can make them my slaves. They can belong to my organization. I can baptize them. Then I will have power over that husband of that family and that wife, and they will be my members. So what he's done right there is he's made disciples of his own sect. That's sectarianism, and that is against what Jesus taught. It's against what everything in the Bible teaches. But that is what the churches do because it gives them money. It secures their livelihood in the world.

Now suppose that you were already part of a church organization in one area, and you decided to visit a church in a different area, and maybe you drove, you know, a couple hundred miles, but you already belonged to a certain Baptist church, and for a week you decide to visit this other church, you know, in a city that is a few hundred miles away. So you walk into that church and the pastor says, welcome, how are you? And he's very nice to you. He talks to your wife. What happens as soon as he figures out you're an out-of-towner? He says, oh, well, why are you here? And this happens all the time, guys. And you might say, well, I'm out of town just visiting, but I would like to, you know, visit this church for a while. And that pastor may say something like, well, do you have a congregation back home that you're part of? Now why would he care if you have a congregation back home? Why would he care that you're part of a sect or part of this sort of sectarianism? Why would he care? If the body of Christ is undivided and we're following Jesus and not men, why would he care that you're following a certain sect a thousand miles away? The reason why, guys, is because if you belong to an organization already, then he cannot win you over. He knows that you're already taken. You're off the meat market. So if you don't belong to an organization, he may ask you, well, are you planning to move here? And if you are, we'd love you to join. But if you already live a thousand miles away and you're part of a church over there, then we're glad to see you for today. And then he's not interested to speak to you much more because he knows that you're not going to make him any money. He knows that you're already owned by a different pastor.

So that's how the pastors and organizations treat you. If you belong to church, you're basically their slaves, guys. You belong to religion. If you put yourself at the feet of these false lying pastors, you become their slaves and they treat you as if you're just a warm body in a pew and they will collect tithe from you. They're glad to see you in church because you're going to help the pastor pay his bills and you support that pastor's livelihood. But they don't care about you if you already are part of a different sect. Now all of that is obviously wicked.

So why is it that Christians don't see this? A lot of Christians don't see this because they are not following Jesus. Even though they've read the Bible their whole life, they've just played church, they've been distracted by people, they have been listening to the lies of the pastor, and they haven't opened their hearts and minds up to the truth of Jesus. They've only been playing religion and so distracted with the world, they can't see what is clearly hidden right under their nose. Every day when they go to church, right there below their nose is the Scriptures. And the pastor is probably even reading to them from 1 Corinthians chapter 1 and they still don't even see this deception right in their church. They're blind, they're spiritually deaf, they're being stolen from, they feel condemned if they are not giving their loyalty to these wolves, and they feel guilty if they're not part of these false organizations.

But I'm here today to help your eyes be open. Not that I can open your eyes, but Jesus can open the eyes of the blind. Jesus can open your ears, He opens the ears of the deaf. And if you ask Jesus to open your ears and your mind to the truth, then He will do that for you, and He will show you the difference between His true church, the body of Christ that is undivided, that are all in unity by the Holy Spirit, compared to the false churches that believe in this kind of sectarianism. So I think that's pretty much all I wanted to speak about today. Either we are loyal to men, either we're loyal to these organizations, or we are loyal to God. And at the end of the day, we're either pleasers of men, or we're pleasers of God.

If we really become pleasers of Jesus Christ, we become enemies of the false church. That doesn't mean that we hate Christians or hate people that are spiritually blind, but we become enemies of the false church organization. We stand against it, we oppose it, because we know that it is leading people to hell. Sectarianism and the wolves that call themselves pastors are leading people to hell every day. They come with really nice smiles, they tell people that they will be your friends and that you can join this club and they will help support your family, they'll put these tools in your hand, but at the end of the day, they're pushing people out the back door straight into the lake of hell. So you can either put your faith in Jesus, who is the good shepherd, who loves you, and you can bow yourself at the feet of him and place yourself and your family, your children, at the feet of Jesus, or you can be loyal to these wolves, this sort of denominationalism and sectarianism and these prideful men that only want to baptize you and only want your membership for your money and for them to gain more power.

So I just want to encourage you not to give your money to them, don't give your time to them, don't listen to their lies when they say, you can't give up the fellowship, brother, you need to give up the fellowship with the devil. These people are devils, they're worshipping the devil, they don't have your best interest in mind. Jesus called them hirelings, and a hireling runs when the wolf comes because they don't care for you, they don't care for the flock, they only care to make money. They're hired by the devil. And so we want to point people to Jesus, we want to be in the hands of Jesus, we want to be in his care, and we want to be loyal to him, and we want to have fellowship with Jesus, and we don't want to give up the fellowship, the true fellowship of the brothers and sisters who really love the Lord.

But certainly, give up fellowship with the apostate church, give up fellowship with dead religion, give up fellowship with sectarianism, give up fellowship with false denominations.

And so I want to encourage you as your brother in the Lord, don't be part of any of those 45,000 sects and denominations that are in the world. Get out of there, be separate, don't let them steal your money, don't let them deceive you or your family. Come to really know Jesus, worship him, and live for him with all your heart. So I want to pray for you today if you want to be separate from the harlot church system, if you want to be separate from ungodliness, and if you really just want to follow the Lord by his Holy Spirit. “Lord Jesus, I pray for my fellow brothers and sisters that are part of the true body of Christ, or even those out there that want to join your true body but they are deceived by the world and by false religion. I pray that the scales will fall off their eyes, that their eyes may be opened to the truth today, that their ears may be opened to hear you, and that they would set you up Lord Jesus as their one and only teacher, and that they would tear down all the idols, that they would tear down the idol of the false pastor, that they would tear down the idols of sectarianism and the false denominations and the false churches across America and across the world. I pray that they tear that down and that they come out of false religion and that this sort of false denomination and false sectarianism also comes out of their hearts and minds so that they can really be your pure children wearing their white robes and ready to walk into your kingdom. So I pray that you bless my brothers and sisters and let them be set apart and divided from false religion and worldliness. I pray this in your name Lord Jesus, Amen.”