THE SPIRIT OF FALSE TEACHING AND PREACHING
REVELATION 18:1-24 – CONTINUED
In our last study we were dealing with Ephesians 2 and the life of the Christian; the blessings of God; the unconverted man and the wrath of God. We had looked at unsaved man living under the wrath of God and unconverted men being by nature the children of wrath.
We saw several important areas that need consideration for the Age of Grace and also important for the end times. Let’s review 8 areas of the unconverted man and his actions against God.
- The unconverted man acts against God; he does not act for God.
- The unconverted man rejects God; he does not receive God.
- The unconverted man ignores God; he does not confess God as his Savior.
- The unconverted man denies God; he does not acknowledge God.
- The unconverted man curses God; he does not praise God.
- The unconverted man serves religion; he does not serve the true and living God.
- The unconverted man honors a personal idea; he does not honor Christ, the very Son of God.
- The unconverted man acts in wrath against God; he is a child of wrath, not a child of God.
Therefore, he shall reap what he has sown. What he has measured to God shall be measured to him. The wrath of God shall fall upon him.
“He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life [heaven]; but the WRATH OF GOD abideth on him” (John 3:36).
“For THE WRATH OF GOD is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18).
“But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and WRATH” (Romans 2:8).
“Let no man deceive you with vain WORDS: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience” (Ephesians 5:6).
“And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ [John 3:16; Romans 10:9-13]” (2 Thessalonians 1:7-8).
“For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; how shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him” (Hebrews 2:2-3).
Now let’s move back to Revelation 18:2-7 and continue our study of the few who will believe and follow the Lord Jesus Christ and the Word of God in the end time.
NOTE: Babylon and society will be spiritually corrupt. We had looked at some of the spirits that corrupt man: the Spirit of bondage (Romans 8:15), the spirit of the world (I Corinthians 2:12), and the spirit of man (I Corinthians 2:11). Please review study 167.
Today we begin with the spirit that works in the children of disobedience. Remember that these spirits that are working nowalso will be enhanced in the end time.
“Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience” (Ephesians 2:2).
There is also the spirit of false teaching and preaching. This is something that Christians need to be concerned about, even now, in the Age of Grace.
“…believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are one out into The world” (I John 4:1).
This is something we need to be very concerned about, even in the Age of Grace. It is the spirit of error.
“We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error” (I John 4:6).
Now let’s look again at Babylon, the great capital city, that will be destroyed because the city corrupted nations, kings, and merchants (Revelation 18:3).
The word “fornication” tells us what this means: fornication means SPIRITUAL FORNICATION, the rejection of God and the turning to other gods. The world of the end time will be days of secularism, humanism, and materialism. Man will worship himself and his secular society. He will focus his life around 6 things…
Babylon will be the capital of the world. Babylon will take the lead in the secular society. It will have economic wealth that will literally intoxicate the world. The businessmen and merchants of the world will grow rich because of its wealth. Its wealth will be so vast that it will be able to control nations and leaders and businessmen all over the world.
The point is this: the capital city will use its influence for evil, for secularism and powers not for good. The city will manipulate the nations and leaders of the world to follow its own evil purposes.
NOTE: Those evil purposes will be a secular society, a worship of the state and its leader [Antichrist] as the answer to the utopian society, that is, to meet the needs of the people. The city will lead the nations to exterminate the Jews, Christian believers, and the faithful of all other religions who refuse to give their first loyalty to the State.
Note: Babylon will be able to seduce the nations and leaders to follow in this evil because of its wealth (see Revelation 13:4-8).
“For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written” (Romans 2:24).
Think about this, even today, if all the nations of the Middle East could be united under one rule, the confederation of power could make enormous demands and manipulate the money of the nations of the world. How? Through its oil. This would be difficult today because of the United States being independent energy wise.
However, add to this the confederation that the Antichrist will put together in the end times, along with a confederation of some nations of Europe, of the Old Roman Empire that will be revived; imagine the wealth and power. It would be mind-boggling–just stagger the imagination.
NOTE: Babylon will be destroyed because the city will corrupt people through secularism (Revelation 18:4-5). One of the easiest things in the world is to become influenced by secularism. A secular society offers comfort, health, education, possessions, pleasures, time, recreation, culture and art. It offers all that a person could ever want physically and mentally. But it denies and rejects God.
Therefore, the citizens of a secular society are led to focus life upon this world and nothing more, in violation of I John 2:15-17, which is utterly tragic.
The citizens of the world, those following the Antichrist, go out into eternity lost and doomed. They enter into whatever lies beyond this world unprepared. And Scripture declares that God and eternity lie beyond this world. Man can either choose an eternity of hell and punishment apart from God or an eternity of life and reward with God.
Therefore Babylon, the great city of secular society, will stand guilty of misleading people into sin–in the false belief of secularism and humanism. Note: these sins are said to have reached up to heaven and that God remembers its iniquities (Revelation 18:5).
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy” (2 Timothy 3:1-2).
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears” (2 Timothy 4:3).
“And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth” (Genesis 6:12).
“Help, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail from among the children of men” (Psalm 12:1).
“The good man is perished out of the earth: and there is none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood; they hunt every man his brother with a net” (Micah 7:2).
Also, Babylon will be destroyed because the city will take the lead in persecuting God’s people (Rev 18:6). Note the words “she rewarded you.” The Antichrist and his government of Babylon will launch the worst holocaust the world has ever seen against believers, the Jews, and the faithful of the earth. Literally millions will be persecuted and killed in the most inhuman and terrorizing ways imaginable.
The wrath of God will fall upon the government and capital that launched this merciless slaughter of human life. And note: the wrath will be double wrath. God will avenge the death of His dear followers, those who truly trust His Son the Lord Jesus Christ (John 3:16; Romans 10:9-13).
Babylon will be destroyed because of self-glory, pride, selfish extravagance, and indulgence (v. 7). Every good and perfect gift comes from God. Therefore, the leaders and citizens of Babylon should praise and thank God for the wealth and comforts of their land and nation. But they will not!
NOTE: They should use their wealth to help meet the needs of a world that reels under the weight of so many who are desperate and have needs. This is exactly what God expects of every leader and the people upon the earth to do.
The wealth of the land resources is not given for indulgent and extravagant living, nor for self-glorying and boasting. The natural resources and wealth of the earth have been given by God to take care of the needs of man–all men–not for just a few.
God will not, above all else, tolerate selfishness, hoarding, indulgence, extravagance, and the glorying in oneself because one has been able to hoard and bank more than someone else.
NOTE: This is the reason Babylon, the godless capital of the last days, will be destroyed. The city will lead the world to glory in the secular society of the state — the technology, science, humanism, and ability of the state to amass wealth. The city will lead the world to boast in the science and technology and efforts of man and his government–to ignore, reject and deny God. Therefore, the judgment of God will fall on and destroy Babylon.
“And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted” (Matthew 23:12).
“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked” (Revelation 3:17).
“Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverbs 16:18).
“A high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin” (Proverbs 21:4).
SATAN’S GOALS: NOTICE 5 “I WILL’S OF SATAN”
“For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High” (Isaiah 14:13-14).
“Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, and though thou set thy nest among the stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the LORD” (Obadiah 1:4).
(Revelation 18:8) – Key Words, Judgment — Babylon: There is the quickness of Babylon’s destruction. It will happen in one day. Actually verse ten says that the city will be destroyed in ONE HOUR, which is referring to immediate and instantaneous destruction.
In one hour’s time the plagues of death, mourning, and famine will sweep through the streets of the city, and then it will happen–the city will be utterly destroyed by fire. How? This verse tells us: by the strength of the Lord God who judges us.
NOTE: We will pick this up in our next study and consider two possibilities. However, as we close today, I would like to challenge each one listening to the radio or studying the message on the web to consider John 3:16 and Romans 10:9-13. Heaven and hell are both real and everyone must decide on his own where he or she wants to spend eternity.
Think about this: Jesus died for man. God loved man and wanted to save man but He had a problem. Man had ALREADY SINNED and broken the law; he had already committed rebellion against God. Therefore, the penalty of death had ALREADY BEEN ENACTED AND PRONOUNCED…MAN HAD TO DIE!
However, there was one way out of the dilemma. If the Perfect and Ideal Man would bear the penalty of sin for man, then His ideal death could stand for and cover any man who really trusted Him.
FACT: This is exactly what Jesus did. He was the ideal and Perfect Man who loved God with all His heart. Therefore, when God willed Christ to bear man’s penalty and judgment for sin, He surrendered and sacrificed Himself. He died for man; He bore man’s penalty and punishment for sin. He was perfectly obedient to God the Father EVEN IN DEATH. Therefore, He did not deserve to die; He deserved to live forever with God.
FACT: Jesus was raised up from the dead. He was the Ideal and Perfect Man; therefore, His resurrection can stand for and cover any person who truly trusts Him.
Wonderful news: how does God raise up the believer together with Christ? By belief–trust–faith. When a person truly believes in Jesus Christ, God loves His Son so much that He counts the person’s faith as his identification with Christ. God sees the persons’ faith and love for Christ, and He honors his faith and love by doing the very thing the person believes. The person believes and loves Christ for His righteousness, death, and resurrection; therefore, God counts the person as BEING TOGETHER with Christ in His righteousness, death and resurrection. God counts or credits the persons’ faith….
- as his having already died and been raised with Christ.
- as his having been placed in the death and resurrection of Christ.
- as his having been identified in the death and resurrection of Christ.
- as his having made a partaker in the death and resurrection of Christ.
- as his having been in union with the death and resurrection of Christ.
- as his having been bound together with the death and resurrection of Christ.
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