How do you know if something is ‘legit’?
How do you know if you can trust a person–a teacher, a boss, a politician, a minister?
Is it possible to know, for example, whether or not a Church or ‘religious organization’ is the ‘real deal’ or not?
Is there a ‘litmus test’?
Actually, there is!
In my reading this morning, I came to 1 John 4: 1-3, which says: “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.”
Note: that does NOT mean that ‘everyone who admits that Jesus was real’ is legit.
You have to remember, they didn’t write First and Last names back then–in other words ‘Jesus Christ’ isn’t like saying ‘Dave Johnson’. In that day, they either introduced someone as to their family, “Jesus, son of Joseph”, or according to their origin, “Jesus of Nazareth”. “Jesus Christ” is His name and His title. ‘Christ’ is not a last name, but a title, meaning ‘Chosen One’ or ‘Anointed One’…Messiah.
John is saying that “Anyone who acknowledges that Jesus (of Nazareth) is from God, and is the Messiah’ is from God. In fact, it’s clear that John taught that Jesus is God, Jesus is Lord, Jesus is Messiah, and Jesus is Risen. Therefore, anyone who does not acknowledge all of these things is representing ‘the spirit of the antichrist’.
He goes on to say that “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 5 They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us.This is how we recognize the Spirit[a] of truth and the spirit of falsehood.” (1 John 4:4-6)
Anyone who does not acknowledge these truths about Jesus is ‘from the world’ and will only speak from this world’s viewpoint–not God’s.
Therefore, Christian, you MUST be crystal clear: Jesus the Christ is God! Jesus the Christ is Messiah! Jesus the Christ is Risen, Jesus the Christ is LORD, and Jesus the Christ is the One and Only Mediator between God and Man.
He is ‘The One’ that “every knee will bow, and every tongue confess is Lord, to the glory of God the Father!” (Philippians 2:10-11)
Let no one deceive you: No bumper sticker, no popular speaker, no tv show, nobody which says anything like ‘all roads lead to God’ or ‘as long as you’re sincere…’, or anything like that is ‘legit’.
It is absolutely true that God loves us, and He wants us to come to salvation, through Jesus the Christ…but He is THE authorized One, period.
He is the embodiment of God–His character, His holiness, His righteousness and His grace.
Matthew 7:13-14: “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
Are YOU trusting in Him, or in the voices from this world?
Come! NOW is the time to Worship Him!