THE WAYS OF A FALSE TEACHER
Roelf L. Ruffner
In the apostle Peters second epistle, chapter two,
he does not mince words in his denunciation and description of the
false teachers/false prophets of his day. But these, as
natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of
the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in
their own corruption (II Peter 2:12). Whether it was the
Judaizers who were trying to bind the Law of Moses on the
Christians (Acts 15:1) or the proto-Gnostics who were
beginning to deny that Jesus had a physical body (II John 7), Peter
and the Holy Spirit are reminding us of the destructive way taken
by those who depart from New Testament Christianity.
THE WAY OF THE FALSE TEACHER IS
Like a modern day microscope, the Bible reveals to us
the way of depravity of the false teacher. And the word of God is
as revealing today concerning false teachers as it was 2,000 year
ago. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest
in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of
him with whom we have to do (Heb. 4:13).
THE WAY OF THE IRRATIONAL
God sees false teachers as they truly are, as
natural brute beasts (v.12). He sees them as irrational
creatures that speak evil of the things that they
understand not. Christianity is a rational, objective
religion of absolute truth. Prove all things; hold fast
that which is good (I Thess. 5:21). False doctrine is
basically irrational. For example, the falsity of
faith-only salvation is readily apparent to the honest
reader of the Bible. Ye see then how that by works a man
is justified, and not by faith only (James 2:24).
THE WAY OF A FALSE TEACHER IS
THE WAY OF A SPIRITUAL BUM
The false teacher is basically a sensualist who seeks to
live in luxury at the expense of others (v.13). For example, many
so-called televangelists are just professional beggars
who either live off love offerings of the naive or seek
to peddle their books at Wal-Mart to gullible buyers. Behind their
masks of piety are lust and covetousness.
THE FALSE TEACHERS WAY IS
False teachers have a heart trained in covetous
practices (v.14). In fact their downfall is often either financial
or sexually immoral in nature.
These spiritual bums live off others weaknesses.
For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and
lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers
lusts (II Tim. 3:6). The dividend or reward of
unrighteousness (v.13) of the false teacher will be eternal
TO FORSAKE THE RIGHT WAY
Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone
astray... (v.15). That right way Peter
mentions is the living way (Heb. 10:20) or the
way (John 14:6) of Jesus Christ -- the teaching of New
THE FALSE TEACHERS WAY IS
In this life there is a spiritual choice to be made.
Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and
broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be
which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the
way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it
(Matt. 7:13-14). That strait gate is salvation
through Jesus Christ. The wide gate leads away form God
toward Hell. False teachers opt for the wrong way by forsaking the
That wrong way is also the way of Balaam
(v.15). Like Balaam, the false teacher forsakes Gods word for
money. Even though rebuked by the angel of the Lord for his
lawlessness, Balaam followed money rather than the word of God (cf.
Num. 22:32; I Tim. 6:10). Likewise, modern false teachers forsake
the right way by not teaching the necessity of baptism for the
remission of sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38) to make themselves
acceptable to the denominational world. Compromising the truth of
the Gospel also sells more books and merchandise. Peter describes
such a departure as madness (v.16).
ONE OF EMPTY, INFLATED RHETORIC
False teachers are wells without water
(v.17) who speak great swelling words of
vanity (v.18). Their false doctrines make them spiritual
wells of lies and deceit. Their teachings are Satans bait to
lure an unwary soul into his trap. They often mask their treachery
in flowery language and emotional appeals. For they that
are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and
by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the
simple (Rom. 16:18).
THE WAY OF THE FALSE TEACHER IS
Contrast this with the living water (John
4:10) of Jesus Christ, the Gospel, which is simple and easily
understood. Those who truly proclaim it have no hidden agenda of
covetousness. Beware lest any man spoil you through
philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the
rudiments of the world, and not after Christ (Col. 2:8).
THE WAY OF SLAVERY
To those trying to escape sin, the false teacher promises
liberty (v.19) or a supposed license to sin. Whenever we
devalue the necessity of living a morally upright life we pervert
the Gospel. For, brethren, ye have been called unto
liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by
love serve one another (Gal. 5:13).
THE WAY OF THE FALSE TEACHER IS
Today, some false teachers preach a
grace-only salvation that says there is nothing we can do
to gain salvation, thereby excluding obedience to God. This is
merely cheap grace. True liberty is the freedom to do
Gods will -- not serve our own selfishness. But now
being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your
fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life (Rom.
THE WAY OF REGRESSION
Peter pictures the false teacher as someone who has left
the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ
(v.20) and turned from the holy commandment
delivered unto them (v.21). In other words, they know
the truth of the Gospel but have regressed to false doctrine. False
doctrine takes a soul backward, not forward to Heaven.
Look to yourselves, that ye lose not the things which we have
wrought, but that ye receive a full reward. Whosoever goeth onward
and abideth not in the teaching of Christ, hath not God; he that
abideth in the teaching, the same hath the Father and the Son
(II John 8-9, ASV). The false teacher goes beyond what the
Peter sums up Gods revulsion for false teachers
and their pernicious doctrines in a proverb. The dog is
turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her
wallowing in the mire (v.22). This is the only time in
the New Testament we find the words vomit, sow
and mire. God does not want us to have anything to do
with false teachers and we should try to get others involved with
them out of their grasp. Souls are at stake.
Does the church you attend preach and practice the
doctrines found in the New Testament? If not, you are being fed
false doctrine and are in fellowship with false teachers (Eph.
5:11). Flee that situation as if your life was in danger and find
the church of the New Testament -- the church that Jesus built.
Wherefore come out from among them, and be
ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and
I will receive you (II Cor. 6:17).
3418 Meadow Lark Lane
Carlsbad, NM 88220
Table of Contents
WOMEN IN PUBLIC WORSHIP
Garland M. Robinson
The following news item was submitted by Jerry Brewer of
Elk City, Oklahoma. It regards women being used in public worship.
His comment was as follows:
When men depart from the Truth, anything is
possible. That is the case, as is to be expected, with the 5th
and Highland Church of Christ (in name only) in
Abilene, Texas. Note the following, and especially note the absence
of a Thus saith the Lord for what they are doing. They
claim the Spirit is leading them, but theyre having
a time discerning where the Spirit is leading them. Paul
had no problem in that regard. He said, The Spirit speaketh
expressly (1 Tim. 4:1).
The following was posted on the internet by Mike Cope,
Sunday, October 10, 2004. He is one of the ministers of the 5th and
Highland Church of Christ in Abilene, Texas.
I (Mike Cope) minister alongside 42 men whom I
deeply respect. These shepherds are men who have taught me so much.
(There are 45 if you count Wally, Grady, and Clois. Technically
they are no longer elders, but I just prefer to think of it as if
theyve missed the last several meetings. In my mind, the three
of them will always be shepherds of the Highland Church!)
This mornings announcement came from a long,
prayer-filled study of scripture. These are hardly men who make
decisions because of the prevailing culture. They are wanting to
follow the lead of the Spirit and be obedient to scripture at every
Heres the announcement that Jack Griggs
Throughout its 75-year history, the
Highland Church of Christ has been blessed in countless ways. One
of the most apparent of those blessings is the spiritual giftedness
of our members and the way that their gifts have been poured out to
Another of those blessings is the willingness of
this Highland family to seriously study Gods Word and to take
direction from what is revealed. Over a decade ago, the Highland
elders began to study, pray about, and discuss among themselves the
roles of women in various worship and ministry activities. The
result of that interaction was a congregation-wide study a few
years ago on the role of women in public worship.
After that period of study, the Highland elders
decided that it was time to encourage the participation of women in
various ways in public worship. From the earliest conversations
with members, the elders communicated that it was not the intention
of Highland leadership to place women in the role of elder or
preaching minister. However, the eldership concluded that it is
scriptural for women to participate in all other ways.
It has been our intention to implement these
changes in roles carefully -- seeking natural ways to allow our
women to join our men in using their gifts. Over the past few
years, you have seen the fruits of this intent. Ministry reports,
congregational announcements, the sharing of testimony, and
participation in praise teams and dramatic presentations by women
have become fairly common. More recently, you have witnessed women
reading scripture, serving communion, and leading prayer.
Brothers and sisters, your elders want you to
know that we firmly believe that such activities are fully
scriptural and that we are grateful that we have been able to have
this experience at Highland. We are also aware that these actions
represent a great amount of change and that change can -- and does
-- produce anxiety. Please know that we are not callous to those
feelings. Yet, we believe that scripture provides all women and men
the opportunity to share their God-given gifts. Thus, you will see
women continue to be used in worship as natural and appropriate
We want you to know that when you see a woman
taking a public role in worship, it is being done with the
knowledge and approval of the eldership. For those of you for whom
this is a difficult transition, we encourage you to patiently seek
Gods peace as our church family prayerfully moves through this
For those of you who were not at Highland during
our intensive study or if you were here but would like to refresh
your study, we will be offering a class this spring that will lead
you through the scriptures that led us to our decision. Or, if you
would like to talk with an elder about this, please let that be
known. We are always willing to spend time with you.
God has blessed the Highland church with people
who are willing to serve in thousands of ways. We trust you will
join the Highland shepherds in praising the Lord when you witness
that service in your fellow sisters and brothers.
Im not posting this announcement so that
readers can print it off and give it to their elders to say,
We ought to do what Highland has done. Weve made it
clear from the beginning that were trying to discern where the
Spirit is leading us through scripture at this time. But there is
a lot of misunderstanding floating around, and I thought this might
help clarify...and maybe even bless.
I get to hang out a couple days with Landon
Saunders (and two other buddies) this week, as I have each year for
the past decade. His house has become my Valhalla, a hall of
The Highland Church announces their intention to
continue using women to wait on the Lords table and lead
prayer. They claim their decision is based on a
prayer-filled study of scripture.... It if were indeed
a prayer-filled study of Scripture, then the announcement and
practice of this church would be in accordance with the Scripture.
Instead, they trod full-speed ahead in ignoring the clear and plain
prohibition of Scripture that women are to keep silent in the
church (I Cor. 14:34; I Tim. 2:11-12).
Mike claims the elders decision is not based on
the prevailing culture. However, that is
exactly what its based on! Theres nothing in the Bible
that authorizes women taking a leading role in worship. And, the
prevailing winds of our culture are crying for women to position
themselves in such roles. So, to keep up with the times, women
thrust themselves into Scripturally forbidden positions. Its
not male arrogance or chauvinism for us to say such things.
Its simply respecting the Holy Spirits lead.
Mike claims the elders are wanting to follow the
lead of the Spirit and be obedient to scripture at every
turn. So, why do they interject women into positions the
Holy Spirit forbid them? Need we remind them that Jesus did not
teach women to lead in worship? The inspired apostles did not teach
that women should usurp authority over men and the church did not
practice it. So, where did such an idea come from? Not the Bible!
It came from the mind of men who care nothing about running
ruff-shod over the leading of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit led
the apostles and all inspired teachers and writers to make clear to
all the churches that women must maintain a subordinate role to men
in public worship. The leading of the Holy Spirit caused to be
written for all eternity these words: Let your women keep
silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to
speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith
the law (I Cor. 14:34). Let the woman learn in
silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor
to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence (I
Tim. 2:11-12). These men may claim to be led by a spirit, but it is
not the Holy Spirit.
They speak of the spiritual giftedness
of their members and how their gifts have been
poured out to benefit others. This is another modern
innovation from the minds of men. Spiritual gifts in the New
Testament were miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit. Nine such gifts
are mentioned in I Corinthians 12:1-11. The very next chapter
reveals pointedly that all such miraculous gifts would cease at the
completion of the inspired New Testament (I Cor. 13:8-10). The New
Testament was completed by the end of the first century; therefore,
no miraculous gifts exist today. They only existed during the
infancy of the church. They were to the early church what a blanket
or rattle is to a baby (I Cor. 13:11). When maturity is reached,
the baby things are put away -- they are no longer needed. So, if
members of the Highland Church are spiritually gifted, what are
they? Where did they get them? Can they provide some evidence of
the miracles they work? Dont hold your breath.
Years ago, the elders at Highland
...communicated that it was not the intention of Highland
leadership to place women in the role of elder or preaching
minister. However, the eldership concluded that it is scriptural
for women to participate in all other ways. If it is the
case that women can teach over men and take positions of authority
over men as they have concluded, then why cant women preach or
be elders? Isnt it because the prevailing culture
(the general membership) doesnt quite yet allow it or are not
ready to accept it? Is the leading of the Spirit not ready to take
them that far yet? Does the Holy Spirit survey the membership to
see how far He can lead them? The Holy Spirit has already led the
apostles into all truth and that truth has been delivered and
recorded in the New Testament (II Peter 1:3; John 16:13). So, when
men today claim to be led by the Spirit and their teaching and
practice is not according to the New Testament, we can safely and
rightly say that it is not of God.
Their announcement says, ...you have
witnessed women reading scripture, serving communion, and leading
prayer. Brothers and sisters, your elders want you to know that we
firmly believe that such activities are fully scriptural....
Instead of the elders claiming their practice is
scriptural, why not just tell the congregation to read I
Corinthians 14:34 and I Timothy 2:11-12? That will cure their
problem right now. Apparently there are some at Highland who
question their practice of having women read scripture, serve
communion and leading prayer. At least some can read for
themselves. Will they now OBEY where the Holy Spirit is leading
them in these passages?
The leadership at Highland scramble to assure the
membership that all is well. We want you to know that
when you see a woman taking a public role in worship, it is being
done with the knowledge and approval of the eldership.
Elders do not have the right to authorize women or anyone else to
violate Gods Holy Inspired Word. They have no right to prevent
the truth from being taught and practiced or to substitute actions
contrary to Scripture. The work of elders is to see to it that what
is done in and by the congregation is done correctly -- according
to a thus saith the Lord. They cannot make laws for God
and they cannot dismiss the laws of God. Their task or
responsibility is to make sure that Gods law is observed --
complied with -- obeyed. James declares, My brethren, be
not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater
condemnation (James 3:1). Elders are masters
(teachers) because that is one of their qualifications (I Tim.
3:2). They are to stop the mouths of false teachers, not promote
and encourage error themselves (Titus 1:9). Woe to them who pervert
the right ways of the Lord and teach others to do so (cf. Acts
13:10). There are many who have forsaken the right way,
and are gone astray... (cf. II Peter 2:15). False
prophets in the day of Jeremiah assured the people that all is well
and that Jeremiah did not know what he was talking about (cf. Jer.
14:13-15). Does that sound familiar? Then we read in Jeremiah
23:16, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Hearken not unto the
words of the prophets that prophesy unto you: they make you vain:
they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of
the LORD. When one listens to perverters of truth, what
can they expect? Its certainly not the reward of the Lord.
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WHATEVER HAPPENED TO DOING
BIBLE THINGS IN BIBLE WAYS?
(Churches of Christ Disaster Relief, Inc.)
Since we are taught to seek first the divine
arrangement, as per Matthew 6:33, we must be vitally concerned with
the progress and future welfare of the Lords church. The
future can be bright and challenging. It all depends on the
soundness, zeal and courage of the leaders and members. If the
church fails, it will not be because of Divine authority and
organization, but because of human failure!
One of the major problems in the church today is the
missing backbone of many in not exposing error. We must
be set for the defense of the gospel (Phil. 1:17). Many
brethren permit error to enter the body of Christ and then try to
love it out. Only the truth will make us free (John
8:32,36). Error must be exposed.
The future of the Lords church will be very dim if we
continue to exclude the Divine principle of the law of
exclusion also known as the silence of the
Scriptures. You very seldom hear it mentioned any more. Some
examples of people doing things other than what the Lord
had commanded are found in II Samuel 6, Numbers 20 and Leviticus
10. This principle is violated when men act without Gods
authority to act.
The endowed teachers named in Ephesians 4:11 were given to
the church for the purpose of teaching the saints in the complete
and full will of God until the Scriptures were completed. Once the
New Testament had been written, the miraculous gifts would cease.
The church would then be guided by the written word.
In Ephesians 4:12, the church is authorized to function (or
do its work) in only three areas. They are:
1) ...For the perfecting of the saints.
The first and highest purpose of God was and is to direct
and guide man until his faith and knowledge are perfected in his
life as a Christian (II Tim. 3:16-17; Heb. 6:1).
2) ...For the work of the ministry.
This phrase has been perverted in connection with the work
of the ministry in the present day. The original meaning involved
the most menial task and laborious work to be done. It involved
those who attended to the sick, fed the hungry, relieved the
sorrowful and distressed and the physical needs of people. The
ministry in this verse primarily applied to physical needs --
first, to the household of God; second, to the suffering of all
humanity (cf. Gal. 6:10).
3) ...For the edifying of the body of
This includes the teaching necessary to bring people into
the church and to perfect, build upon the faith, and to direct
their work and worship after entering. If saints would perfect
their own characters in righteousness and holiness, and care for
the needy and helpless, then converting all that will possibly be
converted, is just the work performed by the word of God since it
has come in its fullness.
Now, if we assign any of the preceding duties (that God
gave the church to do) to an organization other than the church,
God does not receive the glory for the work accomplished. We
transgress Gods will by not following His instructions.
An example of this occurred in the 1800s. In 1831,
Alexander Campbell advanced the idea of the American Christian
Missionary Society. This called for all the congregations of
the Lords church to pool their financial resources in order to
do mission work on behalf of the congregations. When he was
opposed, he delayed his appeal for ten years and advanced it again
in the Millennial Harbinger (his own publication). When
it was finally established and put into operation, the church was
divided and the division remains to this day. The society was an
unauthorized (unscriptural) organization. Later, he saw the error
of such an arrangement and opposed it.
God orders the church to do the Lords work (the
churchs work). The church is not authorized to do its work
through a man-made organization. It doesnt matter whether that
organization is established and operated by members of the church
or not. It doesnt matter whether the organization does a good
work or not. The church is to do ITS work. God is to receive the
glory, not man (Eph. 3:21). God doesnt receive glory in
organizations of men, whether in an evangelistic society or a
benevolent society or an edification society.
There is at present, an organization in Nashville,
Tennessee, called Churches of Christ Disaster Relief,
Inc. Many congregations and individuals of the churches
of Christ contribute to this unscriptural organization and rely
upon it to do their benevolent work for them. Their work is headed
and controlled by a board of men, not the Lords church. God
instructed the church to take care of his work, not a man-made
organization (Eph. 4:12). Since Churches of Christ Disaster
Relief, Inc. is an unscriptural organization, their work
cannot be done in the name of nor by the authority
of Christ which is demanded by Colossians 3:17. And
whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord
Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. Since
the board operating this organization is not the Lords church,
God cannot, nor will He, receive the glory for the good that is
accomplished. The word of God says, Unto him be glory
in the church by Jesus Christ throughout all ages, world
without end (Eph. 3:21). This scripture is NOT fulfilled
in a society or organization such as Disaster Relief, Inc.,
or the Red Cross or any other organization made by
I would not close this dissertation without acknowledging
the vast number of people who have been helped by the work done by
this group. The tragedy is that they are doing this without
Gods blessing or scriptural authority and persuading others to
do the same. It is my prayer they will realize the error of their
way before it is too late and the Lords church be divided by
an unscriptural organization as the church was in the past.
The future of the Lords church will be bright and
glorious if we who are members of His body love the family of God
and trust Him enough to perpetuate it in its pristine glory.
206 Van Buren St.
McMinnville, TN 37110
Table of Contents
WHAT IS THE RAPTURE?
V. Glenn McCoy
A young Christian mother recently came into my office
with her two children and said, Will you please explain to my
children what the Rapture is? Her children had been
exposed to the Rapture through some of their friends and
they were left confused. Most of us have seen bumper stickers that
refer to the Rapture by saying something to the effect:
In case of Rapture, this car will be empty. Those who
have not been indoctrinated by the proponents of this doctrine
scratch their heads in wonder as to what this could mean.
Denominational programs on television present the Rapture
as a doctrine that all should believe. Members of the Lords
church are not always prepared to discuss this subject with their
religious neighbors. Although there are some variations in beliefs
about the Rapture, in this article we will discuss the
most commonly held views.
NOT A BIBLE SUBJECT
Many are surprised to learn that the Rapture is
not a Biblical subject. The Scriptures say nothing about it. It is
a concept that has been around for some time, but was highly
promoted by Hal Lindsey in his book, The Late Great Planet
Earth, first published in 1970. According to the proponents
of the theory, at the end of the church age Jesus will
raise the righteous dead and take them, along with the righteous
who are living, to a special place, presumably like heaven, for
seven years where they will be given rewards and positions. They
teach that those people who remain on the earth will not know where
the saints have gone. They will realize they are gone, but will not
be able to explain their disappearance. They will see the open
graves that have been abandoned by the resurrected bodies, but they
will have no explanation.
WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE RAPTURE?
While this Rapture is going on in heaven for
seven years, the great tribulation supposedly takes place
on the earth. This is to happen primarily during the last three and
one-half years of the seven-year period. During that time there
will be fear, anxiety, and death on a massive scale. Further, those
who advocate the Rapture teach that at the end of the
seven-year period the righteous will go to Jerusalem with Christ
and reign with Him for a thousand years. Then, at the end of the
thousand-year reign the wicked will be resurrected and condemned to
Is there a Bible basis for the Rapture
doctrine? No! Will there ever be such a thing as the
Rapture? Absolutely not! Is there a conflict between
Rapture teaching and the plain teaching of the Bible?
Absolutely! Please notice some of the things wrong with the
teaching of the Rapture.
TWO PRIMARY PASSAGES
1. The Rapture requires too many comings of
Jesus. They have Him coming the first time to take the righteous
away for seven years. They have Him coming again seven years later
to go to Jerusalem to reign a thousand years. Then at the end of
the thousand years they have Him raising the wicked and judging
them. Jude 14,15 pictures Jesus coming to execute judgment on the
ungodly. So, according to the Rapture proponents, another
coming of the Lord is required for judgment upon the wicked.
How does all this fit with Bible teaching? The answer
is, not at all. The Bible says that when Jesus comes he will
execute judgment upon all, not some now and some later,
but all at one time. His coming will not be in stages with years
between the comings. Behold, the Lord comes with ten
thousands of His saints, to execute judgment on all, to convict all
who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they
have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which
ungodly sinners have spoken against Him (Jude 14,15).
2. The proponents of the Rapture say that
only a part of humanity will see Jesus when he comes the second
time. Only the righteous dead and the righteous living will see
Him. The remainder of the living will not see him for at least
seven years. Those among the unrighteous dead will not see him
until the thousand-year reign is finished. This cannot possibly be
correct because Revelation 1:7 states that when Jesus comes
every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the
tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him.
3. The Rapture is in conflict with Matthew
25:31-46. Unlike the Rapture theory, Matthew 25 has
all the nations, the wicked and the good being judged at
the same time in the same judgment. The Rapture has some
of the dead being raised while others are left in the grave.
However, the Bible says that Jesus will come to judge all the
living and the dead, the wicked and the good; all in the same
judgment. There will be a great separation. The wicked are placed
on the left and the righteous on the right. Those on the left will
be sentenced to punishment in hell, while those on the right will
get to enjoy the bliss of heaven. There is no room in Matthew 25
for a Rapture period, or the great tribulation,
or the thousand years between the resurrection of the righteous and
Paul states in 2 Timothy 4:1, I charge you
therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge, the
living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom.
Paul said that Jesus will judge those who are living and those who
are dead at His coming. Matthew 25:31-46 tells us that the judgment
will contain both the righteous and the wicked. Therefore, all the
wicked who are dead as well as those who are living will be judged.
At the same time, all the righteous who are living as well as those
who are dead will be judged. In contrast, the Rapture has
Jesus coming with no universal judgment, with only part of the dead
being raised, while others are left in their graves.
4. The Rapture theory is in contradiction
to the clear and positive teaching of the Lord in John 5:28,29.
Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which
all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come
forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and
they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.
While the Rapture has multiple judgments, the Bible
says that all humanity will be judged at the same time, the good as
well as the wicked.
5. The Rapture does not fit the Bible
teaching of the last day. And this is the
Fathers will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath
given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the
last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one
which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting
life: and I will raise him up at the last day. ... No man can come
to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will
raise him up at the last day (John 6:39,40,44).
Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal
life; and I will raise him up at the last day (John
6:54). He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words,
hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same
shall judge him in the last day (John 12:48). Jesus
taught in John 5:28,29 that the resurrection of both the good and
evil will take place in the same hour. That resurrection and
judgment will take place in the last day. The Rapture
theory has not just days but a thousand years separating the
resurrection and judgment of the good and evil.
6. The Rapture is in conflict with 2
Thessalonians 1:6-10. Seeing it is a righteous thing with
God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; 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: Who shall be punished with everlasting
destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of
his power; When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to
be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among
you was believed) in that day.
In the above passage, Paul spoke of two groups. The
first group is composed of those who have been troubled and
persecuted. These are the obedient. The other group is described as
those who do not know God and have not obeyed the Gospel. He also
talks about two compensations. To the afflicted He will give rest,
but to the disobedient He will bring punishment. The rest for the
righteous and punishment for the disobedient will occur in
that day when Jesus comes with His angels. The
Rapture does not have the wicked receiving their
punishment in that day as Paul declared, but a thousand
years later! According to the Rapture doctrine, the
righteous will be in the air and the wicked will still be on the
7. The Rapture conflicts with 2 Peter
3:10-14. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in
the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great
noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth
also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then
that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons
ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for
and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens
being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with
fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for
new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be
diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and
This passage refers to the second coming of Jesus.
When that happens, the earth and all in it will be burned up. But,
the Rapture demands a continuation of the earth after the
Lord comes. They say the earth will continue seven more years until
Jesus returns to Jerusalem, and then a thousand more years after
that. They teach that the earth will be renovated to be the
resting-place for those who are not among the fortunate 144,000 who
will be in heaven. Compare this far-fetched theory with the Bible
that clearly says the earth and all in it will be burned up at the
Lords second coming.
There are two primary passages that the advocates for the
Rapture use in an attempt to support this imaginative
theory. Neither the word Rapture nor the teaching to
verify it is to be found in either one. They both refer to the
second coming of Christ with no reference whatsoever to a
1 Thessalonians 4:13-17
The first passage Rapture advocates use to
support their theory is 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17. One does not have
to look very long to realize this passage in no way verifies the
Rapture. The proponents of the Rapture say that
Jesus will come in secret, but this passage tells us that when
Jesus comes it will not be in secret. He will descend
with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump
of God (v.16). The coming of Christ mentioned in this
passage is the same as the one mentioned in Revelation 1:7.
Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him,
and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth
shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen. There is no
secret coming discussed here. These Scriptures say there will be a
shout, the voice of the archangel, the trump of God, and every eye
seeing Jesus when He comes again.
2 Corinthians 15:50-58
The second passage that the advocates of the
Rapture use is I Corinthians 15:50-58. It is equally
lacking in support for the theory. Verse 52 dispels the idea of a
secret coming when it tells us that the sound of a trumpet will
accompany the Lord. There is more in this passage that does not fit
the Rapture. When Jesus comes, immortality will begin
(v.53). Death will be destroyed at His coming, swallowed up in
victory (v.54). In contrast, Rapture proponents say
that life and death will continue on earth during the time the
righteous are with Jesus. These passages do not verify the
Rapture, but in fact, they repudiate this false doctrine.
The theory of the Rapture is false because
it is not taught in the Bible. It came from the mind of men.
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It might be of interest to our readers just how far
Seek The Old Paths is reaching around the world. The printed
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make this work possible. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
We at the church of Christ on Damon Road have been greatly
encouraged by reading articles in Seek The Old
Paths. Keep up the good work ...Springfield,
VT. We enjoy STOP very much. Its one of the best of
the best periodicals out today. We look forward to reading each
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all the work you do putting out STOP. It is a wonderful paper and
I never cease to wonder at those who choose not to accept it when
sent to them. They must indeed have itching ears and dont
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bless you all ...Name withheld. STOP has
biblical truth and we are grateful. We appreciate the good
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Your brother in Christ ...Gary Hall, Cleveland, OH.
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OK. I was looking at one of your STOPs from a member
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for myself plus my children ...Sid Holt, Tuckerman, AR.
I am currently serving a five year sentence in the state
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Box 514, Granite, OK 73547.] Hope you can keep up the good
work. God bless you ...Gladys Scott, Petal, MS.
Just a note to send a word of encouragement to keep up the
excellent articles published in STOP. God bless ...Paul
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STOP. Thank you ...Robert & Ann Meeks, Lexington, TN.
...HERE AND THERE... Years ago,
on 10/14/1990, Rick Atchley, in a sermon (Dont Bother Your
Brother) preached at Richland Hills Church of Christ in Ft. Worth,
TX saying: ...Lets not limit the kingdom of God to the
size of our brotherhood. ... this is what I heard... the only
people that could go to heaven were in churches of Christ...
Im going to suggest to you not only is that not Biblical, but
it is in fact a violation of the very restoration plea to which we
are heirs...when I accept someone who has believed and repented and
been born again of water and the Spirit that does not necessarily
mean I endorse everything he says or does. And let me say this
clearly, I have brothers and sisters in Christ who may be in
churches where I couldnt worship... But if grace will cover
moral error, why are we so afraid to let it cover doctrinal
error?... [EDITORS NOTE: Though this statement
was made nearly 15 years ago, it is a growing sentiment that is
spoken many times by those who have departed from the Truth. More
and more we hear of preachers and churches who want to fellowship
any and every body. The only thing that is unscriptural today
(according to them) is to point out error and say that someone is
Biblically wrong. They would have us fellowship all the
denominations. But, this is a clear violation of II John 9-11,
Ephesians 5:11 and Romans 16:17. The Lord did not tell us to play
the political correctness game. He did not die on the
cross so people could say, Im ok, youre ok.
There is a major difference between right and wrong, truth and
error. Error condemns and truth saves. The Lord told us to
contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the
saints (Jude 3) and to stop the mouths of the gainsayers
(Titus 1:9). We are to ...ask for the old paths, where is the
good way, and walk therein (Jer. 6:16). Pardon me if
thats what we do. As for me and a host of faithful brethren
around the world, we will follow the Lord and His Way. What about
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