Class Notes: 3/15/2020
Psa 23:1-6; Psa 91:1-10; The doctrine of evil part 9
Psa 23:1-6; A Psalm of David. The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters.
3 He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Psalm 91:1-10; 1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High Will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!”
3 For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper And from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with His pinions, And under His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.
5 You will not be afraid of the terror by night, Or of the arrow that flies by day;
6 Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness, Or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.
7 A thousand may fall at your side And ten thousand at your right hand, But it shall not approach you.
8 You will only look on with your eyes And see the recompense of the wicked.
9 For you have made the Lord, my refuge, Even the Most High, your dwelling place.
10 No evil will befall you, Nor will any plague come near your tent.
We are presently in a study of the doctrine of evil that is the product of believing the false narrative of the public lie that satan, the god of this world, fabricates and raises up in opposition to truth and righteousness that are the product of believing the Person and Word of the Living God of the universe.
At this point we are looking at Lewis Sperry Chafer's description of satan's system in his Systematic Theology Volume 2 pages 100-111. Picking up from where we left off...
It is also noticeable that the term "infidel" has, within a generation, disappeared from common usage, and that that manner of open denial of the truth has been almost wholly abandoned.
Yet the real Church has by no me/ans lost her foes, for they are now even more numerous, subtle, and terrible than ever before. These present enemies, however, like the unclean birds in the mustard tree, have taken shelter under her branches.
They are officiating at her most sacred altars and conducting her institutions. These vultures are fed by a multitude, both in the church and out, who, in satanic blindness, are committed to the furtherance of any project or the acceptance of any theory that promises good to the world if it is apparently based upon Scripture, little realizing that they are often really supporting the enemy of God.
A counterfeit is Satan's most natural method of resisting the purpose of God, since by it he can realize to that extent his desire to be like the Most High. Every material is now at hand, as never before, for the setting up of those conditions which are predicted to appear only in the very end of the age.
In 2 Timothy 3:1-5 one of these predictions may be found: "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, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away."
Every word of this prophecy is worthy of most careful study in the light of the present tendency of society. The fifth verse is especially important in connection with the subject of counterfeits of the truth: "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." Here it is stated that in these last days forms of godliness shall appear which, however, deny the power of God, and from such the believer is warned to turn away.
The important element in the true faith which is to be omitted in this "form" is defined elsewhere in the Scriptures: "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek" (Rom. 1:16);
"But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God" (1 Cor. 1:23-24).
Therefore, that which is omitted so carefully from these forms is the salvation which is in Christ. This is most suggestive, for "there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved," and it is by salvation alone that any deliverance can be had from the power of darkness.
Without this salvation Satan can still claim all his own. It is perhaps necessary to add that, judging from all his writings, this salvation of which Paul confesses he was not ashamed was no less an undertaking than regeneration by the Spirit; and whatever other theories may be advanced, this is the teaching of the Spirit through the Apostle Paul.
This prophecy concerning conditions in the "last days" ends with an injunction which is addressed only to the believers who are called upon to live and witness during those days. To them it is said: "from such [a form of godliness which denies the power thereof] turn away."
As certainly as the "last days" are now present, so certainly this injunction is now to be heeded, and the Lord's people are called upon to separate from churches and institutions which deny the gospel of God's saving grace through the substitutionary blood-redemption of the cross.
To support institutions or ministries which "deny the power thereof," is to lend aid to Satan-the enemy of God. With no less force it is stated in 2 Peter 2:1, "But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them and bring upon themselves swift destruction."
In the same manner, according to this passage, the denial falls not on the Person of Christ, but rather on His redeeming work-"the Lord that bought them." It therefore follows that one feature of the last days will be a form of godliness which carefully denies the power of God in salvation.
Again, Satan is "in the latter times" to be the promoter of a system of truth or doctrine: "Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron" (1 Tim. 4:1-2).
These predicted satanic systems are here accurately described. Their offers will be so attractive and externally so religious that into them will be drawn some who "shall depart from the faith," they being enticed by seducing spirits. No reference is made here to personal faith by which one may be saved. It is "the faith"-a body of truth (cf. Jude 1:3) which is first seen to some extent, and then rejected.
This a regenerate person will never do. These attractive systems are not only from Satan, but are themselves "lies in hypocrisy," being presented by those whose conscience has been seared with a hot iron. No more illuminating terms could be used than these.
A lie covered by hypocrisy means, evidently, that they are still attempting to be counted among the faithful; and the conscience seared would indicate that they can distort the testimony of God and blindly point other souls to perdition, without present remorse or regret.
The doctrines of devils are again referred to in Revelation 2:24; R.V. as "the deep things of Satan," and this is Satan's counterfeit of "the deep things of God" which the Spirit reveals to them that love Him (1 Cor. 2:10;).
Thus there are predicted for the last days of this age both a form of godliness which denies the power of salvation that is in Christ, and a system known as "the deep things of Satan" or "doctrines of devils," speaking lies in hypocrisy.
Can there be any doubt that these two Scriptures describe the same thing, since they also refer to the same time? The lies of one can be but the covered denial of salvation in the other.
Again, Satan has his assembly, or congregational meeting, which is his counterfeit of the visible church. This assembly is referred to, both in Revelation 2:9; and 3:9; as the "synagogue of Satan," an organized assembly being relatively as important for testimony in the deep things of Satan as it has been in the things of God.
In Matthew 13 the tares appear among the wheat and their appearance is said to be after the sowing of the wheat. So, also, the "children of the wicked one" appear and are often included and even organized within the forms of the visible church.
The assembly of Satan, calling itself a part of the visible church, is to have its ministers and teachers. This is stated in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15;: "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works." Here is a remarkable revelation of the possible extent of the satanic counterfeit "false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ" and "ministers of righteousness"; yet these are shown to be only agents of the great deceiver, Satan, who is himself transformed into an angel of light.
It is evident that the method of this deception is to imitate the real ministers of Christ. Certainly these false apostles cannot so appear unless they gather into their message every available "form of godliness" and cover their lies with the most subtle hypocrisy.
Evil will not appear on the outside of these systems; but they will be announced as "another gospel" or as a larger understanding of the previously accepted truth, and will be all the more attractive and delusive since they are heralded by those who claim to be ministers of Christ, who reflect the beauty of an "angel of light," and whose lives are undoubtedly free from great temptation.
It should be noted, however, that these false ministers do not necessarily know the real mission they have. Being unregenerate persons of the cosmos, and thus blinded to the real gospel, they are sincere, preaching and teaching the best things the angel of light, their energizing power, is pleased to reveal unto them. Their gospel is one of human reason, and appeals to human resources.
There can be no appreciation of divine revelation in them, for they have not come really to know God or His Son, Jesus Christ. They are ministers of righteousness, which message should never be confused with the gospel of grace.
One is directed only at the reformation of the natural man, while the other aims at regeneration through the power of God. As all this is true, how perilous is the attitude of many who follow attractive ministers and religious guides only because they claim to be such and are sincere, and who are not awake to the one final test of doctrine by which alone the whole covert system of satanic lies may be distinguished from the truth of God!
In this connection John writes the following warning: "If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed" (2 John 1:10;).
False teachers are usually sincere and full of humanitarian zeal; but they are unregenerate. This judgment necessarily follows when it is understood that they deny the only ground of redemption.
Being unregenerate, it is said of them: "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Cor. 2:14;).
Such religious leaders may be highly educated and able to speak with authority on every aspect of human knowledge; but if they are not born again, their judgment in spiritual matters is worthless and misleading.
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