“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. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
“And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.” – 2 Peter 2:1-3
When I was a much younger Christian, I used to visit many “Christian” bookstores in search of books on bible doctrines and living the Christian life; these were mostly located in Lagos Island-Yaba axis. It was during that period that the Lord mercifully led me to the writings of the Puritans, the Reformers, Matthew Henry, Spurgeon, Ryle and many other faithful authors. However, to find those books, I always had to visit many bookstores and searched heavily before I could lay my hands on them. And they were always in one little corner, far from the mainstream books on display.
The books that were often in display and showcased in over ninety-percent in these bookstores were books from men like Kenneth Hagin, Myles Munroe, Kenneth Copeland, Benny Hinn and the rest. For some reasons, I just don’t feel at home with these popular authors. I tried reading Hagin but I had to abandon the idea as his books were too shallow if not out-rightly peddling false doctrines. It was much later that I learnt that these authors all belong to the Word of Faith movement, or the “Name it, Claim it” movement.
One thing that was consistent in these books by Word of Faith peddlers where their twisting of the Scriptures to make the reader feel good. Even as a young believer, I was taking aback by their total lack of depth and the obvious misrepresentation of the Bible which they freely twist without fear. They totally avoided touching the offense of the Cross; it was as if they were all intent to make God and His Gospel subservient to the whims and caprices of fallen man. They helped neither in the way of holiness nor in the practice of true faith. If they speak of faith, they only speak of it in a twisted and perverted manner. Like interpreting the resurrection of our Lord to mean the restoring of a person’s wealth, etc. The blessed doctrines of repentance, holiness, trials, heaven, separation from the world, discipline were desperately wanting in their books and sermons. They freely bring ideas and notions from the world and mingle it with Scripture as if those two can ever co-exist.
I am therefore not surprised, when recently, I discovered the YouTube video that dug up a “sermon” by Myles Munroe where he freely and shamelessly peddle one of the most damaging false doctrines the ear will ever be unfortunate to hear.
He claimed, with so much confidence, that Christians should not preach the Cross nor the Blood of Christ; that these were offensive to non-believers and the reasons why they were not won over to the Christian faith. That what non-believers wanted to hear is how their material needs will be met and how they can take charge or control of their situation. In short, what he said in that wretched sermon was akin to what Satan told Eve in the Garden: it was about man securing his happiness outside of God’s will.
Below is the YouTube video that highlight the level of perverseness of the heretic Myles Munroe:
The Bible teaches the very opposite. In fact, the Cross of Christ is the crux/center of the Gospel. That Christ came into the world to save sinners through His suffering, death and resurrection and ascension is the core and crux of the Gospel. That is the Faith of Jesus Christ. Without these, we have no Gospel. When the Apostles preached, they preached Jesus and Him crucified. Stephen, in the face of death, preached Christ and His resurrection. Paul warned us that if any man come to us with “another gospel” different from this Gospel of Christ, that person should be accursed. We are never to receive nor tolerate anyone that preaches or promote anything different.
The victory we have in the world and the hope of eternal life we have is in this Faith of Jesus Christ. “And this is the victory which overcometh the world, even our faith” (1 Jn 5:4) Faith in His divinity, co-equal, co-existent, eternally existent with the Father, that God the Son put on human nature (without relinquishing His divinity) so as to satisfy the penalty for sin on our behalf. And that He was tortured by both Jews and Gentiles alike, falsely accused, tortured and crucified, and that God the Father raised Him up on the third day never again to die, and by that became the firstborn from the dead, and on His merits, the merits of His life and death, the trusting believer can depend for victory over sin and Satan and hope with confidence in Christ to gain eternal life at the end of his life, whether that comes by death or at Christ’s second coming.
But Myles Munroe was not alone in this business of deceiving souls. They have myriads of disciples who carries on their nefarious work of perverting the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is therefore very important that the believer in Christ be ever on guard. I will leave the reader with an excerpt from J.C. Ryle’s sermon:
“Let us be on our guard against false doctrine. Unsound faith will never be the mother of really sound practice, and in these latter days, departures from the faith abound. See then that your loins be girt about with truth, and be very jealous of receiving anything which cannot be proved by the Bible. Do not think for a moment that false doctrine will meet you face to face, saying, “I am false doctrine, and I want to come into your heart.” Satan does not go to work in that way. He dresses up false doctrine like Jezebel — he paints her face and attires her hair, and tries to make her like truth. Do not think that those who preach error will never preach anything that is true. Error, would do little harm if that was the case. No! error will come before you mingled with much that is sound and scriptural.
The sermon will be all right excepting a few sentences. The book will be all good excepting a few pages. And this is the chief danger of religious error in these times — it is like the subtle poisons of days gone by — it works so deceitfully that it throws men off their guard. Brethren, take care. Remember, that even Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Keep clear of any system of religion which confounds the world and true believers, and makes no broad distinction between those who are true children of God in a congregation, and those who are not. Do not be carried away by an appearance of great self denial and humility. It is far easier to fast and wear sackcloth, and be of a sad countenance, than to receive thoroughly the doctrine of justification by faith without the deeds of the law.
“Call no man father upon earth. Do not build your faith on any minister or set of ministers. Let no man become your Pope. Make no Christian your standard of what is right in faith or practice, however high his name, his rank, or his learning. Let your creed be the Bible, and nothing but the Bible; and your example Christ, and nothing short of Him. Take heed, lest your minds be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. Be careful what books you read on religious subjects — many books of this day are leavened with doctrines which spoil the Gospel. Examine yourselves often whether you are standing in the old paths– our lost estate by nature — our recovery through our Savior’s kindness and love — our need of regeneration and renewal — our justification through grace — these are the grand doctrines, as Paul told Titus; and these are the points on which we must be sound, if we would maintain good works.”