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The Daily Word of Righteousness
The Sons of the Kingdom, #9
Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us. (I John 2:18,19)
As we read the comments of Paul and John concerning division in the churches we can observe some of the characteristics of the tares:
They cause divisions and offences by speaking things contrary to Paul's doctrine.
They are not servants of the Lord Jesus.
They are servants of their belly.
They speak good words and make fair speeches and thereby deceive naive and unsuspecting people.
They are contentious, expressing loyalty to people.
They bring envying, strife, and division proving they are acting in the flesh and are not servants of the Lord.
They are as so many antichrists, meaning they are their own god.
Both Paul and John mention that such divisions are necessary so those whom God has approved may be revealed. Paul commands us to avoid divisive believers, even though socially this is grievous to us. Nevertheless there is Divine wisdom in Paul's directive, because those who leave will strive unceasingly to tear down the work of God.
Even though it is difficult we absolutely must separate ourselves from those who cause division among us. If we do not obey the Lord in this matter we may find ourselves being accused by the rebels in the Day of Judgment. They may protest that we knew they were doing wrong and because of our self-love continued to treat them as though they were on the right path and pleasing the Lord by their criticism, gossip, and slander. The self-willed are perverse now. They will be perverse in the Day of Judgment!
How many believers have lost their crown because they did not separate themselves from those who brought division and were accusing the brothers? They remained in fellowship with the accusers until the spirit of accusation entered their own spirit. Soon they themselves were full of doubt and criticism and little by little withdrew from the work of God. They have no one to blame but themselves because the Apostle warned them to avoid those who bring division and strife.
The crown they lost will be seen, in that Day, to be of such value as to be incomprehensible. Yet they lost their crown because they placed their own social activities above the interests of the Body of Christ. They did not wait on the Lord to find out His will. They became sons of the wicked one, the evil spirit who always accuses the true sons of the Kingdom.
Notice that all such strife and party loyalty is proof that the individual is walking in the flesh and not in the Spirit and will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:20,21)
To be continued.