Archive for the ‘Seven Churches of Revelation’ Category

Embracing the Anti-Christ: The Heresy of Interfaith Dialogue

July 1, 2020

COMING SOON!  An exposé on the interfaith movement and, how it is perverting the Gospel and denying Muslims the truth of salvation.

EmbracingTheAnti-Christ.final

Follow this blog site for updates coming soon.  The book every true follower of Christ needs to read and share.  To express your interest and receive early order updates, e-mail understandingislamoffices@gmail.com.  Please share this post far and wide. Thank you!

Whom Do We Serve?

May 23, 2020

James F. Gauss, Ph.D.

May 22, 2020

Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.  Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.

Romans 13:1-2

There you have it: “Submit to the governing authorities.” Our excuse not to be bold and courageous and to be submissive to secular rule. I am tired of this scripture being thrown in the faces of Christians every time Christian leadership is too hesitant to do what God commands them to do.

This admonition by Paul to the new Christians in Rome has nothing to do with the church submitting to ungodly authority. It is an instruction for individuals to be good citizens and follow just laws.

Regardless of your own interpretation of Paul’s words, my question to pastors as one of Christ’s shepherds is: Who is the head of your church? Christ or the government? You know the answer, so I will refrain from providing it.

As a World War II baby I grew up in segregated America. Although we lived in a multi-racial, multi-ethnic rural neighborhood in the northeast of the nation, I was pretty much oblivious to racial injustice. That all changed with a rude awakening when I decided to attend college in the deep south in 1960. As a friendly, naïve northerner, my inclination was to make friends with anyone, no matter what their station in life or skin color. That got me in trouble real quick. Hold on, there’s a point to this diversion.

The school was, of course, lily white and mostly born and bred southerners. All the menial jobs on campus and elsewhere were performed by black men and women who were paid a token 50-cents per hour (minimum wage was $1.00). I cringed at the way I saw my fellow southern students treat the black workers. They were repeatedly offensive, disrespectful and always playing pranks on these hard working people. Partly as a result, I befriended a number of the workers. Largely to let them know that not everyone thought ill of them or saw them as subhuman, not deserving of respect. And, I paid a small price, as southern students in my dorm pulled pranks on me to show their displeasure. However, that did not deter me, and I showed the same respect to blacks off campus too.

I write this, not to elevate myself, but to illustrate a forthcoming point. This was the “civil rights” era of Martin Luther King, Jr., Medgar Evers and many more black and white civil rights leaders. They emerged from their churches to fight for justice for all under the U.S. Constitution. During the spring semester of my freshman year, a young black man from South Carolina, Harvey Gantt (look him up), wanted to attend my school’s acclaimed architectural school. At the time, I was taking a class on U.S. government. One day the professor stood before the class and proclaimed, that if this “nigger” tried to integrate the school, they would lynch him. Needless to say, it was the only course I ever failed, because I withdrew the next day.

There are many stories I could share, but my point is this: Where would America and black Americans be today, if pastors and Christians, continued to obey the segregated “law” of the South and ignored the unjust treatment of fellow Americans and brothers and sisters in Christ? For Freedom Fighters of that era, there was no question, no hesitation for them, “on what would Jesus do?” Jesus would defy unjust authority, just like He did with the Pharisees who sought to kill Him.

How many followers of Christ were persecuted, tortured and brutally killed during the first century of the Church because they refused to submit to the authorities? Despite the constant threats from multiple sources they continued to meet, pray corporately and preach the Gospel and minister to the saints of Christ.

Throughout the centuries, hundreds of millions of Christ followers have lost their lives because they refused to deny Christ or stop practicing their faith. Fast forward to today. Around the world, in such oppressive environments as China, SE Asia, Iran, the Middle East, parts of Africa and elsewhere, bold and courageous warriors for Christ daily defy the powers to be and risk their lives to meet, pray, worship, testify, break bread, study God’s word, etc.

What can we say; what can you say to these brothers and sisters in Christ who risk everything for the cause of Christ, while we humbly submit to our local and state “lord and masters?” Pastors and congregants, who controls your church? The government or Christ and His body of believers?

Yes, I get all the health concerns of this “pandemic.” I also know that it now has been proven that it was grossly overblown. There was absolutely no need to shut down America’s economy and certainly no need to shutter our churches. Yes, I know, the church is not the building, I fully understand that. This whole mess, as far as I’m concerned, shows just how weak the church is in America. The church has always had the ability and willingness to take care of its own, including the infirm and needy. It does not need the permission or instructions from the state or other “authorities.” I would submit that each church and each pastor knows how to protect and minister to their vulnerable members without the dictates from the state.

Think about it, pastors. What will you do next time, you are told to shut down your church? And, there will be a next time. After all, the authorities found out just how easy it was to scare you into submission. What stand will you take and with whom will you stand? As a reminder, the church is to be God’s “salt” and “light” under any conditions, and at all times. It is to show the way, not be told which way to go by godless authority. Before COVID-19, other than for weather related reasons, when was the last time you shuttered your church because somebody told you to? When will be the next time?

What if, instead of fully closing down, non-vulnerable and willing church members came together in corporate prayer and fasting, confessing their sins and the sins of the country, repenting and calling upon God’s mercy and seeking His intervention on behalf of their loved ones and the country. Would we be in a different and better place today? Yes, I know thousands of Christians were doing that on their own, but the power of the corporate prayer of the Body of Christ cannot be understated. This would have been an excellent time for churches across America to have been praying for much needed revival throughout our nation.

And He called the twelve to Himself, and began to send them out two by two,

and gave them power over unclean spirits.

Mark 6:7

Fence Sitters Need Not Apply

August 23, 2019

fence sitters

Jesus said to him,

“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

John 14:6

James F. Gauss, Ph.D.

There is a war raging for the soul of the Church throughout America, but few see it. Christian leaders—some notable—are falling one after another for a false gospel that is leading millions of biblically ignorant and likely nominal Christians astray and into the pits of hell.

Pastor after pastor; leader after leader; church after church and denomination after denomination have fallen prey to the unholy gospel of Satan himself, the committing heresy and apostasy against the Word of God. They have, in essence, become the church of Laodicea prophesied about in Revelation 3:14-15. “And to the angel [or messenger] of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot.”

The Church of Laodicea. So, what was the failure of the church of Laodicea according to Jesus? Of the seven churches mentioned in chapters two and three of the Book of Revelation, the Laodicean church was the only one that Jesus did not commend for something. First, for what did Jesus commend the other six churches?

To the church in Ephesus, Jesus said, “I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars;” (Revelation 2:2). To the church in Smyrna, Jesus said, “I know your works, tribulation, and poverty (but you are rich); and I know the blasphemy of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan” (Revelation 2:9). To the third, the church in Pergamum, Jesus said, “I know your works, and where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is. And you hold fast to My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days in which Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells” (Revelation 2:13).

Once again, to the church in Thyatria, Jesus also offered His commendation. “I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first” (Revelation 2:19). To the church in Sardis, Jesus had a warning and a commendation. “I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.  Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God. . . . You have a few names even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy” (Revelation 3:1-2, 4). Although the flame of faith was dying in Sardis, there was still hope because of the faithfulness of a few. The last church to receive a commendation from Jesus was the church in Philadelphia. To this church Jesus said, “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name” (Revelation 3:8). Even though this church was weak, they had kept the Word of God and did not deny the name of Jesus Christ.

So, what was the sin of the Laodicean church? Since Jesus did not commend them for anything that He commended the other six churches, it can be surmised that they were guilty of the opposite. So, unlike the church of Ephesus, were the members of the Laodicean church tolerating evil in their midst? The church in Smyrna was commended for enduring tribulation and poverty while not tolerating blasphemy in their midst. The Laodicean church was wealthy and did not recognize their spiritual poverty. Jesus commended the church of Pergamum for their faithfulness while living in Satan’s evil domain. The church at Laodicea had no understanding or awareness of the evil among them. To the church in Thyatria, Jesus commended their good works of faithfulness; their love and patience.   In Laodicea the church was unfaithful and blinded to their wretched deeds. They only had love for themselves and their own wellbeing. The church at Sardis was barely alive spiritually, but had hope of revival due to a faithful few. The church in Philadelphia was also weak, but Jesus commended them for remaining true to the Word of God and not rejecting Him. However, the church in Laodicea failed to recognize their failings or their need to repent and turn back to the truth of the Gospel and the true nature of their calling in Jesus Christ.

How many churches and denominations today, led by ignorant and deceiving spiritual leaders fall into the description of the church of Laodicea? Unfortunately, far too many and it is getting worse by the day. Thousands of churches across America and their unbiblical leaders are straying from the real, unadulterated Gospel of the New Testament. They embrace abortion, gay rights, perversion of various persuasions, environmentalism, social justice, anti-Semitism, anti-Israel, embrace Islam and Muslims as “brothers and sisters” and a host of other non-biblical viewpoints, while ignoring the weightier commandments and admonitions of Jesus Christ and His Apostles.

The consequences of being neither cold nor hot. Of the seven churches, the church of Laodicea was in the wealthiest city. The church had become “fat and happy” so to speak, and apparently had the reputation of not standing for anything but falling for everything when it came to Christian doctrinal issues. They became indifferent and spiritually lazy when it came to the finer truths of the Gospel. In modern terms, they had become ChINOs (Christians-in-Name-Only). Although they were no longer “hot” for the Gospel of Christ and His commandments, they were not totally “cold” to the truth. Instead they were “lukewarm,” showing little enthusiasm for sharing the Good News with the lost. They had become indifferent, apathetic and unmoved by the salvation message they had been given to share with others. Because of this, Jesus said He would vomit them out of His mouth.

“I know your works,” Jesus said to the church at Laodicea, “that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot.  So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.  Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked” (Revelation 3:15-17). In stating such, Jesus was indicating that He wanted nothing to do with this lukewarm, spiritually lethargic church—unless they turned from their gospel of indifference and heresy.

“I counsel you,” Jesus warned, “to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see” (Revelation 3:15-18).

The Apostle Paul had a similar warning to members of the churches in Galatia. “I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed” (Galatians 1:6-8). Strong words for those who pervert the Gospel of Christ and create their own alternative gospel from worldly minds.

Jesus Christ is not looking for, nor does He want fence sitters—those that are ambivalent or reticent to sharing the Word of God with others. “Preach the word!” Paul instructed Timothy. “Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching” (2 Timothy 4:2). All followers of Christ should do the same.