“By this we know that we love the children of God: when we love God and keep His commandments” (1 John 5:2 LITV).
The religious world, as ever, has things backwards. Rather than loving God by keeping His commandments, they say: “By this we know that we love God: when we love the children of men and keep their commandments.”
Man’s religion has the purpose and goal of serving self, not God.
That is what man’s religion is all about – keeping the religious statutes and ways of men rather than God’s commandments, because men love themselves and seek the favor and praise of each other rather than the praise of God. They will recognize and honor one another’s manmade forms, seeking to fulfill their lusts without having to take up the cross. Man’s religion, by substituting form and appearance for the true worship of God, is blaring out to the world: “There is no God. Do what you want. We are, and we are getting away with it.”
Man, by nature, serves himself firstly. He will not be told by God, or anyone else, what to do, unless he perceives advantage in it. Man’s religion has the purpose and goal of serving self, not God, deceitfully so because done in the Name of God. How much easier to get what you want from others when presuming His stamp of approval? Who will know the difference, so long as He, the Light, doesn’t show up to illuminate things? Loving (serving) man is easier than loving (serving) God, with greater rewards; or so men think.
The world pays homage to this religious show, thinking and saying, “Surely the love of man is worthy of honor as the realization of God.” The pope is considered by many to be a man of peace. Islam is called a religion of peace. Any institutionalized religion must be for peace (even if they obliterate the notion in practice), because religions promote peace and love, right? That is what men think, reflecting how they see themselves as good. Because religion gives lip service to the ideals of peace and love in the Name of God, it is assumed to be of God. But talking about these things does not make them real. Men are religious, but God is real. Men are liars, but God is the truth. The difference between the two is night and day.
This world is in death, because dead to God and the life from above.
Question: If the pope and Islam are for peace, what are the Crusades and Jihad all about?
The world, putting its trust in men and their lies, experiences results exactly opposite of that for which it has wished and hoped. The fruit of misplaced trust inevitably and invariably comes – wars, hardships, frustrations, vexations, loss and destruction. These things go on and on, yet no one has the answer or knows the way out. No one even knows that there is a way out, a better way and the only way – true love, the love of God and the keeping of His commandments, according to His wisdom and revelation. No one knows this except that he or she has been separated from the world, onto the other side of the spiritual divide, delivered from death into life. This world and all that is in it is in death, because dead to God and the life from above. That is why it buys into religious deceit. But those in Christ Jesus are alive from the dead (John 5:24), now and forever, and can see these things, and declare them, even as we do presently.
No one knows Jesus Christ or the way of life because no one has seen Him. No man can see God and live. To see Jesus Christ you must die, as He promised (Matthew 10:39). You must forsake all you have and lose your life. The multitudes that profess His Name do so while retaining their lives. Their religion is all a hypocritical sham. Their love is for themselves, not God. The earth (man) has been empty and desolate, because cut off from the love of God, the only Way to which is through the cross (death to self) of Jesus Christ.
However, God has not forgotten His creation. The Spirit of God moves upon the face of the waters. The manifestation of the sons of God brings Light, illuminating the Way Who fulfills the hope of better things to come:
“For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly awaits the unveiling of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but on account of Him Who subjected it in hope; because even the creation itself shall be freed from the slavery of corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:19-21 EMTV).
What glorious things are promised! Freedom from corruption! No more futility of doing things that end in loss and disappointment. Instead life and increasing goodness come, born of the love of God! Wonderful! The Kingdom of Heaven on earth!
Reality is a hard and fatal blow to unreality, not a loving embrace.
So what happens at this glorious event, inaugurated at the unveiling of the sons of God? Is it a warm and fuzzy love-fest, basking in the glow of love-filled beings? Here is how the Scriptures describe it:
“Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints [the sons of God], to execute judgment against all, and to convict all the ungodly among them about all their ungodly deeds which they have committed impiously, and about all the harsh words which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him” (Jude 1:14-15 EMTV).
What a blow to the hopes of the religious, in their vain expectation of experiencing loving acceptance and promotion when God appears! Yet how could it be otherwise when things are so obviously and drastically wrong in the world of professing faith? Reality is a hard and fatal blow to unreality, not a loving embrace. “The kisses of an enemy are deceitful,” the wise man wrote, but, “faithful are the wounds of a friend” (Proverbs 27:6). Reality is what the Light reveals, when men, caught red-handed trying to cover the stinking, rotting mess they hide in darkness under their works of love, exclaim to the mountain and rocks:
“Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him sitting on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of His wrath has come, and who will be able to stand?” (Revelation 6:16-17 MKJV)
The Light is here as Remedy, a rude awakening for many.
In other words, the end is here. The mask is removed from man and his fabrication of false religion with its cover of love, that subtle substitute for true godliness. Jesus Christ, the Light of all men, comes to expose the false, to put it away once and for all, with all the deceitfulness that has kept humanity in the dark. The Light is here as Remedy, a rude awakening for many, attendant with great upheavals, the extent of which men have never seen, and never will see again. The old world dies, and the new is born. The earth has become decrepit, worn out like an old man, but God will change it altogether, as promised:
“Before time You founded the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. They shall perish, but You shall endure; yea, all of them shall wear out like a garment; You shall change them like clothing, and they shall be changed” (Psalms 102:25-26 LITV).
The Kingdom of God has come; it is time to unveil His workmanship, as promised from the beginning:
“Until the Ancient of Days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the Most High. And the time came that the saints possessed the Kingdom….And the Kingdom and rulership, and the greatness of the Kingdom under all the Heavens, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High, Whose Kingdom is an everlasting kingdom. And all kingdoms shall serve and obey Him” (Daniel 7:22,27 MKJV).
This is the manifestation of the sons of God, for it is God, the Ancient of Days, Who comes, and:
“Judgment is given to the saints of the Most High.”
What is the purpose of this judgment exercised by the sons of God? The purpose of His judgment is to bring all men into the Kingdom of God. When the time comes for the saints to possess the Kingdom, it is written that all kingdoms shall serve and obey Him. Judgment is therefore given to the saints for correction, to teach all men in the way of God.
Has God come to condemn the world, or to save it? Jesus said:
“And if any one hears My Words and does not believe, I do not judge him, for I do not come to judge the world, but to save the world. He who rejects Me and does not receive My Words has one who judges him; the Word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:47-48 MKJV).
How will the world be saved except by God’s doing? We are His Word, judged and transformed by Christ to speak to the rest of the world:
“Don’t you know that God’s people will judge the world?” (1 Corinthians 6:2 CEV)
Liberty comes by lawfulness and not by the lawlessness men have called liberty.
Is this judgment a matter of forcing men to comply? That has been the way of the world, the way of men and their religions, the force covered over by a false face of love. Force does not work because it does not address or change the inner person. Only the Word of God, Jesus Christ, can do that, and He will, as promised. His Spirit goes into the place that is otherwise inaccessible, to deal with the heart of darkness. He is the Light of all men. We come, not with carnal weapons, but spiritual, which put away destruction and bring peace of soul.
The saints of God come with judgment, not to serve themselves, but to serve God and neighbor. They come to lay down the life for others. This is the love of God. The religious come with man’s love, serving themselves, keeping their lives at their neighbor’s expense. The only way you can truly know the difference is to see the motives of the heart. That is what Jesus meant by knowing them by their fruits (Matthew 7:20).
The revelation of the sons of God, His judgment, brings freedom, not bondage; liberty in doing what is right. Liberty comes by lawfulness and not by the lawlessness men have called liberty, every person doing what is right in his or her own sight. This is the way of the kingdoms of this world with its religions, which, without fail, have brought bondage and crushing devastation to the world.
In this final showdown of good and evil, it is the evil that looks good, and the good that looks evil. Men prefer the evil, the subtle love of the serpent that allows them to keep their presumed dignity and independence from God. The judgment of God is corrective, for good, but men do not desire to admit their wrong or to lose their sovereignty and do right. Quite the opposite, they will fight tooth and nail to retain independence. Man’s love substitutes the doing of his own thing for submission to the corrective love of God, the religious honoring one another in a massive cover up of their independence and rebellion:
“So Jesus spoke to them: You are masters at making yourselves look good in front of others, but God knows what’s behind the appearance. What society sees and calls monumental, God sees through and calls monstrous” (Luke 16:15 MSG).
The love of God is scorned and rejected.
The love of God, the love of Truth from which proceeds the impartial and holy judgment given to the saints, is scorned and rejected as long as men are confederate in loving one another to cover each others’ sins. However, they cannot remain concealed when the Light shines all around them, and exposes what is behind the facade of smiling faces that, without Light, is all men can see. The subtlety of the serpent who seduced Eve is no longer effectual when the redeemed, who walk in the Light as He is in the Light, are present. His poison is neutralized:
“They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover” (Mark 16:18 KJV).
God’s love will prevail, and has, because it is His good pleasure to give us the Kingdom, those of us redeemed from the horrible deceitfulness of sin, in order to serve and obey Him for the benefit of all. The time has come. The Seed was planted. It has been watered with the blood of the saints and has now grown into a great Tree:
“Then He said, ‘What is the Kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and put in his garden; and it grew and became a large tree, and the birds of the air nested in its branches’” (Luke 13:18-19 EMTV).
Religious men, rather than entering into the Kingdom and submitting to the judgment of God, have created their own religious works that they mutually honor, even when those works are contradictory. Catholics, Protestants, Jews, and Muslims all have one thing in common: They will honor each others’ religious institutions before honoring God and forsaking their own righteousness and artificial distinctions. They will make liars of themselves in accepting the religious authority or persons of those whose doctrines blatantly condemn them. This is because their goal is to maintain acceptability or advantage among men.
The religious are not there to serve their religions and doctrines, much less God.
Think about it: If the religious will deny their own version of truth by their ways, how much more the Truth, Whom they falsely claim to love? They simply do not care, contrary to any appearance otherwise. Why? Because their religions and doctrines are there to serve them, and are expendable when they do not. The religious are not there to serve their religions and doctrines, much less the Truth, Who is God. They are there to serve themselves.
You might point out that some religious groups are not accepted or honored, or accepting of others. Let us consider the history of the Mormons, as an example.
In the beginning the Mormons were too small and weak to be of concern to the mainstream religions, which the Mormons, from their inception, rejected altogether. However, when they gained numbers and began to act on the founder’s intention to become the preeminent social power of this world, dominating the politics in the city of which he was mayor and burning down the dissenting press, there was a violent reaction.
They grease the skids of commerce to serve themselves.
This reaction led to the founder’s death, and the Mormon flight from their home base in Illinois to a new land beyond established society in the wilderness of Utah. After setting up their own “kingdom” there, it soon became apparent to the Mormons that they were better off integrating and infiltrating the larger American society. The Mormons gave up polygamy and some autonomy to officially merge into the United States of America and eventually became almost as mainstream as the denominations they once openly labeled as heretical. In fact, they are now seen as quintessentially American.
This history demonstrates how disparate and disagreeing religious parties and societies co-exist. None of them are ultimately stronger than another, because all are essentially one, mired in lies of compromise that violate their own religious principals and foundational beliefs. They grease the skids of commerce to serve themselves. Everything is negotiable to that end. It is a mass marriage of convenience.
Yes, there are fights, disagreements, separations, and divorces, as in any marriage, but, collectively, the religious are one with the world and part of man’s tyrannical rule, until the time allotted has been fulfilled. They have kept “The Golden Rule” in reverse. He that has the gold has ruled. Doing right by God and neighbor, for the sake of right and not gain, has been, according to men in their fabricated worship of God, for heretics and losers.
False religion practices a deceitful love for God.
Money speaks loudest to the religious. Money represents the power of this world; exercised over that which is seen, finite, and temporal. Trying to control this world and its inhabitants by the created thing, rather than by laying down the life for the Creator (Who does rule over everything), is what love of money is all about. That is why Jesus said you cannot serve God and money. The religious have fooled men by serving money in the Name of God. It has appeared to them that you can have your cake and eat it, too. They have not counted on Him appearing, exposing their fraud and misrepresentation of Him. “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 53:1).
You may have heard that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel, the one unacceptable in behavior made acceptable by his new-found profession. What you may not have heard is that man-made religion is patriotism of the soul. It is the ultimate refuge, the sinner portraying himself as absolved and made acceptable to himself, and, by extension, to all men. That is why many in prison become religious.
False religion practices a deceitful love for God, the subtle influence of the serpent who savors the things of men, substituting for walking in God’s commandments, which requires denying the things of men and laying down the life. Jesus said you must take up your cross if you are to follow Him (Matthew 16:24). In false religion, sinners and scoundrels, which all men have been, find acceptance without the cross – without giving up their selfish lives and undergoing inner change. The religious say to men: “Love me, acknowledge I am clean, and I will love you.”
The time is now up on man’s scandalous religious works.
This love is characterized in the Bible as a whore, a woman who captures the souls of men, confident in her power and dominion, yet whose hour has come:
“For her sins have gone up even to Heaven, and God has taken note of her evil-doing. Give to her as she gave, even an increased reward for her works; in the cup which was mixed by her, let there be mixed as much again for herself. As she gave glory to herself, and became more evil in her ways, in the same measure give her pain and weeping: for she says in her heart, I am seated here a queen, and am no widow, and will in no way see sorrow. For this reason in one day will her troubles come, death and sorrow and need of food; and she will be completely burned with fire; for strong is the Lord God Who is her Judge. And the kings of the earth, who made themselves unclean with her, and in her company gave themselves up to evil, will be weeping and crying over her, when they see the smoke of her burning” (Revelation 18:5-9 BBE).
The time is now up on man’s scandalous religious works, his pretense and arrogance. It is not a moment too soon, or too late. All has been perfectly timed and arranged by the sovereign and omnipotent Lord Jesus Christ, Who has come to judge the world. We proclaim Him with our mouths, because firstly by our lives, which He has caused us to lay down for His sake. They are His, and He is ours. It is His day of vindication.
“Lord Jesus,” all saints say as one, “Let it happen.”
Here are a few Scriptures about love, the true kind, in which, if you turn to God and obey Him, you will recognize the false love and will see the subtle one behind it:
“And it will be that if you truly give ear to the orders which I put before you this day, loving the Lord your God and worshipping Him with all your heart and all your soul, then I will send rain on your land at the right time, the early rains and the late rains, so that you may get in your grain and your wine and your oil. And I will give grass in your fields for your cattle, so that you may have food in full measure. But take care that your hearts are not turned to false ways so that you become servants and worshippers of other gods” (Deuteronomy 11:13-16 BBE).
If you do not love God, be sure that any profession of faith or spirituality you have will become a vain one (if it is not already), and your heart will be turned to false ways in the worship of other gods, as with Solomon, who did not obey (love God) in the matter of marrying strange women.
True love is what you do, not what gets done to you.
If you do not love God, you do not love anyone else either, as you ought to. Your love is of the kind that gives to get, not the kind that proves, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35). True love is what you do, not what gets done to you:
“This is love, that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, that as you have heard from the beginning, that you should walk in it” (2 John 1:6 EMTV).
“For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:3 EMTV).
“Listen, Israel: The LORD is our God. The LORD is the only God. Love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength” (Deuteronomy 6:4-5 GW).
“And now, Israel, what would the Lord your God have you do, but to go in the fear of the Lord your God, walking in all His ways and loving Him and doing His pleasure with all your heart and all your soul?” (Deuteronomy 10:12 BBE)
“He has shown you, O man, what is good. What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8 HNV)
If we obey God, we will love our neighbor in truth.
On this foundation we will love our neighbor:
“You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the children of your people; but you shall love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD” (Leviticus 19:18 HNV).
“The stranger who lives as a foreigner with you shall be to you as the native-born among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you lived as foreigners in the land of Egypt. I am the LORD your God” (Leviticus 19:34 HNV).
If we obey God, we will love our neighbor in truth, and not in acceptance of lies or persons:
“When a prophet or visionary gets up in your community and gives out a miracle-sign or wonder, and the miracle-sign or wonder that he gave out happens and he says, ‘Let’s follow other gods’ (these are gods you know nothing about), ‘let’s worship them,’ don’t pay any attention to what that prophet or visionary says. GOD, your God, is testing you to find out if you totally love Him with everything you have in you. You are to follow only GOD, your God, hold Him in deep reverence, keep His commandments, listen obediently to what He says, serve Him–hold on to Him for dear life!” (Deuteronomy 13:1-4 MSG).
Only the love of God will keep you from mixing with man.
Loving God, unlike the love of man, is not possible by human will or power. It requires His work of grace:
“The LORD your God will circumcise your heart, and the heart of your seed, to love the LORD your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, that you may live” (Deuteronomy 30:6 HNV).
“But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12-13 KJV).
Only the love of God, cleaving to Him with all your heart, will keep you from mixing with man and ultimately perishing in deceitful love:
“Take good heed therefore to yourselves, that you love the LORD your God. Else if you do at all go back, and cleave to the remnant of these nations, even these who remain among you, and make marriages with them, and go in to them, and they to you; know for a certainty that the LORD your God will no more drive these nations from out of your sight; but they shall be a snare and a trap to you, and a scourge in your sides, and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from off this good land which the LORD your God has given you” (Joshua 23:11-13 HNV).
If you love God, you will also love men as God loves them, to do good to them.
If you, a believer, do not love God, choosing to serve yourself instead, surely you will serve evil and incur the wrath of God:
“Jehu, son of the seer Hanani, asked King Jehoshaphat, ‘Why do you help wicked people and love those who hate the LORD? The LORD’S anger is directed toward you because you have done this’” (2 Chronicles 19:2 GW).
If you love God, you will also love men as God loves them, not for what He can get from them, but to do good to them. If you love God, men will hate you, even as they hate Him:
“God of my praise, let my prayer be answered; For the mouth of the sinner is open against me in deceit: his tongue has said false things against me. Words of hate are round about me; they have made war against me without cause. For my love they give me back hate; but I have given myself to prayer. They have put on me evil for good; hate in exchange for my love” (Psalms 109:1-5 BBE).
However you will be kept in perfect peace, and no man can take this from you:
“Great peace is to those who love Your Law, and there is no stumblingblock to them” (Psalms 119:165 LITV).
You will be wise and receive His messengers of correction, loving them, though the wicked will not:
“Don’t reprove a scoffer, lest he hate you. Reprove a wise man, and he will love you” (Proverbs 9:8 HNV).
“I correct and punish everyone I love. So make up your minds to turn away from your sins” (Revelation 3:19 CEV).
“…Unless I wash you, you have no part with Me” (John 13:8).
You will have the true love that loves the children of God.
You will blot out the sins of others, though the wicked will stir up strife:
“Hatred stirs up fights, but love covers all sins” (Proverbs 10:12 MKJV).
“You shall not hate your brother in your heart; you shall certainly reprove your neighbor, and not allow sin on him. You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the sons of your people; but you shall love your neighbor as yourself; I am Jehovah” (Leviticus 19:17-18 LITV).
The wicked will make a show of love but will not obey, not having the true love of God:
“And they come to you as the people come, and they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words. But they will not do them. For with their mouth they show much love, but their heart goes after their unjust gain” (Ezekiel 33:31 MKJV).
But you will have the true love that loves the children of God:
“By this we know that we love the children of God: when we love God and keep His commandments” (1 John 5:2 LITV).
“And as you have made your souls clean, being ruled by what is true, and loving one another without deceit, see that your love is warm and from the heart: Because you have had a new birth, not from the seed of man, but from eternal seed, through the word of a living and unchanging God” (1 Peter 1:22-23 BBE).
And you will know God, being assured you are in Him.
You will have the true love of all men, as opposed to the love that loves only those that love them:
“And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise. But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them” (Luke 6:31-32 EMTV).
And you will know God, being assured you are in Him:
“But whoever keeps His Word, truly in this one the love of God is perfected. By this we know that we are in Him” (1 John 2:5 MKJV).
Those given the grace to love God and neighbor will be accepted of God, but rejected by men, just as Jesus promised and exemplified. Whoever's eyes are opened will see the same in the following brief, but poignant, correspondence.
Can you trust your senses, particularly in things spiritual, and how will you recognize the love of God?
A reader condemns the Lord's judgment as "hate" when it is the very fire that will free her from her own self-worth.