For the time is coming when people will not endure sounda]"> teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. -- 2Timothy 4:3-4 (ESV)
Another translation says they will not tolerate the truth! They will not put up with sound doctrine! If you start talking doctrine to the deceived they will dismiss you out of hand as either legalistic or not understanding the love of God. I understand that God's love would not leave us in our fallen state of sin. The cross is God's love. The blood of Christ is God's love. Oh do not be deceived beloved. Make no mistake though. It is the people that gather around for themselves teachers to suit their own passions. Paul Washer once quipped that Joel Osteen was not as much a false teacher as he was God's wrath upon those willing to sit through his sermons. It is not that the people do not hear the truth. It is that they willfully turn away from it and wander into the myths they now embrace. Try talking to a Joseph Prince follower or a dominionist adherent. It is a near impossibility to break through with the truth of God's word. Jesus Himself once lamented how deep the darkness is when we have convinced ourselves that it is light.
The word of the Lord? It is offensive to them according to the key verses. Think about that for a moment. It actually offends them. The bible says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom but they operate devoid of wisdom because they have no fear. The truth offends them because it is contrary to the lies they live by. Not only is it offensive but they cannot find any pleasure in it. Remember the true word of God is as sharp as a two-edged sword. It shows us what is right but it also reveals what is wrong. Paul once drew a clear distinction:
You see, we are not like the many hucksters who preach for personal profit. We preach the word of God with sincerity and with Christ's authority, knowing that God is watching us. -- 2Corinthians 2:17 (NLT)
Many of the hucksters today preach for personal profit or power. They have no sincerity with God and no authority from Christ. The discerning pastor understands the great burden that is preaching God's word. He will understand that he is judged by a higher standard. When Paul said goodbye to the elders at Ephesus in Acts 20 he declared that he was innocent of their blood because he did not hesitate to tell them the entire counsel of God. What we need to take from that is that all preachers will be held to account for the blood of those they preach to if they did not present the entire counsel of the Lord! Half a gospel is no gospel at all.
I am full of the wrath of the Lord and I cannot hold it in. Such was the plea of Jeremiah for the people of Judah and such is our prayer today for millions of lost souls wandering in the darkness of the contemporary church. They have been purpose driven right off a cliff. Chasing money as if it mattered. Chasing this world as if it were their home. It is not. There is no revival coming beloved. I am not saying that -- God already has. In his letters to the Thessalonians, Paul reveals that there will in fact be a great apostasy in these end days. A great falling away. A great wandering off into myths. A great uprising of idolatry. These things were written down for our benefit that we might learn from them. Past is prologue.
Reverend Anthony Wade -- June 22, 2020