To this day I remember how foreign things seemed when Jesus separated me to Himself and began teaching me the truths of God. The things He began showing me were so contrary to what men were preaching at the time. Back then the Full Gospel people were teaching that we should claim the promises of God. I was amazed at the ignorance and foolishness of people who were rushing headlong into this heresy.
I understand that those who are taught by men are bound to carry a little man-made theology. And, since the church has been in a state of sleep for centuries, the impact that teachings of men have had on the knowledge of Christ is bound to be detrimental at the very least.
I find it hard to believe that anyone who wanted to please God would claim anything from Him. It seems to me that only those who think they deserve something would do it. That’s the definition of the word claim. It means to demand something you think you have a legal right to. You’ve been set free from the law and now you want to use the law to get what you want? Sounds hypocritical to me.
We no longer live by the law. We now live by faith in the grace and truth in Jesus through whom we were crucified to the law. The promises of God are yes in Jesus, not in the law. Why would we who have been set free from the law bind ourselves to the law again just to receive the promises of God that come not from the law, but through grace and truth in Jesus. Those who claim the promises of God profess to have faith in Jesus, but use the law to bolster the littleness of their faith just in case it doesn’t work. They appeal to God on a legal basis as well as a faith basis just in case. This is referred to as double-mindedness in James 1:7,8. And that man will receive nothing from the Lord.
Some may think claiming promises is a small thing, and that God knows we don’t mean it in a bad way. My friends, if you claim a promise of God, you are doing something that is NOT in the Bible. You are doing something that is bad, whether you mean to, or not. And what about young Christians who hear you? Aren’t you afraid of them being influenced by what they hear? THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS CLAIMING THE PROMISES OF GOD IN THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST. And yet people attempt to do it. Just like sheep being led to the slaughter, these people follow blindly those who would subvert the Word of God.
How long will this go on? When will the shepherds wash the scales from the eyes of the sheep, that they might see the light of Christ. When will the shepherds bow to the will of God? Will it be before or after they have been stripped of their golden calves?
Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant
P.S. This is only one area in which the shepherds have failed the sheep. There are more. One can only ride the golden calves of the past for so long; soon he will be required to produce works that demonstrate genuine growth in the present time.