Trinity 8 - Sermon Notes
Texts: Jer 23:16-29; Rom 8:12-17; Matt 7:15-23
In the Garden of Eden, Satan deceived Eve & Adam.
How did Satan deceive Eve? Satan said somethings that were true to God’s Word. Such as asking Eve: “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” How did Eve respond? Eve answered saying, yes, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it lest you die.’ ”
How did Satan deceive Eve? Satan also said some things that were false to God’s Word. Such as telling Eve: “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 So when Eve saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings.
Beware! Satan is a false teacher even within conservative Protestantism.
Satan teaches half truths. Therefore you mark and avoid him.
Yet, this is a hard sermon to deliver. I am going to name a few names of false teachers that you may very well like. The good thing about the following teachers is that about half of what they teach conforms to the Bible. So you may have enjoyed reading their books or listening to their podcasts. The bad thing is that about half of what they teach is opposed to the Bible and dangerous to your soul.
I am not going to dwell on false teachers such as the Pope who places himself above the Bible. I’m not going to focus false teachers in the liberal mainline denomination who deny the authority and inerrancy of the Holy Bible. I’m not even going to focus on the women’s ordination movement, which is expressly condemned in the Bible, or even the Seminex movement within our own church body, even though I should.
Rather, I’m going to focus on three false but popular teachers within conservative Protestantism. This sermon is hard because you might enjoy their books or podcasts and you may even have grown in the Word of God because of them. But beware, they are false teachers and just as you would not endorse Satan to be a worthy teacher of the Bible in this pulpit so also you should stop endorsing the following false teachers within conservative Protestantism. Mark them and avoid them (Romans 16) as much as you mark and avoid Satan.
Here we go with three names and a few examples:
First. Beware! Beth Moore is a false teacher
Beth Moore receives personal non-Biblical revelations.
Beth Moore writes in her book So Long, Insecurity, saying in this long quote:
I’d like to replay it to you in the form of a dialogue because when it occurred, it was as if God spoke every word concretely and audibly to me. In reality, what I’ll describe was expressed in my spirit rather than in my physical hearing. After spending years in relationship with God, seeking what He’s like and how He operates in Scripture, I, like many people, can get a sense of something He’s strongly impressing upon me without “hearing” precise words. When thoughts come to me out of the blue that I’m convinced did not originate in my own mind, if they’re consistent with God’s character and sound like something He would say in Scripture, I usually assume it’s Him. Ultimately, time proves whether or not I discerned the voice correctly. If it produces substantial fruit, I know it was God and I was on target. If nothing comes of it, I probably misunderstood or accidentally ascribed it to Him. None of us are beyond confusing our own thoughts with God’s, no matter how many times we’ve been around the bend with Him (Moore, “So Long,” pp. 325-326).
Response: Receiving personal revelation from outside of the Bible is dangerous. God tells us that He has given us Scripture:
16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (NKJV, 2 Timothy 3:16-17).
Yet, Beth Moore repeatedly relies on personal revelation that she has received from God outside of the Bible. She also encourages others to get personal, non-Biblical revelation and even incorporates their personal revelations into her books. This implies that the Scriptures are not sufficient to equip us. Ironically, Moore describes the danger of this non-Biblical revelation. Unfortunately she fails to recognize this significant danger even from her own writing.
Repent by marking and avoiding Beth Moore (Romans 16) as much as you mark and avoid Satan.
Second, beware! Joyce Meyer is a false teacher
Joyce teaches that Jesus stopped being the Son of God.
And I quote: "Jesus could have helped himself up until the point where he said I commend my spirit into your hands, at that point Jesus couldn’t do nothing for himself anymore. Jesus had become sin, Jesus was no longer the Son of God. Jesus was sin." (http://storage.carm.org/joycemeyer/joyce-meyer-Jesus-became-sin-stopped-being-son-of-God.mp3)
Response: This is false teaching. Jesus did not ever stop being the son of God. Essentially what Joyce Meyer is saying is that Jesus stopped being divine, the eternal son, second person of the Trinity. This is an attack on the very nature of Christ and it is a dangerous false teaching. Joyce Meyer needs to repent and retract this statement. There is no place in Scripture that says Jesus stopped being the son of God. She's adding to the word of God and placing in the hearts and minds of listeners false doctrine.
Also, Joyce Meyer said she is not a sinner. Like many of you, Joyce grew up in a Missouri Synod church. In this quote, Joyce attacks the confession of sins that you confessed a few minutes ago and refuses the absolution. I quote:
"I am not poor. I am not miserable and I am not a sinner. That is a lie from the pit of hell. That is what I were and if I still was then Jesus died in vain. I'm going to tell you something folks. I didn't stop sinning until I finally got it through my thick head I wasn't a sinner anymore. And the religious world thinks that's heresy (false teaching) and they want to hang you for it. But the Bible says that I am righteous and I can't be righteous and be a sinner at the same time." (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5dmHJdM63hk)
Response: 1 John 1:8 says, "If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us." Notice that John the apostle says "we." He includes himself with sinners. Also, Paul said in Rom. 7:19-20, 24, "For the good that I wish, I do not do; but I practice the very evil that I do not wish. 20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not wish, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me...24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?" Is Joyce Meyer better in Christian character than the apostle John and the apostle Paul? I think not. Mrs. Meyer fails to recognize her own sinfulness, and so mistakenly denies her own sinfulness. I can only conclude that this false teaching comes from pride because it certainly isn't biblical.
Finally. Beware! Joel Osteen is a false teacher.
The basic doctrine of Joel Osteen, as summarized on his church’s website, is orthodox enough: the inerrancy and inspiration of the Bible, the triune nature of God, and salvation by faith in Christ are all affirmed. The doctrinal problems come in other areas.
Mr. Osteen is a Health & Wealth preacher. He says, God’s will is that we be blessed with material things, a view that contradicts 1 Timothy 6:6 that godliness with contentment is great gain. I quote from his church’s website:
“To be successful in your walk with God, commit to honor God with your finances. When you commit to give the Lord the first 10% of your income, God promises He will pour out blessings you cannot contain. Tithing is the first key to financial prosperity.”
Mr. Osteen misuses Malachi 3:10 for his false teaching, where it is written,
Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the Lord of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it.
It is a prime example of taking Old Testament promises to Israel out of context to apply them to the New Testament believers.
What Joel Osteen pushes is a shell of legitimate biblical Christianity, at best, and a dangerous counterfeit at worst. When all you have to offer is materialism and emotion, you’re not an evangelist. You’re a motivational speaker who borrows religious terminology. Nothing Osteen says is going to help a person with legitimate questions about faith and salvation. His message won’t build real disciples; there’s no more substance for the believer than for the unbeliever. Nor is his message going to sustain faith in a crisis. When things go bad, people quickly realize God’s blessings don’t come merely because they think happy thoughts. And if personal prosperity is the measure of their success as a Christian, then Osteen’s teaching has merely set them up for a fall. https://www.gotquestions.org/Joel-Osteen.html
Beware of False Teachers says the Lord. Beth Moore, Joyce Meyer, and Joel Osteen are false teachers. They are Protestants, generally conservative in contrast to the mainstream church bodies, but they share in the false teaching of Kenneth Hagin Sr. of the Word Of Faith Movement
The Word of Faith doctrine teaches that based on the definition of the word sozo from which Christians get the word salvation, that the saving work done by Jesus on the cross included health and provision in this life.
What can you do to protect yourself from false teachers aside from not reading their books or downloading their podcasts?
First, keep hearing and reading the Bible. Like you are doing right now.
Second, keep rereading and praying through the Small Catechism. If the Holy Bible is like a street you want to keep your soul on, then the Small Catechism is like a street curb that keeps you from crashing into store fronts of false teachers like Beth Moore, Joyce Meyers, and Joel Osteen.
The Small Catechism curbs Beth Moore’s appeal to personal non-Biblical revelation when it states under the first commandment that we should fear, love, and trust in God above all things, including personal revelation.
The Small Catechism curbs Joyce Meyer’s claim that Jesus is no longer the Son of God when it states in the second article of the Apostles’ Creed that Jesus Christ is true God begotten of the Father from eternity.
The Small Catechism curbs Joel Osteen’s claim that God wants to give you financial gain for your faithfulness when it states under the seventh commandment that we should fear and love God so that we help to improve and protect our neighbor’s possessions and income.
All we have is the text.
So, in this place we teach the text of the Holy Bible.
And to prevent us steering away from that Holy Text, we teach the Small Catechism as well as all the Lutheran Confessions.
ACV  To obtain such faith God instituted the office of preaching, giving the gospel and the sacraments.  Through these, as through means, he gives the Holy Spirit who produces faith, where and when he wills, in those who hear the gospel.  It teaches that we have a gracious God, not through our merit but through Christ’s merit, when we so believe.  Condemned are the Anabaptists48 and others who teach that we obtain the Holy Spirit without the external49 word of the gospel through our own preparation, thoughts, and works.
ACXIV Concerning church government it is taught that no one should publicly teach, preach, or administer the sacraments without a proper [public] call.
 The bishop of Rome claims to be superior by divine right to all bishops and pastors.1  In addition, he claims to possess by divine right the power of both swords,  that is, the authority to confer and transfer royal authority.2 Third, he states that it is necessary for salvation to believe these things. For these reasons the Roman bishop calls himself the vicar of Christ on earth.3  We hold and publicly declare that these three articles of faith are false, impious, tyrannical, and ruinous to the church.  In order that our assertion may be understood, we will first clarify what our opponents mean by the claim of superiority by divine right over all bishops. They take the pope to be the universal or, as they say, ecumenical bishop, that is, the one from whom all bishops and pastors throughout the world are bound to seek ordination and confirmation because he has the right to choose, ordain, confirm, and depose any bishop.4  Moreover, he claims the authority to make laws concerning worship, alterations in the sacraments, and teaching. He wants his decrees and laws to be regarded as articles of faith or commandments of God and thus as binding on the conscience of the believer.5 Because he claims to exercise this power by divine right, he means it to p 331 take precedence even over God’s commandments. And then, what is even more atrocious, he adds that it is necessary for salvation to believe all this.
Robert Kolb, Timothy J. Wengert, and Charles P. Arand, The Book of Concord: The Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church (Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 2000), 330–331.