Christian Churches of God
(Edition 2.0 19941029-20000108)
This paper examines the cult mentality in people who have been associated with churches not concerned with the acceptance of, and adherence to, truth. The definition of a cult is examined, as is the modern application of the term. The main impact of placing anything before the love of the Father is seen as identifying a group as a cult.
The Cult Mentality
Cults exist because of the frame of mind of the people who organise together. A cult is merely a group of people with a similar frame of mind and similar beliefs acting under false apprehensions.
There is a growing tendency in the mainstream Christian churches to use the term cult to refer to non-mainstream sects, which differ from the teachings they espouse. All of these mainstream sects that arose from Knox and Calvin and the Reformation writers (e.g. Luther), and all of these fundamentalists Trinitarian organisations group around and label people who do not agree with them as cults. We were always a sect called the way. Paul said that. A cult is something different and quite general. Most people misapply the term.
The application of the term is quite wrong. The true understanding and application encompasses both groups equally, i.e. mainstream Christianity and small groups alike. The true distinction between what is and what is not a cult is in fact more definite and distinguishes the true church of God from all cults, including so-called mainstream Christianity.
The Oxford Universal Dictionary defines cult from 1617. [ad. L. cultus worship, In 19th c. often spelt culte as in Fr.] Ü 1. Worship - 1683. 2. A particular form of religious worship; esp. in reference to its external rites and ceremonies 1679. 3. transf. Devotion to a particular person or thing, now esp. as paid by a body of professed adherents 1711.
So we have that form of worship with particular rights and ceremonies paid by a body of professed adherents - people who belong to that organisation. Consequently, the entire religious framework is composed of cults.
The definition was expanded in the Oxford English Dictionary Supplement to include:
cult, sb. Add: 2.b. Now freq. used attrib. by writers on cultic ritual and the archśology of primitive cults...
The examples are from descriptive references to the worship of different gods and goddesses under various systems and circumstances.
The important distinction of a cult is that it is a particular form of religious worship, especially in reference to its external rites and ceremonies in its worship or devotion to a particular person or thing. It automatically breaches the first commandment in that an organisation formed by a person can claim loyalty of a person over cults and beyond the truth that God lays down in the Bible. It is now related to the distinctions between the forms adopted by a body of adherents.
In one way or another all religious systems are cults. The distinction between cults and the elect is the explicit loyalty to a body of professed adherents over and above the biblical truths that govern the conduct and allegiance of the elect.
The distinction is drawn when one places one's allegiance to the body or group before one's allegiance to the explicit truth as laid down in biblical law and testimony.
The prophetic distinction is found in Isaiah.
Isaiah 8:16-20 Bind up the testimony, seal the teaching among my disciples. 17 I will wait for the LORD, who is hiding his face from the house of Jacob, and I will hope in him. 18 Behold, I and the children whom the LORD has given me are signs and portents in Israel from the LORD of hosts, who dwells on Mount Zion. 19 And when they say to you, "Consult the mediums and the wizards who chirp and mutter," should not a people consult their God? Should they consult the dead on behalf of the living? 20 To the teaching and to the testimony! Surely for this word which they speak there is no dawn. (RSV)
This would happen and God said it would happen and in some cases God deliberately makes it happen so that these people do not come into judgment. They are allowed to become a cult and they are taken out of the elect. They are not called into judgment and so they are reserved for judgment in the second resurrection.
The text is better understood from the KJV.
Isaiah 8:16-20 Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples. 17 And I will wait upon the LORD, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him. 18 Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.
This is prophecy. Christ has been given the elect by the Lord of Hosts as signs and protents to Israel and to the world. The law and the testimony are sealed up in us. We are compelled to act according to the law and the testimony.
19 And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead?
Thatís what is happening out there at the moment and it was prophesied and it happened on a continual basis. Israel went back to false religions and false systems. They started doing all sorts of strange things like setting up neo-pagan cults, setting up false systems of necromancy and consulting spirits of the dead (who are demons), as they are doing now.
20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.
If somebody does not speak with the truth of God, if they are not committed and it is not sealed up in them, they are not part of the elect.
The text in the RSV does not fully convey the importance of the law and the testimony for the disciples of God. When a group of people, who had once professed the law and the testimony, begin to teach contrary to the Bible then there is no light in them. They are a cult. Those who remain with that group adhering to false doctrine are no longer the disciples of God and the elect. They are simply members of a cult in the same way that any other group of non-biblical worshippers of aberrant systems is a cult.
From this definition when the Christian sects commenced to adopt the Trinitarian system, following the doctrines of the councils of the church, they became cults. When the mainstream Christian sects started to build up to the Council of Nicaea and they established theological and philosophical positions contrary to the biblical position they became cults. When the majority of the church accepted the councils and accepted the Trinity by the time of the Doctrines of the Council of Chalcedon they were all cuts and none of them were part of the elect.
If we are within those organisations we condone that doctrine. If we are a member of an organisation which espouses a Trinitarian doctrine we are condoning it by our presence. The very fact that we sit there condones the doctrine; our silence condones it.
Thus the Roman Catholic, Anglican, and Greek Orthodox churches are cults, in the same way that every other pantheistic or triune-worshipping group is a cult. Size is no limitation or disqualification to the appellation of the term cult. The fact that a group places allegiance to an individual leader above the explicit biblical truth is the hallmark of a cult. Whether the leader is the Pope or the Archbishop, or the Metropolitan, or Jones is irrelevant.
The elect are baptised into the body of Christ and not into any church or denomination. Those words are spoken over each of the elect on baptism. The elect are thus bound to the body of Jesus Christ in the worship of the One True God from John 17:3. Thus when the elect were organised into area churches, they were so grouped on the basis of their adherence to the truth and the worship of the One True God and the service of His Son Jesus Christ.
When the church was faced with the doctrine which attempted to make Christ out to be more than the Son of God and to make him equal to God and to separate his humanity from his divinity, then the elect were forced to re-organise and to separate themselves from those who maintained the false doctrine, which was clearly labelled as the doctrine of Antichrist.
The basis of the faith is the truth and there is no darkness in those who walk in the truth. The reason we will go through 1John is because this dispute entered the church under Johnís administration. He had to deal with this false doctrine on the Godhead in the earliest stages of the church. Nothing is new. This argument was examined in Johnís church, when they tried to separate the humanity from the divinity of Jesus Christ. They tried to say that there was some part up there in the ether, which was Jesus Christ, and he was part of God and that he was equal with God and that part did not die on the cross. That was heresy and John had to deal with that as we will see from the following. We will also see what the doctrine of the Antichrist is. We will see that the doctrine of the trinity is a variation of the doctrine of Antichrist. Modalism is another variation. However, Trinitarianism is the doctrine of Antichrist and that is why we must come out of that position.
1John 1:1-10 †That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life Ė 2 the life was made manifest, and we saw it, and testify to it, and proclaim to you the eternal life which was with the Father and was made manifest to us -- 3 that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you may have fellowship with us; and our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.
That fact determines the fellowship of the elect and it determines the fellowship of the elect with God and the Son. That is the importance and significance of that text.
4 And we are writing this that our joy may be complete. 5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not live according to the truth;
When we belong to an organisation that embraces a false doctrine it is a lie. It is not the truth and we walk with darkness, therefore we cannot be walking with God. We are not in fellowship with God or with his Son. That is why we cannot stay with people in our fellowship, who walk in darkness.
7 but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 †If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (RSV)
Thus it is mandatory for the brethren to walk together in the truth. We have no option. It is an explicit direction of the Holy Spirit through John.
1John 2:1-29 †My little children, I am writing this to you so that you may not sin; but if any one does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; 2 and he is the expiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. 3 And by this we may be sure that we know him, if we keep his commandments. 4 He who says "I know him" but disobeys his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him; 5 but whoever keeps his word, in him truly love for God is perfected. By this we may be sure that we are in him: 6 he who says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
Christ is the advocate with the Father. An advocate speaks to an authority on behalf of another and cannot itself be the authority. So it is manifest that Christ as an advocate cannot be the authority to which he pleads the case, or speaks to on behalf of the individuals concerned. He cannot be God and an advocate to God for the elect in the same sense.
7 Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment which you had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. 8 Yet I am writing you a new commandment, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining. 9 He who says he is in the light and hates his brother is in the darkness still. 10 He who loves his brother abides in the light, and in it there is no cause for stumbling. 11 But he who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
Love of each other is the mark of the elect. Where a group of people love an organisation or leader more than each other and to the exclusion of truth, then that group is a cult. Where the individuals stay within a corporate structure which preaches false doctrine then the individuals condone error and are willingly part of a cult and endorse it by their presence.
John writes about the word of God abiding in the elect and by this they overcome the evil one.
12 I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven for his sake. 13 I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, children, because you know the Father. 14 I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one. 15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If any one loves the world, love for the Father is not in him.
So we canít love an organisation in the world, otherwise love for the Father is not in us. We must love the truth from the Father above any other organisation or thing on this planet. Nothing can interfere with our relationship with the Father, not even Jesus Christ. Since Jesus Christ is at one with the Father that is no longer a possibility. The point is our relationship is with God through Christ. We were able to enter into relationship with God through Jesus Christ and through his expiation. Thatís what John is saying.
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life, is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world passes away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides for ever.
The object of the love of the elect is ultimately the Father. The love of the elect for each other is based on the presence of the Holy Spirit in each of the elect, from Christ onwards. Christ gave himself for the world through the love of the Father. John 3:16 says that the Father gave the Son.
John 3:16 †For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (KJV)
It is a trite or hackneyed phrase in mainstream Christianity, but it is a very powerful statement and it condemns their position.
We cannot give what is not ours. There is no co-equality in the gift of the Son by the Father. Moreover, Christ was sent by the Father under will and direction.
John 4:34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work. (KJV)
Thus the work is of the Father and had to be done by the elect. How then can the elect remain in an organisation which teaches contrary to the law and the testimony and still be about the Father's work? How urgent is the work? John saw it as being urgent when he wrote. How much more so is it now? By the silent participation in a cult, which has become a social club, the capacity of the nation of Israel and from them the entire world to be brought to repentance is delayed or rendered impotent.
There is an even more deceitful argument put forward by some of the elect, which runs as follows. I am not baptised into any organisation but into the body of Christ. Therefore wherever the elect are there I can remain regardless of what the organisation teaches.
People that say they are not members of any organisation except the body of Christ, yet remain within a cult that teaches contrary to the law and the testimony, do the work of Satan. They inhibit the capacity of the elect to preach the truth. They delude themselves with devious arguments designed to delay uncomfortable decisions. In short, they are cowards. They were sent out as sheep among wolves by Christ to take part in the harvest. By their presence in an apostate organisation, which by definition includes any Trinitarian organisation, they are not about their Father's business. They are preventing the calling of the elect. In short, they have buried their talent.
This nation has to be called to repentance and the labourers are few.
18 Children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come; therefore we know that it is the last hour. 19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out, that it might be plain that they all are not of us. 20 But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all know. 21 I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and know that no lie is of the truth.
Thatís how they went out. They started preaching lies. It does not matter whether they have the numbers. It does not matter if they force us to a re-organisation. They have had the numbers since the Council of Nicaea. Certainly since 381 of the Council of Constantinople they have had the numbers. The numbers do not make them part of the body. They go out because they espouse lies. It is the truth that keeps us in the body of Jesus Christ and it is reorganising with people of likemind that keeps us in the body of Jesus Christ, doing the work of Jesus Christ. If we cease to do the work of Jesus Christ, reorganising with the body of Jesus Christ, we are not in the first resurrection.
22 Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son. 23 No one who denies the Son has the Father. He who confesses the Son has the Father also.
How can we confess the son when we say they are simply hypostases of one being, one God; that they are merely manifestations of the one thing. We deny the son and in so doing we do not have the Father. That is the doctrine of Antichrist.
24 Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you will abide in the Son and in the Father. 25 And this is what he has promised us, eternal life. 26 I write this to you about those who would deceive you; 27 but the anointing which you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that any one should teach you; as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie, just as it has taught you, abide in him. 28 And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming. 29 If you know that he is righteous, you may be sure that every one who does right is born of him. (RSV)
Here the concept of going out from us is developed by John. The argument that developed in the Church referred to by John was over the Godhead and the relationship of the Father and the Son. The argument was the precursor to Trinitarianism. It attempted to separate the humanity of Christ from his divinity. In effect it attempted to assert that Christ had an element of his being which remained separate to his humanity and did not die. Moreover, it remained part of the entity we understand as God. In effect it attempted to make Christ part of and in equality with God. This was the doctrine of Antichrist. It was so obviously related to Trinitarianism that the text at 1John 4:1-2 was changed to disguise the fact.
The concept of being part of the elect is by righteous conduct; he who does right is righteous.
He who commits sin is of the devil (diabolos). Thus it is impossible to be part of an organisation which does not preach the truth. For the commandments of God are paramount. Sin is the transgression of the law or here lawlessness. The first commandment relates to the worship and the love of God. How can we worship the One True God when we are part of a system which attempts to accuse Christ of attempted equality with the One True God and thus guilty of the same sin that Satan committed? We thus are required to purify ourselves as Christ is pure. How can we purify ourselves in an apostate social club? How can we serve God and tithe to Baal?
1John 3:1-24 See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are God's children now; it does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 And every one who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure. 4 Every one who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. 5 You know that he appeared to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. 6 No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. 7 Little children, let no one deceive you. He who does right is righteous, as he is righteous. 8 He who commits sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. 9 No one born of God commits sin; for God's nature abides in him, and he cannot sin because he is born of God.
That is a fairly relative statement. We sin all the time. It is the nature of God that testifies against the sin. We know when we have thought something wrong because our nature rebels against what we do and our conscience (the Holy Spirit) says to us no, no, no, this is not the way. We feel guilty because we have sinned. It is not that we cannot sin. We can override that witness but we know what we are doing and we place ourself outside of God and outside of the elect because of sin, and we have to repent. Repeated sin does not put us in an enviable position because we cannot put Christ to the test to crucifixion again and again.
10 By this it may be seen who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not do right is not of God, nor he who does not love his brother.
So we have two concepts - one loving our brother and the other doing what is right. What is right is quite clearly dealt with by the law. We cannot be in an apostate organisation.
If we do not do what is right then we are not of God. We can not love our people if we do not preach the word of God to them in unsullied truth.
We cannot serve God speaking out of both sides of our mouth. It is not sufficient to say let him who has ears to hear then let him hear. The truth in the last days must be plainly spoken among the elect and given to the nation in plain speaking. To think otherwise is to delude oneself. The gifts and the call of God are not to a social club or popularity contest.
11 For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, 12 and not be like Cain who was of the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own deeds were evil and his brother's righteous. 13 Do not wonder, brethren, that the world hates you. [emphasis added] 14 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. 15 Any one who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 16 By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But if any one has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? 18 Little children, let us not love in word or speech but in deed and in truth [emphasis added].19 By this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our hearts before him 20 whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. 21 Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God; 22 and we receive from him whatever we ask, because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him. 23 And this is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. 24 All who keep his commandments abide in him, and he in them. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit which he has given us. (RSV)
God is distinct from the Son and we keep His commandments walking in the truth. Walking in the truth cannot be achieved by keeping silence within an organisation that has fallen into error. By silence we effectively deny Christ. Such weakness was excused in Peter before he was converted. It is not however, acceptable in the elect.
When Peter denied Christ he was not converted. He was in a lesser position than we and all of the elect are. Peter was not as strong as we are. Nor was he expected to be as strong; he was not converted. We are judged by a higher standard than the apostle Peter was at the time of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. That is a very serious position to be in. Being part of the elect is not a joke.
The elect are required to test the spirits to see whether they are of God. If anyone says to us that Christ is God and co-equal and co-eternal with the One True God, then they are not of the Spirit of God. The elect are required to regroup away from them. These people go out of us by what they say, not by where they sit. The fact that apostates control an administration does not make them of God, nor do they require the allegiance or support of the elect. Indeed the reverse is the case. They by their actions have already gone out of us in order to demonstrate that they were never of us. The denunciation of error does not mean that those denounced are not loved. Those whom God loves He rebukes and chastens. Often the rebuke comes from those strong in the spirit and the word of God.
1John 4:1-21 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are of God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit which confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, 3 and every spirit which does not confess Jesus is not of God. This is the spirit of antichrist, of which you heard that it was coming, and now it is in the world already.
In Johnís time, this spirit of Antichrist tried to say that a part of Jesus Christ did not come in the flesh, but stayed up there in the ether. That spirit is still present today and is part of the system of the whore. It is part of the false religion. It is a doctrine of Antichrist.
This text concerning the doctrine of Antichrist has been altered in the ancient texts. This is one of the first texts they forged because this told us that the doctrine of the Trinity was the doctrine of Antrichrist, so they had to alter the text. The correct text can be reconstructed from the writings of Irenaeus (see the Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol 1, fn. p. 443). The text reads
Hereby know ye the spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses Jesus Christ came in the flesh is of god; and every spirit which separates Jesus Christ is not of God but is of Antichrist.
Socrates the historian says (VII, 32 p. 381) that the passage had been corrupted by those who wished to separate the humanity of Jesus Christ from his divinity. Thus the argument that part of Christ was extant in the heavens as part of God, separate to his humanity and his death on the cross, effectively denied the resurrection and is the doctrine of Antichrist. Thus Trinitarianism correctly falls into the doctrine of Antichrist.
4 Little children, you are of God, and have overcome them; for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. 5 They are of the world, therefore what they say is of the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are of God. Whoever knows God listens to us, and he who is not of God does not listen to us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.
Thus the spirit of truth is required to separate from the spirit of error. This test is on the elect to show who are of the elect and who are called but not chosen.
7 Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God, and he who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God; for God is love. 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No man has ever seen God; [emphasis added; Christ is distinct from God] if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. 13 By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his own Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son as the Saviour of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So we know and believe the love God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17 In this is love perfected with us, that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and he who fears is not perfected in love.
If we are frightened about organisation and belonging to so-called organisations to maintain our place, and frightened about having to go to places of safety, and frightened about what is going to come upon the world in the trial and think we can escape it, then we do not have perfect love and we are not thinking correctly. We are not looking to God.
19 We love, because he first loved us. 20 If any one says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from him, that he who loves God should love his brother also. (RSV)
Those who have perfect love are not afraid of anyone, let alone those in error from the truth. No one of the elect can condone error by silence and remain within that organisation. A person would simply become a member of a cult and no longer part of the body of Christ.
The requirement to overcome the world is clearly stated in 1John 5:1-5.
1John 5:1-21 Every one who believes that Jesus is the Christ is a child of God, and every one who loves the parent loves the child. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. 4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith 5 Who is it that overcomes the world but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
If we love God we keep His commandments. By this we know that we love the children of God. To be born of God we must overcome the world. To overcome the world we must believe that Messiah is the Son of God. Thus the relationship is explicit. The sort of delusion that seeks to obviate this requirement seen amongst Trinitarians is found in the alterations to the biblical texts, or to their false interpretation away from the plain meaning of the words as we see below (esp. from 1John 5:7. Compare below with the false text in KJV translation).
6 This is he who came by water and blood, Jesus Christ, not with the water only but with the water and the blood. 7 And the Spirit is the witness, because the Spirit is the truth. 8 There are three witnesses, the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree. [note the KJV has a forged text here] 9 If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater; for this is the testimony of God that he has borne witness to his Son. 10 He who believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. He who does not believe God has made him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne to his Son. 11 And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who has not the Son of God has not life.
Note that God gave us eternal life and this life is in His son. Thus the son has eternal life from the Father, which is also given to us in the same way.
13 I write this to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. 14 †And this is the confidence which we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of him. 16 If any one sees his brother committing what is not a mortal sin, he will ask, and God will give him life for those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin which is mortal; I do not say that one is to pray for that. 17 All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin which is not mortal. 18 We know that any one born of God does not sin, but He who was born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him. 19 We know that we are of God, and the whole world is in the power of the evil one. 20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, to know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. 21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols. (RSV)
This concept here of mortal sin has been taken by the Catholics into concepts of mortal and venial sin. What John is making a distinction in is that the process of the perfection of the elect necessarily involves error in our day to day existence. Those errors are part of our overcoming. We commit sins on a daily basis. Mortal sin in this sense (that sin which places one in the second resurrection) is when we sin to the point where the body of Christ, through the elders, says we are no longer capable of coming into judgment and places us back into the world in order that we are given to the adversary, so that our life might be saved in the last days. We are put back into the second resurrection. That is what happened in 1Corinthins 5:5. When we are sinning deliberately we go into mortal sins where we cannot overcome them and we are placed back into the world. So we are taken out of judgment. It is merciful.
The elect are thus under judgment by what they do, say and think. Their actions are continually weighed by the Holy Spirit. The adherence of the elect to groups of people that act in contradiction to Scripture put the elect under judgment. Thus the elect cannot be members of cults that follow men in contradiction or to the exclusion of Scripture and truth.
When we join an organisation that breaches the laws of God, we place ourself under judgment. There is no difference between belonging to an organisation which breaches the first commandment than belonging to an organisation that breaches the seventh, the eighth, or the ninth. There is no difference being a member of a religious cult that worships a false god than being a member of assassins who murder, or a group of robbers, or a group of fornicators. They are all cults and all of them breach one of the Ten Commandments and all are consigned to the second resurrection to be dealt with.
There is a process of delusion that overcomes people who belong to cults, which disregard truth. As we have seen, a cult is a group of adherents who follow people and rites and do not listen to the word of God
God explicitly condemns this action in Isaiah 66:4
Isaiah 66:4 I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not. (KJV)
The word translated delusion here is in effect vexation or affliction as it is in the RSV.
Choosing not to follow God will result in God choosing our affliction. This affliction is listed as a wandering as an error in 2Thessalonians 2:11.
2Thessalonians 2:9-10 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. (KJV)
The man of sin can only occur among the elect because the members who purport to be in the body of Christ in the last days are not part of the elect. They do not love the truth and thus they cannot be saved. They are sent a strong delusion by God.
2Thessalonians 2:11 †And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: (KJV)
This term translated strong delusion is in fact an operation of error (energeian planes, see Marshall's Interlinear). They were given an operation of error by God because they loved not the truth, so that they would not be brought into judgment, because they could not be saved.
If we follow men rather than the truth, we will not be saved. It could not be plainer.
Churches within the twentieth century system treat religion as a business and doctrine as a means of attracting customers. This was essentially the approach taken by the Catholic church in the fourth century and Christianity was destroyed because of it, as a mainstream system.
This sort of deceit or intellectual dishonesty, results in the type of arguments advanced in the G.L. Haydock commentary to the Douay-Rheims Bible (1850 reprint of the 1819 version), concerning John 17:3.
Ver. 3. This is life everlasting: that is, the way to life everlasting, that they may know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. The Arians, from these words, pretend that the Father only is the true God. S Aug. and diverse others answer, that the sense and construction is, that they may know thee, and also Jesus Christ thy Son, whom thou hast sent to be the only true God. We may also expound them with S. Chrys. and others, so that the Father is here called the only true God, not to exclude the Son, and the Holy Ghost, who are the same one true God with the Father; but only to exclude the false God's of the Gentiles. Let the Socinians take notice that (1John v, 20), the Son of God, Christ Jesus, is expressly called the true God, even with the Greek article, upon which they commonly lay so much stress.
Once we get into this sort of distortion of truth we will believe anything. Note also the use of incorrect perjorative labels, such as Arian, seeking to obviate or deny the legitimate Unitarian structure of the Bible. There is no possibility that the One True God in John 17:3 or 1John 5:20 refers to Jesus Christ at all, with or without the article. The fact that the Douay-Rheims version is a translation of the Latin Vulgate and thus the article is deduced from the Latin is not mentioned. The term with the article does not refer to Christ, but rather to The One True God whose Son is Christ. It is necessary for Trinitarians to resort to such deceit to maintain their position in the face of the texts. This is not new.
1John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, to know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. (RSV)
He who is true is the One True God. We know Him and are in Him who is true and in His Son Jesus Christ. We worship Him who is true, not His Son, Jesus Christ.
Little children keep yourself from idols: those of men and those of demons and shun the falsehood of cults. Come out of her my people (Rev. 18:4)
Revelation 18:4 Then I heard another voice from heaven saying, "Come out of her, my people, lest you take part in her sins, lest you share in her plagues; (RSV)
This whore referred to as Babylon the Great and the Mother of Harlots, is the head of the false religious system of the world. This system has been known to be based on the false religion of the Triune God for more than two thousand years. The elect have never accepted the system. The command is to come out of her so that the elect do not partake of the plagues that will be heaped on the Trinitarian false religion in the last days Ė the harlot daughters of the whore that emerged during the reformation. These same ministers taught against that system once, but now teach the Triune doctrines for money. They are not part of us. Speak up and come out of her system.
Christian Churches of God
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