ARE WE WORSHIPPING A FALSE CHRIST? YOU BET WE ARE!

Are you ready for some shocking Bible truth? If you are, read on.

Let’s look at some pure words of God directed to Christians:

Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

This is not a suggestion. It’s a command from Jesus Christ.

2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture [is] given by inspiration of God, and [is] profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

1 Corinthians 10:11 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

Look at instruction from the Chief Shepherd to His sheep:

John 10:3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. 4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.

John 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:

The challenge is to get the sheeps’ attention to HEAR and HEED the voice of the Shepherd in the Bible.

A childlike attitude is essential for salvation. How many times have you heard this in sermons? Isn’t it time to pay attention? Look at the following direct quotations from Christ Himself:

Matthew 18:3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 19:14 But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.

Mark 10:14 But when Jesus saw [it], he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. 15 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdomof God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.

Luke 18:16 But Jesus called them [unto him], and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. 17 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.

The message is plain: no childlike attitude equals no salvation.

The most important factor of a childlike attitude is teachability. A child who cannot be taught has a mental deficiency. A Christian who cannot be taught has a spiritual deficiency. The SPIRITUALLY-DEFICIENT will not be in the kingdom.

Examine these verses carefully. MANKIND’s popular beliefs about what God thinks of us is entirely different from what God PLAINLY STATES as HIS VIEW OF MANKIND. Herein lies the mammoth problem which leads to the worship of a FALSE CHRIST.

Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man [of] the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Take the breath of life OUT of this man, and what do you have left? A HUNK OF DIRT!

Genesis 3:19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou [art], and unto dust shalt thou return.

This is our destiny. Question: is DIRT in such short supply as to give it any real value?

Man has no more value than any four-legged beast. See just what the Shepherd says about this:

Ecclesiastes 3:18 I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of men, that God might manifest them, and that they might see that they themselves are beasts. 19 For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thingbefalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast: for all [is] vanity. 20 All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.

“No preeminence” means that a man has no advantage over a beast. Both the NIV and NAS translate this word “preeminence” as “advantage.”

Only one thing gives any human any advantage over any animal: the POTENTIAL which God has placed before mankind. If we blow that potential, we are equal to or less than the animals, because the ANIMALS OBEY THE LAWS GOD HAS SET IN MOTION.

How is our childlike attitude holding up?

Look at God’s statements about mankind, even WITH this potential:

Isaiah 40:15 Behold, the nations [are] as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing…

Isaiah 40:17 All nations before him [are] as nothing; and they are counted to him less than nothing, and vanity.

Here are words straight out of God’s mouth. He views all nations, even with that potential, as “less than nothing.” Is this the way you have always thought that God views mankind? If not, you have been worshipping a FALSE GOD.

We have just examined God’s view of humans.

Question: are we listening to the voice of the Shepherd?

Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

This is a COMMAND, and there is no salvation without it.

The verses above, concerning God’s view of mankind, are why God can make the following comments to those who blow their potential:

Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Matthew 25:12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.

Just why is God dealing with humans in this manner? The answer is that He is not going to risk creating any more Satans, i.e. any more spirit beings, originally created perfect, who will have to be executed at the end of the melliniumas Satan and the demons will be (see my article “Satan’s Execution”). DIRT IS CHEAP. Humans are made from dirt so that they ARE EASILY EXPENDABLE.

God states that Satan was created perfect:

Ezekiel 28:14 Thou [art] the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee [so]: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. 15 Thou [wast] perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.

Although created perfect, God gave him free moral agency. Thus, when Satan rebelled, there were eternal consequences which affect you and me today.

How can God ensure that no more Satans come out of mankind? He does it by ongoing testing through various means, one of which is setting traps. Oh, you didn’t know that God is a trapper? Read on and you will find out how he traps “Christians,” people playing church, tares and good seed gone bad.

Romans 9:33 As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

NIV- As it is written: See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes men to stumble and a rock that makes them fall, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame.”

“Zion” is Strong’s number 4622. “literally, a hill in Jerusalem; figuratively, the church.”

Here is God stating that He puts stumblingstones in the Church that are intended to make men stumble and fall. Have you been taught about THIS God? Read on. The Shepherd is speaking:

Romans 9:33 is a quotation from Isaiah:

Isaiah 8:14 And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 15 And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken,and be snared, and be taken.

We will look at these verses in detail shortly, but we first need to look at this “stumbling stone” and “rock.”

1 Corinthians 10:4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

“Rock” in Romans 9:33 and 1 Cor. 10:4 are both Strong’s #4073, petra: “a mass of rock, lit or fig., rock.”

Here is God the Father, our Dad, putting Christ as a stumblingstone in the church. Remember, Zion can also mean the church.

Acts 4:10 Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, [even] by him doth this man stand here before you whole. 11 This is the stonewhich was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.

“Stone” in Acts 4:11 and Romans 9:33 is Strong’s #3037, lithos: “a stone (lit or fig):-(mill-,stumbling-) stone.”

This stone is actually named “Jesus Christ” in Acts 4:10-11.

Are we listening to the voice of the Shepherd? Our Dad declares that He has put Christ in the church as a stumblingstone. Who has the nerve to argue with the Father? Will we accuse Him of writing the Book wrong? Or, have we been worshipping a false god? Remember Matthew 4:4:

4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Now for a detailed look at Isaiah 8:14-15:

Isaiah 8:14 And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offense to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

Note: this is directed to BOTH HOUSES of Israel.

“Stone” is Strong’s #68: “a stone.”

“Stumbling” is Strong’s #5063: “a trip of the foot.”

“Offense” is Strong’s #4383: “a stumbling block, lit or fig, an obstacle, enticement.”

“Gin” is Strong’s #6341: “a spring net, or a snare.” Three other translations (NIV, Amplified, and NAS) use the word “trap.”

“Snare” is Strong’s #4170: “a noose for catching animals.”

Remember, we just reviewed that man has no advantage over an animal, Ecclesiastes 3:18-20. And that is just what we ARE, if we are not developing the potential God has offered us.

Isaiah 8:15 And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken, and be snared, and be taken.

“Many” is Strong’s #7227: “abundant, (in quantity, size, age, number, rank, quality).”

We are talking about Christians being tripped up in the church by Christ—not the few, but the MANY.

“Stumble” is Strong’s #3782: “to totter, or waver through weakness of the legs, esp. the ankle. To falter, stumble, faint, or fall.”

Just as the legs provide the foundation for the human body, our Christian FOUNDATION must be securely based in the pure Word of God—NOT what we THINK it says, or what any MAN interprets it it to say.

“Fall” is Strong’s #5307- to fall (in a great variety of applications).

“Broken” is Strong’s #7665- to burst, lit. or fig.

“Snared” is Strong’s #3369- to ensnare, lit. or fig.

“Taken” is Strong’s # 3920- to catch in a net, trap, or pit.

You need to review this carefully, and prove it from your own Bible and concordance. Our Dad, the Father, is using Christ to create multiple trials and arenas of testing for ALL in the church. This very article will be a stumblingstone, a pit, a trap for many. Are we ALL LYING FLAT ON OUR FACES on the ground and we DO NOT EVEN REALIZE IT?

Is our childlike attitude being tested? The Master Shepherd is talking. Are we listening?

Let’s take a detailed look at Romans 9:33:

Romans 9:33 As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

“Lay” is Strong’s #5087: “to place.” This word indicates DELIBERATE ACTION on the part of God the Father.

“Zion” is #4622: “lit. a hill in Jerusalem, fig., the church.”

“Stumblingstone” is made up of Strong’s #4348 (stumbling) and #3037 (stone). #4348 means “a stub, i.e., fig, an occasion of apostasy- offence, stumbling, (-block, -stone).” #3037 means “a stone.”

A recent example of our Dad placing the stumblingstone in Zion (the church) is the Tkach apostasy in the Worldwide Church of God. God deliberately allowed Joseph Tkach and his son, Joe Jr., into authority. They quickly dismantled church doctrines and beliefs. God KNEW what they would do. How many “Christians” (tares and good seed gone bad) were trapped, snared, stumbled, and are STILL lying flat on their faces? Is this not an example of the “many” in Isaiah 8:15?

“Rock” is # 4073: petra, “a mass of rock.”

“Offense” is #4625: “scandal, a trap stick (a bent sapling), i.e., a snare, fig. cause of displeasure or sin, occasion to fall (of stumbling), thing that offends, stumbling block.”

God is dealing with the church in a manner far different than any of us have been taught to expect. What CAN we do but to believe exactly what the Bible says in both the Old and New Testaments. If you cannot take your Bible and DISPROVE this, ACCEPTING OR REJECTING are your only choices. I did not know the God we have studied in this article until about a year ago. I had an image of Him which was not accurate.

Now, can we take exception with God the Father and Jesus Christ because of what they have caused to be written? On what grounds can we take exception? Is it good enough to take on the two most powerful beings in the universe? Maybe you would take exception to my credibility, since I do not have any according to Church of God standards. I’m not a deacon. I’m not a minister. I have no intentions of ever being one, either. I just have thirty years of regular Bible study and endeavoring to put into practice what I learned. What IS credibility? God spoke though an ass to Balaam. Would a jackass have credibility in the church today? Being ordained has nothing at all to do with God’s written word. Do the ordained men in the church today have a monopoly on understanding?

We had better hear and fear this mighty God who has made these statements and who has the power to back them up, regardless of what human instrument he uses to teach His word. We are just EXPENDABLE DIRT!

Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

The Bible expresses God’s mind, His thoughts; we are commanded to let this mind be in us. The only way we can obtain this mind is by LIVING by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:4)

Let’s read the rules of judgment:

Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is [the book] of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Notice that we are judged by the things which are “written in the books, according the their (or our) works.”

Do these rules of judgment leave room for anyone to water down or alter the meaning of any of God’s words? The rules of judgment apply AS WRITTEN, regardless of mans’ opinions. We should be doing IN DEPTH Bible studies to see what God is revealing to us.

Here is a sobering warning from the Great God:

Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

Rejecting knowledge of God, regardless of the source, has deadly consequences.

Philippians 2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

This instruction is not included in the Word of God for no purpose.

There is a lot more to be gleaned from the “stumblingstone” issue and related subjects. My article “The Maze” contains examples of the stumbling stone in action over the last thirty or so years.

Published October 10, 1996

© Edgar Y. Bennett
PO Box 509
Black Hawk, CO 80422 USA
edgar@solidrockspeople.org
www.solidrockspeople.org