Through many years of Bible study I could never understand what Jesus meant by His breathtaking statement, "For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many." (Matthew 24:5). Since I have watched this Scripture being fulfilled by much of the modern religious world, it is now seems clear to me. Jesus was prophesying that false prophets and false religious movements would use His name, preach with His name, and even confess faith in His name, but would be serving a different Jesus. I believe He was suggesting that the ultimate deception would be by men and women that actually say, "Jesus is the Christ," but do so only in name, not in reality.
The New "Jesus" has the same name and is preached or promoted with the same great Bible verses, but bears no recognition to the historic message of the cross. The cross-centered life, where the flesh is crucified and the self-life is denied, has no relationship to the flamboyant Christianity of today that looks more extravagant than Hollywood. The Jesus of the Bible, the risen Lord, who is presently at the Father's right hand, would be totally repulsed by the worldly hype, the godless singers, and all the fanfare that is the heart of today's church world. He would march into these unholy temples and drive out the false prophets that preach for wealth and gain. He would call them "vipers" and "hypocrites." They would hate Him today just like the Pharisees hated Him in their day. Let's look at a few clear differences between the Son of God Himself and the new "Jesus" of today's deception.
The crucified Jesus says, "Deny yourself, take up your cross, forsake all, and follow me." This new "Jesus" says, "Indulge yourself." The Lord says, "Humble yourself."
The Biblical Jesus plainly said, "He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him." (I John 2:4).
The historic Jesus floods human hearts with reverence and even an awesome fear at the very mention of His name. Our Savior still instills in "saved hearts" a beautiful desire to come before Him in purity, holiness, and godly attire.
The true eternal Son of God is absolutely masculine, authoritative, and Sovereign. There is no sign or sense of weakness, compromise, or effeminacies in Him or His person. Even the effeminate pictures painted by perverted artists are totally out of order in a believer's home. Do not ever use statues or pictures of Him to visualize or aid you in worship. It is idolatrous and forbidden in Scripture.
Music is still a marvelous way to worship the Lord of the Church. Our Jesus desires our worship, but will not receive anything but spiritual worship and spiritual music. Soulical music or fleshly music that feeds the appetites of the carnal man cannot be used for our Lord in praise to Him. Our eternal Savior was the Creator of all things and powerful spiritual music was at the core of the Heavenly scene as all creation was planned.
The true Lord of the church was crucified on a cross of shame as our substitute. His death decided forever that Satan had lost and was destined for defeat. Satan has used every idea that hell could produce to rob that cross of its glory. Every effort has failed and this last scheme is the devil's grand finale. It too will fail, but will serve to show the world the final bankruptcy of Satan's kingdom.
[VW Editor: However, we are not supposed to have crosses "on the wall". God commanded "You shall not make to yourselves any...likeness of anything..." (Ex20:4) Please see: 10 Commandments and Q/A links.]
The Nazarene we worship has no political design. His kingdom is spiritual and "cometh not with observation" (Luke 17:20) until the time of judgments against sin. It is the Father that will give Him His kingdom and holiness will be the principles of government. The Son of God will sit upon the "Throne of David" and the kingdoms of the world will worship the Lamb of God with everlasting joy.
The precious Son of God is truly God manifest in the flesh. His nature is divine and every expression of homosexuality will be banished from the face of the New Earth. Jesus is the image of the Father and His new glorified saints will be pure, sinless, and resurrected in His likeness.
A perfect way to know that you are worshipping the new "Jesus" is if any of these signs occur to you. If your church is experiencing these signs, your church has changed to worshipping the new "Jesus."
The King of Kings will never titillate your flesh to try to gain your surrender. His Word says, "Come now, and let us reason together (mental activity), saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." (Isaiah 1:18). He saves by the preaching of His Word and your acceptance of His gospel. Satan has no beauty, his offer is deceptive and his promises are lies, so he must deceive you into his false religious system. The Lord of Lords is creator of the earth, but His invitation is based on truth and life-changing reality. You must choose Him because you understand who He is and His offer to you.
The Son of God will always invite you to discern by truth, rightly divided before you commit your soul. Our Redeemer never mixes a little truth with a lot of error. Every expression of the Lord will be pure, totally Biblical and sensible. He never manifests Himself in "spectacular nonsense." He said, "I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine." (John 10:14).
The Lord Jesus is the Word of God. The written Word, when true to the original text is just as truly the Word in written form as He is the Word in living form. The Apostle John settled who Jesus is in His Gospel. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not." (John 1:1-5).
Jesus Christ gave great honor to His earthly mother. She was a genuine saint of God, but is no greater than any other obedient person. She awaits the resurrection and it is nothing but necromancy (communication with the dead) to suggest that she can talk to you or take you to God. The Son of God clearly rejects all such foolishness about His earthly mother.
The Son of God loves the sinner, but comes to him with conviction of sin so the sinner can be redeemed. The first step towards the saving merits of the Lord is to understand that you are a sinner. He will never approach anyone in anything less than His holiness. The true "sinner-friendly" Savior comes in such holiness that the sinner is smitten in guilt. This is the true friend of lost souls.
There are many further differences between the new "Jesus" and the true Jesus. Millions are being deceived. The flesh has no capacity to discern between this titillating "Jesus" that comes in lies and deceiving powers. The Word of God alone is our safety. Every believer has the responsibility to warn souls of this darkness and to help the few that are willing to listen. If Jesus warned of this false or new "Jesus," then everyone should take the facts seriously. Just because a preacher is smooth, soft, and is kind to you does not prove a thing. Is he preaching the new "Jesus" or is he preaching the old-time truth that saves? There is no excuse for the fact that you do not know better.
You can get on your knees right in your own world and surrender to the Lord Jesus Christ. Give Him all and be willing to obey all of His Words. "It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." (Matthew 4:4).