Outline For Building-up And Equipping The Body Of Christ


This Biblical Christianity website encourages people to know and to live, God’s Word; thus enabling us to live now as God intended for us to live, and preparing us for eternal life in God’s kingdom.

Site Navigation:This left-column outline contains links to website pages and sources pertaining to helping the Body of Christ gain the potential for which God designed it. The menu below pages down to the individual sections of this outline from which you can navigate to other web pages. There is a fourth level to some of the third level or decimal elements of this outline that is hidden, to view this level click on the symbol in the outline; to hide the fourth level, double-click upon it (I found out, the last time I checked, that Mozilla's Firefox browser doesn't support this fourth level expansion feature, sorry).

    • First Section
    1. Basic Spiritual Instruction for God's People
    1. Introduction to our Spiritual Growth series
    1. Spiritual growth is very important, not only to us but also to our Lord Jesus Christ. He has made adequate provisions in our behalf by giving special gifts and abilities to individual members of His body to accomplish this much needed task. Click to see, Introduction To Building Up And Equipping The Body Of Christ.
    2. Click to see, Explaining The Use And Expansion Of The Growth Outline.
    3. Click to see, The Importance God Places upon Spiritual Growth.
    1. The Godhead
    1. In the beginning God (prepared, formed, fashioned, and) created the heavens and the earth (Gen. 1:1).
    2. Jesus is right now seated at the right hand of God the Father, reigning and ruling with Him. Click to see website page, Jesus Exalted At The Right Hand Of The Father.
    1. The Holy Spirit was sent to the church to continue the education of the Body of Christ that Jesus had begun, and to empower them for the work that God’s people are to do. "But the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will cause you to recall (will remind you of, bring to your remembrance) everything I have told you" (John 14:26).
    2. With all of man’s supposed wisdom and acquired knowledge, he has never been able to know or understand what life is, but God does, because He created it and has revealed what we need to know about it in His Word. This is what we will be exploring in this section concerning spiritual growth. Click to see Growth page, What Life Is All About, And God's Original Plans
    3. True Unity: "Be eager and strive earnestly to guard and keep the harmony and oneness of [and produced by] the Spirit in the binding power of peace. [There is] one body and one Spirit--just as there is also one hope [that belongs] to the calling you received--[there is] one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of [us] all, Who is above all [Sovereign over all], pervading all and [living] in [us] all" (Eph 4:3-6).
    4. The old hymn Living For Jesus, exemplifies our required commitment, and the article to see to acquire it is, Our Top Priority In Life.
    1. Living for Jesus a life that is true; striving to please Him in all that I do. Giving allegiance glad hearted and true; this is the pathway of blessing for me. Oh Jesus Lord and Savior; I give myself to Thee. For Thou in thine atonement; did give Thyself for me. I owe no other master; my heart shall be Thy throne. My life I give; henceforth to live. My God for Thee alone.
    2. This is a life-style of Trust and Obey; for there's no other way to be happy in Jesus; than to Trust and Obey!
    1. Dwelling in Christ by faith for victorious living
    1. Chapters fourteen thru seventeen of the Gospel of John contain some of the most intimate and informative teachings of Christ, and are a good starting point for learning about spiritual life.
    1. It is not an easy task to change the way that people have been accustom to think, reason and believe, nor can it be accomplished in a short time; but this was one of the main reasons of Jesus' earthly ministry. The transition from the old covenant to the new, or the Law to Grace, or the physical to the spiritual all speak of or refer to the same thing. This transition is still in process and must be understood from a Biblical perspective or it becomes very confusing and difficult. Click to see Growth page, Dwelling in Christ, part 1.
    2. It is interesting to recognize, not only in others, but in our personal lives just how long it takes for the facts we know to become a living reality to us, the time it takes is determined by the quickness and the quality of our spiritual growth. This is illustrated by the fact that those closest to Jesus during His earthly ministry failed to grasp the spiritual meaning of much of what He lived and taught. Therefore, about two years after His resurrection Jesus personally revealed Himself to Paul and then took him into Arabia (Gal 1:17) where Paul apparently spent about the same amount of time as the other disciples being instructed of the Lord regarding our further spiritual development. Click to see Growth page, Dwelling in Christ, part 2.
    1. Chapters five thru eight of the book of Romans explains in greater detail what Jesus introduced in chapters fourteen thru seventeen of the Gospel of John.
    1. It will help us to understand spiritual progression if we keep in mind these three points. (1) It was Jesus that first introduced new spiritual life and how it should develop in the normal Christian; (2) It was the apostle John that faithfully recorded the words of Jesus, about sixty years after the resurrection of Christ, in the book that we call the Gospel of John; (3) it was to the Apostle Paul that Jesus, about 2 years after His resurrection, personally revealed more details of how further spiritual development should take place in the Body of Christ (Gal. 1:11-18). No other writer of the New Testament speaks of the Church as the Body of Christ, and the many other details concerning spiritual life as does Paul. Therefore, the logical places for us to look for information about spiritual life is the books of the Apostles John and Paul, and the person we should appeal to, to guide us, is the Holy Spirit. Click to see Growth page, Dwelling in Christ, part 3.
    2. ROMANS 8:1-4.... THEREFORE, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit. [John 3:18.] For the law of the Spirit of life [which is] in Christ Jesus [the law of our new being] has freed me from the law of sin and of death. For God has done what the Law could not do, [its power] being weakened by the flesh [the entire nature of man without the Holy Spirit]. Sending His own Son in the guise of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, [God] condemned sin in the flesh [subdued, overcame, deprived it of its power over all who accept that sacrifice], [Lev 7:37.] So that the righteous and just requirement of the Law might be fully met in us who live and move not in the ways of the flesh but in the ways of the Spirit [our lives governed not by the standards and according to the dictates of the flesh, but controlled by the Holy Spirit]. Click to see Growth page, Dwelling in Christ, part 4.
    1. Parts 1 thru 4 of Dwelling In Christ took us from the physical ordinances of the Old Testament that God first began to use to reveal His salvation plan for mankind, to the spiritual dimension that replaced the old physical ordinances. In part 5 we will consider another transition from how Christians are to live now, before the rapture, to how we might live during the Millennium and on into eternity. This gives a brief description of what we can expect and look forward to now and throughout eternity, don’t miss it.
    1. Most of us have wondered, probably on many occasions, what living with God in heaven is going to be like. Not so surprisingly, there is a great deal of information regarding this subject, but the following short article only makes use of a few, but very important and interesting portions of Scriptures available. Click to see Growth page, Dwelling in Christ, part 5.
    1. Sources to refer to:
    1. The essential teaching that is neglected in most Christian churches is that of dwelling in Christ Jesus by faith. For victorious Christian living this is not an elective, but an absolute requirement. It is very likely that most truly born-again Christians spend the majority of their time living by their own ability rather than the power and ability that the Holy Spirit makes available to God's people. This is the reason for failure and discouragement, and the reason that we are making this a priority study. Click to see website page, New Life In Christ And How To Live It.
    2. If Jesus has become our everything as described in 1 Cor. 1:30, why does it sometimes not seem true of us? Click to see website page, Perfect Righteousness Is Ours Only By Dwelling In Christ.
    3. What provisions has God made available to us to make freedom from sinful living a reality in this life? Click to see website page, Freedom From Sinful Living.
    1. Having learned how to Dwell In Christ, let's make sure that we stay there!
    1. There are three main books to study with regards to persevering in our faith in Christ: The books of Romans and Galatians, both written by Paul the apostle, and the book of Hebrews, possibly written by him also.
    1. There has been a long-standing disagreement among Christians of all ages, as to whether a true believer in Christ can fall away or lose their salvation; the Scriptures that we will present, seems to indicate that this is a real possibility. Click to see Growth page, Persevering In Our Faith In Christ.
    1. What provision has God made to prevent Christians from continuing to indulge in sin?
    1. Has God made it possible, through Christ Jesus our Lord, for us to live as Jesus lived when He was here in a human body that is, filled with the Holy Spirit and sinless? Click to see Growth page, How Can We Who Died To Sin Live In It Any Longer?
    1. A vital element of retaining our relationship to God is communicating with Him. God has provided the way for this communion to take place, and as usual Satan has his counterfeit substitutes; we will briefly examine these two opposing ways and means in this article. Click to see Growth page, Communion With God.

      • Second Section
      1. Practical Christianity from the book of First Corinthians
      1. 1 Cor. 1:1-4:21 <> In section one we learned about basic spirituality, in this section we will concentrate upon how we are to walk and conduct ourselves with this new spiritual life that God has given to us through Jesus Christ our Lord. "Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!" (2 Cor 5:17).
      1. The blending of our new life in Christ (spiritual) with our every-day walk (practical) presents us with some new issues to consider. The Bible teaches that Christianity is a relationship, not necessarily a religion, religion expresses itself by what we believe and the way we outwardly respond in our relationship with Christ Jesus and one another. Our religion can sometimes get in the way and hinder our spiritual progress.
      1. Click to see Growth page, Our Religion Can Hinder Our Spiritual Progress.
      1. 1 Cor. 1:1-9 <> The spiritual, but not necessarily the practical, condition or state of the Corinthian believers
      1. To affirm what we have already learned about our spiritual condition when we are dwelling in Christ, Paul states in 1 Cor 1:2a; "To the church (assembly) of God which is in Corinth, to those consecrated and purified and made holy in Christ Jesus, [who are] selected and called to be saints (God's people)."
      2. Evidence of God’s Devine grace 1 Cor 1:5; "[So] that in Him in every respect you were enriched, in full power and readiness of speech [to speak of your faith] and complete knowledge and illumination."
      3. 1 Cor 1:7a.... That you are not [consciously] falling behind or lacking in any special spiritual endowment or Christian grace
      4. 1 Cor 1:8.... And He will establish you to the end [keep you steadfast, give you strength, and guarantee your vindication; He will be your warrant against all accusation or indictment so that you will be] guiltless and irreproachable in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah).
      5. 1 Cor 1:9.... God is faithful (reliable, trustworthy, and therefore ever true to His promise, and He can be depended on); by Him you were called into companionship and participation with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
      1. 1 Cor. 1:10-4:21 <> In this section Paul instructs the people about the problem they were having with dissensions, factions and divisions among themselves; in the process he uses and touches upon several important issues or subjects that help to illustrate how the many details interrelate to give a better understanding of the overall picture.
      1. 1 Cor. 1:10-18 <> The preaching of the Gospel is proclaiming the message of the Cross of Christ, not about the group we belong to.
      2. 1 Cor. 1:19-31 <> The wisdom of God in contrast to the wisdom of men which is foolishness with God. The revealed Word of God that we will look at in the article below declares that the wisdom of this world is foolishness, but what does this world’s wisdom consist of? Basically it can be described as any wisdom or knowledge that is not based upon, or departs from, or is contrary to the revealed Word of God! Another words, any wisdom or knowledge that is based upon, and remains true to, and is according to the revealed Word of God is actually God’s truth and not something of our own making. Therefore, in order to distinguish between truth and error we simply check to see what God, in His Word, has to say about the subject in question. Click to see Growth page, This World’s Wisdom Is Foolishness.
      3. 1 Cor. 2:1-5 <> Paul uses himself as an example of how the Gospel should be presented and what it contains. "As for myself, brethren, when I came to you, I did not come proclaiming to you the testimony and evidence or mystery and secret of God [concerning what He has done through Christ for the salvation of men] in lofty words of eloquence or human philosophy and wisdom; for I resolved to know nothing (to be acquainted with nothing, to make a display of the knowledge of nothing, and to be conscious of nothing) among you except Jesus Christ (the Messiah) and Him crucified. And I was in ( passed into a state of) weakness and fear (dread) and great trembling [after I had come] among you. And my language and my message were not set forth in persuasive (enticing and plausible) words of wisdom, but they were in demonstration of the [Holy] Spirit and power [a proof by the Spirit and power of God, operating on me and stirring in the minds of my hearers the most holy emotions and thus persuading them], so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men (human philosophy), but in the power of God."
      4. 1 Cor. 2:6-13 <> The Wisdom of God and how it is received and communicated
      5. 1 Cor. 2:14-3:4 <> The carnal or unspiritual Christian: Click to see website page, What Makes A Person Spiritual?, or Click to see website page, The Difference Between Spirituality And Human Effort.
      6. 1 Cor. 3:5-15 <> The way a faithful minister of the Gospel should be understood, and how he should function.
      7. 1 Cor. 3:16-23 <> Christians are God’s temple, and it should not be corrupted with the foolish wisdom of men.
      8. 1 Cor. 4:1-5 <> Paul gets back to the subject on the divisions that they had allowed to develop among them, and defends himself against those who improperly judge him.
      9. 1 Cor. 4:6-21 <> Paul shows that the real, basic problem is that the Corinthians think too highly of themselves, and secondly, that they are thinking of men contrary to the teachings of Scripture.
      1. 1 Cor. 5:1-6:20 <> Sexual immorality and lawsuits among Christians
      1. 1 Cor. 5:1-13 <> From what Paul says in this chapter the Corinthians were tolerant of sinful practices and those that committed them and were proud of it, instead of being ashamed and doing what was needful. They may have been this way because of ignorance, but now we know better because we have God’s Word to go by.
      1. We know what Jesus expects of us, but do we really want to live this way, and, do we understand how we can? Have you ever read what is commonly called the Sermon on the Mount (chapters 5-7 of Matthew), or a similar account that may have been given at a different time (chapter six of Luke), and thought to yourself that it was impossible to live that way? Check out the following web pages to summarize the ground we have already covered concerning how to live for Christ. Click to see Growth page, Jesus Made It Possible For Us To Live As He Did, But, Do You Really Want To?, or Click to see website page, Human Authority And Christian Responsibility.
      1. 1 Cor. 6:1-20 <> This is an interesting chapter dealing with the subject of judgement, and is related to chapter five where they failed to practice proper judgement in regard to the person who was living with his stepmother. In this chapter they are reminded six times, "Do you not know or see," of things that they ought to know or be aware of; the last three are –
      1. 1 Cor 6:15-20.... Do you not see and know that your bodies are members (bodily parts) of Christ (the Messiah)? Am I therefore to take the parts of Christ and make [them] parts of a prostitute? Never! Never! Or do you not know and realize that when a man joins himself to a prostitute, he becomes one body with her? The two, it is written, shall become one flesh. [Gen 2:24.] But the person who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him. Shun immorality and all sexual looseness [flee from impurity in thought, word, or deed]. Any other sin which a man commits is one outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own, you were bought with a price [purchased with a preciousness and paid for, made His own]. So then, honor God and bring glory to Him in your body.
      1. 1 Cor. 7:1-40 <> Marriage relationships
      1. The departure from the Biblical fundamentals of family life opened up the way for many of the destructive forces that have followed.
      1. The areas that we are going to touch upon in this article are highly contested in society today. We cannot expect those who have been indoctrinated into the present world mind-set and accustomed to this life style to quickly agree with what we are about to present, but if correction and restoration are to come, the truth of God’s Word must be faithfully and accurately proclaimed in order that new converts may learn the right way, and hopefully the older ones will come to their senses and gradually make the change back to a Biblical world-view. Click to see website page, Marriage, Sexuality And Authority.
      1. 1 Cor. 8:1-10:33 <> Food offered to idols, and the precautions required
      1. 1 Cor. 9:1-27 <> Paul defends himself against accusations
      1. 1 Cor 9:1-3.... Am I not an apostle (a special messenger)? Am I not free (unrestrained and exempt from any obligation)? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? Are you [yourselves] not [the product and proof of] my workmanship in the Lord? Even if I am not considered an apostle (a special messenger) by others, at least I am one to you; for you are the seal (the certificate, the living evidence) of my apostleship in the Lord [confirming and authenticating it]. This is my [real ground of] defense (my vindication of myself) to those who would put me on trial and cross-examine me.
      1. 1 Cor.10:1-33 <> Paul warns the people further about idols by reminding them of what happened to the Israelites when they indulged in idolatry.
      1. 1 Cor. 11:1-34 <> Church order and the Lord’s Supper
      1. 1 Cor 11:1-3.... Pattern yourselves after me [follow my example], as I imitate and follow Christ (the Messiah). I appreciate and commend you because you always remember me in everything and keep firm possession of the traditions (the substance of my instructions), just as I have [verbally] passed them on to you. But I want you to know and realize that Christ is the Head of every man, the head of a woman is her husband, and the Head of Christ is God.
      1. 1 Cor 11:20-21.... "So when you gather for your meetings, it is not the supper instituted by the Lord that you eat, for in eating each one [hurries] to get his own supper first [not waiting for the poor], and one goes hungry while another gets drunk." So what is the proper way to celebrate the Lord’s Supper? Click the red C to see.
      1. 1 Cor 11:23-29.... For I received from the Lord Himself that which I passed on to you [it was given to me personally], that the Lord Jesus on the night when He was treacherously delivered up and while His betrayal was in progress took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke [it] and said, Take, eat. This is My body, which is broken for you. Do this to call Me [affectionately] to remembrance. Similarly when supper was ended, He took the cup also, saying, This cup is the new covenant [ratified and established] in My blood. Do this, as often as you drink [it], to call Me [affectionately] to remembrance. For every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are representing and signifying and proclaiming the fact of the Lord's death until He comes [again]. So then whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in a way that is unworthy [of Him] will be guilty of [profaning and sinning against] the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man [thoroughly] examine himself, and [only when he has done] so should he eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discriminating and recognizing with due appreciation that [it is Christ's] body, eats and drinks a sentence (a verdict of judgment) upon himself.
      1. 1 Cor. 12:1-14:40 <> Spiritual gifts and administration
      1. 1 Cor 12:1.... Now about the spiritual gifts (the special endowments of supernatural energy), brethren, I do not want you to be misinformed.
      1. 1 Cor 12:7-11.... But to each one is given the manifestation of the [Holy] Spirit [the evidence, the spiritual illumination of the Spirit] for good and profit. To one is given in and through the [Holy] Spirit [the power to speak] a message of wisdom, and to another [the power to express] a word of knowledge and understanding according to the same [Holy] Spirit; to another [wonder-working] faith by the same [Holy] Spirit, to another the extraordinary powers of healing by the one Spirit; to another the working of miracles, to another prophetic insight ( the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose); to another the ability to discern and distinguish between [the utterances of true] spirits [and false ones], to another various kinds of [unknown] tongues, to another the ability to interpret [such] tongues. All these [gifts, achievements, abilities] are inspired and brought to pass by one and the same [Holy] Spirit, Who apportions to each person individually [exactly] as He chooses.
      2. 1 Cor 12:27-31.... Now you [collectively] are Christ's body and [individually] you are members of it, each part severally and distinct [each with his own place and function]. So God has appointed some in the church [for His own use]: first apostles (special messengers); second prophets (inspired preachers and expounders); third teachers; then wonder-workers; then those with ability to heal the sick; helpers; administrators; [speakers in] different (unknown) tongues. Are all apostles (special messengers)? Are all prophets (inspired interpreters of the will and purposes of God)? Are all teachers? Do all have the power of performing miracles? Do all possess extraordinary powers of healing? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? But earnestly desire and zealously cultivate the greatest and best gifts and graces (the higher gifts and the choicest graces). And yet I will show you a still more excellent way [one that is better by far and the highest of them all--love].
      1. 1 Cor. 13:1-13 <> The spiritual gifts of God only function properly when they are administered in love!
      1. 1 Cor 13:1-8.... If I [can] speak in the tongues of men and [even] of angels, but have not love (that reasoning, intentional, spiritual devotion such as is inspired by God's love for and in us), I am only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers ( the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), and understand all the secret truths and mysteries and possess all knowledge, and if I have [sufficient] faith so that I can remove mountains, but have not love (God's love in me) I am nothing (a useless nobody). Even if I dole out all that I have [to the poor in providing] food, and if I surrender my body to be burned or in order that I may glory, but have not love (God's love in me), I gain nothing. Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God's love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]. As for prophecy ( the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), it will be fulfilled and pass away; as for tongues, they will be destroyed and cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away [it will lose its value and be superseded by truth].
      1. 1 Cor. 14:1-40 <> The proper use of God’s gifts, and how our church services should be conducted
      1. 1 Cor 14:1.... Eagerly pursue and seek to acquire [this] love [make it your aim, your great quest]; and earnestly desire and cultivate the spiritual endowments (gifts), especially that you may prophesy ( interpret the divine will and purpose in inspired preaching and teaching).
      2. 1 Cor 14:26-35.... What then, brethren, is [the right course]? When you meet together, each one has a hymn, a teaching, a disclosure of special knowledge or information, an utterance in a [strange] tongue, or an interpretation of it. [But] let everything be constructive and edifying and for the good of all. If some speak in a [strange] tongue, let the number be limited to two or at the most three, and each one [taking his] turn, and let one interpret and explain [what is said]. But if there is no one to do the interpreting, let each of them keep still in church and talk to himself and to God. So let two or three prophets speak [those inspired to preach or teach], while the rest pay attention and weigh and discern what is said. But if an inspired revelation comes to another who is sitting by, then let the first one be silent. For in this way you can give testimony [prophesying and thus interpreting the divine will and purpose] one by one, so that all may be instructed and all may be stimulated and encouraged; for the spirits of the prophets (the speakers in tongues) are under the speaker's control [and subject to being silenced as may be necessary], for He [Who is the source of their prophesying] is not a God of confusion and disorder but of peace and order. As [is the practice] in all the churches of the saints (God's people), the women should keep quiet in the churches, for they are not authorized to speak, but should take a secondary and subordinate place, just as the Law also says. [Gen 3:16.] But if there is anything they want to learn, they should ask their own husbands at home, for it is disgraceful for a woman to talk in church [for her to usurp and exercise authority over men in the church].
      3. For a more detailed study of this chapter, see our website page, Action Required To Achieve Spiritual Maturity.
      1. 1 Cor. 15:1-58 <> A reminder concerning the Gospel and the resurrection
      1. 1 Cor 15:1-8.... And now let me remind you [since it seems to have escaped you], brethren, of the Gospel (the glad tidings of salvation) which I proclaimed to you, which you welcomed and accepted and upon which your faith rests, and by which you are saved, if you hold fast and keep firmly what I preached to you, unless you believed at first without effect and all for nothing. For I passed on to you first of all what I also had received, that Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed one) died for our sins in accordance with [what] the Scriptures [foretold], [Isa 53:5-12.] that He was buried, that He arose on the third day as the Scriptures foretold, [Ps 16:9,10.] and [also] that He appeared to Cephas (Peter), then to the Twelve. Then later He showed Himself to more than five hundred brethren at one time, the majority of whom are still alive, but some have fallen asleep [in death]. Afterward He was seen by James, then by all the apostles (the special messengers), and last of all He appeared to me also, as to one prematurely and born dead [no better than an unperfected fetus among living men].
      1. 1 Cor 15:12-15.... But now if Christ (the Messiah) is preached as raised from the dead, how is it that some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not risen; and if Christ has not risen, then our preaching is in vain [it amounts to nothing] and your faith is devoid of truth and is fruitless (without effect, empty, imaginary, and unfounded). We are even discovered to be misrepresenting God, for we testified of Him that He raised Christ, Whom He did not raise in case it is true that the dead are not raised.
      1. 1 Cor 15:21-24.... For since [it was] through a man that death [came into the world, it is] also through a Man that the resurrection of the dead [has come]. For just as [because of their union of nature] in Adam all people die, so also [by virtue of their union of nature] shall all in Christ be made alive. But each in his own rank and turn: Christ (the Messiah) [is] the firstfruits, then those who are Christ's [own will be resurrected] at His coming. After that comes the end (the completion), when He delivers over the kingdom to God the Father after rendering inoperative and abolishing every [other] rule and every authority and power.
      2. 1 Cor 15:34-36.... Awake [from your drunken stupor and return] to sober sense and your right minds, and sin no more. For some of you have not the knowledge of God [you are utterly and willfully and disgracefully ignorant, and continue to be so, lacking the sense of God's presence and all true knowledge of Him]. I say this to your shame. But someone will say, How can the dead be raised? With what [kind of] body will they come forth? You foolish man! Every time you plant seed, you sow something that does not come to life [germinating, springing up, and growing] unless it dies first.
      3. 1 Cor 15:51-55.... Take notice! I tell you a mystery (a secret truth, an event decreed by the hidden purpose or counsel of God). We shall not all fall asleep [in death], but we shall all be changed (transformed) in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the [sound of the] last trumpet call. For a trumpet will sound, and the dead [in Christ] will be raised imperishable (free and immune from decay), and we shall be changed (transformed). For this perishable [part of us] must put on the imperishable [nature], and this mortal [part of us, this nature that is capable of dying] must put on immortality (freedom from death). And when this perishable puts on the imperishable and this that was capable of dying puts on freedom from death, then shall be fulfilled the Scripture that says, Death is swallowed up (utterly vanquished forever) in and unto victory. [Isa 25:8.] O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? [Hos 13:14.]
      1. 1 Cor. 16:1-24 <> Closing comments
      1. 1 Cor 16:21-24.... I, Paul, [add this final] greeting with my own hand. If anyone does not love the Lord [does not have a friendly affection for Him and is not kindly disposed toward Him], he shall be accursed! Our Lord will come! (Maranatha!) The grace (favor and spiritual blessing) of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. My love (that true love growing out of sincere devotion to God) be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen (so be it).
      1. 1 Cor 16:1-2.... Now concerning the money contributed for [the relief of] the saints (God's people): you are to do the same as I directed the churches of Galatia to do. On the first [day] of each week, let each one of you [personally] put aside something and save it up as he has prospered [in proportion to what he is given], so that no collections will need to be taken after I come.
      2. 1 Cor 16:13-14.... Be alert and on your guard; stand firm in your faith ( your conviction respecting man's relationship to God and divine things, keeping the trust and holy fervor born of faith and a part of it). Act like men and be courageous; grow in strength! [Ps 31:24.] Let everything you do be done in love (true love to God and man as inspired by God's love for us).

        • Third Section
        1. Church administration
        1. God has shown us in His Word how He intends to rule over His creation. If we have surrendered to His sovereignty, then we should examine His Word to see how we are to conduct ourselves in this world and as heavenly citizens. The word theocracy originates from Greek words meaning "the rule of God". This in turn derives from (theós, from an Indo-European root occurring in religious concepts), meaning "god," and (krátein), meaning "to rule."
        1. Policies that God has established in His Word that we are to adhere to:
        1. The way that God rules, and what He expects of us. Click to see our Growth page, Church Policy - Theocracy.
        2. There has been so much religious froth and foam added to modern-day church policy and practice that many have become totally unacceptable to Christ; God’s policy regarding the format of our church gathering, and how it should be conducted is one of them. Click to see our Growth page, Church Policy - Service Format.
        3. Many Christian groups and organizations have chosen the incorrect pathway of pleasing the people in contradiction to God’s Word, and have substituted the humanistic social gospel to try to correct the problem they helped create when they chose to please the people in the beginning; it’s a vicious cycle that goes round and round and never solves anything. Click to see our Growth page, Church Policy - Discipleship Versus Human Affection.
        4. How did various Christian groups and denominations get started? Let’s examine a few passages of Scripture for a clue as to how this happened, and, if it should have happened. Click to see our Growth page, The Origin Of Christian Denominations.
        5. This is a sequel to the above article explaining the cause and the cure for this present world of darkness and confusion. Click to see our Growth page, Our Only Hope In This Darkened World.
        1. Other Website pages to refer to:
        1. Contending For The Faith Or Gospel is required by church leaders. Click to see website page, Basic Instruction For The Local Church
        2. Our prayer is for the local shepherds, that God would give them wisdom and discernment in their charge over and feeding of their flocks, and the strength to resist what does not line up with His Word. Click to see website page, The Debilitating Effect Of Tradition.
        1. See the books of First and second Timothy and Titus

          • Fourth Section
          1. Keep the church informed about the dangers Christians face
          1. One-World Government, or New World Order, or Global Governance; they all mean and promote the same thing, the attempt by Satan to gain full control over the whole world.
          1. Do not neglect to familiarize yourself with the deception that is engulfing the whole world. Click to see Growth page, Only Jesus Can Dispel The Darkness That Is Engulfing The World.
          2. Sources to refer to:
          1. There are three sources of information or knowledge available to us: (1) That which God has revealed unto us in the Bible or His Word; (2) the lies which Satan tries to deceived us with; and (3) that which is derived from human investigation either from God's Word and God's creation, or from human investigation into the forbidden demonic spiritual realm. Obviously, to believe or put confidence in anything connected with Satan is the height of foolishness since Jesus has exposed his true character, "He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a falsehood, he speaks what is natural to him, for he is a liar [himself] and the father of lies and of all that is false" (John 8:44b). So anyone who believes what God has said should naturally dismiss Satan as a true source of information. Click to see Growth page, Global Governance Exposed.
          2. "The only global government authorized by God and His Word will be when Jesus Christ returns to planet earth at the second advent and rules the world with a rod of iron from Jerusalem. All other global government, no matter how "benevolent" its intention, is frowned upon by Scripture. Yet, the Bible teaches that God will allow evil to form a global government for three and one-half years during the second half of the tribulation for the purpose of our Lord's global judgment just prior to the second coming of Christ and the establishment of His global rule for 1,000 years upon earth. Thus, current moves toward globalism are preparation for antichrist, not for Jesus Christ, and should be opposed by Bible-believing Christians." The Emerging Global Community, by Dr. Thomas Ice. . . . UPDATE: The above was written in 2005 by Dr. Ice, so he might have a slightly different opinion at the present (Oct. 23, 2010) regarding when this World Government will commence because some information indicates that this system has already been formed, it has just not been fully implemented.
          3. Gary Kah?s book, En Route To Global Occupation, by Huntington House Publishers - 1992
          1. Rival religions, cults, movements, false teachings and practices
          1. 2 Cor. 10:3-6.... For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons. For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds, [inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed one), being in readiness to punish every [insubordinate for his] disobedience, when your own submission and obedience [as a church] are fully secured and complete.
          1. Whenever God starts something, Satan immediately attempts to infiltrate, corrupt, weaken, and eventually destroy (ICWD) it. Shortly after God created all that is, the enemy began his ICWD plan; you can read about it in the third chapter of Genesis. As soon as Jesus began His earthly ministry, the enemy unsuccessfully tried his ICWD plan on Him (Lk. 4:1-13); and as soon and since Jesus established The Church, Satan has been aggressively using his ICWD plan to infiltrate, corrupt, and weaken, with an intense desire to destroy it. Click to see our Growth page entitled, How The Present-day Church Has Been Deceived By Satan.
          1. The previous page to be added to our website was entitled, How The Present-day Church Has Been Deceived By Satan. This page attempts to explain how Satanic deception can be avoided by being of the same mind, and how that can be accomplished. Click to see our Growth page entitled, A Christian’s Proper Manner Of Life.
          1. Gal. 1:1-14; Rev. 2:6, 15, 20-23
          1. Evolution, psychotherapy, (New Age, Purpose Driven and Emerging Church movements), the Positive Confession or Faith movement
          2. Eastern religions, Islam, the Roman Catholic Church, the cults and the occult
          1. Sources to refer to:
          1. It is hoped that this article will be a convenient help to enable God's people to recognize and avoid the deception and bondage that Satan intends to bring upon the unwary. Click to see website page, Satan's Vast Network Of Deception & Opposition
          2. When we turn from trusting God to equip us to live, and rely instead on the schemes of men, no matter how educated and well meaning, we have rejected the path to true wholeness. Click to see website page, The Christian's Battle Against Gnosticism
          3. Basically, we could say that Biblical Christianity believes, trusts and relies upon what God has revealed to us in His Word; while Secular Christianity puts more confidence in human ability and understanding, and feels free to disregard or explain away the Word of God. Click to see website page, What Is Biblical Christianity?
          4. "In the 1930s, the reality of influence in the schoolroom spurred John Dewey, the father of American progressive education, to write My Pedagogic Creed. In it, Dewey depicts public education as a massive behavior-shaping tool. Dewey knew that you could sway the beliefs of a whole generation in the classroom and thereby alter the course of a nation." Click to see website page, The Battle For Truth Is Almost Lost
          5. Satan's attacks upon our minds come to us from all directions, but modern twentieth-century psychological counseling/therapy with its roots in occultism has been one of Satan's most potent schemes to lead people away from the truths and help of God's Word. Click to see website page, Spirit, Soul And Body Under Siege
          6. Never before, in the history of mankind, have there been so many and varied themes and schemes for distracting and conforming or shaping the minds of men, that mold or shape our character, or the person that we become. Click to see website page, Who Or What Are You Being Shaped By?
          7. The revealed Word of God that we will look at in this article declares that the wisdom of this world is foolishness, but what does this world's wisdom consist of? Basically it can be described as any wisdom or knowledge that is not based upon, or departs from, or is contrary to the revealed Word of God! Another words, any wisdom or knowledge that is based upon, and remains true to, and is according to the revealed Word of God is actually God's truth and not something of our own making. Therefore, in order to distinguish between truth and error we simply check to see what God, in His Word, has to say about the subject in question. Click to see Growth page, This World's Wisdom Is Foolishness.
          8. See the website series on "Developing A Biblical Worldview"
          1. Individuals
          1. It is hardly ever pleasant to contend, not even for the faith delivered to us by the Lord Jesus Christ, but it is absolutely necessary and here are some Scriptures that verify the practice. 1 Tim. 1:18-20; 2 Tim 2:15-18, 4:14-15; Titus 1:10-14; Rev. 2:2, 20-23; 3 Jn. 1:9-10
          1. By T.A. McMahon: "The history of the social gospel is, in nearly every case, a sincere attempt by Christians to do those things that they believe will honor God and benefit humanity. In every case, however, the practical working out of "benefitting humanity" has compromised biblical faith and dishonored God. Why is that? God's Word gives no commission to the church to fix the problems of the world. Those who attempt to do so are starting out under a false premise, "...a way which seemeth right unto a man," not God's way. So where can it go from there? "The end thereof are the ways of death," i.e., destruction (Proverbs 14:12). Furthermore, the problems of the world are all symptoms. The root cause is sin." Click to see the internet page from The Berean Call, The Shameful Social Gospel.
          2. By T.A. McMahon: "Why am I making an issue of this? Because the world and, sadly, much of the church are caught up in a temporal delusion: clinging to this earth rather than hoping for heaven. It's part of Satan's strategy to deceive the world into building his kingdom. For thousands of years, he has seduced both professing and true Christians into joining his labor force, with the goal of establishing his own religion, which will be headed by his puppet ruler, the Antichrist. As the intensity of his program increases in these last days, particularly in Christendom, the leaven of this apostasy has been deposited in all theological camps: charismatics, Calvinists, conservatives, liberals, Pentecostals, Baptists, left-leaning Christians, supporters of the Emerging Church Movement, promoters of the "social gospel," et al." Click to see the internet page from The Berean Call, The Temporal Delusion.
          3. The choices we make direct our path and our life toward a particular destination for either good or evil. God’s Word tells us the right choices to make, but unfortunately, some people and organizations, who are recognize or believed to be Christian, have compromised God’s Word and have brought confusion and deception into the Church. Click to see Growth page, Our Choices Can Tremendously Effect Our Life.
          4. How can we possibly hope to have confidence and be committed to Jesus unless we are convinced that we can completely rely upon Him and what He has declared. To find out, click to see Growth page, We Need To Know Him, In Order To Trust Him.
          5. The apostle Peter’s second letter gives us some good advise about what to be aware of and watch for when we attend church. Click to see Growth page, Peter’s Warnings And Encouragement.
          1. Retain Biblical Basics
          1. Spiritual rebirth, God’s salvation plan
          1. What Spiritual rebirth is; why it is needed; what it accomplishes; and how is it gained.
          2. There is nothing surer in all heaven than the salvation of every person who believes what God has declared in His Word, and trusts and relies upon Christ Jesus as his personal Lord and Savior; thus having the death penalty that he deserved payed for and cancelled by Jesus on the cross of Calvary (1 Cor. 1:30), and justified, declared righteous and put into a right relationship with God by the resurrection of Jesus from the dead (Rom. 4:25). We can forsake and forfeit this salvation (Heb. 6:4-8; 10:26-31; 2 Peter 2:20-22), but God never will (Rom. 8:28-39). I’m a born-again child of God only through faith in the salvation provided by Jesus when He shed His blood on the cross to pay for my redemption and rose from the dead for my justification (Eph. 1:7; Col. 1:14; Rom. 3:24).
          3. Click to see, Spiritual Rebirth.
          1. Stand firm and true to God's Word, Jesus and the Gospel
          1. To prepare God’s people to stand up to this kind of last-days deception that we presently face, our churches and or personal lives need to be patterned after the model that Jesus and Paul established. Click to see our Growth page entitled, Stand Up For Jesus.
          1. How to understand and cope with todays Generational Mindsets?
          1. With each individual and each generation their mind-set will depend upon what they are taught, and largely that depends upon how well they know what God has revealed to us in His Word. Without a firm and correct knowledge of God’s Word, one cannot know the truth for sure, and will end up using and relying upon the wisdom of the world that God calls foolishness (1 Cor. 1:18-25; 1 Cor. 2:9-16; 1 Cor. 3:1-4; 1 Cor. 3:18-20). Click to see our Growth page entitled, Understanding and coping with todays Generational Mindsets.

            • Fifth Section
            1. Church History, present condition, and Future destiny
            1. The Church that Jesus is building, and its offshoots. In an endeavor to dispel some of the confusion that has caused much concern among God’s people, we will in this series of articles examine God’s Word for some understanding and answers to such questions as: (1) the pattern Jesus gave us to follow when gathering together as His Church; (2) why there are so many offshoots of the original pattern; and (3) what is the basic cause for all the deception and conflicting opinions?
            1. Examine from Scripture how God designed the Church and meant it to be and function. Consider how a church is formed; also who God entrusted with the most information about the Church, and how he received it. Click to see website page, Jesus Said, I Will Build My Church
            2. Learn about the spiritual basics of Biblical Christianity and the invisible Church; how we can learn to live this way; how this enables us to rule and reign with Jesus now; and church structure and functions. Click to see website page, Biblical Christianity And The Invisible Church
            3. Consider some of the many branches or offshoots we have of the originally designed invisible Church that now constitutes the visible churches, and some of the problems this has created. Click to see website page, Offshoots Of Biblical Christianity Or The Visible Churches
            4. Examine a modern controversy, and how and why it developed. Click to see website page, The Basic Cause For Deception In The Churches
            5. See how God will respond to the choices we make, and also the example Paul gave us to live by. Click to see website page, God Makes His Appeal To Us Through The Apostle Paul
            1. Church History
            1. Most church history merely reports the facts known about that segment of Christianity that attached itself to the Roman Empire and then became apostate, and the Reformation that followed. But we need to be aware that there were groups of Christians that refused to go along with the false teachings and practices of the Roman church and remained true to Christ, and then, not only to know but learn to interpret the history of all these groups in light of the Word of God.
            2. The book of Acts
            3. Sources to refer to:
            1. Today there are numerous religions, cults, protestant denominations, movements and written agreements that are moving us back into the failed policies of the dark ages, once again world leaders, secular and religious, are attempting to bring the Church into an allegiance with world government. Click to see Growth page, A Brief Survey of Church History
            2. This is a much longer article, briefly mentioning the whole of history from the very beginning. Click to see website page, The Bible, History And Western Development
            1. Present Condition
            1. Sources to refer to:
            1. By reading what Jesus had to say to the seven churches in the book of Revelation, we can better understand what He expects from us. Click to see website page, Evaluating The Churches
            2. We are very reluctant to consider or attempt to do anything about the truth that many Christians no longer believe in true Biblical Christianity or have walked away from it all together. Click to see Growth page, Why People Are Leaving The Churches
            3. Jesus came to make us law-abiding citizens of His heavenly Kingdom, but most Christians today are trying to apply our spiritual heritage to this earthly realm. Click to see Growth page, What Is The Composition Of American Christianity?
            1. Future destiny
            1. Sources to refer to:
            1. Have you ever wondered what this life is all about and what living with God in heaven is going to be like; this is what we will briefly consider in this article. Click to see Growth page, The Reason For Our Present Earthly Existence

              • Sixth Section
              1. Eschatology or end-time events
              1. Daniel chapters 2, 7-12
              2. Matt. chapter 24
              3. 2 Peter chapter 3
              4. Revelation
              1. One world government, economy and religion under the antichrist
              1. Rev. chapters 13-14, 17-18
              1. The thousand-year Millennial reign of Christ
              1. Rev. chapters 19-20
              1. The Eternal state
              1. Rev. chapters 21-22
              1. Sources to refer to:
              1. In the following article we will try to establish where we are in this plan of God's, and some of the details of it. Click to see website page, How Far Along Are We In God's Plan?
              2. The very first thing that Jesus mentioned that will be characteristic of this period leading up to and including the end is deception. Click to see website page, The Beginning Of The End
              3. The events leading up to the Antichrist's end-time exploits. Click to see website page, The Role Of Antichrist
              4. Prophecy is a very difficult and imprecise discipline, but since about one-quarter of the Bible is prophecy and we have every reason to believe that God gave it to us to understand and be encouraged by, we should spend a corresponding amount of time in an attempt to discover the true meaning of it. Click to see website page, A Brief Look At The Book Of Revelation

                • Seventh Section
                1. Obedience to God can bring trouble and persecution
                1. Matt. 10:21-39, 24:9-13; Mark 13:9-13; Jn. 7:7, 15:18-25
                1. Sources to refer to:
                1. The Roman Empire persecuted the early Christians mainly because they refused to participate in their religious activities and worship the gods of the empire; the global system being formed today will do the same thing for the same reasons. Click to see website page, The Reasons Christians Have And Continue To Be Persecuted
                2. As people increasingly become as Jesus described in Matthew 24:9-14, it will become extremely difficult to live as the Lord would have us to. It is easy to love kind and generous people, but when they begin to malign, deceive, cheat and mistreat you it is much more difficult. Click to see website page, Prepare Yourself For Difficulties
                1. Comfort and encouragement in difficult times
                1. Sources to refer to:
                1. The way that we learn to trust and be comforted is to read and meditate upon what He has promised us until it becomes a firmly held conviction in our heart that dispels all fear because we know that God is in complete control and nothing escapes His notice, and that He does indeed care about us affectionately. Click to see Growth page, Comfort In The Midst Of Difficulties

                Satan's Vast Network Of Deception And Opposition

                Sources Of Information

                The following list of books and other sources from which I obtained most of the information for this page is given here in order that the reader may have access to expert information to verify the content of this page and also to further study the issues raised.

                The Seduction Of Christianity by Dave Hunt & T. A. McMahon – Harvest House Publishers (1985)

                Beyond Seduction by Dave Hunt – Harvest House Publishers (1987)

                Global Peace by Dave Hunt – Harvest House Publishers (1990)

                A Woman Rides the Beast by Dave Hunt – Harvest House Publishers (1994)

                Occult Invasion by Dave Hunt – Harvest House Publishers (1998)

                The Berean Call monthly newsletter – articles written by Dave Hunt & T. A. McMahon

                En Route to Global Occupation by Gary Kah – Huntington House Publishers (1992)

                The Kingdom Of The Cults by Walter Martin – Bethany House Publishers (1985 & 1997)

                The Encyclopedia Of Cults And New Religions by John Ankerberg & John Weldon – Harvest House Publishers (1999)

                Dictionary Of Cults, Sects, Religions And The Occult by George A. Mather & Larry A. Nichols – Zondervan Publishing House (1993)

                Halley’s Bible Handbook by H. H. Halley – Zondervan Publishing House (1965)

                This page contains a brief list and description of some of the major opponents and practices that, sometimes unknown to the individuals involved with them, are being used by the enemy to oppose or hinder God’s plans. The word ‘satan’ actually means an adversary or opponent, so we understand, as the Bible states, that he is the ultimate one behind all that is contrary to the good that God has for us and would have us to enjoy. It is hoped that this article will be a convenient help to enable God’s people to recognize and avoid the deception and bondage that Satan intends to bring upon the unwary. Remember that, "Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light" (2 Cor. 11:14).

                Until recently these forces and technics have mostly worked or been known as separate religions, cults, and movements, but are now being ecumenically brought together to work toward Satan’s global political, economic and religious system, all with the same focus on humanistic occult mysticism as the New Age Movement. The reason that these organizations and their practices are so dangerous is that most Christians are unaware of the occultic nature behind them, and that God has warned us against them (Deut. 18:9-12; Ex. 20:1-5; Jer. 29:8-9; Zec. 10:2; Isa. 47:13-15; Lev. 19:4, 26, 31; 20:6). This is the reason this page is being added to this website.

                In their book, Dave Hunt and T. A. McMahon repeatedly warn us that the basic element of deception in Satan’s whole global system is to entice with the same temptation he overcame Eve with – to become like God, or to become a god ourselves. "This aspiration after godhood is an ambition that has become an apparently incurable (apart from Christ) obsession for the entire race. It is at the heart of all occultism and shamanism and is the essence of the Human Potential movement and the religion of Antichrist. It is sweeping the world today as part of the delusion that is preparing us for this coming world dictator. And this same delusion has been entering the church as a key element in the growing apostasy" (The Seduction of Christianity, p. 88).

                We are told in the first chapter of Romans that when people turn away from God and His truth and choose instead the wisdom of men that God turns them over to a reprobate mind. "For God's [holy] wrath and indignation are revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who in their wickedness repress and hinder the truth and make it inoperative. For that which is known about God is evident to them and made plain in their inner consciousness, because God [Himself] has shown it to them. For ever since the creation of the world His invisible nature and attributes, that is, His eternal power and divinity, have been made intelligible and clearly discernible in and through the things that have been made (His handiworks). So [men] are without excuse [altogether without any defense or justification], [Ps. 19:1-4.] because when they knew and recognized Him as God, they did not honor and glorify Him as God or give Him thanks. But instead they became futile and godless in their thinking [with vain imaginings, foolish reasoning, and stupid speculations] and their senseless minds were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools [professing to be smart, they made simpletons of themselves]. And by them the glory and majesty and excellence of the immortal God were exchanged for and represented by images, resembling mortal man and birds and beasts and reptiles. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their [own] hearts to sexual impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves [abandoning them to the degrading power of sin], because they exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, Who is blessed forever! Amen (so be it). [Jer. 2:11.] For this reason God gave them over and abandoned them to vile affections and degrading passions" (Rom. 1:18-26a).

                This is the state or condition of the majority of our worldly organizations and leadership, because they have placed their faith in humanistic philosophy and rejected the God of the Bible. Jesus says "A good (healthy) tree cannot bear bad (worthless) fruit, nor can a bad (diseased) tree bear excellent fruit [worthy of admiration]" (Matt. 7:18). So we know what to expect from those who disregard the Word of God and rely upon the wisdom of men instead.

                We don’t know when it was that Satan rebelled against God’s authority and plan, but we have a great deal of information in the Bible about his methods of opposing all the good that God had originally intended. Lucifer (brightness or bright star) the anointed cherub (Ez. 28:14), refusing to stay where God had placed him; chose to live for self instead of God and became Satan (an adversary, opponent) or the devil. Other names for him are: the Dragon, the Evil One, the Angel of the Bottomless Pit, the Prince of this World, the Prince of the Power of the Air, the God of this World, Apollyon, Abaddon, Belial, Beelzebub.

                We are first introduced to Satan and his lying deceitfulness in the third chapter of the Bible when he used a serpent to persuade Eve to disobey God, "But the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die, for God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing the difference between good and evil and blessing and calamity" (Gen. 3:4-5).

                We also know that Satan has extended his influence and control over most of the earth as he did with the king of Tyre as Ezek. 28:12-16 describes, "Son of man, take up a lamentation over the king of Tyre and say to him, Thus says the Lord God: You are the full measure and pattern of exactness [giving the finishing touch to all that constitutes completeness], full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering, the carnelian, topaz, jasper, chrysolite, beryl, onyx, sapphire, carbuncle, and emerald; and your settings and your sockets and engravings were wrought in gold. On the day that you were created they were prepared. [Gen. 3:14,15; Isa. 14:12-15; Matt. 16:23.] You were the anointed cherub that covers with overshadowing [wings], and I set you so. You were upon the holy mountain of God; you walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire [like the paved work of gleaming sapphire stone upon which the God of Israel walked on Mount Sinai]. [Ex. 24:10.] You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created until iniquity and guilt were found in you. Through the abundance of your commerce you were filled with lawlessness and violence, and you sinned; therefore, I cast you out as a profane thing from the mountain of God and the guardian cherub drove you out from the midst of the stones of fire."

                The things said above could not possibly apply to the king of Tyre, but more than likely to the force that motivated him. Satan had apparently taken such control of this king that God could speak to him as if speaking to the one who controlled him. This deceptive, captivating control that Satan has is illustrated by Jesus when he remarked, "I will not talk with you much more, for the prince (evil genius, ruler) [Satan] of the world is coming. And he has no claim on Me. [He has nothing in common with Me; there is nothing in Me that belongs to him, and he has no power over Me]" (John 14:30); leading the apostle John to conclude, "We know [positively] that we are of God, and the whole world [around us] is under the power of the evil one" (1 Jn. 5:19).

                Not only has Satan set up a well established political realm, but he has done the same thing in the religious realm as well. All of Satan’s many and varied religions, sects, teachings and doctrines reject the One True God of the Bible and (directly or subtly pervert the truth to) make Satan or ones-self god. Satan is the ultimate con-man, seducer, deceiver (Revelation 12:9) and father of (the one who brings into existence) lies and of all that is false (John 8:44): "For the god of this world has blinded the unbelievers’ minds [that they should not discern the truth], preventing them from seeing the illuminating light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, Who is the Image and Likeness of God" (2 Cor. 4:4).

                It is these various occultic religions, cults, and movements that we wish to briefly mention as a means of warning and preparing God’s people for the increasing deception that we are presently confronted with.

                Many of the past and present religions’ roots can be traced back to the time of the flood of Noah’s day and of Nimrod and the Tower of Babel. The next eight paragraphs are taken from Gary Kah’s book: En Route to Global Occupation by Huntington House Publishers (1992). I strongly recommend Gary’s book, he does an excellent job of showing the satanic ties of many of the past and present false religions and practices, as well as political and economic institutions.

                It was interesting to discover that all of the ancient mystery religions from the Bible era were pantheistic. Pantheism originated in the ancient city of Babylon in Mesopotamia and from there spread rapidly in all directions to cover the face of the earth. Hinduism is one of the off-shoots of the original Babylonian pantheism (via the Aryans of ancient Persia). And Buddhism is an off-shoot of Hinduism. all of the Eastern religions of today are ultimately traceable to ancient Babylon, where the post-flood rebellion against God began.

                The nation of Israel was completely surrounded by these occult societies. All of these pantheistic religions (at their base) were the same and were traceable to ancient Babylon and the time of Nimrod.

                God scattered the people from Babylon at the building of the Tower of Babel, but this did not put an end to occultism, it merely broke it up and slowed its spread for a time. As new civilizations arose in Egypt, Persia, India, etc., the occult practices of old were revived. The people, as it turned out, had merely taken their beliefs and practices with them.

                Although some changes and modifications took place in these "new" mysteries to suit the developing cultures of the various language groups, the basic tenets and practices remained the same. All of the ancient mysteries, for example, had an occult priesthood, which ruled the country or empire in association with the appointed priest-king. . . . The highest priests took their orders directly from Satan or his demon messengers in altered states of consciousness. The techniques for achieving these states were once the deepest, best kept, secrets of the high priests. Later, they would be kept alive and carried forward by the secret societies. Within the past generation, however, these same techniques (or variations of these techniques) have made it into the mainstream of Western society.

                I also found that many, perhaps most, of the world’s secret societies view Freemasonry as their mother organization from which their ceremonies, rituals, and beliefs emanate. World Book Encyclopedia supports this conclusion stating that "more than a hundred fraternal organizations have a relationship with Masonry. . . . (p. 92)

                The history of Freemasonry, I discovered, was also the history of the secret societies, and the history of the secret societies is the history of organized occultism – particularly in the Western world. Perhaps the most complete history of organized occultism has been provided by Albert Pike in his 861 page occult classic entitled Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry (more commonly referred to by Masons as simply Morals and Dogma). Drawing from the sources available to him as the long-time leader of Freemasonry (1859-1891), Pike was able to trace the chronological growth and spread of the Mysteries over the face of the earth from ancient Babylon down to the present-day Masonic Order. (En Route to Global Occupation, p. 95)

                The major religions of the world

                Hinduism – is one of the offshoots of the original Babylonian mysteries through the Aryans of ancient Persia. Hinduism has evolved over the past four thousand years and is now composed of hundreds of sects. There is no single Hindu idea of God, their interpretations include: monism (all existence is one substance); pantheism (all existence is divine); panentheism (God is in creation as a soul is in a body); animism (God or gods live in nonhuman objects such as trees, rocks, animals, etc.); polytheism (there are many gods); henotheism (there is one god we worship among the many that exist); and monotheism (there is only one God). These various sects believe and practice reincarnation, evolution, altered states of consciousness, TM (transcendental meditation), visualization, hypnosis, and anything else that will help them attain self-realization and perfection. Hinduism has been deliberately spread throughout the world by it’s many gurus, and has infected and influenced almost every segment of our society including the Christian churches.

                Buddhism – is an offshoot of Hinduism, begun in India about B.C. 500 because of disillusionment with some of the aspects of the Hindu religion. The final goal of Buddhist practice is Nirvana, the absence of physical desire and suffering. Religious merit is gained by observing the teachings of the monks, and worshiping the relics of the Buddha.

                Judaism – Many Israelites still attempt to live according to the Law given by God unto Moses. They failed to recognize Jesus as their promised Messiah and the One Who fulfilled all the types and sacrifices of the Law. Therefore, they were not able to move on into the new Christian faith, when Christ did away with the old covenant and established the new (Heb. 10:1-10).

                Islam – marks its beginning in A.D. 622 when Muhammad fled opposition to his teachings which he had allegedly received in a vision in A.D. 610 at the age of forty. When the Jews and Christians also rejected his teachings, he returned to Mecca, Saudi Arabia. He denounced the idols that surrounded the famous black stone, the Kaaba Stone, and declared that it represented the one true God, Allah. Muslims believe in the law of Moses, the Psalms of David, and the Injil, or gospel of Jesus Christ, but they believe that the Bible has been distorted or polluted and that where it contradicts Muhammad’s revelation it is incorrect. Muslims do not believe that Jesus is God, or that He died on the cross, or that He atoned for anyone’s sins.

                Occult or Mystic Tools of the Trade

                The following is a list of tools, devices, beliefs and tricks that the devil uses to snare and bring into bondage unsuspecting victims. Many have testified that when they first became involved it was exciting and even enjoyable. But afterwards it became a hell on earth experience that is very difficult, and sometimes impossible to be freed from.

                • Acupuncture: A healing technique from China that uses needles to pierce the skin of a person’s body, in an attempt to realign the universal force called the Tao.
                • Altered States of Consciousness: A deliberate attempt, through various occult techniques, to achieve a higher or enlightened change of mind or awareness.
                • Archetypes: An inherited idea or mode of thought in the psychology of C. G. Jung that is derived from the experience of the race and is present in the unconscious of every individual.
                • Astrology: the divination of the supposed influence of the stars and planets on human affairs and terrestrial events by their positions and aspects; horoscopes.
                • Augur: to foretell, especially from omens.
                • Automatic Writing: Writing performed without conscious intention and sometimes without awareness as if of telepathic or spiritualistic origin.
                • Biofeedback: The technique of using monitoring devices to furnish information regarding an autonomic bodily function, such as heart rate or blood pressure, in an attempt to gain some voluntary control over that function.
                • Charmer: enchanter, magician
                • Clairvoyance: The power or faculty of discerning objects not present to the senses.
                • Divination: The act or practice that seeks to foresee or foretell future events or discover hidden knowledge usually by the interpretation of omens or by the aid of supernatural powers. In Scripture the diviners were false prophets, and divination was allied to witchcraft and idolatry and energized by demon power. Divination differs from prophecy in that the one is a human device while the other is a divine gift.
                • Esoteric: Designed for or understood by the specially initiated alone; of or relating to knowledge that is restricted to a small group.
                • Evolution: An ancient occult belief that progress is being achieved as species evolve into higher life forms. Mankind is supposedly being evolved toward godhood through reincarnation.
                • Hypnosis: An altered state of consciousness induced by a skilled manipulator, on a cooperative person, through suggestibility.
                • Incantation: Ritual recitation of verbal charms or spells to produce a magic effect. A formula used in ritual recitation; a verbal charm or spell. A conventionalized utterance repeated without thought or aptness; a formula.
                • Inner healing: The religious counterpart of regression therapy; where a past problem situation is brought vividly to the mind through the occult practice of visualization, and then Jesus is visualized as coming to heal that part of the person that has been injured, and thus eliminating future problems. This occult technique was introduced to Christianity by Agnes Sanford.
                • Magic: the use of means (as charms or spells) believed to have supernatural power over natural forces; magic rites or incantations; enchantment.
                • Mantra: a secret, the communication of which forms the chief ceremony of initiation in all Hindu sects. It generally consists of the name of some deity, or a short address to him; it is conveyed by the teacher to the disciple in a whisper, and when once known, is carefully concealed from all the uninitiated. The word mantra is also employed generally to denote a spell or enchantment, and also a hymn or a prayer.
                • Medium: an individual held to be a channel of communication between the earthly world and a world of spirits.
                • Metaphysical: Beyond the physical; supernatural or spiritual.
                • Necromancy: Communication with the dead through a medium for the purpose of magically revealing the future or influencing the course of events.
                • Omens: an occurrence or phenomenon believed to signify a future event.
                • Pantheism: A doctrine that equates God with the forces and laws of the universe. The worship of all gods of different creeds, cults, or peoples indifferently; also toleration of worship of all gods (as at certain periods of the Roman Empire).
                • Precognition: To know beforehand.
                • Psychotherapy: That branch of psychology that tries to understand human nature, determine how they should live, and then instill in people suffering problems, the values, attitudes, and behavior that they have determined to be best suited to solve the problem. There are several branches of psychotherapy, and more than 250 separate systems which all fall into the category of pseudoscience "a system of theories, assumptions, and methods erroneously regarded as scientific."
                • Reincarnation: The belief in the rebirth of a soul into another body.
                • Remote Viewing: The alleged ability to gather information of any kind whatsoever, wherever it is located in space and time — even in the future.
                • Ritual: The body of ceremonies or rites used in a place of worship.
                • Shaman: A word that is now used by anthropologists for those who were formerly called witch doctors, medicine men, wizards, and sorcerers. Hindu occultism is believed to be the most ancient and universal form of shamanism.
                • Soothsaying: The act of foretelling events; prediction, prophecy.
                • Sorcery: the use of power gained from the assistance or control of evil spirits especially for divining; necromancy.
                • Telepathy: Apparent communication from one mind to another rather than through the channels of sense.
                • Visualization: One of the basic shamanistic beliefs that pictures vividly formed and firmly held in the mind can bring that object into reality.
                • Witchcraft: the use of sorcery or magic; communication with the devil or familiar spirits.
                • Wizard: one skilled in magic; sorcerer.
                • Yoga: Like Transcendental Meditation, yoga is a ritual to enter the altered state. Also believed to be an attempt to stop the recycling process of reincarnation by achieving universal consciousness.

                Increasing numbers of people who call themselves Christians are being deceived into believing and using the technics and practices of occult mysticism because they have failed to recognize the demonic influence behind them, or have neglected or no longer believe the Bible, or have accepted instead the humanistic wisdom of this world, which God calls foolishness: "For the story and message of the cross is sheer absurdity and folly to those who are perishing and on their way to perdition, but to us who are being saved it is the [manifestation of] the power of God. For it is written, I will baffle and render useless and destroy the learning of the learned and the philosophy of the philosophers and the cleverness of the clever and the discernment of the discerning; I will frustrate and nullify [them] and bring [them] to nothing. [Isa. 29:14.] Where is the wise man (the philosopher)? Where is the scribe (the scholar)? Where is the investigator (the logician, the debater) of this present time and age? Has not God shown up the nonsense and the folly of this world's wisdom? For when the world with all its earthly wisdom failed to perceive and recognize and know God by means of its own philosophy, God in His wisdom was pleased through the foolishness of preaching [salvation, procured by Christ and to be had through Him], to save those who believed (who clung to and trusted in and relied on Him)" (1 Cor. 1:18-21). "For this world's wisdom is foolishness (absurdity and stupidity) with God, for it is written, He lays hold of the wise in their [own] craftiness;" (1 Cor. 3:19).

                The following paragraph is a good example of what can happen, even to good men who call themselves Christians, when they disregard God’s Word and rely upon the wisdom of men instead.

                From the crucifixion of Christ to emperor Constantine’s supposed conversion to Christianity, in A.D. 313, the Church was intermittently persecuted by the Roman Empire. Constantine, in A.D. 313, accepted and favored Christianity and was instrumental in preparing it to be established as the state religion in A.D. 381. This merger of Church and state, probably believed by most to be God-sent, soon began to compromise and corrupt the Church; it has proved to be an unholy alliance which God never intended. When the Western Empire came to an end in A.D. 476 the Popes began to assume the authority that the Emperors once had, and some of them have been regarded as among the most commanding, corrupt and depraved individuals that have ever lived. Thus the Roman Catholic Church was born, but there had always been small churches even before the Reformation, that most historians ignore, that refused to follow their ungodly ways and remained separated from them.

                Major Cults that Call Themselves Christian

                The Roman Catholic Church – How and when it began: The beginning of the Roman Church is described in the previous paragraph. It would take a whole book to begin to describe the host of errors of the Roman Church, but the most fatal error is its false gospel of works. This church has rejected the Word of God by it’s tradition (Matt. 15:6-9) and insists that redemption remains yet to be accomplished by the individual’s efforts as he receives grace dispensed by the Roman Church through the liturgy and sacraments: baptism, Mass, penance (acts of self-abasement, mortification, or devotion performed to show sorrow or repentance of sin), etc.

                The Eastern Orthodox Church – How and when it began: A division between the Eastern Church and the Western Church began to develop in Catholicism in the year 869 and became permanent in 1054. The Eastern Church refused to accept the Pope of Rome as the head of the Universal Church and so they parted, but otherwise their basic doctrines and beliefs remained the same and are practically the same now.

                Mormonism – How and when it began: This religious cult was formulated by Joseph Smith jr. as a result of several alleged heavenly visions, one of God the Father and Jesus His Son in 1820 in which they appointed him as an anointed prophet, and another in 1823 when the angel Moroni supposedly appeared to him with information about the location of a set of "golden plates" which he found and began to translate into English in 1827 and published as the Book of Mormon in 1830. About twelve years later he joined and became a high-ranking official in the Masonic Order; Brigham Young, another Mormon leader, was also a Freemason. Mormons believe that God was once as we are now and is an exalted man, and that he has a body of flesh and bone. Jesus is one god among many gods; the spirit brother of Lucifer; a polygamist, and every Mormon male can seek to become a god.

                Christian Science – How and when it began: This cult began to be formulated in the 1860s by Mary Baker Eddy while she was in the process of spreading her teachings on Christian Science. She finally established the order in 1879 based upon the metaphysical teachings of Parkhurst Quimby. Christian Science borrows from Hinduism its rejection of the reality of matter. Sickness and death are illusions, as are all material things. Healing is accomplished by thinking pure thoughts; one overcomes illness by refusing to think about it. They believe that sin is only an error and can be conquered by denying its power and existence. Salvation is deliverance from the awareness of evil or pain, and all men are saved because man is God’s idea. They do not believe in the Trinity or that Jesus is God.

                Theosophy – How and when it began: This false belief system does not call itself Christian, but because it has greatly affected Christianity it is listed here. It was founded in 1875 by Madame Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Colonel Henry Steel Olcott, and William Quan Judge in New York City. The greatest successor to Helena was Annie Besant. This cult’s background is Spiritualism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Gnosticism, and it is considered the most influential Hindu/occult group in America. There are three major theosophical groups. The teachings of this society have had tremendous influence within the New Age Movement. Their teachings about God and the world are based on mystical insight. The teachings follow chiefly Buddhist and Brahmanic theories especially of pantheistic evolution and reincarnation.

                The Jehovah’s Witnesses – How and when it began: This cult was founded by Charles Russell in 1879, who was succeeded by Joseph F. "Judge" Rutherford. Its purpose is to usher in the kingdom age of the Millennium and join Jehovah’s forces, who will be victorious at Armageddon. The leadership of this organization claims to receive divine guidance and new revelations from God. Some of their beliefs include: Jehovah is one God, not a Trinity; Jesus was the first and greatest creation of Jehovah; denies Jesus’ bodily resurrection; there is no hell; background is Gnosticism.

                Unitarianism – How and when it began: — This cult was founded by Charles S. and Myrtle Fillmore in 1886, and is based on the teachings of Phineas Parkhurst Quimby. Known as the Unity School of Christianity, it was one of the New Thought groups known in the early days as Modern Thought. Background is Christian Science, Eastern mysticism, and Gnosticism. In comparison with Christian Science, there is less emphasis on denying the physical and more emphasis on the latent powers within. Prayer releases these powers, producing peace of mind, inner harmony, good health, and success.

                Groups or Movements with False Teachings or Practices

                Moral ReArmament. — The Oxford Group was founded by Frank Buchman, a Lutheran minister. This group seems to have started well, but soon departed from Biblical Christianity, and was later renamed Moral ReArmament. Sam Shoemaker, Episcopalian pastor in Boston, was a part of this group and taught Bill Wilson, the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. Bill Wilson and his close friend, Bob Smith, were both heavily involved in the occult even before they conceived of AA, and that involvement never ceased after AA’s founding. Seeking guidance, not from the Bible but from God Himself allegedly speaking with an inner voice, became a major part of the Oxford Group, then MRA and finally AA. A. J. Russell recommended and made popular the Oxford Group in his book For Sinners Only. Paul Tournier was associated with an Oxford Group in Switzerland from 1933 to 1939. This group has also influenced New Age groups like Findhorn, on the coast of Scotland. Buchman had a notable impact on diplomacy during the Cold War. MRA became active in more than 50 countries and achieved NGO (Non-governmental Organization) status with the United Nations, which it enjoys today. Buchman died on August 8, 1961.

                New Thought Movement. — Their basic teachings were developed by Phineas P. Quimby (1802-1866). His teachings were derived from mesmerism (early hypnotism), Spiritism and kindred phenomena. Mary Baker Eddy was healed by Quimby, and her Christian Science teachings are based on his. New Thought’s basic teaching is very much like Hinduism, and is the forerunner of the New Age Movement, and the basis for a number of cults including Unity School of Christianity and The Church of Religious Science (Science of Mind founded by Ernest Holmes). Norman Vincent Peale, a 33-degree Mason, and his chief disciple, Robert Schuller, kept New Thought alive within mainstream Christianity.

                The Ecumenical Movement -- or Unity of All Religions was conceived by the World Parliament of Religions in 1893. It has since become the dream of those who wish to unite all the world with a Global Government, economy and religion. Many Protestant and Catholic groups, as well as other religions, now use the term interfaith dialog to indicate what is taking place in the Ecumenical Movement. It’s emphasis on unity for world peace and betterment, psychology and its sensitivity-training philosophy are being used to influence the world and the church to use language that is positive and inoffensive. To speak otherwise is not considered politically or religiously correct. It has become more important to speak pleasing words than it is to seek and speak the truth. A major figure in this Movement is the Roman Catholic Church.

                Billy Graham was the first and most notable evangelical to support Catholicism's ecumenical efforts. Others followed, including Bill Bright, Pat Robertson, J. I. Packer, Timothy George, Robert Schuller, Hank Hanegraaff, Benny Hinn, and Jack Van Impe. Evangelicals and Catholics Together, under the leadership of Chuck Colson and Catholic priest Richard John Neuhaus, declared Catholics and evangelicals to be "brothers and sisters in Christ" and exhorted them to work together in spreading the gospel. Obviously, and conveniently, that gospel was never defined. (Evangelical Mysticism? by McMahon, T.A. February 1, 2008 in The Berean Call newsletter)

                The Positive Confession or Faith Movement — is much the same as Peale’s Positive Thinking and Schuller’s Possibility Thinking. But instead of just thinking and visualizing your prayers into existence, Positive Confession believes you must speak them into existence. E. W. Kenyon attended at the Emerson College of Oratory in Boston, where the New Thought philosophy was very popular. It was Kenyon that first taught "the positive confession of the Word of God", and that man is a little god "in God’s class", and that we can use the same faith-force that God does. Kenneth Hagin picked up on Kenyon’s teachings and made them popular and has influenced, and/or trained, many others including: Kenneth Copeland, Charles Capps, Frederick K. C. Price, and Benny Hinn.

                The "Christian" Psychology Movement. — There is no such thing as Christian Psychology, but there are Christians who practice psychology. There are many branches of psychology, those that stick to objective facts may be legitimate as a science. But those that use testing that deals with personality types or personal feelings or subjective views lacks the necessary factual support to qualify it as a true science -- this is the realm of the soul and spirit, emotions and behavior, and should be dealt with from the teachings of God’s Word. It is beyond the realm of science to evaluate, verify, dictate to, or treat the soul or spirit of man. The attempt to deal with human behavior scientifically has opened the door to occult seduction. Psychology comes out of the occult, is not scientific, and many of its leading professionals admit that it can be destructive. Proponents of this movement are: psychologist James Dobson, Drs.’ Gary Collins, Lawrence Crabb, Jr., Paul Meier, and Frank Minirth.

                The Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion — is awarded by Sir John Marks Templeton. He was on the board of Princeton Theological Seminary and for 15 years was on the board of managers of the American Bible Society, in spite of his rejection of the Bible as God’s Word. His beliefs are Unity, Religious Science and New Age. He is enthusiastically endorsed by Norman Vincent Peale, Robert Schuller, Christianity Today, and by Billy Graham, Chuck Colson, and Bill Bright who have received his $1,000,000 plus prize.

                Promise Keepers — is a men’s movement under the leadership of University of Colorado football coach Bill McCartney. His pastor and PK board member is James Ryle, a Vineyard minister. A former Vineyard pastor, Randy Phillips, is the PK president. This movement promotes the Ecumenical Movement and psychology.

                The Holistic Movement — is generally considered as health care for the whole person. The more extreme psychic element of this movement holds to New Age philosophy and practices such techniques and rituals as: acupuncture, biofeedback, channeling, crystal therapy, guided imagery, psychic healing, TM, visualization and yoga.

                The Human Potential Movement — was developed by Abraham Maslow, founder of the Association of Humanistic Psychology. This Movement stresses man’s essential goodness and unlimited or infinite inner potential supposedly awakened by the use of occultic techniques like those previously mentioned.

                The Environmental Movement — is composed of separate groups that range from legitimate to pagan spirituality and nature worship. Ecological concerns have become a major issue of religious and political leaders.

                The Dominionist Movement — is separate from, but has a lot in common with the Latter Rain Movement that began in Canada in 1948, out of which came the Manifested Son of God Movement, a group called Coalition on Revival, the Reconstructionist Movement, and the Kingdom Now/Restoration Movement. The basic belief of all these groups is that the Church of Jesus Christ will take over and control the world before Jesus comes to rule over it.

                The Signs and Wonders Movement. — The core belief of this movement is that the ministry of evangelism and the sharing of the Gospel is defective unless signs and wonders accompany it. John Wimber and his Vineyard churches spearhead this movement. Rodney Howard-Brown, who calls himself "the Holy Ghost bartender," brought the laughing revival to America from South Africa and is involved with this movement and others.

                The Spiritual Warfare Movement. — Fuller Theological Seminary’s Peter Wagner, mentored by John Wimber, is a prominent leader in this movement. This movement has coined the use of new phrases such as: territorial spirits, spiritual mapping, Spiritual Warfare Network, A.D. 2000 Movement, ground-level spiritual warfare, occult-level spiritual warfare, strategic-level spiritual warfare, cosmic-level spiritual warfare, praise marches, prayerwalking, prayer journeys, praying through windows, etc. Most spiritual warfare proponents promote dominion theology. Proponents of this movement are: John Dawson, Cindy Jacobs, Jack Hayford, Larry Lea, Gwen Shaw, Dick Bernal, Tom White, Joy Dawson, Dick Eastman, Ed Murphy, Charles Craft and Frank Peritti.

                The New Age Movement — mainly adopted the teachings and practices of Hinduism, Theosophy and the Unity Church. It is comprised of an informal network of cults and other groups that believe in a coming age of peace and enlightenment. The teachings of Carl Gustav Jung (1875 - 1961) and his theory of the inner collective unconscious, and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1881 - 1955) a Jesuit priest who conformed his Christianity to his theory of evolution with a noosphere or vast global envelope of consciousness of shared thoughts surrounding the planet, have also made a large impact upon the beliefs held by this movement. Proponents of this movement:

                • The New Age leader Marilyn Ferguson who wrote "The Aquarian Conspiracy" (called the New Age Bible) somewhere around 1967.
                • New Age leader Robert Muller who was Secretary General of the United Nations for many years.
                • The Esalen Institute, located in the Big Sur area south of San Francisco is a New Age think tank founded in 1962, is where the Human Potential movement began.
                • Jean Houston, who is both a psychologist and a theologian, uses psychology, occultism, and evolution in her workshops and writings.

                The Purpose Driven and Emergent Church movements – promote teachings and practices that include interfaith and the social gospel, and contemplative prayer and Christian mysticism. T.A. McMahon explains:

                This all became "spiritual" fodder for the Emerging Church Movement (ECM), much of it a reaction against the consumer-oriented marketing approach to church growth popularized by Robert Schuller, Bill Hybels, and Rick Warren. Many ECM leaders, most of whom have evangelical backgrounds, saw Catholic ritual and mysticism as a necessary spiritual ingredient that was lost for evangelicals at the Reformation. Sola Scriptura was a major rallying cry of the Reformers against the abuses stemming from Roman Catholic tradition; the Bible as one's only authority practically shut down the influence of the Catholic mystics known as the Desert Fathers.

                Yet Catholic mysticism has returned with a vengeance. Its occult techniques can be found nearly everywhere, from Youth Specialities to Richard Foster's Renovaré organization to Rick Warren's Purpose Driven Life. Many Christian leaders started searching for a new approach under the banner of 'spiritual formation.' This new search has led many of them back to Catholic contemplative practices and medieval monastic disciplines, . . .

                Catholic mysticism is thoroughly subjective and experiential. Like its parent, Eastern mysticism, it claims that God can neither be known nor understood through human reason but only experienced subjectively through various techniques. It is the antithesis of what the Bible teaches: "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord" (Isaiah 1:18); "Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding" (Proverbs 4:7); "According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him" (2 Peter 1:3). Furthermore, the goal of mysticism is union with God, i.e., the merging of one's soul into God. This is an impossibility that reveals mysticism's pantheistic and panentheistic roots, that God is everything and is in everything. No. God is infinite and transcendent, absolutely separate from His finite creation. (Evangelical Mysticism? by McMahon, T.A. February 1, 2008 in The Berean Call newsletter)

                This brief outline of Satan’s vast network should give us a basis from which we can begin to recognize and resist his efforts to deceive and defeat us, and to build up defenses and warn others.