For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works. II Corinthians 11:13-15
Jesus warned that in the end times there would be many false prophets and that they would even, if possible deceive his elect. Since the first century there have been those that would distort the gospel for their own advantage and make the way of salvation into a broad road that everyone can travel down. In this past century we have experienced some of the most diabolical schemes of the devil that have ever surfaced from the pits of hell.
Hitler, though non-religious, deceived thousands into following his plans of mass destruction of the Jews and many good people took part in this atrocity. Jim Jones was a pentecostal preacher that started out seemingly on the right track until Satan filled him with drugs and deception, ultimately leading him and his congregation to commit suicide. Then we have David Koresh quoting scripture from a big black bible telling his flock that they were an elite group destined for glory and isolated from the evil of this world.
All of the above were false prophets and messengers of Satan, but the ones you really have to watch out for are those that come looking like sheep, but Jesus said, "Inwardly they are ravenous wolves." What does a wolf do to a sheep? He instinctively kills it and devours it! So it is with those that seem like sheep, not that they necessarily look like a meek little lamb, but they seem to be loving and trustworthy. Someone you would look up to, someone successful or maybe even famous.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is very clear when read in the context of the way it was written. The way of salvation had certain components that must be left in tact in order for one to be truly saved. To deviate from the gospel or to distort or change the meaning of what God is saying can be disastrous and can lead you to hell. One of the biggest mistakes is the fact that God is love and that He loves us unconditionally and when taken out of context it can lead you to believe that you can do anything you please without any consequences.
I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert ( distort ) the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. Galatians 1:6-8
Paul is using some pretty strong language to describe what needs to happen to someone who perverts, distorts or waters down the glorious gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ who died, that we could inherit eternal life. God is a God of love, but He is also a God of judgment, judgment to those who don't obey the gospel. God is also a God of mercy, and He extends that mercy only to those that obey His word. God does not have gray areas of grace that allow another way to Heaven other than through repentance for forgiveness of sin and the washing of His precious Son's blood.
Today, especially in America it seems we have added many ways to get to God. Recently a very famous talk show host announced to the world that there are many ways to Heaven and it is all right to explore anything you want in order to get to God. Another well know pastor in Texas said that Jesus was not the Messiah of the Jews. Mega churches are filled with seekers wanting to know truth and feel good about the condition of their soul even if they are lied to and taught to just love themselves and strive to be a better person. Its all a pack of lies!
The bible warns over and over to not be deceived, but we keep running after these false gurus of self love and self gratification to ease the apparent ills of life. There is only One that can save you and deliver you from eternal death, and that is Jesus Christ who was crucified because of our sin. No one has ever died for us except the Son of God, Who paid the ultimate price to redeem us from our sin and deliver us from eternal damnation.
But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted ( led astray ) from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted- you may well put up with it! Galatians 11:3,4 ( I thought there was only one gospel! )
Millions of unsuspecting souls have been lied to and sent to hell because of greedy messengers preaching doctrines of demons and false gospels that either convinced them that they were all right or just lulled them to sleep with some mushy sermon designed to make them feel good about themselves. We had better take a hard look at what man has created and called God! There are over 30,000 denominations in the world today all preaching a version of their own way to Heaven, can I tell you, someone is wrong!
Don't you think its important to know and tell the truth to someone about their eternal destination and the condition of their soul, or do you want to let them just go to hell and not hurt their feelings? Many have! Many a preacher has given a "Placebo" instead of the gospel of your salvation. A placebo is an inert ( powerless ) medication used for its psychological effect on ones mind rather than something that can actually heal you. Sound like a false gospel?
"Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in Heaven. "Many will say to Me in that day,' Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?' "And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!" Matthew 7:21-23
Satan grew up in Heaven and knows how to use religion to deceive the unsuspecting, he was engulfed with praise and worship and lived in the very presence of God and the angels since the day he was created. He is a student of God's word and knows it better than anyone on the planet, he even used it against Jesus in the wilderness to try and trip Him up. Satan is a master when it comes to adding to or taking away from the gospel, just enough to seduce you from the path of righteousness.
For thousands of years Satan has injected man with the virus of religious tradition: doctrines, rituals, laws and all sorts of do's and don'ts to make man more holy, or so he thinks. Eastern religion and Jewish tradition have been mixed with Christianity for two thousand years ever since Peter and his brethren tried to infect the new Gentile church with the laws of Moses. In order for Satan to defeat the Christian all he has to do is confuse the way to Jesus and put up signs along the straight and narrow path that will lead you in another direction.
When Jesus was crucified He set us free from man-made religion and when He rendered up His Spirit the veil of separation in the temple was ripped from top to bottom. Man no longer needed a priest to lead him to God, nor a temple to worship in because the believer was transformed into a priesthood and a temple by the blood of Jesus. This is hard for man to wrap his mind around and false prophets and false shepherds refuse to teach these principals to new believers.
For two thousand years Satan has tried to resurrect the old priesthood leading God's people back into bondage believing that their pastor is the priest and they are the flock resigned to be penned up in a man-made building two hours a week for the rest of their life. Their gifts are stifled and their visions and passions quenched by the leadership's selfish agendas and worldly ambitions.
Satan's plan has worked and for the most part, there is a church on every corner filled with people infected with the virus of religion, incapable of any independent ministry outside the framework of the hierarchy's suspicious reach, fearing that someone might start his own work, may God forbid, after all someone might get saved and maybe even discipled! The underlying motive of this demonic scheme is to ultimately render the body of Christ powerless by dividing them up into small groups forbidding them to unify under the banner (cross) of Christ thus weakening them to the point of total helplessness.
From day one, divide and conquer has been the enemie's war cry in the midst of the battle against God's elect and it has been the most effective scheme that he has ever employed. In Egypt Satan moved Pharaoh to divide Israel and appoint cruel taskmasters over them to weaken them in case they would ever consider conquering the land and dominate the Egyptians. Today the plan is still working and God's people are even more divided with denominations, sects and cults of all kinds driving a wedge of separation deep within the army of God.
The old priesthood is back in business with many new labels and because man refuses to read and study God's divine plan for the new testament church it will remain in tact keeping the people of God in religious bondage forever! It looks so good to the worldly and half baked lukewarm church member as he only has to show up, write a check, join the club and obey the hierarchy, never questioning his supreme authority, after all he has a PHD in theology.
A pyramid scheme par excellence with a CEO ruling the religious customers who love to be entertained and made to feel good about themselves, these self help gurus literally rob the people of God, not only of their money but their God- given destiny to fulfill the divine mandate for the royal priesthood to build up the kingdom of God in the earth. The fivefold ministry commissioned to equip God's people has been replaced with worldly leadership copied from the corporate model and the Ekklesia is ruled for the most part by a CEO, CFO, secretary and a few deacons with a trained eye to keep the CEO under restraint. May God have mercy on us all!
As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principals of the world and not according to Christ. For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power. Colossians 2:6-10