whom do you believe?
“Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers” (John 10:5). “My sheep hear My voice and I know them and they follow Me” (John 10:27).
The Word of God: “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Genesis 2:17).
Satan’s answer: “Then the serpent said to the woman, you will not surely die” (Genesis 3:4). A Pharisee’s answer today: I believe in being free and flowing in freedom. Living by the Word of the Lord is just legalism. Faith’s answer: “And He said unto me, son of man, feed your belly, and fill your stomach with this scroll, that I give you. So I ate, and it was in my mouth like honey in sweetness” (Ezekiel 3:3).
Satan said: “If you are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread” (Matthew 4:3).
The Word of God: “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Deuteronomy 8:3; Matthew 4:4).
A Pharisee’s answer today: I decide whether the Word of the Lord is just culture or true by the way I feel about what it teaches.
Faith’s answer: “For I trust in Your word” (Psalms 119:42).
Satan said: “If you are the Son of God throw Yourself down” (Matthew 4:6).
The Word of God: “It is written again, you shall not tempt the Lord your God” (Matthew 4:7).
A Pharisee’s answer today: We are living in a ‘New Age,’ and it has given me a deeper understanding in my person than just what the Word of God has said.
Faith’s answer: “Your word is truth” (John 17:17).
Satan has said: “…the kingdoms of the world, and their glory. And he said to Him, all these things I will give You, if you will fall down and worship me” (Matthew 4:8-9).
The Word of God: “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, you shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve” (Matthew 4:10).
A Pharisee’s answer today: The riches of God are seen in my financial wealth.
Faith’s answer: “The deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful” (Matthew 13:22).
The Word of God: “Thou shall NOT number the children of Israel” (Numbers 1:49).
Satan has said: “And Satan stood up against Israel and provoked David to number Israel” (1 Chronicles 21:1).
A Pharisee’s answer today: God is love so I am just sure He does not expect me to believe the Scriptures that I do not consider important.
Faith’s answer: “He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much” (Luke 16:10).
The Word of God: “And when the Holy Spirit is come, He will reprove the world of sin, and righteousness, and judgment” (John 16:8).
Satan’s answer: “But Peter said, Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit…” (Acts 5:3).
A Pharisee’s answer today: Real truth in Scripture is found in psycho-analyzing the person who makes known the message of Scripture.
Faith’s answer: “So I said, woe is me, for I am undone: because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips” (Isaiah 6:5).
The Word of God: “…The Scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35).
Satan’s answer: “You will 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 good and evil” (Genesis 3:4.5).
A Pharisee’s answer to day: Scripture must be interpreted in light of the day it was written, all the truths in it could not possibly be meant to be practiced today, that would ruin everything in my ministry and undermine the great things that are happening in my church.
Faith’s answer: “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16).
The Word of God: “And Jesus came and spoke to them saying, all authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth” (Matthew 28:18).
Satan’s answer: “And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money, saying give me also this power” (Acts 8:18-19).
A Pharisee’s answer today: I am your religious authority. Give me your money for my ministry, I will tell you what the Bible says, and heal you of your sicknesses.
Faith’s answer: “…Her heads judge for a bribe, her priests teach for pay, and her prophets divine for money. Yet they lean on the Lord, and say, is not the Lord among us? (Micah 3:11). “We do not as the many, make a trade of the Word of God” (2 Corinthians 2:17 JND).
The Word of God: “And He said to them; The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those who exercise authority over them are called benefactors. But not so among you; on the contrary, he who is greatest among you, let him be as the younger, and he who governs as he who serves. …Yet I am among you as the One who serves” (Luke 22:25-27).
Satan’s works: “I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to have the preeminence among them, does not receive us. Therefore, if I come, I will call to mind his deeds which he does, prating against us with malicious words. And not content with that, he himself does not receive the brethren, and forbids those who wish to, putting them out of the church” (3 John 9-10).
A Pharisee’s answer today: My church and I see nothing wrong with having our denomination ordain a clergyman to control our spiritual direction, we believe in clergy control over the church. He is our teacher and we have put our trust in him.
Faith’s answer: “But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi;’ for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren. Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. And do not be called teacher; for One is your Teacher, the Christ” (Matthew 23:8, 10).
The Word of God: “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but My words will by no means pass away” (Mark 13:31).
Satan’s works: “The sower sows the word. And these are the ones by the wayside, where the word is sown. When they hear, Satan comes immediately, and takes away the word that was sown in their hearts” (Mark 4:14-15).
A Pharisee’s answer today: A life that is driven by purpose is what I believe in; the Word of God and the cross of Jesus are too restrictive for me and my church.
Faith’s answer: “But as God is faithful, our word to you was not Yes and No. For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us – by, Silvanus, and Timothy – was not Yes and No, but in Him was Yes. For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen… (2 Corinthians 1:18-20).
Satan’s works: “And many of them said, He has a demon, and is mad. Why do you listen to Him?” (John 10:20).
The Word of God: It is enough for a disciple that he be like his teacher, and a servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more will they call those of his household!” (Matthew 10:25).
A Pharisee’s answer today: We have established ourselves as the authority of truth, your insisting on Scripture for truth is causing trouble for our religion. “For we have found this man a plague, a creator of dissension…” (Acts 24:5).
Faith’s answer: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God to salvation to everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16).
The Word of God: “For false christs and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. But take heed; see, I have told you all things beforehand” (Mark 13:22-23).
Satan’s works: “And no wonder! for Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14).
A Pharisee’s answer today: That couldn’t be of the devil, because our church and clergy are highly esteemed in the world and the religious community.
Faith’s answer: “And when He (Holy Spirit) has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment” (John 16:8).
Satan’s answer: “Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, far be it from You, Lord; this shall not happen to You” (Matthew 16:22).
The Word of God: “But He turned, and said to Peter, Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men” (Matthew 16:23).
A Pharisee’s answer today: I believe in fair play for everyone. So don’t tell me about the cross and dying to self, and giving up my religion to follow Jesus.
Faith’s answer: “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who love me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).
Satan’s works: “You are already full! You are already rich! You have reigned as kings without us…” (1 Corinthians 4:8). “For she says in her heart, ‘I sit as queen, and am no widow, and will not see sorrow” (Revelation 18:7).
The Word of God: Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked — I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see” (Revelation 3:17-18).
A Pharisee’s answer today: The Holy Spirit may teach that in Scripture but it does not fit into our church. Our leaders never say anything to make anybody uncomfortable. I have followed my church long enough to be totally self satisfied and I don’t need anything else!”
Faith’s answer: “That their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:2-3).
The Word of God: “Simon Peter answered and said; You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:16, 18).
Satan’s answer: As for Saul, he made havoc of the church, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, committing them to prison” (Acts 8:3).
The Pharisee’s answer today: I fully believe and have faith in my denomination and everything that my church teaches; if anybody insists on the Scripture for truth, we expose them as a trouble maker and false. “For I know this; that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock” (Acts 20:29).
Faith’s answer: “…Christ also loved the Church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the Word” (Ephesians 5:25-26).
The Word of God: “And He said to them, all too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your own tradition” (Mark 7:9).
Satan’s works: “Lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices” (2 Corinthians 2:11).
A Pharisee’s answer today: Truth is relevant to what is taught in our church. I believe in total impartiality in ministry and so does our church. Our church was started in equal opportunity and we have kept the tradition of our founding even to this day.
Faith’s answer: “Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ” (Colossians 2:8).
The Word of the Lord: “An astonishing and horrible thing has been committed in the land: The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule by their own power; and My people love to have it so…” (Jeremiah 5:30-31).
Satan’s answer: “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers transforming themselves into apostles of Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3).
A Pharisee’s answer today: Yes, some people do some things different than others. But this is God’s world and we are to love everybody. Didn’t God command us to just love everybody and not judge others? That is what my church and I are built on, love and being non-judgmental.
Faith’s answer: “I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars” (Revelation 2:2).
Satan’s works: “For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression” (1 Timothy 2:13-14).
The Word of God: “But I fear lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3).
A Pharisee’s answer today: The Word of the Lord is a glass ceiling and is keeping some of us from our full potential. Our leaders however, have decided to bring fairness to us through equal opportunity in headship. Through their decisions, our eyes are opened; we are so much wiser; and we feel a power that we have never known before. Our leaders’ covering us has taken away our nakedness.
Faith’s answer: “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).
The Word of God: “This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!” (Matthew 17:5).
Satan’s answer: “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!” (2 Corinthians 11:4).
A Pharisee’s answer today: We follow a lot of different teachers, they don’t believe everything Scripture teaches, but we believe in tolerance. We believe in Jesus, but we do not believe all of the Word of God is for today or that important.
Faith’s answer: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1).
The Word of God: “I know your works, and where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is” (Revelation 2:13).
Satan’s works: “For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world” (1 John 2:16). “…the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one” (1 John 5:19).
A Pharisee’s answer today: I believe in diversity, feminism, equality of marriage, God’s creation through evolution, woman’s choice to choose, and many other things that show God’s kingdom and love for all people of the world.
Faith’s answer: “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15).
The Word of God: “He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God” (John 8:47).
Satan’s answer: “And he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist Him” (Zechariah 3:1).
A Pharisee’s answer today: I don’t want to argue so don’t quote the Bible to me. Spiritual leaders in our church say that part of the Word of God does not fit into our religion, and they do not allow anyone to teach those things. We get very upset when Scripture rebukes our religion.
Faith’s answer: “And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered and said unto them; whether it be right in the sight of God to listen to you more than unto God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:18-20).
Satan has said: “For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God… I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High” (Isaiah 14:13-14).
The Word of God: “And He said unto them: I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven” (Luke 10:18).
A Pharisee’s answer today: I am in the ministry, so don’t try to influence me with Scripture or what the Holy Spirit teaches.
Faith’s answer: “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus …He humbled himself, and became obedient unto death even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:5, 8).
Satan has said: “…Because your heart is lifted up, and you say, I am a god, I sit in the seat of gods…” (Ezekiel 28:2).
The Word of God: “You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you. …Therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee…” (Ezekiel 28:15, 18).
A Pharisee’s answer today: My church, my position, my ministry, are on the cutting edge of everything that God is doing today.
Faith’s answer: “But God knows your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God” (Luke 16:15).
Satan’s works: “And (Satan) deceived them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast” (Revelation 13:14)
The Word of God: “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Revelation 20:10).
A Pharisee’s answer today: The Word of the Lord is good but we don’t want it to undermine our lives, our marriages, and our church.
Faith’s answer: “And the Word of the Lord was precious …” (1 Samuel 3:1). “Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the Word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you” (2 Thessalonians 3:1).
“That which has been is what will be, that which is done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which it may be said, see, this is new? It has already been in times before us” (Ecclesiastes 1:9-10).