It’s a wonder how some things became sayings. One that always baffled me is not putting the cart before the horse. How many people had tried that back in the olden days that it became such a common saying to have survived into our era? Were there people everywhere just tying their horses to the back of their carts and then wondering why the cart wasn’t moving? Were peasants with glazed-over eyes just loitering by the side of their barns with the confused look of a modern millennial needing to change a tire so far out of their element that they just sat in the dirt and wept?
It’s common sense, isn’t it? The horse goes before the cart because the cart must be pulled, and the horse does the pulling. Granted, some would conclude that was just too simple and try to complicate it somehow, but for the most part, the mechanics of how a cart operates and what a horse’s place in the operation of said cart is, is pretty straightforward.
While Jude had started out intent on writing to the church about our common salvation, he ended up with a powerful tome encouraging the brethren to contend earnestly for the faith instead. The reason, in principle, is the same as why you don’t put the cart before the horse. If your faith is misplaced, perverted, or otherwise skewed, any talk of salvation must be tabled until we get the faith right.
Salvation comes about by faith in Christ, while faith comes about by hearing the Word. If the enemy can somehow cause those professing to preach the Word to preach something other than the Word, then the hearer’s faith will be tethered in something other than Christ, thereby making their salvation tenuous.
If you want to poison a waterway, you pour the poison in as far upriver as you possibly can. If at all feasible, you try to find where the waterway begins and dump the poison there so that everything from that point onward is befouled and corrupted.
The pulpit drives the church. The man standing before the sheep feeding them every week is responsible for what he feeds them, and if he has been compromised or was among those who have crept in unnoticed, his entire focus will be a slanted faith in something or someone other than the Lord Christ Jesus.
This is why shepherds are so high up on the enemy’s target list. You can’t get much further up the ladder than shepherds of flocks, so if you can get one of them to teach some heretical nonsense about how important, perfect, strong, and confident you are, how being self-centered, self-obsessed, and self-entitled are virtues rather than defects, the cascade effect and impact those lies will have had are incalculable.
Do you think it’s an accident that certain teachings and teachers are amplified by the world to the point that you can’t walk into a bookstore or a supermarket without seeing their leering faces? Just ask yourself this question: if the devil is the nemesis of Christ, and his minions are the enemies of believers, why are certain supposed Christians being promoted and praised by the servants of darkness? That should be your first clue that something is fishy. That should be the first warning bell that should go off in your head.
Why is the world lavishing praise on a supposed evangelist, pastor, bishop, or preacher? Why is the darkness so enamored with supposed ambassadors of the light?
If the same people who hate Jesus love the evangelist you call your spiritual mentor, you have a problem, even if you don’t want to admit it.
The second warning sign, if a second one is needed, is to see what these people say when they open their mouths to speak on the platforms that the godless have offered them. Dollars to donuts, they’re not talking about Jesus, repentance, sanctification, or holiness, but feelings and emotions, learning to love yourself, and letting go of the regret of having accused your ex-husband of something he didn’t do even though it landed him in prison.
Are they contending for the faith, or are they apologizing for the words of Jesus or what the Bible says as though they were ashamed? When they start to stutter or repeat the question just to buy a bit more time to think up an acceptable answer, you know the Christ and the cross have just been betrayed live on television.
What if the Lord is opening doors for them so that the worldly folk can get won over for Jesus? Since the same people are blaspheming God decades in, poking fun at His followers and insisting Christians are backward in their thinking and antiquated in their beliefs, I’d say that’s likely not the case.
You’ve got to give credit where credit is due; it is a brilliant strategy. First, you sneak some nefarious agents into the house of God, then use the agents you have on the outside to amplify the message and reach of those on the inside, thereby causing those on the inside to stumble and those on the outside to never find the narrow gate. Efficient and efficacious.
At this juncture, you may accuse me of being jaded and cynical. I like to think of it as realistic. Given over thirty-five years of ministry, starting at 12, and having seen different iterations of the same lie perpetrated upon the people of God, I can’t help but call it what it is. What would be the point otherwise?
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea, Jr.
Posted on 7 May 2023 | 10:46 am
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