Summary: Beware of False Prophets--Proclamation and Application in Preparation for the Holy Communion

“Beware of False Prophets—Without and Within”

Jeremiah 23.16-29; Romans 8.12-17; St. Matthew 7.15-23

the Sunday Sermon preached for the Eighth Sunday after Trinity

at Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church—UAC

by the Rev. Frederick E. Davison, Pastor

August 10, 2003


Grace, Mercy, and Peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus the Lord. [Amen.]

The sermon for the Eighth Sunday after the Holy Trinity is recorded in the Holy Gospel appointed, the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew chapter 7th, with particular focus on these words:

“…Beware of false prophets…”

In the Name of the Father and of the X Son and of the Holy Ghost. [Amen.]

“Thus saith the Lord of hosts, ‘Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you… they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord. They say still unto them that despise me, “The Lord hath said, Ye shall have peace”; and they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, “No evil shall come upon you.” ’ ”

“*Beware* of false teachers…” Teachers who stand and say to those who know not Jesus nor His, indeed *Our* Father… “Beware” those who stand and call out to such as these, “Brothers and sisters…” And worse, to confirm their knowing not saying, “We are stronger now than we were an hour ago…”

“Beware” teachers who stand and say, “The Muslim also believes in the One True God…” And “beware” such teachers who swear by the Lord falsely saying “Amen” to these who “speak after the imagination of their own heart”: “My own confirmation Pastor said the same thing…”

“Beware of false prophets.” For they will say, “All is peace, peace.” “Peace and safety…” “no evil will fall on you…” “We are brothers and sisters and we are stronger now…” Do we not sing, “We all believe in one True God…”?

“Beware of false prophets…” for the Lord God testifies from heaven against them: “I have not sent these prophets… I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.” From the ancients I have sent my prophets to say, “Behold, I send My Angel before you… obey His Voice… for My Name is Him.” Yet these who come lately verily, “They are prophets of the deceit of their own heart…” who “cause my people to forget My Name…”

Praying to Allah, Adonai, Vishnu, Sri Krishna, Buddha they are seen to be “standing in the corners of the streets” indeed, smack dab in the middle of the public square they stand praying “that they may be seen of men.” All the while praying “in the precious name of Jesus” they embrace those who revile Him. And calling them “brothers,” they make them “twice the sons of hell” confirming them “stronger” for having prayed and trusted in the doctrines of demons. Yes, dear flock “beware of false prophets.”

“Beware” for they come “in sheep’s clothing…” Baptized into the Name, and purporting to pray *in* Him,” in their prayers they trample under foot His glory and award it unto men; “extend Jacob’s ladder” to the men “who ascended the stairs…” Yes, “in the precious name of Jesus”—not the One *we* know—they pray to open heaven on account of the righteousness of men. Allah, Adonai, and the Great Architect were all pleased. For indeed, their way of salvation was preached most plain and clear.

But so say the false prophets, “Have no fear.” There’s no need to cry, “Abba, Father.” [They’d say:] “The Lord is not angry.” “No evil shall come upon you.” Besides, “We all believe in one true God!” So sayeth the hymn. Indeed, we do proclaims “the deceit of their hearts.” My, even the pope says it’s true.

Their hearts tell them and so their tongues soon follow, in effect, “All men worship. And inasmuch as they worship God—and “the Muslim God is also the One True God (there IS only ONE TRUE GOD, right?) [exact quote], if there is only One True God and *He* is the One who created all things, and *He* put in men’s hearts the ability to look at creation and think, “God must have made this!” Inasmuch as all—well at least part of it—if this is true, that is, if you worship god, any god, you must be—at least to some degree—worshipping the One True God.

“Beware of false prophets” for because of *that* kind of “deceit of their own hearts” to those who reject Jesus, false prophets appeal to them, “Brothers and sisters, *we* are stronger now than we were an hour ago…” After all as they say, “the Muslim God is also the One True God…”

But to you dear Church God gave no such deceitful revelation, but a “more sure word of prophecy.” Indeed, a “more sure Word.” And for you ‘tis the cure.

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