Summary: This word “ignorant” occurs 13 times in the Bible and is connected with some important spiritual facts we should all know. That is why today we cover the spiritual Truth that false teachings about Christ are alive and abound in our world.
Ignorant Series: Scoffers, Cults, and Us
According to the American Heritage Dictionary, the word “ignorant” means unaware or uniformed. I would like us, for the next few weeks, to look at some spiritual facts that you may be unaware of or have forgotten. Most of the time we forget important spiritual truths when it comes to God and our relationship with Him. I am not sure why we forget such important matters, but I know it to be true. That is why God had Israel erect monuments and write down accounts and tell stories about all the events that took place in their relationship with Him. They forgot easily! We forget easily! This word “ignorant” occurs 13 times in the Bible and is connected with some important spiritual facts we should all know. That is why today we cover the spiritual Truth that false teachings about Christ are alive and abound in our world.
In the past two weeks, several events have taken place that leads me to this message today. I had intended last week’s message on death to be the final sermon in this series, but God has other ideas. I would like to share these events that happened in the past few weeks:
1) Josephine Ungard told me about a letter she received. It came in the mail and the envelope was covered with Bible verses and Christian statements. Inside was a request for money and this group would pray for you. She asked if I had seen it and I had not. Perhaps some of you received a similar letter, many have. I got one eventually. I could not decide if this was a good group of Christian folks or a group out for money masking as Christians. I threw it away and told Ms. Ungard to do the same.
2) At the Light Up the Levee event, 2 Mormon youths approached us in the booth area and asked if they could set up a booth about families and Jesus Christ. The person in charge asked them if they believed Jesus was the only way to Heaven and they agreed. They set up a booth. Ward and Jennifer Reeder were there promoting drug and alcohol related information and were “disturbed” by this. I was as well.
3) The same 2 Mormon fellas came and visited our church and looked around. They found the Lookout for that week and it happened (Godly coincidence) to be on cults. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was listed and they were concerned with this. After talking with them awhile, I invited them back to study and read with me anytime.
4) Jehovah Witnesses came to my house the other day and left a great pamphlet on Jesus and salvation, but I noted it was from “Watchtower” publishing and I tossed it away.
Why tell you these stories? I want you to know that Satan is alive and well in our world as well as cults who pervert the Truth of Scripture to suit their own beliefs. That would be my definition of a cult: a group that changes doctrine in a manner not consistent with Scripture. They walk our streets, come to our homes, go to your neighbor’s homes, and are on a mission to convert all they can to their belief system.
READ 2 PETER 3:1-18
I. THE WORLD IS FULL OF SCOFFERS
Peter writes to these Christian believers and first warns them about scoffers and they will see them and talk with them. What or who are scoffers? Scoffers (GK: “empaiktes”) are people who mock and follow their own ideas and usually exhibit feelings of hatred and malice and unbelief. Both 2 Peter and the book of Jude record these scoffers and mockers as following after their own desires rather than God’s desires. Verse 4 describes these scoffers as attacking the beliefs of the Christian concerning the return of Jesus. Peter then reminds the Christians about the Truths of Scripture and the Reality about God.
We find mocking and scoffing all throughout Scripture in the Old and New Testaments. Two incidents came to my mind as I was studying this. The first was in 2 Kings 2:23, “Then he went up from there to Bethel; and as he was going up by the way, young lads came out from the city and mocked him and said to him, ‘Go up, you baldhead; go up, you baldhead!’” Elisha must have considered this a sore subject because he turned around and cursed them and two bears came out of the woods and mauled them. The second happened in Matthew 27:28-30 when the soldiers were in charge of Jesus. They stripped Him, beat Him, and mocked Him as their king. They gave Him as staff and put a crown of thorns on His head. These soldiers caused pain to someone else because of their hatred and malice.