"Hold Firmly Till The End"
by Sandy Simpson, 1/10/08
Heb 3:14 We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly
till the end the confidence we had at first.
Mt 10:22 All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.
Matt. 24:12-13 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.
Re 2:26 To him who overcomes and does my will to the end ...
2Ti 4:7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
The Bible is repleat with examples of both those believers who stood firmly to the end, and those that did not. There is nothing sadder than to observe a believer in his or her twilight years wander away from the faith after having served the Lord.
There are many today in the churches who teach that a believer cannot wander away (James 5:19), fall away (Luke 8:13), shipwreck their faith (1 Tim. 1:19), and finally shrink back and be destroyed (Heb. 10:39). But the Bible is clear that Christians can be deceived (Luke 21:8, 1 Cor. 6:9, James 1:16) and therefore must be alert against deception (1 Pet. 5:8). Saul started out well, in fact was the anointed of the Lord for leading Israel, but through continued disobedience ended badly. The Bible says that Simon the Sorcerer, later to be known as Simon Magnus, who was one of the founders of Christian Gnosticism, "believed and was baptised" (Acts 8:13) yet his heart was not right with the Lord. Even Solomon who wrote Scripture, in his later years, slipped into idolatry because of his many wives and mistresses (1 Kings 11:4).
The startling fact is: a righteous man can do good works his whole life, yet because he did not hold firmly to the Faith till the end will end up in judgment. By the same measure a wicked man who turns and repents will be saved in the end after a wicked life. You can't have the forgiveness of sins of the repentant wicked without the forgetting of the righteous acts of those who do not repent.
Eze. 33:13-16 If I tell the righteous man that he will surely live, but then he trusts in his righteousness and does evil, none of the righteous things he has done will be remembered; he will die for the evil he has done. And if I say to the wicked man, ‘You will surely die,’ but he then turns away from his sin and does what is just and right—if he gives back what he took in pledge for a loan, returns what he has stolen, follows the decrees that give life, and does no evil, he will surely live; he will not die. None of the sins he has committed will be remembered against him. He has done what is just and right; he will surely live.Though this passage is perhaps talking about physical death, it is clear that we are told to keep the Faith till the end. We must be overcomers or else we will be swallowed up in apostasy. There are many I know today who started out well but ended up, or will end up if they do not repent, as heretics and false prophets. Heretics and false prophets are desitned for judgment, hell (2 Pet. 2:1, Rev 21:8).
Look at what the wicked must do to come back to the Lord. They must (1) turn away from sin (2) do what is right (3) pay back what they have been loaned or what they have stolen from God's people (4) obey God's Word and (5) stop doing evil. I think of a number of televangelists. They have set themselves up so that is is almost impossible for them to truly repent. They would have to not only acknowledge their sins before the Lord and confess them publicly for the things they have taught and done in public, but they would also have to do what is right, pay back the money they raised through false promises and deceit, and begin to obey the Word of God fully. I am not saying repentance is impossible for them, but the reality is that it is very improbable. In all the years I have been doing discernment ministries I have never seen a top leader in any of the heretical movements in the churches repent. I have seen a number of followers repent and get out. I have seen some minor leaders repent and get out. But I have not seen any top leaders repent even though they have been rebuked and shown their errors and lies many times. They will not repent because of the pit of deception they have dug for themselves.
I have seen Christians leaders who have preached the Gospel and done many good works fall toward the end of their lives. I see it happening today all over the place. They have bought into deception and have left the authority of God's Word for new revelation. They are trusting in their own "righteousness". The false anointing has caused anyone who has received it to have pride. The prophetic movement is entriely based on making people think they are something they are not and the devil uses false prophecies to raise up the pride of life in anyone who buys into them. Those who remain in these types of movements will end up having none of their "righteous acts" remembered. They will die in sin. Following false teachers, teaching heresy, making false prophecies, and scamming people out of their money is "practicing sin" or a lifestyle sin which will cause people to come back under judgment.
1 John 3:4 & 7-8 Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. ... Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.Christians do sin (1 John 1:8). But as true believers we confess our sins and God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins (1 John 1:9). However, those who say they are followers of Christ and yet continue to practice lifestyle sins are actually working for the enemy, and the enemy and those who work for him are going to hell. I am not the one saying these things. These are the teachings of Jesus Christ and the Apostles. The only way out of lifestyle sin is to repent and make things right.
One of the reasons for my web site is to warn people who say they are believers to repent and get away from false teachers and false prophets. But the site is also there to rebuke and warn false teachers to repent. It is my prayer that the Lord will tarry long enough for at least a few of the thousands of false teachers in the world today to repent.