Sunday, March 20, 2011

Used By God

Used Does Not Mean Approved

I have written before about how it is the light of Christ alone which dispels darkness, not focusing primarily on what the devil is doing.  Yet, God knows that His people are often destroyed for a lack of knowledge.  As such, His word takes time to instruct believers on how to identify false teachers and wolves in sheep's clothing attempting to deceive.

When discussing what Scripture calls "hirelings" in the pulpits (John 10:12-13), it is not uncommon to hear many in the churchworld jump to their defense.  Even when such is a brazen, admitted adulterer clothing his message of spirituality in the branding of a lingerie store which openly exploits immodest images of women for profit.  At least true to form, this ad reveals its real focus; "elevating YOU", not lifting up Christ.  Perhaps the proof editor was off the day this ad was approved, or maybe self-exaltation has become so commonplace in "church" that such messages don't even raise a flag.

As a justification that such are holy men or women, people often point to how God is "using them" in their ministry.  Or, you get a chorus of how "God can use anybody."  Frankly, such sayings are a mouthful of nothing.  Rarely do you hear such arguments made by sincere Christians.  Rather it is a cover often used by those compromising with God because of unrepentant sin.  Since sin is running rampant in their own lives, they want to sign off on God "using" others who are likewise still in bondage to sin.

"Well", you might say, "Isn't that rather harsh?"  Perhaps, but let's not fool ourselves.  No amount of giving to the needy, setting up schools, preaching a good sermon (whatever that means), increasing church membership, sending out missionaries, or any other "good work" can replace being born again and led of God by His Spirit. Only those led by the Spirit are the Sons of God (Romans 8:14).  Our works can never justify us before God; only being found in Jesus Christ can.

The early church did not initially believe that God could use Saul (Paul), but God - in His providence - changed Saul and filled him with His Holy Spirit to become a new man.  It is the evidence of this change - the life of Christ bearing fruit inside of him - that allowed Paul to be received and his testimony believed by the church (Acts 9:13-26).  

It goes without saying that God can "use anyone".  Better yet, let me put it this way: everyone IS being used by God. One is either gathering with Christ or scattering against Him.  Those who are His will be "used" to reflect the light of Christ in a dying world and bring in the harvest.  Those who are not His will be "used" to turn people away from God - making those who are approved manifest and persecuting them as a means of crucifixion to this present, evil world. 

It should never be our goal to just be "used" by God, but to walk in obedience to His will and be found in Him.  Pharaoh was "used" by God to create a cry in the heart of God's people for deliverance (Romans 9:15).  Solomon was "used" by God and even wrote several books of Scripture, but he eventually fell away into idolatry.  Nebuchadnezzar was "used" by God to punish Israel for their idolatry; and in this manner, he was even called God's "servant" (Jeremiah 27:6).  The prophet Balaam was "used" by God, yet was a soothsayer who was rejected by Him.  Judas was "used" by God and wound up damned to Hell.  The Scriptures tell us that the "kings of the earth" set themselves against Him, yet they are each chosen and placed in positions of power specifically by Him (Psalm 2:2; Daniel 2:21).

It is not a matter of being "used" by God, but how?  To gather or to scatter?  The question we must ask is never whether someone is "used", but whether the testimony of their lips and the testimony of their lives attest to the life of the Spirit.  And even this is not so that we can stand in ridicule of them, but so that we can know whether such a person is to be followed - or the words of their testimony believed (I Corinthians 11:1; Hebrews 13:7).  Are they sincerely what they profess to be?

In the following video, David Williams discusses criteria God gives us in His words for discerning true teachers from false ones.  One thing Bro. David speaks of is how the "good" which false teachers do may make it hard to identify them as false.  They are camouflaged, which is why Scripture calls them wolves in sheep's clothing.  Therefore they don't appear to be evil...but they are (Romans 16:18; I Corinthians 11:13-15; II Peter 2:1-3; II John 1:7They are trying to mimic in the flesh a life that can only be led by the Spirit This is how they can preach the word or do "goods works" one minute, and then turn around to do/say that which is defiled the next.

Am I saying that one must be sinless or completely without error before being qualified to preach?  No.  I am saying that one must be born again by the Spirit and have the witness of the Spirit in their lives as a testimony to be considered a man or woman of God.

Do you know the type of language the Scriptures use to describe God's true ministers?  Such are to be "blameless", above "reproach", of "good behavior", "holy", of "good report", "proven" in the faith and having a "pure conscience" before God and men (I Corinthians 1:8; I Timothy 3:2-10, 5:7-14, 6:14; Titus 1:6-9).  WHY is this the standard?  Because such a life is only made possible by the Holy Spirit of God.  Such is the evidence that their life/testimony is inspired by the Spirit; it is the "fruit" by which we can identify those who belong to the Lord (Galatians 5:22-25). 

The point in posting this is not to examine the individual examples highlighted in David's video, but to keep in mind the direction provided by Scripture in this area.


  1. Great teaching! We must continue to expose the enemy and his craftiness...It's good to know people are real and genuine about the things of God....

    Much Love and God bless...


    P.S. Hope you and the family are well...

  2. Bro. Rashid!!! How are you?

    I have found David Williams to be sincere & biblical in the teachings I have heard. You would likely be blessed by his ministry too if you are not familiar with him already.

    I agree with you. It is a treasured thing to find believers who are genuine. I am thankful for all such fellowships in my life, including you guys.

    I know I owe you a call and will do so this afternoon. :-)

    Much love!

  3. Sis M,

    All is truly well with my soul...Thank you for asking!

    Yea, I've watched a few of his videos a while back...I'll be checking him via YouTube though...I can hear his sincerity so that's a good start :-D

    I appreciate your continued labor in study to keep the blog going...I know at one point you were re-considering...You made the right choice! Love what you're doing...I'm praying and stadning with you all...

    Look forward to your call...


  4. While this is a tremendously good article I am a bit curious why you only have pictures of African American leaders and celebrities. Are you not sending some sublinal message? What about Paula White, Benny Hinn, Roberts Lairdon, Robert Tilton, W.V.Grant, Paul Crouch, to name a few. I simply cannot appreciate your sublinal accusation. I would say to you stay in the spirit and don't allow under cover racism to plague you.

  5. Hi Anonymous,

    There are no subliminal messages on this blog. Everything we want to say is said outright.

    For some reason, you see these men foremost as "Black". I don't. I see them as deceived...and deceiving.

    Your advise is a good one. One should not be plagued by a spirit of racism. Yet, racism doesn't just raise its ugly head to degrade others due to skin color. Racism is also present when one seeks to justify others based on skin color.

    Instead of seeing after the flesh (and ethnicity is a matter of the flesh), we all must seek to be led by the Spirit. When we do, then we will not be offended by things which are of no consequence to God.

    Thanks for sharing your feedback.


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