Faith Baptist Church
4258 Botetourt Road
Fincastle, Virginia 24090
(540) 473-2325

Apostasy Defined

Apostate Characteristics - Part 1

II Tim.3:1-2

The Apostle Paul saw the Church and its pastors and all the difficulties they had in keeping a growing flock. He warned the Church at Ephesus to be on the watch for wolves, Acts 20:28-31.

He warns Timothy in this third chapter of II Timothy to continue in the things (doctrines) he had learned.

v.1

Know this Timothy, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

The last days, (eschatais hemerais), refers to the end of the days of the Church age, perilous times, (chalepoi kairoi), hard and difficult times will come, (Fut.M.I).

The word times as used here refers to specific marked periods or epochs of church history. Paul said the consummation of the church age would end badly. There will be no great attraction for the things passed on to the church by Christ. We must remember that even though the Church age has gone on for 20 centuries that each generation of believers expects the Lord’s return and there have been spiritual highs and lows all of these years. During the times of the “spiritual lows” where interest in Bible doctrine is sorely lacking in the Church these are the times when we should most expect the Lord’s return.

During these times the tide of interest goes in and out, and each successive time the tide of interest in God’s word goes out, it comes back in a little less. The remnant overall grows smaller and smaller. Interest in truth is less and the attacks on the truth of the Bible grow bolder and bolder. Unbelievers become less and less shameful of their unrighteous lives, and unfortunately so do God’s people.

v.2 During these low tide times we must hang on to the Word, and to our personal faith in God’s word. We will see disturbing trends in society among the lost, and unfortunately among the saved as well.

Here Paul uses the explanatory gar, [for] as he explains what saved men will be like when the church is in apostasy; “for men (anthropoi) men and women shall be, (Fut.A.I of eimi)... lovers of their own selves,(philautoi) fond of their own interest.

Paul said in II Cor.5:14-17 that we are to be a new creation in Christ Jesus; that we are to no longer live unto our selves. Apostates find themselves personally attractive. A narcissistic complex pervades our society today even in Christianity. Why is it that so many believers do not see their lack of interest in the word of God as being selfish and narcissistic? The answer is because they have become callused to their vain thinking, Eph.4:17-19. Scar tissue on the soul has caused them to be insensitive to their actions and thoughts.

Paul continues to say; apostates will be covetous (philarguroi) fond of silver. A Christian, who becomes a monetary reversionist, seeks his happiness in money and what money can do for him. The Bible warns against the love of money, I Tim.6:9-10; Prov.23:4-5. Jesus Christ said a man cannot serve God and money, Mt.6:19-24.

Money becomes the backslidden believers new comfort, and doctrine and the transformation is scrapped for the life the believer once lived before salvation. Discipline will come to such believers.

Paul says apostates will be boasters (alazones), empty pretenders claiming to be more than they are; puffed up with the whole idea of their greatness, I Cor.8:1; Rev.3:17.

We might think pretending is for children, but grown ups often live much of their lives playing the same game and they don’t even know it. Apostate believers pretend to love God, but the truth is far from them.

Next, apostates will be proud, huperephanoi. This is a haughty, arrogant mental attitude of self-exaltation.

This sin is one of the seven abominable sins God particularly hates, Prov.6:17. This is the sin that Satan showed toward God. It is the opposite of humility. How many times has the sin of pride laid waste to your testimony as a Christian. How many times has pride belittled ones spouse or children or friends or the less fortunate.

They will be blasphemers, evil speakers of God. They run the gamut of those who curse God’s name to those clerics who deny the inspiration of Scriptures and the deity of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

This arrogance leads to the next sin, disobedient to parents, apeitheis goneusin. This word disobedient, means one who will not be persuaded; one who is incompliant; one who is obstinate. The word obstinate means to be unreasonably fixed in one’s purposes or opinion; unyielding; stubborn, and difficult to overcome or cure. [Funk & Wagnall s Standard Desk Dictionary Prov.30:11 “There is a generation that curseth their father, and doth not bless their mother.”

Here we see a progression of obstinate children who..

(1) curse their parents,v.11 ;

(2) are haughty and arrogant v.12

(3) they think they are better than others as self-righteousness sets in v.13,

(4) and v.14 they fill the streets with crime while daring you to look at them or touch them. These young folks are getting younger and younger as elementary age children are now involved in capital offenses and domestic crimes.

Unbridled crime is the evidence that a society has abandoned the laws of divine establishment. It is the evidence that true common sense developed by sound Bible instruction has been ignored.

When children are not disciplined biblically then ruin will come to a nation. When judges and law makers go easy on the criminal then there will be a rise in the number of victims.

What follows this disobedience is they are unthankful and unholy. We overload their senses on their birthdays and on holidays and we wonder why they are so callused to their everyday blessings. Parents and grandparents play a part in controlling this ingratitude on the part of our youth.

The Pastor
January 2014

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