Mocking What We Don’t Understand

I heard the phrase “We mock what we don’t understand” several years ago in a movie entitled “Spies Like Us”.  Although uttered in sarcastic jest, being in a comedic movie, it is an often true assessment of unregenerate human nature.  As we listen to the mocking and blasphemous statements made against our the Lord Jesus Christ and those of us, who are called by His name, we encounter humanity mocking the God they do not understand.  It is simply human to look cynically at that which we do not understand, are unfamiliar with, or have a fear of. Sadly believers can also practice “mocking what we don’t understand”, when an issue would shake us out of our sleep walk with Jesus or engender a little effort in prayer to gain God’s wisdom. 

Take for instance the appearance of “blood moons”.  On September 28th the world witnessed a phenomenon called a lunar tetrad.  I will spare a science lesson on why the moon appears blood red, but simply put a lunar tetrad  is a series of four eclipses that happen in one year.  Their significance scientifically is that they are rare and they are blood red.  Their significance spiritually, as examined in light of Israel’s history, is that most major moment’s of Israel’s history happened in a year with a lunar tetrad, or series of blood moon eclipses.  Many believers of the Lord’s own have seen this blood moon phenomenon as more than just random, tagging it with prophetic significance.  Could it be that this event is a marker signifying God’s bringing us closer to Jesus return?  Maybe?

The reason for “Maybe” may surprise some of our readers.  In spite of this surprise I am concerned about an ignorance that may damage us in the future if not careful.  Regarding the blood moons, even secular people are unsettled by it, but a large group of believers simply dismiss these things as “hysteria” or “pagan” and define those who regard them as “ignorant” or “undiscerning”.  Those who exercise this type of cynicism, may be guilty of ignorance themselves; mocking what they don’t understand.  I must admit there are those who are looking for a sign in everything, and try to decipher how each “event” will fit into their specific prophetic calendar.   I am also aware, that their fervency and ill interpreted discoveries have, at times, brought more harm than good. Yet ours is a knee jerk age, where we dismiss at times what we do not understand, are afraid of or are cynical of, in the name of someone Else’s misappropriated understanding.  This is potentially damaging and we don’t need balance as much as we need truth to form our foundation on these matters.
If we will be true believers in Christ, we must take the full council of God’s Word and not leave out what we don’t like or have not waited on the Lord enough to understand.  Not only are blood moons foretold as important indicators, of significant times in Israel’s history and the return of the Lord, other natural and supernatural indicators are foretold as well.  Jesus birth was accompanied by an astronomical sign (not astrological as there is a huge difference), in the Bethlehem star.  In Joel 2:28-32 as well as Acts 2:17-21, the word of God gives us several “signs and wonders” that signaled the birth of the church and the beginning of the latter days.  Peter said what was happening on the day of Pentecost was a fulfillment of the Joel 2:28-32, as the Holy Spirit was poured out.  Interestingly most Christians do not have an issue with the tongues of fire, or a sound of a rushing an mighty wind,  or people having dreams or visions, but balk at the moon turning to blood, or the sun being darkened (solar eclipse; we had one of those two weeks ago) or vapor of fire or smoke being actual occurrences.  Look folks these are not allegorical or merely apocalyptic wording, they are supernatural signs.  Jesus Himself spoke of these astronomical signs and wonders in Matthew 24:29-31 and in the totality of Matthew 24 He also spoke on famine, earthquakes and other environmental circumstances that would happen before His return.  
Yet dealing with the power of God on multiple levels is a problem, we in the western church struggle with.  If we really get down to where the rubber meets the road, not only do we have difficulty with blood moons and solar eclipses as prophetic markers, we also have an issue with gifts of healing, miracles, tongues, words of wisdom and the like.  We may say we don’t, but where are these necessary elements of Kingdom power and testimony?  We often talk about the power of God unto salvation, but confine that to the miracle of the new birth or to being able to preach the word of God effectively under the unction of the Holy Spirit.  We lain aside the truth,  that our redemption in Jesus Christ is supernatural, powerful, and continual as we engage His presence daily.  We truly need to have a reviving in our souls to the power and presence of God among us and through us.  
We ought to never mock or be cynical of what the bible declares is more than a possibility.  I am sorry to admit that church of Jesus Christ, in America, no longer knows the power and presence of God.  If not corrected this will prove to be problematic and potentially catastrophic.  Some may conjecture I go to far, but let me share why this is the case.  How often have we prayed for increasing authority to cast out demons, or faith to see those in bondage set free in Christ?  How often is a prayer made for God to pour out His Spirit unto miracles or discerning of the spirits, or for wonders to testify to the Lord Jesus Christ?  I can say not very often.  Many may criticized for suggesting such things, but this is what the early church prayed for in the midst of being persecuted.

Acts 4:29-31 (NKJV)   Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.”And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness. 
Again Jesus told us signs and wonders would follow the preaching of the gospel.  It is not that we are to seek these signs and wonders, but that we expect God to approve the gospel He commanded we preach with the power He promised to do so with (Mark 16:20).  In light of this truth it is easy to see why we are cynical or even mocking at times when considering the power of God in the signs, miracles and wonders, His word declares are markers for us to recognize.  The time has come for us to repent of our cynicism and mockery and seek to know the presence of Jesus among us, or our lack will lead to tragedy, as we will be unable to identify the counterfeit from the real. For clarity, I present an illustration.

A few years back I heard a brother in Christ, who was a former secret service agent working in the area of busting counterfeit money rings.  The way they identified counterfeit bills was remarkable.  One would think this happened by studying the trends of counterfeiters, examining their work and then seeking to spot what would be characteristic of each criminal enterprise.  This was not the way they did it.  The secret service would study only authentic bills, pouring over every nuance and detail of the new printings.  They knew the authentic so well, it made it easy to spot the counterfeit.   Do we know so little the authentic power and presence of God that we could be fooled by the counterfeit?  God forbid, but lets face it, many a well meaning saint has been fooled by Satan, as he disguised himself as an angel of light.  

How many a pseudo Christian cult leaders, who began in orthodoxy, have fallen off the truck to produce what we would call heretical?  In America, too many to count.  This should not surprise us for Jesus Himself does not regard orthodox belief, in an of itself as full proof, as His warning to the church of Ephesus in Revelation 2:1-5 declares.  Although orthodox in doctrine, the Ephesians, who had left their first love, and were no longer orthodox in their relationship to Him.  That is a dangerous place to be, for it is a place of right theology, but dead orthodoxy, as our doctrine has ceased bringing us into an encounter with the Living Word; Jesus Christ.  In this condition we fall into a reasoned based approach to faith.  Our faith in Christ is reasonable, but it is suprarational; meaning it is beyond our normal capacity of human reason to understand or appropriate.

This is a dangerous place to remain for we get away from a living encounter with Jesus Christ. In this we lose discernment. We lose discernment because we become unfamiliar with the authentic nature of God, of which we are to be partakers of by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (II Peter 1:4).  When we lose this reality of our faith, not only do we leave on the back burner biblical miracles, signs and wonders, but become ignorant of the counterfeits among us.  Hence we can be fooled, by Satan masquerading as an angel of light.  We can be deceived by his servants disguised as ministers of righteousness. One need only to ponder the number  2,000,000,000 to see this truth clearly.  Two-billion is the number of Roman Catholics in the world, who have some orthodox beliefs.  These poor souls, being in a system that appears godly without not the real presence and power of God, have accepted doctrines of demons, that contradict their profession of orthodoxy (Next blog I will share more on these false doctrines of demons).

Of course we would say with the Ephesians, “We cannot stand false doctrine or false teaching and assume we will not be fooled or fall away, like the Catholics”.  Let us who think we stand take heed lest we fall (I Corinthians 10:12).

2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 (NKJV) The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 

I realize that this passage refers to the time very close to the return of Jesus Christ and I have no desire to debate on the pre-tribulation, mid-tribulation or pre-wrath rapture argument.  My firmly held desire is in the blessed Hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.  He will return physically to this earth for His church and then at some point, every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him.  And all the tribes of the earth with mourn (Revelation  1:7).  Jesus return is personal and pre-millenial.  

My desire is to extract from the above passage of scripture, that is necessary in any age.  It is true in the primary sense “the lawless” refers to the Antichrist at the end of the age, but the word of God tells us in I John 4:1-3 that the spirit of Antichrist was already in the world at that time.  Therefore we should test the spirit’s as by the authentic Spirit of God.  It is true that II Thessalonians 2:9 declares that the Antichrist comes at the end of the age with “all power, signs and lying wonders… with all unrighteous deception”.  It is equally true that Paul’s warning in II Corinthians 11:13-15 was made because false apostles had already come empowered by Satan with lying wonders, and  to fool the saints.  I do not believe it is too much to conjecture that if the Corinthian believers were fooled by counterfeit power, we can as well.   My proposition is if we look at why the people in II Thessalonians 2:9-12 were deceived and fell away, we can avoid the potential for such a precipitous fall.

“they did not receive a love of the truth… they did not believe the truth.” When examining these verses we must understand that believing the written word of God is only the beginning of the love of the truth.  We must always remember that Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  Our Savior is Truth personified, as He is the Living Word of God (John 1:1-5) which became flesh.  As Jesus warning intimates to those in Ephesus in Revelation chapter 2,  having the written word of God, understanding it, teaching it, and even living it’s precepts, is futile if what is written does not find it’s fulfillment in an going relational encounter with Jesus Himself.  Let me be clear, this is not a suggestion of some esoteric spiritual knowledge apart from the written word of God, as it is read, heard or spoken, for any experience, not corroborated by the written word must be dismissed.  But it is to say that knowledge of the written word of God itself, will only lead to a half baked life of faith, where we believe rightly, yet are not rightly related to Jesus in personal experience.

Having a love for the truth is seen in a deepening love for Jesus Christ, as we encounter Him in the written word of God.  As we grow to know Him more, out of love we obey His commands.  As we obey His commands, He manifests Himself to us by the Holy Spirit, empowering us to obey His commands further (John 14:21-23).  As we seek Him further, we are instructed by the written word to go and “in our going” share the good news.  We share the good news by declaring the testimony of Jesus Christ, by spoken word.  We need power to accomplish this, as well as live the Christ-life, and to by faith exercising His commands… To cast out demons, lay hands on the sick that they may recover, speak with new tongues, and receive what it is that the Holy Spirit is leading us to.  It is the written word of God–as it is read, spoken or heard, that leads to a deepened love and knowledge of the Truth, who is Jesus Christ.

In our culture, where the written word is available to virtually any one, Christians will declare “I love the Truth” as they lift their bible high in the air, but this is particularly short sighted. We must remember that those who heard the inspired word of God in the apostolic church did not carry around copies of the Bible. This makes Peter’s preaching, word perfect at Pentecost, without so much as a note or scroll. This is what makes Stephen’s righteous rebuke to the Sanhedrin, so much more supranational, as it was scripturally solid.  It is for this reason that Paul’s perfect declaration of the faithfulness of God to save his shipmates, is an example for us.  These men all loved the written word of God, as it was the truth that led them to encounter the Truth, Jesus Christ in a regular supernatural way.  In the practice of the presence of the Lord they found power that kept them from error and being deceived.

I have and admonition for you in these last days, when apostasy can be seen creeping across the face of the world—where demonic power is fooling millions—where false ministers are doping the souls of countless men with inclusive, universalist and liberal “Christianity”—where the world is looking for one silver bullet savior to solve all the world’s problems.  My admonition… receive a love for the truth.  It is interesting that II Thessalonians says they did not receive a love for the truth.  This love is a gift from Jesus Himself, an inherent potential for the born again soul, which needs to be fully appropriated.  To fully appropriate and receive this love, believe the written word of God, in all its full counsel.  Love the precepts and commands… Love the doctrine of Christ… Love the deep knowledge about the unknowable God made known to us… Love the miracles and the signs and the wonders as they continue to reveal God’s sovereignty over His creation and continued power to accomplish His plan.  But don’t stop there.  Love and seek the power and Presence of the Living Word Jesus Christ, for that which is written is the door way into the reality of a relationship to the one who is the Truth.  

About Michael J Erdel

Mike is a pastor with The Assembly of God Fellowship. He is the lead pastor at Encounter Church in Fostoria Ohio. His desire is to encourage the Church of Jesus Christ, and declare God's hope through His Son Jesus, to a world which is long on excuses and short on hope. Mike has experienced the truth that when we kneel before Christ, surrendering to Him as Savior and LORD, being led and empowered by His Spirit. To Jesus Christ be all glory and honor.
This entry was posted in blood moons, Jesus Christ, lunar tetrad, Miracles, power of God, signs, solar eclipse, supernatural, suprarational, the last days. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Mocking What We Don’t Understand

  1. Anonymous says:

    Great blog pastor mike JESUS IS COMING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Brother Ed says:

    Great and timely word my friend! Let it challenge us to be about out Fathers business and love others as Christ has Loved us!

  3. Anonymous says:

    i agree super timley I think our lord will soon return