Week 14 Day 3 Devotions
“I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock.”
The apostle Paul was under no illusions regarding the reality of false prophets and in these parting words to the elders of the church of Ephesus he warns them of what he senses is going to follow his departure. This prophecy of the growth of heresy at Ephesus finds its fulfillment in 1 Timothy 1:3-7 “As I urged you when I went into Macedonia, stay there in Ephesus so that you may command certain men not to teach false doctrines any longer nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies. These promote controversies rather than God's work—which is by faith. The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Some have wandered away from these and turned to meaningless talk. They want to be teachers of the law, but they do not know what they are talking about or what they so confidently affirm.”
Someone has said something along the lines of: “You may be the only Bible that someone else reads today.” There is no doubt that, whether we like it or not, when we profess and live out our Christianity others look to us for example, particularly those who might be new to the faith. By the way we live, in other words by our example, we might, when our practice does not match up to our belief, be the “savage wolves” in the midst of the flock! We are sometimes the only prophets that other people will hear.
Let us add to what we've learnt in the last two days relating to false prophets and being on the lookout for them, a strong measure of humble, personal, self examination. The following words (which our Lord might well say to a false prophet) can help us in this process.
Ye call Me Master and obey Me not,
Ye call Me Light and see Me not,
Ye call Me Way and walk Me not,
Ye call Me Life and desire Me not,
Ye call Me wise and follow Me not,
Ye call Me fair and love Me not,
Ye call Me rich and ask Me not,
Ye call Me eternal and seek Me not,
Ye call Me gracious and trust Me not,
Ye call Me noble and serve Me not,
Ye call Me just and fear Me not,
If I condemn you, blame Me not.