And Famous Servants Of Satan….
Materialism goes contrary to the Christian tradition….
From a Christian viewpoint, pagans are generally characterized as those who are caught up in any religious ceremony, act, or practice that is not distinctly Christian. Correspondingly, Jews and Muslims also use the term pagans to describe those outside their religion. Others define the term paganism as any religion outside of Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, and Christianity; whereas some argue that a pagan is anyone with no religion at all.
Pagan comes from the Latin word paganus, which means “country dweller”; paganism can refer to polytheism or the worship of more than one god, such as in ancient Rome. A pagan is also considered to be one who, for the most part, has no religion and indulges in worldly delights and material possessions; someone who revels in sensual pleasures; a hedonistic or self-indulgent individual. Another, more modern term is neo-paganism, which refers to some of the contemporary forms of paganism such as Wicca, Druidry, and Gwydion.
These modern “pagan” practices are actually similar to their ancient counterparts in that they rely heavily on hedonism—sensual gratification and self-indulgence and the pursuit of happiness and pleasure to the exclusion of everything else. In ancient times, sexual ceremonies were a major part of pagan religions. The Old Testament references these perverted religions in such passages as Deuteronomy 23:17, Amos 2:7–8, and Isaiah 57:7–8.
Though they are numerous and varied in their practices and beliefs, pagans do hold to some similar beliefs. For example:
• The physical world is a good place, one to be taken pleasure in by everyone.
• Everyone is considered to be part of this Mother Earth.
• Divinity reveals itself in every facet of the world.
• Every being, man and animal, is a derivative of the Divine. As such, all are gods and goddess.
• Most pagan religions do not have gurus or messiahs.
• Doctrine is superseded by one’s own responsibility.
• Solar and lunar cycles are significant in pagan worship.
Any form of paganism is a false doctrine. Paul addressed this perversion of the truth in his letter to the believers in Rome (Romans 1:22–27). The people Paul described were worldly and materialistic, worshipping created things rather than the Creator. They worshipped trees, animals, and rocks, going so far as to abuse their bodies in deviant sexual practices to revel in their passions. Paul then goes on to tell us why they did this and the end result:
“Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done” (Romans 1:28).
In spite of common assumptions, most pagan worshippers claim they don’t believe in Satan. However, there’s no question that Satan is their chief source of influence and control. Though they will deny it, they deify him in their worldly and sensual practices. Paul tells us plainly how Satan works in the lives of people without God, through His power, his signs, his deceit, and his lies:
“The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs, and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason, God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness” (2 Thessalonians 2:9–12).
That Satan is alive and well is powerfully evidenced in these pagan practices. This was not only clear in the times of the first-century church, but also in today’s postmodern world. To the faithful believers who know the Lord, pagan worship is what it appears to be—the power and deceit of the prince of this world, Satan (1 John 5:19), who “prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). As such, paganism should be avoided.
The new company started as a Kickstarter project that raised $62,000 and they got some big backers, like Hillsong and Bethel churches. Last year, they went from working part-time for tech startups to launch their own “creative faith-based brand for millennials” as a way to explore the intersection of art, creativity, big money, and last “faith”.
“Bad and Boujee? More like God and Gucci ayyyeee.”
The account, which garnered humor, judgment, and awareness to what some describe as a pretty shocking phenomenon, features celebrity pastors like Carl Lentz, Judah Smith, Chad Veach, Steven Furtick, and Rich Wilkerson, Jr. with shoes that cost from a few hundred dollars up to $5,000.
In the Gospels, Jesus speaks of those who have “ears to hear” at the end of a difficult saying or parable (e.g., Matthew 11:15; Mark 4:9, 23). Who is “he who has ears to hear”? Better yet, who is “he who has ears”? Ears are a feature shared by all of humanity—to not have ears would be an unnatural occurrence. Therefore, when Jesus addresses those who have ears, He refers to all who have been given His words—no matter their age, ethnicity, language, or status.
But there is a difference between having ears and having “ears to hear.” Jesus’ parable of the sower and the seed contrasts types of hearers: those who let the Word of God pass straight through their ears and those who truly listen and seek understanding (Mark 4:13–20). Come hear the Word, yet they do not allow it to take root because the seduction of worldly pleasures and comfort overcomes them. Others end up rejecting the Word because of persecution or trials. Others hear the Word and open themselves to understand and accept it so that it transforms them. Those who have “ears to hear” allow the Word to bear fruit to the glory of God. It is up to the hearer to decide whether to take the Word seriously and pursue understanding; only a few are willing—the rest have ears, but they do not have “ears to hear” (Matthew 7:13–14, 24–27).
Whenever Jesus says, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear,” He is calling for people to pay careful heed. It’s another way of saying, “Listen up! Pay close attention!” Speaking in parables was one way in which Jesus sought to gain the attention of the crowds —people love stories, and the parables depicted events and characters with which they could readily relate. But unless they were willing to tune out other distractions and come to Jesus to understand the meaning of His preaching, His words would be only empty stories. They needed more than ears, however keen they were; they needed ears to hear.
According to David Miller, Martin Luther viewed Mammon (or the desire for wealth) as “the most common idol on earth”. Miller cites Jesus’ encounter with the rich ruler Mark 10:17–31 as an example of wealth being an obstacle to faith. According to Miller, it is not the rich man’s wealth per se that is the obstacle but rather the man’s reluctance to give up that wealth in order to follow Jesus. Miller cites Paul‘s observation in 1st Timothy that, “people who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction.” Timothy 6:9. Paul continues on with the observation that “the love of money is the root of all evil.” 1 Timothy 6:10 Miller emphasizes that “it is the love of money that is the obstacle to faith, not the money itself.”[
Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!” The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again, “Children, how hard it is[a] to enter the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, “Who then can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “With man, this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”
Kahan cites Jesus’ injunction against amassing material wealth as an example that the “good [Christian] life was one of poverty and charity, storing up treasures in heaven instead of earth.[
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6
Jesus counsels his followers to remove from their lives those things which cause them to sin, saying “If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than to go with two hands into hell, where the fire never goes out.” Mark 9:42–49. In order to remove the desire for wealth and material possessions as an obstacle to faith, some Christians have taken vows of poverty. Christianity has a long tradition of voluntary poverty which is manifested in the form of asceticism, charity, and almsgiving. Kahan argues that Christianity is unique because it sparked the beginning of a phenomenon which he calls the “Great Renunciation” in which “millions of people would renounce sex and money in God’s name.
Mosaic MSC talks about how worshipping Jesus can be ‘fun’ and ‘joyful’ as they head out on their nationwide tour on the heels of their new album, ‘Heaven.’
Mosaic MSC is a worship band from Los Angeles, and while they are most known for their worship song, “Tremble,” their new music is getting attention.
Robbie Aholoka, a singer, songwriter for the worship group who grew up in the church, was surprised when he first came to Mosaic, a church founded by Pastor Erwin McManus. In his most broken state, the 31-year-old worship leader found wholeness.
On the heels of their nationwide tour with Travis Greene, Mosaic MSC members, Mariah McManus, and Robbie Aholoka, sat down with Fox News to talk about what it’s like to worship Jesus in the heart of Hollywood and push the boundaries of worship music.
“‘This is worship? It could be this, too? It could be fun? You could actually dance to it?” Ashoka said. “When I heard the music, the worship, Jesus just made sense to me.”
MSC, made up of a collection of over 100 artists within the Hollywood church’s community, makes their music to appeal to everyone, even those who don’t worship.
Mosaic MSC is going on a nationwide tour with Travis Greene on the heels of their new album, “Heaven,” which was a fun and new sound for the Los Angeles-based worship team. (Mosaic)
“It’s a crazy balance of such an important message and also something fun,” he added.
Mariah McManus, Mosaic worship pastor and the daughter of Erwin McManus, said they sing about the Lord, but also have fun.
“We laugh way too much and we’re so loud everywhere – it really is because Jesus has changed our lives,” she said.
And that’s the aim for all their worship songs.
“How do we bring our best piece of art to Jesus?” McManus said. “How do we take it in a completely different direction and do something we’ve never heard or never considered to do within worship music?”
And on their new album, “Heaven,” McManus said their song “Eyes on You” was a “direction shift” for all the songs that followed.
“We had a different perspective on what worship should sound like.”
Their song, “15,” about the biblical story of the prodigal son, started out as a joke but turned into a worship song about Jesus, something Aholoka said isn’t that rare for the group.
For a story typically viewed in a somber way, the group decided to look at it as a celebration.
“I never thought you could think of it as something fun, like ‘oh wow Jesus is chasing after me,'” Aholoka said. “I dance to that song so hard every time but I almost cry every time we sing it, too.”
The band that started off leading worship in a Los Angeles nightclub is going back to playing in clubs along the tour.
“We’re used to being in clubs – like Mosaic started in a night club. I’m like, that’s where you do church, you don’t church anywhere else,” Mariah joked. “It’s like a gross nightclub. It feels very much like L.A. and …just to go anywhere and say, ‘yeah we belong here,’ it doesn’t matter if it’s a club or a church, it’s just something special that we get to do.”
While the worship collective has fun, it’s not at the expense of their message.
“I hope, more than anything,” she said, “people experience the joy and the kindness of who Jesus is.”
THE PROBLEM OF MATERIALISM
I. The meaning of materialism.
A. Materialism is defined as a preoccupation with or emphasis on material
objects, comforts, and considerations, with a disinterest in or rejection of
spiritual, intellectual, or cultural values.
B. Notice in the definition that it is a preoccupation that leads to the
disinterest or even rejection of spiritual values.
C. Many acts as if it is a respectable sin.
D. Ira Rice wrote, “The worship of finite things of this world rather than the
infinite things of the Spirit of God is one of the greatest curses the church
E. What materialism does is replace God on the throne of our heart with the
the desire for and the pursuit of money and things of this life.
F. Is there anything wrong with owning TVs?
G. Is there anything wrong with owning cars?
H. Is there anything wrong with buying clothes?
- We know the answer to this is not yes or no.
- The answer is maybe.
I. There is no certain amount of money one can make that makes one
- There were rich people in the Bible who were not materialistic
(Abraham, Job, Barnabas).
- There were people who weren’t rich who were materialistic (Achan
J. Material prosperity and materialism are two different things.
K. The attitude in back of materialism is addressed by Paul (1 Timothy 6:9).
- The phrase “they that will” has a reference to a deliberate mindset.
- The desire of these people is to get rich.
- The getting and keeping of wealth is that on which their hearts are
L. So, materialism is a mindset that replaces the getting of wealth and goods
over one’s relationship with God.
II. The manifestation of materialism.
A. There are many different reasons for materialism.
- We believe that money and goods protect us.
- We believe that money and goods define us.
- We believe that money and goods enliven us.
B. There are signs of materialism in our own lives for which we need to be
looking so we don’t fall into its trap.
C. We show a spirit of materialism when we are intent on accumulating things.
- How much of what we own do we truly need?
- Someone once said that the religion of the first class is taking the place
of the religion of Jesus Christ.
- Luke 12:15.
D. We show a spirit of materialism when we spend more time shopping and
looking for things than we do in the pursuit of spiritual aims.
- How much time is spent in stores and how much time is spent in
- When the time spent getting things is more than the time spent in
worship, study or benevolence, we are showing signs of a problem.
E. If we get mad when someone preaches or teaches about this topic we are
showing signs of a problem (James 4:1-2).
F. We show signs of being materialistic when we turn from the truth of God’s
word in order to appease people so they won’t leave the congregation.
- This has happened in congregations across the world.
- The congregation has something come up that costs money and
some in the congregation who have that are appeased in various
ways in order to keep their money from leaving.
G. We show signs of materialism when we are so caught up in our work that
we fail to attend the way we should try to earn more money.
H. We show signs of materialism by accumulating great amounts of debt.
- The average indebted household is $15, 608 deep in credit card
- We need to remember that the borrower is a slave to the lender
III. The madness of materialism.
A. Falling into the trap of materialism is madness because of these things
cannot do for us that which we hope they can.
B. They don’t make us happy.
- Ecclesiastes 2:11.
- Ecclesiastes 5:10-11.
- 1 Timothy 6:9-10.
C. They are going to perish.
- Matthew 6:19.
- 2 Peter 3:10-11.
D. It will separate us from God, the giver of all good things, here on earth
E. It will keep us out of heaven (1 Corinthians 6:9).
F. The Bible describes riches as “uncertain” (1 Timothy 6:17).
- They are such because they can disappear more quickly than they
- We can lose riches through many different means
(mismanagement, theft, fire, deflation, etc.).
G. We need to remember that all the things we accumulate, and all the
the wealth we can make will just be left for those to whom we leave it when
we die (Ecclesiastes 2:18-21).
H. The chasing after it is pure madness.
IV. The method of overcoming materialism.
A. If we can remember three words that start with the letter “c” we can
B. The first word is “confession.”
- We need to realize if we are materialistic and then confess that to
God (1 John 1:9).
- All the signs we discussed previously will reveal to us whether or
not we are materialistic.
- God will forgive us if we confess that sin to Him and repent of it.
- We then need to confess that fault to a brother or sister in Christ who can hold us accountable (James 5:16).
a. I have come to believe this type of confession is neglected among the vast majority of Christians.
b. We need to have a close Christians group of friends who will be able to help us with our problems and hold us accountable for our weaknesses.
C. The second word is “contentment.”
- It is interesting that right before Paul told Timothy about the
problems of seeking after wealth, he told Timothy to preach to
Christians to be content (1 Timothy 6:8).
- Content is defined as “satisfied with what one is or has; not wanting more or anything else. “
- It is a learned attribute (Philippians 4:11).
- It is also a command (Hebrews 13:5).
- We are a rich people in America, but we are not content people.
- We need to learn to make do with what we have and not
constantly be pursuing bigger, better, faster things.
- God blesses us with all the things we need if we can just learn to be
content with them (Matthew 6:31-32).
- Too many times we are busy running after things that we don’t
need, we miss out on the blessings that we do need.
D. The third word is “commitment.”
- We need to make a commitment to God that we are going to seek
Him above all else.
- Matthew 6:33.
- Colossians 3:1-3.
- We want to be a friend of God, not the world.
- Loving the things of the world is condemned (1 John 2:15-17).
- When we love the world we are enemies of God (James 4:4).
- We have to be committed to God and His way of life that is best for us in order to keep from being overcome by materialism.
This whole movement is nothing more than prosperity gospel on steroids…
Jesus come quick, there is nothing left in society that’s sacred….
MY MISSION IS NOT TO CONVINCE YOU, ONLY TO INFORM…
It is impossible to find anyone in the Bible who was a power for God who did not have enemies and was not hated.
The number of Orphans aging out of Child Protective Custody has grown at an alarming rate. The 127 Faith Foundation receives many requests each week to house them at our ranch. Our prayer is that the good people of our country will step up to the challenge and offer financial support for "the least among us." We need your help! StevieRay Hansen, Founder, The 127 Faith Foundation
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