Two Warnings for the Church

Josh Buice

On Sunday, I had the privilege to preach in our church plant in Zhud, Ecuador.  The text for the sermon was Matthew 7:15-23, and I focused on the two clear warnings that Jesus issued to His people in the famous sermon known to us as, “The Sermon on the Mount.”  Not only were the warnings necessary for the people in Jesus’ day, but they are likewise essential for the church in our present day.

The Warning Regarding False Teachers

In Jesus’ day, the main false teachers who were leading people astray were the Pharisees and Sadducees.  Jesus pointed out the need for the people to be on guard against false teachers.  Jesus warned that they would come like ravening wolves in sheep’s clothing.  This is a statement speaks to the deception of false teachers.

How would the false teachers be revealed?  Jesus used an illustration that contrasted good and bad trees with good and bad fruit.  The way you know a false teacher is by examining their fruit.  The false teacher will not be able to teach the Word of God properly.  His inability to rightly divide the Word and to teach the true gospel will expose his deceptive ways.

There are many false teachers in our day who use the name of Jesus, but in reality, they are cults who hate the true gospel.  They teach about a Jesus who is not God.  Their Jesus has no power to save sinners.  Their Jesus has no power to forgive sin.  Their Jesus has no authority to deliver guilty and bring them eternal life.  This is the Jesus of the Jehovah’s Witnesses.  This is the Jesus of Mormonism.  This is the Jesus of Islam.  All of these religions are false and they teach a false hope of salvation.

In the end, Jesus provided a sobering outlook to the future judgment of the false teachers.  They will all suffer the wrath of God eternally.  Like a bad tree is cut down and thrown into the fire, so will the false teachers be cast into the hellfire of God’s judgment.

The Warning Regarding False Christians

One of the sobering realities in Jesus’ day was that not everyone who claimed to be a chid of God was actually a child of God.  That same thing is true in our present evangelical church age.  Not everyone who attends church is a Christian.  Not everyone who has once prayed to God is a Christian.  Not everyone who has once been baptized is a true Christian.  We need to be aware of the possibility of being a false Christian.

Like Paul said to the church in Corinth, we must all examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith.  Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to me ‘Lord, Lord’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven.”  In fact, Jesus pointed out that on the day of judgment many people will find themselves surprised.  They considered themselves to be true Christians, but in the end, they were proven to be false.  Even if they cry out to Jesus, He will inform them that He never knew them and they will be sent away into everlasting judgment.

What a sobering truth to consider.  According to Jesus’ own words, it is possible to go to hell as a devout religious person.  How many professing Christians will find themselves in hell?  How many people will be in eternal hell who once prayed, became a church members, were baptized, or memorized John 3:16?  Hell will be filled with many religious people.

When was the last time you examined yourself to see if you are in the faith?

On what basis do you know that you’re a true Christian?

In just a few years, you will be in eternity.  Are you ready to stand before God and give an account of your life and your


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Author Two Warnings for the Church

Josh Buice

Pastor Pray's Mill Baptist Church

Josh Buice is the founder and president of G3 Ministries and serves as the pastor of Pray's Mill Baptist Church on the westside of Atlanta. He is married to Kari and they have four children, Karis, John Mark, Kalli, and Judson. Additionally, he serves as Assistant Professor of Preaching at Grace Bible Theological Seminary. He enjoys theology, preaching, church history, and has a firm commitment to the local church. He also enjoys many sports and the outdoors, including long distance running and high country hunting. He has been writing on Delivered by Grace since he was in seminary and it has expanded with a large readership through the years.