Be on the Alert

Be on the Alert

Text: Colossians 2:1-5


I.         It is our natural tendency to interpret the actions of others with our own views.

            A.        It is hard for those who are good to understand why people will do evil.

            B.        While thinking about how to lead in to this lesson, I received the following e-mail back before this particular scheme became so popular.

                        1.         Alarms rang loud on reading this.

                                    a.         The man is obviously not a member of the church

                                    b.         He uses titles such as Pastor and Deacon.

                                    c.         He believes in the direct guidance of the Spirit

                                    d.         He committed a crime for which he has not repented (no restitution, no admittance), yet he claims to be a deacon.

                                    e.         He claims his minister is encouraging him to break the laws of his country and my country.

                        2.         This one was so wild, I turned it in to authorities

            C.        The point is that there are people who prey on the church.

                        1.         We know they are there and so we must always be on the alert.

            D.        In the second chapter of Colossians, Paul warns his brethren to be on the alert for certain wicked men.

II.        Those who would delude you - Colossians 2:4

            A.        The word paralogizomai means cheating through false reasoning

                        1.         Also used in James 1:22 where a person fools himself into thinking he can be a Christian without actually living the life of a Christian.

                        2.         Here though are others who use persuasive arguments to lead Christians to false conclusions.

                        3.         They can and will come from our own midst - Acts 20:30

            B.        Paul’s teaching was not based on persuasive speech - I Corinthians 2:1-5

                        1.         So often, reasoning is not based on an understanding of God’s Will, but the twisted logic of man

                        2.         Theology is not needed to understand the Bible. In fact, most theologians do not grasp the simple message of God

                        3.         I Corinthians 2:6-8 - The great men of this world do not understand the Bible.

                        4.         Often the poison is sugar-coated with eloquence and flattery - Romans 16:17-19

            C.        The problem with deception is that it grows. Those who deceive come to believe their own lies - II Timothy 3:13-14

            D.        The prevention is the confidence gained by a full understanding of God’s Word. A full understanding of Christ - Colossians 2:2

                        1.         It means we need to learn to reason well and to be able to spot twisted logic.

                        2.         How, by learning the wisdom of God - Proverbs 2:1-12

III.       Those who would take you captive - Colossians 2:8

            A.        The word sulagogeo means to kidnap

            B.        There are men who base their religion on worldly principles and not godly principles.

                        1.         They cause divisions by teaching what was not taught by the apostles - Romans 16:17

                        2.         They twist the statements of the scriptures - II Peter 3:16

                        3.         Paul had great concerns regarding those who would lead Christians astray - II Corinthians 11:1-4, 12-15

            C.        Rather, we bring thoughts into captivity to Christ - II Corinthians 10:3-6

                        1.         As Timothy was instructed, we must hold on to what we were given - I Timothy 6:20-21

IV.      Those who would judge you - Colossians 2:16

            A.        The word krino means to decide, judge, or to condemn someone

                        1.         See Romans 14:3-5. 10, 13, 22 - Do not judge one another

                        2.         Acts 3:13 - The Jews had disowned Jesus before Pilate

                        3.         Acts 13:27 - The Jews did not recognize Jesus or the prophet’s teachings, so they condemned Jesus and his followers.

            B.        There are people who just assume they have the truth and will condemn anyone who does not agree with them.

                        1.         Try sometime to say that homosexuality is a sin. People will be aghast. They will look down their noses and condemn you from their supposedly superior moral position.

                        2.         What Paul is warning us is not to let ourselves be brow-beaten into compromising the truth.

                                    a.         This is what happened to Peter - Galatians 2:11-14

                                    b.         This is also what James spoke about - James 4:11

            C.        How to we battle this? Know whom we serve - (see Colossians 2:9-15)

                        1.         We are not serving other men by our God who rescued us.

V.        Those who would defraud you - Colossians 2:18

            A.        The word katabrabeuo means to be disqualified from a competition

            B.        Paul was concerned that his own desires did not disqualify him from reaching heaven - I Corinthians 9:26-27

            C.        Sometimes the attacks are more direct.

                        1.         If they feel you are too good for them, they will encourage you to dirty yourself with sin.

                        2.         Others use sin to gain followers - II Peter 2:1-3, 18-19

            D.        We battle fraud by holding on to Christ -Colossians 2:19

VI.      Those who would dictate rules - Colossians 2:20-23

            A.        People who speak without knowledge - I Timothy 1:6-7

            B.        As Paul said in Colossians 2:23, they serve no useful purpose in battling sin.

VII.     We have been warned, so let us remain steadfast - II Peter 3:17-19

            A.        We know there are corrupt people out there - I John 4:1

            B.        Therefore we must always watch - II John 8

Beloved in Christ,

It is a priviledge to hear from God and it gives me joy to relate my testimony to you haven recieved instruction from God through divine revelation.

I was a Moslem and a retired military top officer in Nigerian Army that served under the past military regime. I was the financial secretary to the Armed Force Ruling Council (AFRC). With my position as a financial secretary, I was able to divert up to $45,000,000.00 (Forty Five million U.S Dollars, into my personal Bank Account, hoping to invest the money when I'm retired.

Immediately I got retired, I was converted from Moslem to Christian when I was preached the words of God through my cousin Pastor Paul Osakwe. I then gave my life to Christ and became a born again Christain.

Since I gave my life to Christ, I had no rest of mind. Some times I think of the souls I killed when I was a soldier and the dubious ways I diverted my country's money into my Personal Bank Account. I then decided to seek the face of God for forgiveness and after fasting and prayer through Divine Revelation, the Almighty God revealed to me that the only way I could have rest of mind is when I used all my money to do the work of God. I immediately disclosed my revelation to my
Pastor and he was happy with me.

I have been thinking of the particular thing to do for my God before this present civilian president of my country set up a panel (Honorable Oputa Panel) to probe the Bank Account of the past Military officers like me. Instead of loosing this money to my government, I quickly withdrew my money out of my Account and deposited the money in a finance and security company for safety.

My Pastor has adviced me to sneak out of the country with the money to sow it into a ministries abroad. I have decided to sow this money into your ministry. I am making arrangement to come over to your country but you need to receive this money from the finance and security company in cash before I come over.

The cash has been packaged by the security company in consignments and ready for shipment but the security company requires the address of the receiver. Please send to me your names, address and your telefax number where I can fax the Airway Bill to you to claim the consignment over there.

I will be coming over to your ministry with my family for thanksgiving as soon as I sent out this money to you. Please act fast because I don’t want the panel to know that I want to leave the country, they might suspect my intention to leave now that the probe is going on.

I look forward to your response

God bless you.