Q. I was wondering if you’ve watched certain Christian interview shows where the guests talk about receiving personal visits from Jesus and/or His angels – sometimes on a regular basis since they were kids?
They say that during these visits, He gives them special revelations, prophecy, spiritual gifts, etc. I just watched one and heard this woman claim (even though she was/is saved) that because she and another woman in her congregation had some animosity between them, Jesus told her that Hell was her destination (and literally took her there) unless she forgave this other woman. Also, Jesus told her that many Christians would end-up in Hell because they fail to obey and/or meet His commandment to love one another with an uncompromising love (agape?).
I’m guessing that during your years of ministry, you’ve encountered Christians who’ve confronted you with these types of special revelations from God, which conflict with what you believe the Word of God actually says. How do you deal with someone who claims to be a Christian, and gets personally visited by Jesus? I don’t want to call them a liar, but then again, I don’t want to accept whatever they say as gospel. Would you share your thoughts on these types of situations?
Thank you for this Bible-study website. It’s been a blessing to me.
A. Yes, I have had some experience with this. Enough to have sworn off all “Christian” TV. The little bit of insight that can be gained from watching these programs doesn’t make up for the countless hours false teaching and actual heresy that you have to sit through to get it.
If even one born again believer winds up in Hell then the Bible is not a trust worthy repository of God’s word and should not be relied upon. Paul criticized the Corinthian church for just this sort of thing.
“I hope you will put up with a little of my foolishness; but you are already doing that. I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.” (2 Cor. 11:1-4)
The Jesus who comes to people telling them things that aren’t in the Bible is a different Jesus than the one Paul preached. The spirit who guides them into behavior not described in the Bible is a different spirit. And the gospel that consigns born again believers to hell for their behavior is a different gospel. And yet people still put up with it easily enough.
The thing many believers fail to understand is that the Pharisees, Saduccees, Gnostics and other false teachers that the Bible warned the first Century church about are all still here, and many of them derive substantial incomes from Christian TV.