Roberts, in SEBTS chapel, warns against false prophets

WAKE FOREST, N.C. (BP)--When sin entered man in the Garden of Eden, it brought a distorted view of God that would manifest itself in false prophets until the second coming of Christ, R. Philip Roberts, president of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, said at a sister seminary.

“False prophets have been with us, are with us, and they will be with us to the very end,” Roberts said after reading from Matthew 7 in a March 6 chapel at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C. “And if we take the Word of God seriously, they will be even more evident as the Day of the Lord nears.”

He noted that in the Old Testament false prophets worked to destroy the truth proclaimed by the prophets that God had ordained, and in the New Testament Christians were warned against false teachers. Modern false prophets in the United States include Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, Christian Scientists and New Age adherents, he said.

“There are false prophets because many people want to twist and use the essence of Christianity to actually divert attention from the truth and the heart of the message of the Gospel,” Roberts said. “Their puny little minds won’t absorb the truth of the Lord. Their hearts won’t be obedient to what God has commanded them to do -- to repent and put their faith in Jesus Christ.

“So they reconstruct the essence of what the faith is in an attempt to divert themselves from facing the truth,” he said.

Roberts said sinful, fallen humanity inevitably wants to counterfeit the truth about Jesus Christ, and typically someone who attempts to counterfeit does not choose something of little worth but something invaluable.

False prophets, he said, often want to appear to be Christian, similar to the wolves in sheep’s clothing that Jesus mentioned Matthew 7:15. Such false prophets will always add to the Bible, subtract from the two great doctrines of the Trinity and the deity of God, multiply the way of salvation and further divide the body of Christ, Roberts said. But such prophets ultimately will not succeed.

“Every false prophetic movement that pretends to be the true expression of the church of Jesus Christ and the Kingdom of God ... is doomed for utter, complete failure,” Roberts said. “And if Jesus tarries, every false prophetic movement we see in our midst today will one day end up on the trash heap of history.”

Roberts exhorted seminary students to reach out with the true Gospel to the cults around them before they’re able to cause further destruction for themselves and others.

“Unless we take the Gospel to them and are active about sharing the truth of Jesus Christ with those caught up in error and untruth and a reconstructed false gospel, their destiny is one of separation from the Lord Jesus Christ,” Roberts said.

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