(1 Kings 11:1-13)
“But King Solomon loved many foreign women, as well as the daughter of Pharaoh: women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites—from the nations of whom the LORD had said to the children of Israel, ‘You shall not intermarry with them, nor they with you. Surely they will turn away your hearts after their gods.’ Solomon clung to these in love. And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines; and his wives turned away his heart. For it was so, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned his heart after other gods; and his heart was not loyal to the LORD his God, as was the heart of his father David. For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, and did not fully follow the LORD, as did his father David. Then Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, on the hill that is east of Jerusalem, and for Molech the abomination of the people of Ammon. And he did likewise for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods. So the LORD became angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned from the LORD God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice, and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods; but he did not keep what the LORD had commanded. Therefore the LORD said to Solomon, ‘Because you have done this, and have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom away from you and give it to your servant. Nevertheless I will not do it in your days, for the sake of your father David; I will tear it out of the hand of your son. However I will not tear away the whole kingdom; I will give one tribe to your son for the sake of My servant David, and for the sake of Jerusalem which I have chosen.’”
The Bible records that King Solomon took the daughter of Pharaoh to be his wife. Solomon had no less than 700 wives and 300 concubines. As the king of Israel, Solomon should have led His people to God, but far from it, his heart actually ended up leaving God. By letting his heart drift away from God, and worshiping countless foreign idols, Solomon blasphemed his God.
The Israelites’ Offense to God
Toward the end of the days of the Judges, the Prophet Samuel, a servant of God, was ruling and leading the nation of Israel. So at that time, the people of Israel were living under a theocracy. However, the Israelites saw that the foreign tribes living in the land of Canaan were under the monarchy system, rather than a theocracy. These Gentiles were serving men as their kings, instead of God. As their kings had standing armies, they ruled with an iron fist backed by military strength, and with this background they were harassing the people of Israel. That’s why the Israelites were envious of these foreign countries’ humanistic political system. So the people of Israel eventually came to request God and Samuel to adopt monarchy instead of theocracy, saying, “Now let us also have a king to rule over us.” This means that they wanted to serve a man as their king instead of God. The people of Israel now desired to be ruled by a man rather than God, and they came to voice their objection, saying that they no longer wanted God’s servants to rule over them.
In response, Samuel the servant of God said to the people of Israel, “With what you are asking, you are not forsaking me, but you are forsaking God. Don’t do this. This will provoke God’s anger.” But God said to the people of Israel, “I will grant your wish. But from now on you should be responsible for everything that happens to you.” So Saul eventually was crowned as the first king of Israel. However, King Saul was not the man God wanted to establish, and his reign was different from the kind of reign that God wanted. So God decided to raise David, who was humble before Him and believed in and followed His Word wholly, as the king of Israel, and eventually He crowned him as the new king. After assuming the throne, David defeated all the neighboring enemies and established a strong, united kingdom. With his conquest of the neighboring countries, King David made Israel wealthy from the tributes coming from the subdued nations.
After the passing of King David, Solomon assumed the throne of Israel, and at first, King Solomon seemed to serve Jehovah God with humility. Before long, however, Solomon was seized by his own carnal desires. The faith of King David was absent from his son Solomon, and in the end, Solomon turned himself into God’s enemy. King Solomon served Jehovah God only in words, and in reality, he was his own king. As soon as he assumed the throne of Israel, he disobeyed the will of God by bringing the daughter of the king of Egypt and taking her in as his wife. He also brought and married princesses from such foreign tribes as Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, and Sidonians. Later on, this man turned into a model of evildoer, just like Jeroboam. Even though God had told him not to love foreign women, as the king of Israel, Solomon considered himself immune to God’s commandments, and so he followed his own lust to ultimately reach his destruction.
This applies to us also. In leading our lives of faith, who are we to ourselves? Are we each our own king, or is God our King? We have been saved from all our sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, but has God really become our King, or are we each still our own king? We are bound to follow one of these two cases, and depending on this choice, we are either blessed or cursed by God. All of us must believe in God as our King and reach our spiritual victory by faith.
However, those who cannot bring themselves to submit to the sovereign rule of God are their own kings, and such people live not according to the will of God, but according to their own will. That is why King Solomon had no less than a thousand wives. Even though Solomon believed in God, he served his own flesh, while in contrast David had served God. On account of this, Solomon turned into a spiritual heretic before God. He was such a carnal man that he spent 13 years to build his own palace, and he mobilized all his people into forced labor to seek such fleshly pleasures of his own. Because Solomon was his own king and lived only for his own flesh, it was inevitable for him to turn into a heretic in the end. So he became the pioneer that led the people of Israel away from God to serve idols as their gods.
The history of Israel’s theocracy had continued on from Moses to Joshua through the days of the Judges onto the reign of David. In this age of theocracy, God’s servants had ruled over the people of Israel, and they had also led them spiritually to have the right faith. However, the people of Israel did not realize that such a theocratic system was a fathomless blessing for them. So even though the nation of Israel had been blessed so much in the era of its theocracy, once it began to be ruled by man, it fell into spiritual corruption to worship only idols, and the kingdom itself was eventually destroyed as well. As a result, Israel turned into a tributary state, ruled by such great powers as Assyria, Babylon, and Rome in succession until the coming of Jesus Christ. Even when Jesus Christ came to this earth incarnated in the flesh of man, the people of Israel did not accept Him, but far from it, they demanded the Roman procurator to crucify Jesus, saying, “His blood be on us and on our children” (Matthew 27:25). As a result, the Jewish people lost their nation, and scattered around the world, they suffered countless tragedies for almost 2,000 years.
What Did Solomon’s Beloved Wives Do to Him?
Solomon’s wives turned his heart away from Jehovah God to worship idols. As Solomon was not a man of faith like his father David had been, and as he did not treasure God the most, he worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, followed Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites, and also built a shrine on a hill east of Jerusalem for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, and for Molech the abomination of the people of Ammon. And he did likewise for all his foreign wives. Solomon and his wives followed idols more than God.
How many wives did Solomon have, including countless foreign women? He had no less than 1,000 wives. How many idols would all these foreign wives have brought into the nation of Israel? That foreign religion flourished so much in the nation of Israel is the evidence of the fact that Solomon’s wives had brought that many idols of their own to worship. For example, if we assume that 30 foreign religions were introduced into the nation of Israel, it means that King Solomon approved all these idols to be worshiped. In other words, Solomon allowed his wives to bring these idols that they had worshiped in their homelands into his own palace, to bow before them, and to also build shrines for them on the mountain. Yet this was not enough for Solomon, for he himself went to these idols and worshiped them instead of God. Even though he was the king of Israel who had to worship only God, he instead worshiped the idol of Milcom, served a goddess called Ashtoreth, and was also delighted by an idol called Chemosh. He also built shrines for all the idols that his wives had, so that they may be worshiped freely. So given this, weren’t Solomon’s acts enough to provoke God’s furious wrath?
In the end, as Israel ceased to be a nation serving Jehovah God as the only Divine Being, and came to serve idols instead, it was now turned into a spiritually Gentile nation. During his reign, David had believed in and followed only Jehovah God. In contrast, all that Solomon did was just building the Temple of God merely as a visible edifice, and all the while his heart was actually serving idols as his gods. He left the people of Israel alone to worship idols as they liked. Since the king and his queens were all worshiping idols, what was to stop the people from worshiping idols like them? In fact, since Solomon’s heart had left Jehovah God, he had already turned into an idolater. It was during the reign of King Solomon that theocracy in Israel was completely finished, as man became king instead of God, and Israel fell into the abyss of destruction.
Since a man like Solomon was the king of Israel, its queens were bound to serve idols. And it was only a matter of course for the people of Israel to also worship and follow foreign idols. They were serving Jehovah God only in words, while in reality, they had turned into heretics before God. After Solomon’s death, his son Rehoboam succeeded the throne of Israel, but at that time, God split the nation of Israel into two, dividing it into the northern kingdom of Israel and southern kingdom of Judah. Even so, God still allowed the house of David to maintain its dynasty, though its kingdom was now reduced to a small one ruling over the southern portion of Israel. God had kept the promise that He had made to David. However, King Rehoboam of the southern kingdom also worshiped idols and left God just like King Jeroboam of the northern kingdom of Israel, and in the end, the Kingdom of Judah also turned into an idolatrous nation. So all the people of Israel came to worship idols instead of God. Ultimately, the nation of Israel turned into a nation of collective heresy. It is actually from this point on that the history of Israel wholly turned into a history of heresy. That is how the Israelites came to serve idols from then on, only to be struck by God and enslaved by foreign nations in the end. In fact, it’s because the people of Israel did not believe in God and were instead delighted by idols and followed them to God’s abomination, that the nation of Israel and its people ended up turning into heretics. As such, God rebuked His people when they followed foreign idols.
Even though Solomon was the king of Israel, he worshiped idols so much. Ultimately, he was the man responsible for turning his own people into heretics. He degraded the entire nation of Israel to a nation of heretics. By serving idols, Solomon drove his people to turn into heretics collectively. It’s because Solomon’s heart had left God with his idolatry that the people of Israel also followed in his footsteps. It’s because King Solomon had lived only for his own flesh that the people also lived for their own flesh. Not only did Solomon mobilize the people of Israel into forced labor to build his own place for 13 years, but he also made peace with other foreign kings by marital relations.
Unlike Solomon, David did not enter into friendly relationships with the Gentile nations. No matter how much he struggled, he only relied on God, as he confessed, “For by You I can run against a troop, By my God I can leap over a wall” (Psalms 18:29). He never allowed his enemies to live beside the Israelites. In contrast, Solomon, Rehoboam, and Jeroboam did not eradicate their Gentile enemies and their idols, but far from it, they kept them near to them like close friends, actually served their idols, and loved them more than God Himself. That is why they all turned into heretics before God. Although Israel occasionally saw a few kings who feared God, most of its kings turned out to be worthless heretics serving idols as their gods. These kings left God and ended up worshiping foreign idols as their gods. So what else can this mean, other than that all these kings had turned into heretics?
This may also apply to you and me today, who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Even though we have received the remission of our sins from God by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, if we were to serve the golden calves that are worshiped by today’s collective heretics, then we would also turn into heretics in God’s sight. If we worship golden calves like Solomon, and all the while consider his faith to be the right kind, what would we then become? We would also become heretics. We must therefore stay away from idols.
Who Has Turned Today’s Christians into Collective Heretics?
If we were to ask who is responsible for producing collective heretics in today’s Christian communities, the answer is that it is actually a collaborative product of King Solomon, King Jeroboam, and King Rehoboam. Solomon faced severe judgment, for he had worshiped idols before God. At the end of his life, right before his death, Solomon said, “Vanity of vanities, vanity of vanities, all is vanity” (Ecclesiastes 1:2). All this time he had lived his life according to his own lust of the flesh, but he found himself confessing that all his life had been completely in vain.
By worshiping idols, Solomon turned his own people into idolaters. Like Solomon, many Christians today also worship something else other than God as their idols. That is why they have collectively turned into heretics. Heretics are desperate only to gratify the lust of their flesh. Christians who have turned into collective heretics are eager to accumulate their own wealth. Their leaders come up with all kinds of schemes to raise their salaries. They build huge church buildings, pack these buildings with as many people as possible, and then compel them to make all kinds of offerings from tithes to thanksgiving offerings and construction donations, as well as forcing them to volunteer their services under various excuses. Invoking the name of Jesus Christ, these leaders incite the congregation with all kinds of sweet words to make them serve themselves and their churches. Meanwhile, however, the purpose of their ministry is only to accumulate their own wealth. In other words, they minister as pastors just to wring material benefits out of their congregation.
Today, among so many Christian ministers, we often come across countless people serving only idols. Many of these people, who all profess to believe in Jesus Christ as their sole Savior, are said to pull in over $1 million a month in offerings. After presiding over just a few worship services, they can easily coax several hundred thousand dollars a week. It’s common knowledge that if the church membership reaches about 3,000, this is enough to generate over $1 million a month in offerings. But what do these pastors do with all this money? Do they invest it into God’s work? How much do they really spend to help the poor? Even though they all pretend to be generous, they don’t provide that much help at all. They claim to help the less fortunate kids in their churches, and yet to a great fanfare, they actually provide only $50 - $100 a month. This is all in spite of the fact they collect at least hundreds of thousands of dollars a month in offerings!
Where do they then spend the rest of the money? They spend it all on building mammoth church buildings for their eyes to see. Even though they are already worshiping in huge church buildings, they don’t hesitate to demolish them all to build even bigger church buildings, draw in even more people, collect even more offerings, and get paid even more money for their salaries. Ultimately, this means that they are not really serving God, but they are actually serving golden calves. Many in today’s Christian communities are heretics worshiping golden calves.
The Lord said that a tree is known by its fruit. Heretics all live only for their own flesh. How wonderful would it be if they were to spend their church offering for the true gospel? If they set aside just 70-80 percent of the offerings to serve the gospel, there would be amazing work arising everywhere. But what percentage of the offerings do they actually spend for the spreading of the gospel? Five percent? Twenty percent? If they even spend just 10 percent, they would be spending a lot for the gospel. Actually, since they do not even know the gospel of the water and the Spirit, they can’t work for this genuine gospel either, but even so, where do they spend all this money? Where else do they spend it all but to adorn their own churches? Even worse, some pastors even have church properties registered under their names only to pass them onto their own children as inheritance. Among today’s pastors, there also are some ministers who do not even flinch to spend tens of millions of dollars. Many pastors serve golden calves like this because there is so much offering pouring into their churches, all in the name of Jesus. All their ministries are nothing more than heretical ministries.
Solomon built his palace for 13 years for himself, and yet for God, he only spent 7 years to build the Temple. But this was not enough for him, for he had no less than a thousand wives, and even worse, he built a shrine for each queen to serve, all financed with state treasury. So it was inevitable for Israel to turn into a nation of heresy. Because of this, idolatry was repeated in the days of King Jeroboam and King Rehoboam alike, thus turning Israel into a nation of collective idolatry. The entire nation of Israel came to resemble an expo of world religion. That is why even today, heretics who forsake their faith in God and instead serve golden calves as their gods are continuing to emerge. So it is from there that collective heretics have emerged, but they are all to be cursed by God.
When we look at the heretics that appear in the Bible, they are so ridiculous. They followed their only carnal greed only to turn into heretics. Just like them, today’s Christian leaders have also collectively turned into heretics by basing their ministry on materialism. Jesus Christ came to this earth, and remitted away the sins of mankind by giving us the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Therefore, Christians must first receive their salvation by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and they must live the rest of their lives to spread this God-given gospel of Truth throughout the whole world. We should all serve the gospel of the water and the Spirit, never forgetting that Israel turned into a nation of heresy because of its kings’ idolatrous worship of golden calves.
The Early Christianity had defended its faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit even under severe persecution, but once the Roman Empire declared Christianity to be its state religion in 313 AD and granted favorable treatments to it, from then on it replaced Jesus Christ with golden calves and believed in them instead. This is the very reason why the servants of God and the born-again saints who believed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit had disappeared from this earth. And that is why today’s Christianity has turned into an idolatrous religion of collective heresy that believes in and preaches only the blood of the Cross. Therefore, today’s Christianity must repent from its sin of worshiping golden calves before God, and return to Him by the genuine faith that is placed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, which the Lord has given to us. Unless Christians do this today, they will remain as heretics forever. They will remain as heretics to be cursed by God.
Isn’t It Worshiping Golden Calves for Today’s Christians to Preach and Serve Only the Blood of the Cross?
Christianity today has turned into a heresy worshiping golden calves. Honestly speaking, today’s Christians are ultimately seeking only physical health and earthly prosperity under the pretext of believing in the name of Jesus. And this is the purpose of their lives of faith. Put differently, Christians who are now leading their lives of faith for material gains are serving golden calves before God. Countless Christian leaders and pastors claim in their sermons to their congregation that if one believes in Jesus, he would receive material blessings and be healed from his illnesses. This means that Christianity today has been corrupted into a religion worshipping golden calves. Such is the reality of today’s Christian faith.
When we take a closer look at the life of Solomon, he was actually a completely worthless idolater. Some may then say how I could speak so ill of someone written in the Bible, but in reality, Solomon was a wretched man whose flaws are too many to mention. Don’t you agree with my assessment? He had a thousand wives. He could hardly recognize his own wives. When one of his wives met him on the streets by chance and said to him, “Greetings, Your majesty,” he probably said, “Do I know you? Who are you?” Since he had a thousand wives, how could he possibly have known each and every face of all his wives? Isn’t this the case? He was the king of Israel, God’s chosen nation, and yet he had no less than a thousand wives! It seems as though whenever he went to another country, he took whichever princess that he saw there and took her in as his wife, as if he were on a shopping spree in a department store. That’s why Israel was reduced into an idolatrous nation.
The worst king of the worst is none other than Solomon. His father had feared God so much and obeyed all His commandments despite his insufficiencies. Yet even as Solomon was David’s son, unlike his father, Solomon lived for himself from the very moment he succeeded his father’s throne, the very moment he secured his crown. King Solomon was far from being a good king. He was an evil and tragic king who had produced so many heretics. It was because of him that the people of Israel had collectively turned into heretics. Since Solomon had abandoned God and worshipped other gods, he himself was a heretic. Why, then, has today’s Christianity on this earth turned into a heresy worshiping golden calves? It’s because Christians today do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that they have come to serve golden calves and turned into heretics collectively. For us also, if we now forsake the gospel of the water and the Spirit and worship mammon instead as our idol, then we will also turn into heretics.
As for Jeroboam, he had also left God, built golden calves to replace Him, and said to the people, “Here are your gods that led you out of Egypt.” And he himself also believed so. He had believed in mammon and followed it as his god. This is a typical characteristic of the faith of heretics. So God said that liars are known by their fruit. Whether they are true believers or heretics can be distinguished by looking at what they seek. If someone seeks only the things of the flesh even as he claims to believe in Jesus, then he is a heretic for sure. Such people do not serve the Lord. They don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit even when it is preached to them. On the contrary, they stand against this gospel. Despite professing to believe in Jesus, they actually live for the sole purpose of ensuring only their carnal prosperity.
Christians throughout the whole wide world are now trapped in the sin of idolatry. Although they worship God in the name of Jesus Christ and preach to others to believe in the blood of the Cross alone, they argue based on their own Christian doctrines that if one believes in Jesus as his Savior, then even if his heart’s sins do not disappear, that is not a problem at all, and that he will still go to Heaven. And they make others worship idols, telling them to continue to offer prayers of repentance. What today’s Christian leaders are actually interested in is to squeeze out as much offerings as possible all in the name of Jesus. Money continues to pile up for them. At every opportunity, they come up with a program to wring out more money. They collect offerings under all kinds of titles, from construction offerings to mission offerings and the so–called “thousand times offerings,” which is derived from the story of the thousand burnt offerings that Solomon had offered at Gibeon (1 Kings 3:4). They demand offerings from their church members at every meeting and every time they visit the members’ homes. With the money squeezed out in this way, they reward themselves with hefty salaries and build huge church buildings, which explains why they are so obsessed with money, all in the name of Jesus Christ.
There are many Christian businesspeople who prefer big churches. Why do they prefer big churches? These people actually attend church only for the purpose of making more money. For example, let’s say someone running a business has moved into a town. He first searches the biggest church in terms of membership and finds one. He then visits its senior pastor and introduces himself, saying, “I was a deacon at so-and-so church, but now that I’ve moved to this city, I would like to join your church.” He then registers his membership, and donates a large sum of money as his thanksgiving offering. The pastor at this church would then call him before the whole congregation the next Sunday and introduce his business, saying, “This deacon runs such-and-such business at so-and-so location.” And this information would also be included in church newspaper. If the church that this businessman just joined has 20,000 members, then 20,000 new customers would have been created. Isn’t this the case? Although not everyone at the church would go to that store, wouldn’t many members visit that store and make their purchases there, thinking that it’s a good idea to help each other? So pastors and elders scratch one another’s back, as the former are paid hefty salaries in the name of Jesus Christ, while the latter see their businesses flourish, all the while claiming to serve in the name of Jesus Christ also. That is why it’s natural for big churches to prosper. A church with a large membership is bound to have even more idolaters. Such businesspeople do not prefer a small church like ours because it seems that the whole congregation won’t be of that much help to their businesses. That’s why when such carnal people come to our church, they don’t stick around for long. And it’s also because we don’t seem to be that wealthy in their eyes.
Pastors and laymen trapped in heresy usually claim to be doing God’s work, but they invoke the name of Jesus Christ only to gain their own carnal benefits. That is how they minister and lead their church lives, claiming to lead their lives while helping each other. And that is why big churches grow even bigger.
But can such a disposition be applied to us also, who now believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? Is money everything even for us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? No, that is not the case. Money is nothing if one decides to spend it. Isn’t a million dollar a considerable sum of money? Let’s assume here that you have a million dollars, and that you’ve put this money in your bank and you are now paid $3000-$4000 a month in interest payment. Many of us drive a car, right? If you drive a car, enjoy a few things in life, contribute to the Lord’s work to serve Him and lead your life of faith, and take in some cultural pleasures, then $10,000 a month would disappear in no time. Don’t you agree? It’s because we are now making money and spending it for serving the gospel of the water and the Spirit that our lives are worthwhile and our hearts are rich. Otherwise, even if you had half a million dollars in cash sitting in your bank and were living on its interest, you would realize that it’s not much at all. It would barely be enough to just get by.
After spending their entire lifetime at work, most schoolteachers or public servants in Korea retire with a severance pay ranging from $200,000 to $300,000. Let’s assume that you are one of them, and with this money, you bought a small apartment, a car, and a few things necessary for your retirement. About $200,000 would be gone in no time. Let’s then say that after spending $200,000, you put the remaining $100,000 in a savings account. The interest payment would not even reach $500 a month. Try to spend $500 in a month and see if it would last that long. Even $300,000 in severance pay isn’t much at all. Besides, a life that relies on material possession is nothing, whether you have $3 million or $300 million.
Even so, countless pastors in today’s Christian communities are serving golden calves as their divine beings, as their gods. They all want to minister at a big church. Why? Because they all want a high salary. There are many pastors who get over $10,000 a month as a basic salary, and who find the joy of their ministry in this money. Even though few pastors may receive such a high salary officially, there are plenty of pastors who are paid in that range unofficially. I am not saying these things to ask you to pay me more, but to point out the prevalence of materialism in today’s Christianity. These worldly pastors are worried to death that they might be defrocked from their high-paying churches. Take a look at the pastors of this world. When I look at them standing and speaking behind the pulpit, I see that most of them have a glossy face. They hardly look like the ordinary people struggling in the world. They look different because they live such an opulent life. Heretics are those who worship the money of this world as their god. Even though they speak of Jesus Christ every time they open their mouths, they actually worship material wealth as their god. Given the fact that today’s Christians leaders are worshiping money as their god and their followers are merely leading a religious life, strictly speaking, they are not serving God, but they are ultimately worshiping golden calves.
Heretics are obsessed with the desire to expand their church buildings. They are singularly fixated on their wish to extract money from the congregation by whatever means and build a bigger church. Wherever you go, even in some remote countryside, you would often discover that the biggest structure is a church. The village may only have rundown houses that are little better than a barn, but false pastors serving idols wring money out of even such poor people to build such a big church. Although the church may be majestic and colossal, the congregation’s houses are all dilapidated. Even if everyone in that village were a member of this church, is it really necessary to have such a huge place of worship? Yet sadly, this is the case nearly everywhere you go.
My fellow believers, we must regard gold like a stone. God says, “The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine” (Haggai 2:8). God provides for all our needs. Our material possessions were given to us so that we would spend them to serve the gospel as needed; money itself is not our god. A chunk of gold is not divine. A nugget of gold itself is nothing to us.
For us, who have been born again by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, material possessions are nothing, but this is not the case for collective heretics residing in today’s Christian communities. For these heretics who do not know the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and who have not received the remission of their sins, none other than material possessions are their gods. They actually follow the value system of pagans. Pagans even put money inside a coffin for a dead person. They put money, gold and silver, and jewelries inside a coffin to be spent on the way to the next world. Influenced by such pagan practices, even some Christians think that money can solve everything. So they spend a lot of money to carve some marble statues of fearful creatures like lions or tigers to be raised in front of their graves after their death. They do this to prevent evil spirits from defiling the grave. It’s a ridiculous notion to think that material possessions would somehow be useful even after death.
My fellow believers, mammon of this world is not a god for us. Even though Christian heretics think that money is everything, money is not everything. The Lord said that a heretic is known by his fruit. Heretics are madly obsessed with church construction. The purpose of their life-long ministry is to build huge church buildings. What is the vision of every pastor who is starting a new church? It’s to succeed in his ministry to build a big church and a big house for himself. Ten out of ten, the greatest wish for all the pastors who have not been born again is to build a big church, since that’s how they can draw in more people into their fold.
They don’t call their church building simply as a chapel or a “place of worship,” but instead they invariably call it a “temple.” Rather than saying that it is a place where God is worshiped, they call it “God’s holy temple.” But such a place is not a temple. To call it a temple is complete nonsense. It is just a place of worship, where the saints gather together to worship God. What matters is not the place; you can worship God anywhere you choose, here and there. The place of worship itself can be anywhere; what is important is the people actually worshiping God. It saddens my heart whenever I think about today’s Christianity that has scooped down so low. It saddens me to think of Solomon, as it also saddens me to think of present-day Christianity. I, too, had been trapped there, but God has saved me through the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit, and He has also saved you and all the other saints. It is a miracle.
We were destined to live only for material possessions and be cast into hell, either crushed under the weight of too many material possessions or perishing with too little, but God had so much compassion for us that He met with us like this in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. When I think about this, I am truly thankful. I am so thankful that the Lord has met with us through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, even though we are indeed nothing, born on this earth as ephemeral beings to live only for a short while and disappear like morning mists. That is how we’ve come to know who Jesus Christ is, and to spread this gospel around. Whenever I think about how I’ve now come to serve the gospel of God, I am overwhelmed by gratitude. Are you also thankful?
My fellow believers, we must save these heretics from their sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. The very last work that we will have to carry out is saving heretics from sin. Together, you and I will preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit to all these heretics residing in today’s Christianity. And we will boldly tell them what heresy really is.
Even though you and I were Christians before, in God’s sight, we had actually been heretics. However, now that we believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we have become true believers before God. We the justified have now come to bear the fruit of righteousness by our faith in the righteousness of God, and for this, I give all my thanks to our Lord.