Beware of Men
Many of the articles I write for the site are
intended to fill an information void I find on the net. I'll do a search
on a certain subject, and if very little is written about that topic,
I'll produce an article to fill that need.
There are 76 million pages that include the phrase,
“things to do,” but only 460,000 pages containing the phrase, “beware of
men.” Half a million references may seem like a lot, but that is hardly
anything when you consider that tens of billions of pages on the net. If
you look at the listings, most of the pages are references to a warning
given by Jesus:
“But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to
the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues” (Matthew
When I post this article, I'm sure it will
eventually rise to the top of the “beware of men” ranking because of the
simple fact that it doesn’t have much competition. People love giving
advice, but they don't care to dispense words of caution that might
Don't Trust Anyone with Clay Feet
I was recently going through the process of
digitizing my vast collection of audio tapes. I have hundreds of tapes
on about every subject one can imagine. While assessing the worthiness
of some of these tapes for reproduction, I found myself listening to an
old series in which Jimmy Swaggart addressed the gifts of the Holy
I have about every tape series his produced in his prime, and
one of my goals in life is to someday meet the man.
One segment of the tape especially caught my attention. First, Swaggart made a passing reference to Kathryn Kulman, then he spoke
glowingly of Oral Roberts, and finally he said he had just returned from
a preaching engagement at the church of his beloved friend Marvin
I immediately thought this would be a good example
to use in some future editorial on why we shouldn’t put our trust in
mankind. Every one of these dear saints Swaggart mentioned, including
himself, turned out to have feet of clay. The teaching series was
recorded sometime in the early ‘80s, and it wouldn’t take long for
Swaggart's words to gain an ironic twist. Here is a brief rundown:
Kathryn Kuhlman is not that well known, but she was the
forerunner of many of the questionable faith healers of today. Benny
Hinn cited her as a major
influence in his life. He has been know to pray at her grave to get her
Roberts made national headlines with a very questionable fund raising
ploy. In 1987, he told his audience that he needed to raise $8
million for the medical school that bore his name; otherwise, God was going to kill him.
Gorman was found to have had an affair with another pastor's wife. Jimmy Swaggart is said to be the one who exposed him.
Swaggart himself was caught in a
motel with a prostitute. As a retaliatory move, Marvin Gorman hired a
private detective to follow Swaggart and take pictures of the tryst.
should never blindly trust men because the behavior of other people has
a profoundly negative influence on our actions. You can preach all the
good moral values you want, but one of the most primary rules of life is
“monkey see, monkey do.” And suddenly you're driving down the highway
doing 80 miles per hour in a 65 miles per hour speed zone because
everyone else is exceeding the speed limit.
judgment day, God will not allow us to blame other people for our own
transgressions. Even if we are the victims of deception, our moral
accountability does not change.
don't have the option of running off and living in a cave to escape the
influence of our fellow earthly inhabitants. We are social creatures,
and we depend on one another for survival. The only thing we can do is
realize that we need to check the biblical truth of everything our
fellow citizens of earth tell us.
Blindly Follow the Herd
Bible tells us that Lucifer became known as Satan when he grew prideful
and organized a coup against God. We are told a third of the heavenly
host followed him into a rebellion.
often wondered how so many angelic beings could be persuaded to join
forces with Lucifer. He must have been an incredible salesman to
convince them to buy into what would seem to be to a hopeless mission.
never know the details until we get a chance to ask those who witnessed
this event. I suspect one of the key factors that aided Lucifer was the
kinship he had with his fellow angelic beings. He was in a position of
authority, and they blindly put their trust in him.
aren’t any better when it comes to blindly placing their trust in other
individuals. There is a good reason Jesus compared us to sheep. We might
all have individual personalities, but when it comes to our social cues,
we don't stray from the herd.
of the worst examples of this “follower” trait have occurred on our
message board. The board has been part of RR for ten years, and during
this time, I have seen several episodes where a key individual or group
of people has left the board for various reasons. The regular occurrence
of these schisms is the main reason most major prophecy ministries don't
have message boards.
Beautiful Evil Mind
getting emails from people who disagree with Rapture Ready. These folks
have proved to be very valuable tools for helping me improve the site's
content (not that all negative email is a goldmine of information; most
critics have no valid reason for their objections).
time I received a note from a gentleman who sent me a wonderful outline
explaining why there is no God and asserting that religion is a bunch of
nonsense. He was obviously wrong, but I marveled at how well written he
had made his argument. God had blessed him with a beautiful mind, and it
was going to waste.
gentleman was only disagreeing with me. I wondered about all the men
with similar talents, and how they were using their God-given abilities
to deceive men.
of the most well-known villains of history have been charismatic and
gifted with special abilities. Fidel Castro is one such example. He has
the gift of gab, and the man could talk for hours about how well the
grass is growing.
Castro holds the Guinness Book of Records title for
the longest speech ever delivered at the United Nations: 4 hours and 29
minutes, on September 29, 1960. His longest speech on record in
was 7 hours and 10 minutes in 1986 at the III Communist Party Congress
Hitler was cruel monster of history, and his name
is now synonymous with evil. What is often lost is the fact that he had
a natural ability to make people like him. He inspired millions of
Germans with the hope of a new national
Germany. In the end, his charismatic
appeal guided many to their death.
should never judge the value of a message by how well it is conveyed.
Because Satan has a proven track record of using gifted people, we
should be suspicious of any person who presents an appealing message.
Because truth doesn't need any fancy packaging, God prefers to use
people of weaker abilities.
“But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the
wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the
things which are mighty” (1 Cor. 1:27)
Great I Art
Arrogance is the best warning sign that someone is a potential source of
erroneous doctrine. People who trust their own opinions on all matters
are destined for error. Proverbs 15:32 tells us, “He who
ignores discipline despises himself, but whoever heeds correction gains
understanding. Here is a popular tale that illustrates this point:
An officer in the navy had dreamed from childhood
of commanding a great battleship one day. He finally achieved his dream
and was given commission of the newest and proudest ship in the fleet.
One stormy night, the captain was on duty on the
bridge when he spotted a strange light rapidly closing in on his own
vessel. As his ship plowed through the waves, the light rose and fell
just above the horizon of the sea. He ordered his signalman to flash a
message to the unidentified craft on his port side, "Alter your course
ten degrees to the south."
Within seconds a reply came, "Alter your course ten
degrees to the north." Determined that his ship would never take a back
seat to any other, the captain snapped a second order, "Alter course ten
degrees--I am the CAPTAIN!" The response was beamed back, "Alter your
course ten degrees? I am Seaman Third Class Smith." By this time, the
light was growing ever brighter and larger.
Infuriated, the captain grabbed the signal light
and personally signaled, "Alter course. I am a battleship." The reply
came just as quickly, "Alter your course. I am a lighthouse."
found that the more arrogant preachers are, the less productive they are
God. There are some men in prophecy
circles that I can't stand to be around because of their pride, and I've
noticed they tend to be the most error-prone group.
recently came up a quick test for haughtiness that can be applied
to the homepage of any Christian leader. I'm not going to say it's 100
percent foolproof, but I have found that an egotism
level can roughly be gauged by how many times someone's image appears on
their main page. Here is a list I came up with after searching dozens of
Perry Stone - 21
Rev. Sun Myung Moon - 14
Pastor Ron Gibson - 11
T. D. Jakes - 10
Fred Price - 9
Rick Joyner - 9
Morris Cerullo - 8
Benny Hinn - 7
Creflo Dollar - 6
R.W. Shambach - 6
Dr. Ed Young - 5
I don't have my photo on RR’s main page because I
realize some folks might be reading the site during their lunch break or
dinner hour. I also believe that web space is too valuable to be used
for anything that doesn't directly advance the end-time gospel message.
Anyone who thinks he or she is someone special in
God’s eyes can rest assured that he or she is not. Because God
absolutely hates arrogance, a preacher with an inflated ego will receive
only a small reward from the Holy Father.
Jesus Is Your Only True Friend
There is an old song with the title, “What a Friend
We Have in Jesus.” Sometimes I wonder if it should have been given a
longer title: “What An Only True Friend We Have in Jesus.”
There is not a single person on planet earth whom
we should trust, and that includes yours truly. Everything I post on
Rapture Ready is modeled after what God has written in the Bible, so why
would you trust a middle man?
I can try to be your friend, but I cannot make any
guarantees that I will always act in your best interest. Because all men
still have a fallen nature, even the best counsel from men is subject to
You can do even worse by being your own friend. We
naturally believe our own view of reality, so people who hold to their
own opinion in all matters are more subject to deception. This is why a
lawyer who defends himself in court is commonly said to have a fool for
The only advice with a proven track record is the
wisdom that comes from God. People can disagree with His teachings, but
they can't offer a better set of moral, social, and spiritual
Jesus is the type of friend described in Proverbs
18:24: “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who
sticks closer than a brother.” He is the friend who has
given His life for us.