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Obedience is the Acid Test of a Valid Religion

The first point we must understand is this: Religious Activity is Quite Useless If We Are Not Doing The Will Of God. Christ declared that calling on God's name, and even leading out in great selfless humanitarian programs, will be wasted if obedience to God's will is excluded. Mark this fact upon the table of your mind and never forget it—the Scriptures exalt Obedience as the distinguishing test of a valid religion. Those who engage ever so fully in the preaching of the name of Jesus—with time, talent, and money—and do not keep His commandments, cannot meet the approval of God. In fact, because they are not obeying Christ, such worshipers actually open a door by which Satan can enter unrecognized and work miracles through them, In The Name Of Jesus, which they ascribe to the power of God. The plaintive plea, "Have we not prophesied . . . and in Thy name cast out devils?" is proof positive that their miracles had been done by some other power than that of Christ, albeit in His name. If Jesus never knew them, who else could work such miracles? Only Satan. The Bible speaks of "the spirits of devils, working miracles" (Revelation 16:14).

By the way, what did Jesus mean when He said, "I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity"? How does one really come to "know" the Lord? The beloved John tells us, "Whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him" (1 John 3:6). "He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him" (1 John 2:4). Knowing Him means we obey Him. Biblically, it is impossible to be a true child of God while refusing to obey the commandments of God. Willful disobedience cuts off the relationship, drives away the Holy Spirit by which we are sealed, and effectively removes the individual from the position of grace.

Now we begin to see how simple it is to test the religious spirits that are in the world today. It is time that we look past the stimulating music, the spellbinding oratory, and even the exciting witnessing programs and apply the test set up by the great Author of all truth—Jesus Himself He made it exceedingly clear that the original requirements of God have remained unchanged. The condition of obedience which would have kept man in Eden becomes the condition for his restoration to Eden. "If ye love me, keep my commandments" (John 14:15).

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