About the Author

Thomas Ray Floyd was born in 1953 in Simpson County, Mississippi, the son of Roy Thomas Floyd and Lina Sue Shows Floyd. Thomas Ray's mother was a member of a Primitive Baptist church, and he cut his teeth on the doctrines of distinguishing grace.

When he was a small boy, his father was converted to Christ and became a member of a Missionary Baptist Church. Thomas Ray joined the church of his father when he was 13 years old, and thought of himself as a Christian. The doctrines of grace that he had heard as a child continued to be precious to him and when he became an adult, he joined a Primitive Baptist Church. When he was 27, Thomas Ray made his first effort to preach the gospel in public and was ordained to the full functions of the ministry in 1985. In 1986 he was convinced under the preaching of Rolfe Barnard (by tapes from Mt. Olive Tape Library), the written sermons of Spurgeon, and the ministry of Elder Zack Guess that he had been a false professor and cried out in agony of soul to the Lord Jesus Christ to have mercy and truly save him. And He did! Floyd then began to preach the gospel as he had been taught of the Lord.

Floyd has pastored churches in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee and until recently was pastor of a church plant known as "Particular Baptist Fellowship." He and his wife Brenda presently attend Zion Baptist Church at Polkville, Mississippi, pastored by Elder Glen Hopkins. The pulpit ministry of Zion Baptist Church can be heard at Sermonaudio.com.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Beware of False Prophets

(Article for publication week of 12-31-2008 AD)

“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” (Matthew 7:16). One of the great difficulties in true conversion is the great number of false prophets who are deceiving people and leading them astray. Please note the context in which our Lord gives this solemn warning. After the Lord instructs us to enter into the strait (or difficult) gate that leads to the narrow way that leads to life, he warns us of false prophets. Do you see the picture? Positioned right near the strait gate (John Bunyan’s “wicked gate’ in “Pilgrim’s Progress”) , there are the false prophets.

So we see the true meaning of a false prophet. A false prophet is not one who disagrees with us on prophecy. Nor is a false prophet one who holds to a different view of church government and order. A false prophet is not one who belongs to another Christian denomination. But a false prophet is one who tells men they do not have to enter the strait gate of conversion to be saved. False prophets obscure the true way of salvation which is grace alone, faith alone and that in Christ Alone. False prophets , like Worldly Wiseman in Pilgrim’s Progress just tell people to be moral or religious and everything will be all right. False prophets never warn sinners of the wrath to come. They never call on sinners in plain terms to repent. And they do not insist that faith in Christ is the only way of salvation.

False prophets are not always easy to recognize. They have on sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. False prophets are often disguised in clerical garb. Sometimes they are disguised in a fashionable suit. They have on all sorts of clever disguises, but beware , lest they lead you into hell. Friends , you had better be very careful who you listen to for directions in salvation. A false prophet is more dangerous than a “quack” doctor. A “quack’ doctor can only harm your body, but a false prophet will destroy your very soul.

False prophets are often very congenial men. They can get along with everybody. False prophets are often very popular in the community and well thought of. They would never be considered as the “off scouring of the world”, like the apostles. “They (love) the praise of men more than the praise of God” (John 12:43).

The prophet Isaiah warned of false prophets in chapter 56, verse 10, calling them “dumb dogs, they cannot bark.” The intruder is coming in to hurt those inside, but the dumb dog does not bark. Like a dumb dog, a false prophet knows when to keep his mouth shut. He may preach many things that are true, but he will neglect some of the most needful things of the hour if he knows his job is on the line. Martin Luther once said something along the lines that if a man preaches all the truth except the truth being attacked, he does not preach the truth.

False prophets are blind leaders of the blind, and they and their followers will finally fall into the ditch. The Apostle Paul warned in II Corinthians 11:13, “for such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.” You see, false prophets are very sneaky. They are talented “wordsmiths” who can craft clever little messages that their hearers never even understand the heresies they are preaching. They can appear to be “apostles of Christ.

Dear friends, beware of false prophets. Test what you hear by the word of God. And may the Lord deliver His people from false prophets.

No comments: