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Cut Off From God


"26 For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a terrifying expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries. 28 Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” 31 It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God."
Good morning my beloved,
Welcome to worship this Lord's Day!
We are so very grateful for our beloved brothers and sisters in Christ from around the world, we are so thankful that you are all with us today. 
There are many people in our world today, who obviously consider that their involvement with the church at some point in their lives as adequate cover them from the wrath of God. These are individuals who although they may have been a part of the Church, really are not believers. Outwardly they appeared to share in the blessings of God, outwardly their lives show no evidence of transformation, inwardly their hearts is unchanged. The visible church does not contain a pure body of genuine believers. Not now, nor has it ever! As much as some church leaders try, as closely as Scriptural principles are adhered to, absolute purity is impossible in this broken and fallen world. Tares are going to be found among the wheat. Goats will be found among the sheep. However, the day will come when the Lord will distinguish between the wheat and tares, the goats and sheep. In that day there will be no more hiding and masquerading as Christians.
I do not believe, that there is any clearer text of this sobering reality, and the dangers of playing church than the one we will examine in our text today. 
Let us pray.
Heavenly Father,
Father, thank You for this Word for us today.  Lord, we pray that You will create within your hearts a deep, deep hunger for your truth that can only be filled by Your Word. Press upon our minds the urgency of the hour in which we live, and give to us a great compassion for those who are without Christ. By our transformed lives, may they be drawn to the love of Jesus Christ. We pray for those
who are among us, who know the whole truth, who have been a part of the church, that You will penetrate their hearts, convict them with the fear of the Lord, that they where they stand, there will be trembling, may they have no rest or peace until they have fallen to their knees, with broken hearts at the foot of the cross and asked to be forgiven, until they have drawn with full assurance of faith into Your presence and held fast. For those of us who are in Christ, overwhelm our hearts with the rejoicing that belongs to us because of what You’ve done.We are unworthy of such a great gift, and humbly thank You Lord.
In Christ's name

Today's Message: Cut Off From God

In Scripture, apostasy is said to be the most heinous of sins, because it is deliberate and willful unbelief. It is not a sin of ignorance, but rather, one of choice in rejecting God's truth. Apostasy is the sin of rejecting the gospel for which there is no forgiveness. Every apostate is an unbeliever, however, not every unbeliever is an apostate. There are many people who do not know the Gospel, they have never had anyone take the opportunity to explain to them the saving faith of Jesus Christ.
However, this is not true of an apostate. An apostate knows the truth intellectually. They are able to quote chapter and verse. It is entirely, that they may even attend a local church, however, their hearts are far from God. They know the truth, yet they have refused to receive the truth, in order that it might transform their lives.
We often see it when young people who grow up in the church with Christian parents, who have heard the gospel on a regular basis. Some even profess to be Christians and give an outward appearance of being saved. However, when the day comes when they were challenged about the gospel and rather than believing God, they embrace a lie. There is no repenting of such sin, they continued to grow cold toward any thought of divine truth.
Years quickly pass and they have no heart for Christ, and they care nothing of the church of Jesus Christ, easily forsaking the church because they have forsaken the gospel of Christ. They have chosen to shun the warnings, and do so with ease. Their hearts grow harder. They may even still be able to rattle off the basic elements of biblical truth but it means nothing to them. In willful defiance, they turn away from Christ, the gospel, and the church.
To know God’s truth, to read and study it, to hear it, perhaps even identifying with a body of believers and then willfully turn away, that is to become an apostate. This is a very dangerous place to find ones self.
Open with me your Bibles, if you would please to the book of Hebrews, the tenth chapter. As we continue in our study of this wonderful and often complex portion in God's Word, we come to verses 26-31. If you will remember, I previously told that there were going to be five warnings in the book of Hebrews, warnings to the intellectually convinced, who know that Christ is real, that Christianity is true but have never committed themselves to it fully, honestly and truly. And of those five warnings, the one in our text today, I believe, is by far the most terrifying, the most heinous, and the most serious. In fact, it may well be the most serious warning in all of the Scriptures. This warning deals with the subject of apostasy.
I would like to invite you to follow along with me as I read to you verses 26-31, to set it our minds, as we prepare our hearts for a Word from the Holy Spirit. Hebrews 10:26-31

"For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a terrifying expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries. Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God."
There are two very clear characteristics of apostasy given in verse twenty-six, there is sufficient enough knowledge to be saved. Apostasy is not a new problem. Throughout history, many have turned way from the truth to falsehood, drawing away from the One True God to serve false gods or serving the god of self.

I John chapter 2 says "They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us." 
Here, John is saying, that some who had made a profession of being Christians in that day had all the outward trappings of being Christians. They bore the Christian name, and they identified themselves with some local assembly, some church. They were baptized, immersed, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. They took the bread and the cup at the communion service. But John says that the way you can tell whether or not one is really a child of God is that eventually a man will show his true colors and will leave the assembly of God if he is not a child of God. He will withdraw from the Christians, the body of believers, and he will fall right back into the world of sin and darkness.
And, in Deuteronomy chapter 13, it says, "some worthless men have gone out from among you and have seduced the inhabitants of their city, saying, ‘Let us go and serve other gods’ (whom you have not known),  then you shall investigate and search out and inquire thoroughly. If it is true and the matter established that this abomination has been done among you,  you shall surely strike the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, utterly destroying it and all that is in it and its cattle with the edge of the sword. Then you shall gather all its booty into the middle of its open square and burn the city and all its booty with fire as a whole burnt offering to the Lord your God; and it shall be a ruin forever. It shall never be rebuilt.   Nothing from that which is put under the ban shall cling to your hand, in order that the Lord may turn from His burning anger and show mercy to you, and have compassion on you and make you increase, just as He has sworn to your fathers, if you will listen to the voice of the Lord your God, keeping all His commandments which I am commanding you today, and doing what is right in the sight of the Lord your God."
In these verses, God’s attitude toward apostasy is clearly indicated there. This situation, given a particular city which became apostate, became then at the same time the object of God’s wrath. And He said if such a city does that and turns from God to false gods and to idols, I’ll destroy it and wipe it off the face of the earth and it’ll never be rebuilt again. That’s God’s attitude toward apostasy!
Judas Iscariot, is the epitome of an apostate, in that no other rejector of Christ, did so with so much exposure to Christ’s love and grace. While the Lord Himself had taught; he sat and had witnessed Christ's miracles with his own eyes. As one of the twelve, he had experienced personal intimacy with Christ that only a few were given. For three years he had lived with the truth incarnate and yet he turned his back and betrayed Jesus.
Willfully rejecting God's truth, carries the idea of deliberate intention that is habitual. The reference is not to sins of ignorance or weakness, but to those that are planned out, determined, done with forethought. The difference between sins of ignorance and sinning willfully is much like the difference between involuntary manslaughter and first-degree murder. It not only willful, and deliberate, but is an established way of thinking and believing. It is the permanent renunciation of the gospel, and the permanent forsaking of God’s grace.
And, it Deuteronomy chapter 17, it tells us "If there is found in your midst, in any of your towns, which the Lord your God is giving you, a man or a woman who does what is evil in the sight of the Lord your God, by transgressing His covenant, and has gone and served other gods and worshiped them, or the sun or the moon or any of the heavenly host, which I have not commanded, and if it is told you and you have heard of it, then you shall inquire thoroughly. Behold, if it is true and the thing certain that this detestable thing has been done in Israel, then you shall bring out that man or that woman who has done this evil deed to your gates, that is, the man or the woman, and you shall stone them to death."
In other words, God is very serious in dealing with them. God hates apostasy.
What will drive a believer closer to the Lord, will will drive the unbeliever further from Him. Whenever the church has been persecuted, the faithful have become strong and those who don’t really believe have left. When hard times come the apostate will not only leave the church but sometimes join the persecution. Some apostates not only turn away from the church but turn against it.
Media mogul, Ted Turner, seems to be a perfect modern day example of an apostate.  One who had sufficient knowledge to be saved. A person who at one time associated with believers and the church, but who because of a crisis in his life, turned from God. Not only had he turned from the church, he turned against the church.
False teachers can also cause a person to turn away into apostasy. Where persecution frightens unbelievers away false teaching entices them away. When unbelievers get fed up with the Gospel, or when the Gospel demands more than they are willing to pay, they can usually find someone who will feed them something they find a little palatable with their lifestyle. Especially, when that lifestyle goes against the biblical teaching of the Word of God.

II Timothy 4, speaks of such a time, when it says "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths."
I believe that we are living in that day now. 
Sometimes temptation comes in the form of many small temptations over a long period of time and other times, its a strong, overwhelming temptation that comes on very suddenly. Regardless of how it comes, it is successful because the person does not have the resources in and of themselves to resist. Temptation can certainly lead to apostasy. However, the saddest cause of apostasy is neglect. When a person can put off making a decision for so long that they actually lose the opportunity. Not deciding to be for Christ, is actually a decision against Him. Just as apostasy is not new, neither is God's attitude towards.
In I Samuel chapter 15, we have an example of an apostate king, Saul. In verse 11 God says " I regret that I have made Saul king, for he has turned back from following Me and has not carried out My commands."
Throughout history, God has always hated that most abominable of sins, the sin of a man who knows the truth, knows it completely, and identifies himself with the people of the truth, then, after a given time, turns his back and walks away. This is the most serious sin in all of Scripture. Now in our text, we find a presentation of apostasy, the negative response to the new covenant. 
It has taken the writer of Hebrews ten chapters to present the superiority of Christ, and finally, beginning in verse 19, He asks for a response. The first response He asks for is positive. He asks for three things. Verse 22, "Let us draw near." Verse 23, "Let us hold fast." Verse 24, "Let us consider one another." What He’s saying there is "Come on. You’ve come this far. You know it’s true. Don’t stay there on the edge. Come all the way to Christ." The triad of Christian virtues, the three things that must make up true salvation: faith, hope, and love. In verses 19 through 25, He’s really asking for conversion.
Anyone who rejects the sacrifice of Christ for their sins will not find any other means of removing their sin. If you reject the one and only path that God has provide to heaven, then you have committed an unforgivable sin. The greater the sin the greater thejudgment. And, since apostasy is the worst sin, it will surely have the most severe judgment.
Then, in verse 26 through 39, He addresses the negative side. And, He emphasizes three points. He gives them three things: the nature of apostasy, the results of apostasy, and the deterrents to apostasy. In other words, He says to them, "Don’t be an apostate."
The word "apostasy," which does not appear in this text, however, it appears in several of other texts, twice in the New Testament, and is a horrible, horrible word. It means a falling away. It means a withdrawal. It means a defection. The word is used in chapter Acts 21 verse 21,when Paul was falsely accused of teaching the Jews’ apostasy from Moses. It is used again in II Thessalonians 2:2when it says in the latter days, before the coming of the end, there will be a great apostasy. A great falling away.
In Matthew 24, Jesus foretold of its happening, when He said "At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another. Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many. Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold." Then, He makes a very powerful statement about one of the facts of salvation; "But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved.
Often times, we see someone who comes to church, they show up faithfully, they participate in group studies, volunteering, then, all of the sudden, one day they seem to have vanished. We find ourselves asking, "Whatever happened to so and so?" Apostasy is a fearful position to find yourself in. To be clear, not everyone who is away from church for several month is an apostate. In fact, the very fact someone is frightened and fearful is completely contrary to the true act of apostasy, I want you to understand that.
Also, I'd like you to notice that it says in verse 26, "For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth" The term "the truth," means the gospel of the new covenant, the story of Jesus Christ, all that’s involved in salvation. However, to be perfectly clear here, He's not talking about being saved, it’s only talking about knowing it. He’s talking to these potential apostates.
The second point of apostasy in its nature. First, they receive the truth; second, they reject the truth. And that’s the first part of 26. " if we go on sinning willfully." Listen, I am going to say this as clearly and plainly as I can, if you have all the truth and you know all the truth and you still don’t want it,you reject all that know to be true, then there is no hope for you! Once you have received all the truth, all there is about Christ's death, burial and resurrection, what more is there for God to show you? Nothing! If you walk away, that's the end... It’s impossible to be renewed unto repentance.
In the Greek, there are two things that really stand out about apostasy. Th first is, it's voluntary. We sin willfully, by our own decision. That's different than the sin of ignorance or the sin of weakness.The second thing that stands out, is that it’s habitual. If we sin, the Greek verb for this is a habitual verb. If we habitually forsake the only means of grace, we’ve had it, we're done for! The sin is then is relinquishing, and the renunciation of the truth, and a continuation in that renunciation.
A true believer may drift away periodically, for just a little while, but sooner or later, he’ll come back, unless the Lord takes Him home. I have been asked many times, how can you tell a true believer who is just carnal from an unbeliever who is an apostate. I don't. The Lord knows, it's not for me to figure out. You know if you’re a believer who’s just being robbed of the joy of His fellowship or if you’re an apostate. And God knows it, that's the important thing. It's not for me to figure out, that’s not my calling, I am called to preach the Word of God as faithfully and truthfully as I can, without fail. That's doesn't mean I won't talk to you about it, but I can't stop it, you have to want to do that yourself. But if it’s a habitual and willful decision to turn your back on Christ, that friend, is apostasy. Plain and simple.
Look, sometimes, as Christians, our faith low. We question God, we find it difficult to believe certain things. I mean, there are times we just floating in the shallow end of the faith pool. But keep in mind, God chose you. You’re His child. However, if you deny Him, He will deny you. To slip is carnality. Apostasy is to deny Him. You may be faithless at some point in your life, your faith runs low, He remains faithful.

In I John chapter 3, it says "No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who d oes not love his brother." In other words, when someone is truly born of God, he cannot continue to willfully commit sin, at some point, he will fall at the feet of his Savior in penitence. 
The only way a man will ever get into heaven, into the presence of God is if his sins have been removed, and, the only way your sins can ever be removed is by sacrifice, for without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin.Jesus Christ, is the only acceptable sacrifice for sin, reject Christ, and you're done. There is no other sacrifice for sin. If you turn your back on Jesus Christ, you will die in your sin.

God sees the one who knows the truth and walks away as an enemy. The word is adversaries. Verse 27 says " but a terrifying expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries."
Apostates are not bred in absence, they are bred in the presence of Christ. Apostates are bred in church, because an apostate can only be bred in the brilliant light of proximity to  Jesus Christ. Jesus said in John 6:70, "Jesus answered them, "Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?" An apostate starts out close, then turns into the worst enemy. So far as in the mind of man,
there will never be a greater sinner, who has ever lived, than Judas Iscariot. 
I'd like you to notice there’s a word in verse 27, its actually the third word in the verse, "terrifying."Remember in chapter 2 verses 3-4, "For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?" And, in Matthew 8, even the apostate angels know that judgment’s coming and they cannot escape it. It always amazes me, that the demons have better eschatology than many of the preachers I know. They knew certain things had to happen before judgment ultimately came. And, that judgment is described here, as "the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries."
In Matthew 13:40-42, its described as "So just as the tares are gathered up and burned with fire, so shall it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all stumbling blocks, and those who commit lawlessness, and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth." That’s judgment, my friend, terrifying judgement! The promise of judgement, is the eternal fire of hell, for the unbeliever, that judgement comes when he dies. It's a terrifying thing when you look at people who are standing on the edge of apostasy. 
In Closing..
I strongly urge you, if you have never come to Jesus Christ, repented for the sin in your life, throw yourself on His mercy, ask for His forgiveness. However, if you know the truth, and you have fully committed to Christ, you’re in danger of being an apostate, if you have kissed Jesus, with a Judas kiss, I beseech you to heed God's warning today. The hottest hell is reserved for the apostate, Scripture says Judas went to his own place, the Judas place. Don’t turn your back on Jesus Christ and walk away.
I pray that you will draw near with faith, hold fast with hope and consider one another with love. That you will come to Christ. 
May it be so...
And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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The Brian Monzon Ministries



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