Jesus used very graphic comparisons in Matthew 7: 15 – 20 to describe false apostles.  He called them:

  1. evil trees which produce fruit that sting and stab

Jesus said that the test of any prophet is the fruit which could be interpreted as the works  or outcome of  the ministry. I have dealt with the fruit and works of false prophets in previous posts, but will examine this from Jesus’ perspective as quoted in Mt 7: 16-20:

Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? 

Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

Jesus’ teachings are quite clearly stated in the text. The fruit of the False Apostle is:

  1. evil because the tree or the source is corrupt
  2. NOT grapes which are delicious and possess healing properties. They produce THORNS instead which symbolize the production of blood and the destruction of those who follow them. Some of these works were described by the Apostles John, Peter and Paul in detail.
  3. The THISTLE instead of tasty FIGS. A thistle is thorny and stings.

An apostle who possesses A TRUE ANOINTING will impart deliverance, a  radiant face and  gladness to the recipient. One of my experiences may illustrate. I once had an experience in which I went into a prayer line for prayer (although I should not have done so). There are a few additional details involved which I will omit, but as the individual prayed for me, I fell back on the floor. A few minutes after I got up, however, I discovered  that my tongue was heavy and I had a strange, heavy feeling on my chest.  It took three hours for me to pray myself into my deliverace. Happily for me, I had been fasting that day. A friend of mine had also gone into that prayer line (although she confessed that she should not have done so) and experienced the same problem. We both had to pray through to our deliverance.

I must warn you that this individual who had laid hands on me was very influential in her local church, prophesying and laying hands on people. I later dreamt in the same week that she came on a broomstick to my room and touched me. She jumped away and  was unable to harm me as she had intended. This happened a few years ago and the Lord used it as an opportunity to teach me about the TRUE ANOINTING (I will speak about this in another post).

I don’t want to scare readers, but I also know of individuals who had  spirits of impurity transferred to them while hands were laid on by  powerful prophets and /or ministers of the gospel.  These are some of the evil fruits that are not readily discerned because they are transferred from the spirit of the individual.

While false apostles produce evil fruits, a true  Apostle who is a grape and/or a fig will emanate the true sweetness, fragrance and beauty of Christ as represented by the fruit of the spirit. True deliverance without any sorrow(as in my experience) will also be imparted.

 WHAT IS JESUS REALLY WARNING US ABOUT?

Jesus is warning us not to be taken in by deceivers, but to examine the fruit of the life. If something rings uncomfortably in your spirit about an individual or ministry, then it is  best for you to stay away for your own good. Don’t get stung and stabbed by people with corrupt spirits! Remember Paul and the fortune teller in Acts 16? She was preaching the right message, but her source was corrupt because it was demonic.

Here is the challenge for all believers. We need to remain pure and allow God to purge us. We cannot hide behind gifts as a cover for hidden and secret sins (even if they are only in the thought life) because they are naked and exposed to God.  In fact, it is a dangerous thing to use spiritual gifts to cover for corruption in the spirit since gifts are never withdrawn.  God can expose the problem if we fail to repent or He may turn the individual over to the devil in order to bring them to the place of repentance (1 Cor 5: 1-5). This is the state of the reprobrate mind (Rom 1: 28). In the Greek, reprobrate means that the individual failed the test and is unfit for His purposes as in 1 Cor 3: 12-15.

We are not to become overly impressed with spiritual gifts to the degree that we worship those who possess them and even fail to correct their wrongs. Is this possible? Yes. I have heard ministers say that God speaks to them alone, implying that they will not receive any word sent by the Lord through anyone else. The failure to receive correction leaves the individual in a dangerous place in which they can be totally destroyed by the devil. Apostle Paul corrected Apostle Peter based on the issue of his pretensive behavior to the Greek brethren (Galatians 2). The church was being seriously affected by the attitude of one of its chief leaders.

Everything must be done decently and in order since God has processes for dealing with error in the lives of His children.  He Himself will correct us even if we have done nothing sinful, to enable us to walk uprightly and to be healed as Paul explained in Heb 12: 5-13).

May God bless!

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