Lesson 11 of 13
Now, let’s look at the difference between true apostles and false apostles: True apostles have the complete foundation of truth to set in the hearts of believers. They are not waiting for bits and pieces of truth to come together, while false apostles believe that truth is in part and progressive. False apostles lack the total vision of the pattern of Jesus Christ and consequently, they cannot give what they do not possess.
A false apostle will daub the wall with untempered mortar as we read in Ezekiel 13:10: “Because, even because they have seduced my people, saying, Peace; and there was no peace; and one built up a wall, and, lo, others daubed it with untempered mortar.” Concrete is structural masonry material made by mixing gravel or broken stone with sand, cement, and water, which is then allowed to harden into a solid mass.
Building the Body of Christ with untempered mortar is symbolic in meaning of the misrepresentation or removal of vital elements from the gospel of Jesus Christ. As a result, truth is no longer structurally sound. While the words of a false apostle may sound as if he is in support of God, his words are mixed with indoctrination, which does not carry the grace and truth of God. So, although he may be truly sincere, he is false in purpose, and without the foundation of truth, he cannot contribute what he does not have. This causes faith to crumble.
Now let’s look at another difference between true prophets and false prophets:
Balaam is a good example of a false prophet who spoke some truth, but prophesied outside of the camp of the Lord. Just because one may prophesy, it is not an indication of conformity to the spiritual government of God. False prophets today may be aware of what God is doing through Jesus Christ, just as Balaam was aware of what God was doing through Moses. But
Balaam was unwilling to conform to Moses, which kept him in the camp of Balak. We can also see these “Balaam” prophets today; prophesying something that may be true about the coming judgment of the world, or something that may be true about the condition of the church, does not make them true prophets of God.
A true prophet of God confirms and conforms to these three things:
1. Spiritual government: Christ rules His house through stewards He has set over His house, thereby providing believers with nourishment, care, and refuge. Jesus Christ the Apostle and High Priest of our profession (Hebrews 3:1); the government of God is upon His shoulders (Isaiah 9:6), meaning that He is our contact point for faith and provides truth through His apostles so believers know how to join themselves to Him.
2. Truth: Jesus Christ is the foundation upon which we build our faith. Apostles are the master builders who set the foundation of truth in the heart; as Paul said, “According to the grace of God which is given unto me [apostle], as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon” (1 Corinthians 3:10). Jesus is the blueprint of truth. As Moses received the “pattern” by which to build the First Covenant tabernacle and tools, so do apostles receive from Jesus Christ the “pattern” of truth to educate believers how to build their faith with the tools of the Second Covenant. This pattern of truth establishes the record of Christ for our faith.
3. Spirit: The Spirit of God will only sanctify our faith in connection with the truth of Christ. Our faith must be joined to His government for truth to be made living by His Spirit. This is why Paul said, “You all are partakers of my grace” (Philippians 1:7).
God is restoring the Body of Christ to the apostolic pattern, and the Body will grow unto a holy temple of the Lord, each believer being joined to God and to one another through the measure of grace that God provides.
We are joined to Christ through His government.
We are joined to Christ through His truth.
We are joined to Christ through His Spirit.
Jesus is our the advocate, bringing unity and forgiveness, fulfilling that which He has promised: "There shall be a unity that is not feigned, and a oneness that is not deceitful."