How To Identify False Ministers Of The Gospel

People are tired of hearing this perverted gospel we preach that’s lacking in love and holiness, and that’s full of prosperity and high-class living for pastors and General Overseers, while church members are suffering. It’s a gospel of deception! Churches have become personal and family businesses and dens of thieves, rather than places of prayer and worship. People have forgotten the real message of the cross that goes with love and happiness.

John 15:13 “Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends”.

That’s the original Apostolic Gospel, where the leaders of the church were not living like kings and lords, while majority of the people were going hungry. The problem with Christianity is the leaders first, who are leading the people astray. The second problem is the ignorant and foolish people who are blindly following their greedy leaders!

For false christs and false prophets will arise, and they will show great signs and wonders so as to deceive and lead astray, if possible, even the elect (God’s chosen ones). Our Lord warned us of false christs (anointed ones) and false prophets who will arise in the last days, with the sole intent to deceive and lead God’s people astray.

If you don’t know how to identify these messengers of Satan transforming themselves as apostles of Christ, you will be led astray, deceived and suffer shipwreck in your faith! The good thing is that, we’ve been forewarned in the Scriptures, by our Lord and his apostles, to beware of these wolves masquerading in sheep clothing. So, if we fail to take the warning of scripture, we have only ourselves to blame. No one can claim ignorance, because we’ve been forewarned.

What has confused simple-minded believers is how somebody can be anointed, heal the sick, prophesy, do mighty signs and wonders in Jesus name, and still be false and satanic.

Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name cast out demons, and in your name perform many miracles?’

Matthew 7:23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness.’

Think of it!

Someone can call Jesus, ‘ Lord’, prophesy in Jesus name, cast out devils in Jesus name, perform many miracles in Jesus name, and will still be told by Jesus at the end that he was a worker of iniquity. That’s pretty serious, isn’t it!

Friends, let me just run ahead of myself and say it now. Prophecy, signs and wonders, miracles, etc are not the evidence to use in judging whether a man of God is genuine or not. None of the gifts of the Holy Spirit can be used as evidence to judge the genuineness of a believer or a man of God.

Not speaking in tongues! Not interpretation of tongues! Not prophecy! Not gifts of healing! Not gift of miracle!

Don’t forget this. Any of the gifts of the Holy Spirit can be counterfeited! Satan can perform miracles and signs and wonders.

Revelation 16:13 and I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.

Revelation 16:14 for they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.

Did you see it there in verse 14? The spirits of devils working miracles!

Revelation 13:11 then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb and he spoke as a dragon.

Revelation 13:12 He exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence. And he makes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose fatal wound was healed.

Revelation 13:13 He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down out of heaven to the earth in the presence of men.

Revelation 13:14 and he deceives those who dwell on the earth because of the signs which it was given him to perform in the presence of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who had the wound of the sword and has come to life.

Revelation 13:15 And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.

Remember how the magicians in Egypt were able to counterfeit the signs and wonders the Holy Spirit performed through Moses? So, all the gifts of the Holy Spirit can be counterfeited by Satan. Don’t ever forget that! Also, remember that the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Romans 11:29 for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

What this means is that, someone who started genuinely may have a genuine anointing and calling, and be genuinely gifted by God, may then fall away from grace, depart from God and still be operating those gifts of the Holy Spirit!

Hear me, folks! God does not take away his gifts from anybody, once he’s released them! Even if we misuse the gifts, he doesn’t recall them. He will judge how we use the gifts at the end, not here. So, stop asking, “If he’s false, why is God blessing him?” or “why is God doing signs and wonders with him?” Or “why is God manifesting in his ministry?”

Remember that Lucifer who once was the bright covering cherub in heaven fell from grace to become Satan (God’s adversary), yet he still retains the powers and gifts he had from God. God didn’t take the gifts and powers from him. So, don’t you ever judge a person or a man of God by his gifts and anointing, unless you want to be deceived.

So then, how are we to judge a person or a man God? How do we know if a minister is genuine or not? How do we test the spirits controlling ministers?

We need to know how to test them because the Bible says, “test or try all spirits!”

1 John 4:1Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

Matthew 7:16 You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they?

Matthew 7:17 So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit.

Matthew 7:18 A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.

Matthew 7:19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

Matthew 7:20 So then, you will know them by their fruits.

Did you get it? You identify the genuineness of a minister of God by their fruits, not by their gifts and anointing. Gifts and anointing can be counterfeited. Gifts and anointing can remain intact even when a man has fallen away from grace. However, fruits cannot be counterfeited!

You can’t successfully fake the fruits of the Spirit!

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

Galatians 5:23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

So, watch out for the fruits emanating from the life and ministry of the man. If his character does not reflect the character of Christ, he’s not of Christ. He may perform all the signs and wonders in this world. He may even accurately prophesy about the colour of pant you wore yesterday, or the amount of money you have in your account; if he doesn’t portray the character of Christ, he’s not of Christ!

2 Peter 2:1But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves.

2 Peter 2:2 Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned;

2 Peter 2:3 and in their greed they will exploit you with false words; their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

One other sign of false ministers is that, they secretly introduce destructive heresies into the church. Think about this! False ministers have no regard for the word of God. They can manipulate it anyhow just to achieve their selfish ambition.

 Acts 20:28 Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.

Acts 20:29 I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock;

Acts 20:30 and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them.

 False ministers will pervert the true Gospel of Christ with impunity, just to draw men after themselves! All they care about is the crowd, the money, the fame and the popularity of a mega ministry! They don’t care about the truth of the Gospel or the salvation of souls!

John 8:47 He who is of God hears the words of God; for this reason you do not hear them, because you are not of God.”

Why are they not hearing God’s Word? Because they are NOT of God!

1 John 3:10 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 does not love his brother.

Do you see the scandal, immorality, hatred and competition among these ministers? It simply means they are NOT of God!

2 Peter 2:1But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves.

Titus 1:16 They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him, being detestable and disobedient and worthless for any good deed.

These false ministers deny our Lord by their despicable deeds, though they profess to know him. They’re disobedient and rebellious to the Lord and his word!

John 14:15 If you love me, you will keep my commandments.

They claim to love him, but disregard his word and break his commandments with impunity!

2 Peter 2:2 Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned;

The name of Christ is being blasphemed among the unbelievers because of the scandalous lives and lifestyles of these false ministers!

2 Peter 2:3 and in their greed they will exploit you with false words; their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

Greed and covetousness are the pillars of their ministry. It’s all about prosperity and more prosperity, for themselves and their families!

Philippians 3:18 For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:

Philippians 3:19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their mind on earthly things.

These false ministers are in ministry for the sake of their belly. They glory in what they should be ashamed of – the size of their cathedrals, their private jets, the cost of their pulpits, etc. Their focus is on earthly things, because there is no hope of heaven for them. No wonder they want to get their reward here and now! These are enemies of the cross of Christ. They’re ashamed of the cross and the suffering it entails.

2 Peter 2:14 having eyes full of adultery and that cannot cease from sin, enticing unstable souls. They have a heart trained in covetous practices, and are accursed children.

2 Peter 2:15 They have forsaken the right way and gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;

2 Peter 2:18 For when they speak great swelling words of emptiness, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through lewdness, the ones who have actually escaped from those who live in error.

2 Peter 2:19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.

These guys have nothing to offer but vain jangling. They speak great swelling but empty words. No life in what they preach or teach. At best, they’re just great orators and motivational speakers. They can’t impart the true Spirit because they’re destitute of the Spirit. They promise people liberty but they themselves are slaves of corruption. False ministers love to be served and hero-worshipped as lords. They love to lord it over God’s people. They treat the congregation as though they own the church, as if it’s their personal or family business!

1 Peter 5:1Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed,

1 Peter 5:2 shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness;

1 Peter 5:3 nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock.

1 Peter 5:4 And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.

 They love to lord it over God’s people and exercise autocratic control over the church, for the sake of controlling church money. Leaders are not to lord it over God’s people, but are to be worthy examples to the flock. They’re to show the people how to lead godly, humble, contented lives, focused on heavenly things!

The Acts 20:33 I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or clothes.

The Acts 20:34 You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my own needs and to the men who were with me.

The Acts 20:35 In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.

1 Timothy 4:12 Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe.

That’s Paul’s admonition to young minister Timothy. And that’s God’s expectation for all true ministers of the Gospel. Even our Lord Jesus, during his earthly ministry, did not live and  act as Lord, but behaved like a servant.

Matthew 20:25 But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men exercise authority over them.

Matthew 20: 26 It is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant,

Matthew 20:27 and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave;

Matthew 20:28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.

John 13:12 So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you?

John 13:13 You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am.

John 13:14 If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.

John 13:15 For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.

These false ministers do not lead by example as humble, godly and others-centered servants of Christ.  Rather, they rule as lords over God’s heritage. They drive fleets of exotic cars, they fly in private jets, they live in lavish mansions in the most exotic parts of the world. Their children go to schools in the best universities abroad. They and their families attend hospitals overseas, while they sell olive oil, holy water, stickers and aprons to their members for healing. While they sell you stickers for protection, they’re protected and escorted by tens of armed police men and soldiers!What deception!

Meanwhile thousands of their followers cannot eat three square meal a day. Thousands of their members cannot send their children to even public schools. Thousands of their members die from treatable illnesses because they cannot afford hospital fees. How can these brood of vipers escape the damnation of hell?

Ezekiel 34:1Then the word of the Lord came to me saying,

Ezekiel 34:2 Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel. Prophesy and say to those shepherds, ‘Thus says the Lord God, Woe, shepherds of Israel who have been feeding themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flock?

Ezekiel 34:3 You eat the fat and clothe yourselves with the wool, you slaughter the fat sheep without feeding the flock.

Ezekiel 34:4 Those who are sickly you have not strengthened, the diseased you have not healed, the broken you have not bound up, the scattered you have not brought back, nor have you sought for the lost; but with force and with severity you have dominated them.

Ezekiel 34:5 And they were scattered, because there is no shepherd: and they became meat to all the beasts of the field, when they were scattered.

That’s what the ferocious, greedy wolves clothed in the garment of shepherds have done to God’s flock. They’ve devoured and fleeced the flock and have made themselves fat at the expense of God’s suffering, poor people, who continue to water them with tithes, first fruits, dangerous seeds and all manner of evil contraptions.

A good shepherd will so love and care for the sheep in his flock that he will defend them against any form of danger, to the extent of putting his life at risk for the sheep.

St. John 10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.

St. John 10:12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.

St. John 10:13 The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.

These false ministers are nothing but hirelings, who have no iota of care or love for the sheep of God! Theirs is to fleece and exploit the sheep to their maximum advantage and benefit.

1 Samuel 17:34 But David said to Saul, your servant was tending his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and took a lamb from the flock,

1 Samuel 17:35 I went out after him and attacked him, and rescued it from his mouth ; and when he rose up against me, I seized him by his beard and struck him and killed him.

David was an example of a true shepherd, who was ready to lay down his life for his flock, by taking on a lion and a bear, in defense of his flock. That’s the heart of a true shepherd! He will leave 99 sheep in a safe shelter and go after one missing sheep, until he finds it. How many of these hirelings feeding fat on God’s flock are ready to go after one missing lamb until they find him or her? If you’re not a big tither, forget it. They won’t even know where you live or whether you come to church or not. These are hirelings, interested only in money!

The Acts 4:33 And with great power the apostles were giving testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and abundant grace was upon them all.

The Acts 4:34 For there was not a needy person among them, for all who were owners of land or houses would sell them and bring the proceeds of the sales.

The Acts 4:35 and lay them at the apostles’ feet, and they would be distributed to each as any had need.

In the early apostolic church, no one lacked anything, because the Apostles ensured church resources and money were not just used by the leaders and the General Overseers, to live like lords and kings, while the flocks suffered lack and deprivation. Rather, money brought to the apostles were distributed to meet real needs in the entire church. The apostles displayed the example of Christ by acting as servant-leaders, by serving others first, before taking care of their own needs. That’s the heart of a true shepherd. That’s the heart of a true spiritual father or mother. You can’t call yourself a true daddy or mummy and watch your kids suffer hunger or want, while you have the resources. A true daddy or mummy will starve themselves, if need be, just to make sure their kids eat. So, if you’re calling someone your daddy or mummy, and you’re there dying in hunger while your daddy or mummy in the Lord is living like a Lord, you’re a big fool.

If you’re gathering your tithes and first fruits and dangerous seeds and giving them to a man who’s flying a private jet and competing with the Bill Gates of this world in wealth, while you can’t even buy a bicycle or pay your house rent,  you deserve to be admitted into a psychiatric hospital!

Brethren, if your man of God or General Overseer is performing signs and wonders on an hourly basis, but is not displaying the fruits of the spirit and the character of Christ and living a humble, exemplary life and placing the needs of the flock before his own, you’re dealing with a false minister of the Gospel.

Shalom!

Published by Dr. Ndubuisi E. Ojo

Dr. Ndubuisi E. Ojo is a teacher and an expositor of the word of God with an intense passion for doctrinal purity and the restoration of the Church to the original Apostolic faith.

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