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Bible Studies and Church of God News

How to Discern between God’s Holy Spirit and False Spirits

Daily News

Announcements;  This is the sixth Sabbath after the Wave Offering.  The Feast of Pentecost is one week from tomorrow.

LCG News:    LCG minister in the Philippines Gideon Benitez recently died.


As UCG moves to “clarify and amend” its teachings and other COG groups stray further and further away from any zeal to love and obey God; it is vital that we be able to discern between God’s Spirit and deceitful false spirits.  Here are a few keys to spiritual discernment between God’s Holy Spirit and the many counterfeit spirits trying to deceive us and lead us astray.

Satan presents himself as an angel of light counterfeiting the gifts and fruits of God’s spirit.

2 Corinthians 11:14  And no marvel; for Satan himself is [presents himself] transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also [present themselves] be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
2 John 1:7  For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come [Jesus Christ will come to dwell in our flesh, through his spirit (Romans 8:9  But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. 10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.)empowering us to live as he lived keeping the whole Word of God] in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

How can we discern between the Holy Spirit of God and the counterfeits presented by Satan to deceive us away from God?

The spirit of God is truth and leads those who follow it into all truth.  The Word of God is truth, therefore the spirit of God and the Word of God are always consistent. 

John 17:17  Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
The first key; 
God’s Spirit is the Spirit of Christ and will do the same thing that Jesus did, and will keep the whole Word of God.  The Holy Spirit will lead us to keep the whole Word of God without any hint of compromise.  It would NEVER lead us to compromise with any sin; it would never lead us to set aside sections of scripture to enable us to justify our sins; instead it would lead us into all truth and into a zealous keeping of the whole Word, the truth of God; as Christ did and does.

 John 14:15   If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

God’s Spirit is not available to the worldly; because the worldly, the carnally minded, are not subject to God and cannot be.  God’s Holy Spirit is given ONLY to those who keep God’s law. 

Acts 5:32  And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.

John 14:23   Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. 24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.  25 These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. 26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

What did Jesus teach?

Matthew 19:17  And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

God’s Spirit is the Spirit of truth and is the very nature of God the Father and Jesus Christ; that nature is a Gift from God the Father to dwell within all those who have sincerely repented and committed themselves to living by every Word of God.

The Holy Spirit is ONLY given to those who obey all the teachings [doctrines] and live by every Words of God of the Father and Jesus Christ; for the Holy Spirit is the very nature of God and is not, and cannot, be divided against God.  It is ONE in complete UNITY with Jesus Christ and God the Father; and if it is dwelling is us, it will lad us into complete whole hearted UNITY with God the Father and Jesus Christ.

Those who have not sincerely repented of breaking or compromising with the Word of God, and who have not committed to STOP sinning and to START learning of God and living by every Word of God with passionate zeal:  Will NOT be given the GIFT of the Holy Spirit!  and if they did have it and have gotten lax for God’s law; they are quenching that spirit!

John 15:26   But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

God is spirit, John 4:24; the Holy Spirit of Christ is the Spirit of truth (John 14:17, 1 John 5:6, John 14:18-28).

What is truth?  God’s Word is truth:  John 17:17.

Ephesians. 5:8    For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: [therefore] walk [live] as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

The Spirit of God leads us into all truth 

10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

We are to have nothing to do with false doctrine or willful  sin, and we are commended NOT to tolerate, but to reprove all false doctrine and sin

11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

James 1:22    But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. 23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: 24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty [from sin] , and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.

Therefore, in John 16:7 Christ said:  Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

Jesus Christ had to fulfill his mission and die for the sins of the world so that those who are called of God the Father, to come to Christ and believe on him; who are called to repent of disobedience to the Word of God; those who commit themselves at baptism, washing away the sins of the past and becoming alive to Christ and dead to sin; might then receive the GIFT of God’s Spirit.

God’s Spirit is a gift given ONLY to those who obey all the commandments of God without compromise.

Acts 5:32   And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.

It is time to be absolutely clear:  God is NOT divided against himself; God the Father and the Son are ONE in complete unity; and their Spirit is ONE in complete unity with them:  The Holy Spirit is the nature of God the Father and of the Son; and is NOT divided against them! 

The Holy Spirit will lead and empower us to live by every Word of God; and will NEVER lead us to compromise with that Word or to reject parts of it, or to countenance and tolerate anything false or any willful sin. 

Therefore any spirit which teaches tolerance for doctrinal diversity, or teaches that doctrine is not important; and any spirit that teaches that a little willful sin is all right because Jesus will understand and forgive: and any spirit that rejects sections of scripture [like on the Sabbath or Calendar or Holy Days] to justify false teachings and sin: Is the false spirit of antichrist, it is a satanic spirit attempting to counterfeit God’s Spirit and lead us astray from Almighty God! 

Look at the various COG groups and think about what they are doing!  They are rejecting the Holy Spirit of truth for false demonic spirits of deceit and sin!  They are quenching God’s Holy Spirit by rebellion against any zeal to live by every Word of God; and because they have rejected any zeal to keep the Word of God, Jesus Christ is going to reject them and spue them out of his body  (Rev 3:16). 

This is serious!  This is a salvational matter!

Therefore God in his mercy, willing to try to save us, will cast us into great tribulation that through the affliction of the flesh the spirit might be brought to repentance and be saved.  But we are forewarned and can TEST and PROVE the spirits: whether they are of God or of the Wicked One.

How do we discern the spirits whether they be holy or evil? 

We are commanded to test and prove out all things by the whole Word of God.

1st John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

2nd Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

2nd Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

1 Thessalonians 5:21  Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. 22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.

That is the reason for the scattering of the COG groups today:  We have apostatized and blindly followed idols of men, not proving all things as to whether they be true like the Berean’s did,  and we have refused to be zealous to live by every Word of God  We have quenched the Holy Spirit of God!

In all honesty, we have rejected God’s ways and replaced God’s Word with our own traditions and with our own ways doing what we think is right.  And in so doing, we are about to be thrust OUT of the mouth [body] of Christ (Rev 3:15); just like Adam and Eve were thrust out of the garden.

We have become speakers and NOT doers of God’s will!  Paying lipservice to God and his will, while doing what is right in our own eyes!  They say and do not!  Just like so many others.

We have rejected any zeal for God’s ways, turning to our own ways and quenching God’s Spirit by our rebelliousness, and then daring to call ourselves godly and righteous!

We have been deceived into equating obedience to idols of men and corporate entities as the same as obedience to God, and have been led away from any zeal for the practical application of God’s Word in our lives.

The Holy Spirit is the GIFT of God to those who have sincerely repented of following the false traditions of men, and who have committed themselves to love and cherish God and his Word. 

By leaving our first love to turn back into the spiritual Egypt of slavery to the false traditions of men; we have been deceived into rejecting much of God’s Word, and because we have rejected him:  He will also reject us until we repent!

Righteousness and Discernment

The fruits of a spirit, or a man; are the results of their thoughts and actions, and these fruits sum up the character of the person or spirit, whether it is godly or evil.

As Christ commanded:

Mat 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

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

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

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

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

20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

We are to test all men and spirits by the scriptures and we are to discern between the righteous and the wicked, by their fruits [deeds]. 

If the spirit we are following were godly, it would lead us towards a deeper unity with God through the diligent and enthusiastic keeping of the whole Word of God. Instead many are doing the exact opposite and departing further and further from any zeal to live by every Word of God. 

Why is this happening? 

We have been called to RULE the nations in the future and God is TESTING us to be certain that we will be absolutely loyal and faithful to follow the whole Word of God forever, regardless of trials or temptations to do otherwise.  God  does not want another Lucifer on his hands; he needs to KNOW us and therefore needs to TEST us.

It is to PROVE and TEST us for our fitness to rule with him for eternity that God has allowed the COG groups to go astray.  God has allowed strong charismatic leaders; to TEST us as to whether we will blindly follow idols of men, or whether we will follow God and live by every Word of God! 

Deuteronomy 13:1  If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;

Regardless of appearances [for Satan and his ministers present themselves as angels of light],  we are to  prove all things by the scriptures; we are to follow only the whole Word of God and not idols of men.

Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the Lord your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

God’s Spirit will always be totally consistent with the truth of the whole Word of God, and a false spirit will decry any zeal for the Word of God and try to get you to live contrary to the Word of God!

There is NO authority in any man; all authority is in the Word of God, and any man who teaches contrary to God’s Word; is NOT of God and has absolutely NO moral authority! 

Working miracles, healings, or the ability to speak many languages is no indicator of the presence of the Holy Spirit of God.   

Matthew 7:21   Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Point Two

2 Timothy 1:7  For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
God’s Spirit is the Spirit of a sound mind and power; it is the Spirit of self control.  God’s  Spirit is not the spirit of the loss of self control or of extreme emotional ecstasy.  The Holy Spirit is a Spirit of self control that strengthens us to calmly and wisely decide to do right and refuse to do wrong; empowering us to live by every Word of God. 
The Pentecostal Movement which follows a false counterfeit spirit of extravagant emotional feel good experience in place of zealous law keeping, which is God’s definition of godly love; is NOT the Holy Spirit of God.
Many are well known Pentecostal Movement types at the very top in today’s COG groups and are using claims about being led by God’s Spirit to lead people away from any zeal to keep the Word of God as they “amend” their teachings [doctrines] while claiming that they are not changing doctrine; which is deceitful verbal gymnastics since amending is changing. 
They have been deceived about the spirit they are following, because they are not zealous to live by every Word of God; and they are leading others astray with them. 

God’s Spirit is love and what is love?  Love is defined by God’s Word as:


2 John 1:6  And this is love, that we walk after [live by] his commandments.

1 John 2:5  But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.  He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk [live], even as he walked [lived and lives]
There are those who claim that they live by every Word of God and then say that all but the ten commandments are done away in God’s Word.  That is an abominable LIE!  The new Covenant is the Mosaic Covenant with the addition of the Holy Spirit to empower us to live by every Word of God just as Jesus Christ perfectly kept the entirety of the Holy Scriptures, not just the ten commandments!  If we had God’s Spirit we would understand that to break any part of the whole Word of God is to break the ten commandments as well; for disobedience to God is dishonouring our Father!
John 14:21   He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.

Let us prove all things by the Word of God, in doing that and keeping the whole Word of God; we show that we love Christ:  and if we do not do that, we do not love Christ no matter what we claim.  As UCG amends its doctrines [teachings]; TEST them by the Word of God. 

Romans 2:13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.

James 1:22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves

In spite of all the various gifts of God; people tend to focus on the gift of tongues.

This gift of tongues is not given to all converted people. Second it is about the ability to speak in a language of another person without any personal knowledge of that language; for the purpose to teaching God’s word to a stranger, as was done at Pentecost 31 A.D. 

Speaking in tongues is not about giving up ones self control, for that is giving up God’s Spirit of a sound well controlled mind.  What the Pentecostal Movement does is a deceitful fraud, it is the exact opposite of what God’s Holy Spirit is and does!

Acts 2:8  And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born? 9 Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia, 10 Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, 11 Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.

The Pentecostal Movement of Charismatic’s has misunderstood this and claims that speaking gibberish is evidence of the Holy Spirit.  They believe that by giving up control of their minds to this level, it means that they have God’s Spirit; when God’s Spirit is the Spirit of controlled actions based on the truth of God’s Word and the keeping of the whole Word of God. 

The scriptures teach quite differently insisting that those with God’s Spirit are to be self controlled persons, not giving up their self control for emotional excess. God’s Spirit is the spirit of power and of a sound mind to control oneself, 1 Timothy 1:7; and the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets, (1 Cor 13:32); that is, the Holy Spirit leads, it never takes control. 

This giving up of the mind to ecstatic utterances has nothing to do with the Holy Spirit and is often demonic in nature with the foul spirit entering an open and inviting mind.

In these perilous times it is more important than ever that we do not blindly believe everything that we are told, and that we discern men and spirits whether they be holy or profane.

Ezekiel 44:23   And they shall teach my people the difference between the holy and profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean.
Study the scriptures and learn to discern between good and evil.
Hebrews 5:14   But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

Prove all things, spirits and men by the whole Word of God, and hold fast that which is good and consistent with the whole Word of God.

Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.



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  1. James mentions:
    “There are those who claim that they live by every Word of God and then say that all but the ten commandments are done away in God’s Word.”

    Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha! As far as the corporate fellowships that were founded and are run by trainees of Ambassador College or those trained by them this is a joke! You want proof?

    The observance of the Sabbath is one of the 10 commandments. (Ex 20, Deut 5)

    Next weekend they will be observing the annual Sabbath of Pentecost. (See Lev 23 for verification that the annual holy convocations are also Sabbaths just like the weekly observance)

    This is a time during which no cooking is to be done (See Ex 16:22-30 for an explanation of the preparation day in anticipation of an approaching Sabbath)

    This is also a time when God’s elect are not to work at their customary jobs or to transact any business with anybody else in their midst. (See Ex. 20:10 and Deut. 5:14)

    Now, as the brethren gather before the morning service, watch as many of the ladies in the congregation get together to plan who is going to which restaurant and to agree on the seating arrangements.
    Then watch as the morning service concludes and the congregation (with the ordained men and their families leading the way with this bad example) collectively makes a mad dash for the parking lot to go rushing off to “enjoy” defiling the annual Sabbath.

    I know this because I stupidly followed such bad example for over 40 years before God convicted me that this was not only unnecessary but also an insult to His ways. Just in case, after reading and praying about the above mentioned scriptures, you want to change your ways, I found the following steps helpful:

    If you don’t already have one, buy a cooler into which you can pack enough food to feed your family and to share if the opportunity arises.
    Get acquainted with your local supermarket.
    The deli section has cheese, meats, and such things as potato or pasta salad, coleslaw, iced tea, lemonade, and other food that is already prepared and easily consumed.
    The produce section has lettuce, cucumbers, and tomatoes for those who like to decorate their sandwiches or salads with such.
    Fresh bread or other baked goods from the bakery and what more do you need for a delicious and nourishing meal? [All of which you can buy BEFORE Sabbath or prepare your own BEFORE Sabbath]

    Of course remember to pack a bag to stow your trash before putting it in an appropriate receptacle for that purpose.

    One more thing to remember, next weekend will be a double Sabbath, so plan accordingly.

    Expect some stares and quizzical looks from other brethren as you set up your very own Sabbath meal (once a deacon offered to treat me to lunch and when I told him, “no, this is a Sabbath you know?”, the clueless look on his face made the entire encounter worthwhile).

    There may be many who reason, “I have been buying meals on annual holy days for (fill in the blank) years now and nothing serious ever occurred because of it that I can tell).

    God’s mercy is vast but it does have its limits.

    II Pet 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

    Tim McCaulley
    Jacksonville FL

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