The Elijah Syndrome

Elijah syndrome

Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn. (Matthew 13:24-33)

Following Christ involves making decisions and making choices. The choices we are faced with are very simple and clear cut, however we often find taking these decisions and making these choices very hard because they may cause some discomfort, put us at odds with others and even bring persecution upon us.

Examples of this are recorded in both Gospel accounts by Matthew and Luke;

A certain scribe came, and said unto him, Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air [have] nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay [his] head. And another of his disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead. (Matthew 8:19-22)

And another also said, Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house. And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God. (Luke 9:61-62)

Then there is the famous story of the rich young ruler who went away sad because he had been told that he would need to be willing to lose all his possessions in order to gain eternal life ( Mark 10 & Luke 18)

Our love for Christ should be the motivating force in our lives.  However, how is this love measured? Christ, Himself, has shown us the example and Christ has even defined how our love for Him is measured:

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. (John 14:21)

It is certainly not defined by the way we feel towards Him, nor in how much we are moved emotionally.

There is a song that many teach the children to sing. It goes like this;

I have decided to follow Jesus
I have decided to follow Jesus
I have decided to follow Jesus
No turning back, no turning back.

One of the verses states:

Though none go with me still I will follow
Though none go with me still I will follow
Though none go with me still I will follow
I won´t turn back, I won´t turn back.

As we approach the Day of the Lord we are faced more and more with the fact of false teaching and false practice within the churches. Those who know the Word of the Lord, and have their senses exercised by it, are able to discern that which is false. These are often in the minority and, like the propets of old, are set at odds with the rest of their peers. New doctrines arise, different practices are encouraged, which are largely innovations rather than being based on sound Biblical truth.

Deception enters the body of a church slowly and unperceived:

But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, (2 Peter 2:1a)

These things appear small and unassuming yet eventually they result in the ultimate blasphemy in the long term:

even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. (2 Peter 2:1b)

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, [and commanding] to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. For every creature of God [is] good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.
If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained. But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself [rather] unto godliness. (1 Timothy 4:1-7)

The Spirit has also spoken clearly that:

ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for [that day shall not come], except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
(2 Thessalonians 2:2-3)

They that love the Lord love Him too much, they hold His Words in such high esteem, that they will not stand idly by whilst these things carry on around them. They have to speak up and speak out, because they MUST refuse “profane and old wive’s fables!”

For decades now the churches here in UK have been falling prey to deception as the final and Great Apostasy is now virtually complete. For those that truly love Christ this is a cause of much grief of spirit, and much disquiet. They have watched as the churches around them and, in many cases even their own church, have been “giving ear to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils!”

Often, as they have spoken out, they have been marked out as trouble makers by the elders and pastors. In some cases they have been told to leave their particular church, other times the situation is such that they have taken the difficult decision to leave. This may have caused them to lose old and dear friends, and in a few cases even have church members turn against them and persecute them.

Some become very discouraged to the point where they are tempted to either capitulate (and simply over look what is happening around them) or even quit following Christ altogether. But a few have continued to serve the Lord in what has been described as “out of church”, meaning that they now meet in small home based groups.

Sometimes people have been counselled that the parable of the Tares of the Field refers to the churches, that in every church there will be those that are tares and those that are wheat. Therefore we should leave well alone and let God sort out the situation! Yet Christ, Himself has told us that this is not referring to the churches:

Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field. He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked [one]; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear. (Matthew 13:36-43)

When the churches are part of great apostasy the Spirit says:

Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in [them]; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean [thing]; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.  (2 Corinthians 6:14-18)

Those that truly love the Lord Jesus cannot maintain such a status quo, they cannot (in all conscience) be part of any of this, they must come out and be separate from them. They dare not participate in such error, they would rather lose an arm or a leg before they would yeild

As a post-script I would also add that some may succomb to what I describe as the “Elijah Syndrome.”  They feel as Elijah did when he fled from Queen Jezebel:

But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I [am] not better than my fathers. (1 Kings 19:4)

And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, [even] I only, am left;
(1 Kings 19: 10 & 14)

Elijah felt so disheartened that he wanted to curl up and die thinking that only he was left, that all the rest of God´s people had fallen into apostasy. God reminded Him:

Yet I have left [me] seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him. (1 Kings 19:18)

So be encouraged—YOU ARE NOT ALONE!


1 Comment

  1. Thank you for this encouraging word. I would like to add that many people who have been the targets of bad behavior and bad theology (the two usually go together) can become either fearful or embittered. But we are warned to not be overcome by evil, but to overcome evil with good. Rom. 12:21 We can reach out with love and truth toward those who have just barely escaped the teeth of the wolves.

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