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Tag Archives: counterfeits

The Counterfeit Idol

Idols are an image or representation of a god used as an object of worship. This person or thing is greatly admired, loved, or revered. Meanwhile, counterfeits are made in exact imitation of something valuable or important with the intention to deceive or defraud others. In the manufacturing world, counterfeiters have become masters at making duplicates of high end products that appear to be authentic.

Then He told them a parable, saying, The land of a rich man was fertile and yielded plentifully. 17 And he considered and debated within himself, What shall I do? I have no place [in which] to gather together my harvest. 18 And he said, I will do this: I will pull down my storehouses and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain or produce and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have many good things laid up, [enough] for many years. Take your ease; eat, drink, and enjoy yourself merrily, Luke 12:16-19.

From a biblical perspective, Jesus conveys a parable that opens up conversation for a counterfeit idol. Whenever an individual through dedication and hard work builds a successful business, there is a temptation to ease up by relying on past performances. While money in itself is not bad, the love of money is the root of all evil, 1 Timothy 6:10. Jesus warns about allowing money to darken your soul, Matthew 6:19-24.

But God said to him, You fool! This very night they [the messengers of God] will demand your soul of you; and all the things that you have prepared, whose will they be? 21 So it is with the one who continues to lay up and hoard possessions for himself and is not rich [in his relation] to God [this is how he fares]. 22 And [Jesus] said to His disciples, Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious and troubled [with cares] about your life, as to what you will [have to] eat; or about your body, as to what you will [have to] wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body [more] than clothes. 24 Observe and consider the ravens; for they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn; and [yet] God feeds them. Of how much more worth are you than the birds! – Luke 12:20-24

When greed takes over someone’s life, minds are blinded by the source of all wealth, Malachi 3:9-10. Instead of solely trusting God to provide, Proverbs 3:5-6, greed makes someone believe that they can make money on their own. If success continues, greed becomes the counterfeit idol, feeding the cravings of those hungry for control, money and power. “If your body has been infiltrated by darkness, how great is that darkness,” Matthew 6:23. This is what makes greed the counterfeit idol. Let the light of God’s Word expose this darkness.

by Jay Mankus

A Reason to Reconsider

Imitation is a response by an observer or observers who replicate another’s behavior. This can be viewed as a form a flattery when the originator sees others coping a dance move, expression or unique style. One of the nicknames Jesus received during the first century was the Great Magician. Jealous of Jesus’ great healing powers, religious leaders began to refer to Jesus as an illusionist, performing miracles in the name of Satan, Matthew 12:24. Despite these claims, Jesus’ ministry inspired others to become faith healers without having a personal relationship with God.

Then some of the traveling Jewish exorcists also attempted to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “I implore you and solemnly command you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches!” – Acts 19:13

During a trip to Ephesus, Luke details a family of brothers who became Jewish exorcists. This isn’t a scene out of the Exorcism of Emily Rose, a 2005 film. Rather, the sons of Sceva traveled to homes filled with desperate individuals hoping to be set free from demonic oppression and possession. Apparently, this was a viable occupation, making enough money and successful enough to rid souls from imps. Yet, when this crew confronted a legion of demons, all 7 got their butts kicked, barely escaping, fleeing in fear.

This became known to all who lived in Ephesus, both Jews and Greeks. And fear fell upon them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified and exalted. 18 Many of those who had become believers were coming, confessing and disclosing their [former sinful] practices. 19 And many of those who had practiced magical arts collected their books and [throwing book after book on the pile] began burning them in front of everyone. They calculated their value and found it to be 50,000 pieces of silver, Acts 19:17-19.

Like the top grossing horror films of all time, fear gripped everyone who interviewed these brothers or witnessed this assault. According to Luke, the thought of imitating the Christian faith stopped, resulting in a spiritual awakening that spread to practicing witches. Contrite hearts began to purge their lives from anything that attempted to imitate God’s power. Subsequently, magical books worth 50,000 pieces of silver were burned. The fear of God from what happened to the 7 sons of Sceva served as a reason to reconsider previous practices by embracing Jesus as Lord and Savior.

by Jay Mankus

Six, Six, Six

In biblical numerology, the number 7 is symbolic of perfection, like a complete 7 day week.  Thus, the number 6 refers to being incomplete.  Without a day of rest on the 7th day, a week is imperfect, breaking from God’s design for mankind in Genesis 2:2-3.  Meanwhile, the number 3 indicates wholeness, like the trinity: Father, Son and Holy Ghost.  When you add 3 sevens together, this signifies complete perfection.  On the other hand, 666, also known as the mark of the beast, represents complete imperfection.

Ezekiel 28:11-19 contains a prophecy against the King of Tyre.  Strangely enough, this leader is compared to Lucifer, the angel of song thrown out of heaven by God the Father.  Based upon the account in Genesis 3:1-5 and Matthew 4:1-10, the devil appears to be an imposter, someone trying to imitate the Lord of All.  This masquerade continues today with angelic qualities, described by the apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15.  Although counterfeits have nearly exact features, time will give away their cover.  In the end, this knock off of the Creator of Life will be exposed, but will his victims have time to turn back?

Every decade, another prophet so to speak will claim he or she knows the day when Jesus will return.  Others will swear to be made aware of signs from the Holy Spirit like a modern day John the Baptist.  Their words can be tested, using the Bible as a measuring stick, 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22.  Some may even fall prey to spells cast by these dynamic leaders just as Jesus predicted nearly 2000 years ago, Matthew 24:10-11.  Since everyone is forced to live in the world, the best solution is following the words of Jesus’ baby brother, James 4:7-10.  May this advice serve as a blue print, to protect you from the schemes of the one labeled six, six, six, Ephesians 6:10-11.

by Jay Mankus

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