Mike Gendron is the founder and director of Proclaiming the Gospel Ministry. Mike was a devout Roman Catholic for 34 years and was taught to rely upon the authority of the church above all else. Mike searched the Scriptures and was amazed to find that what he read in Scripture contradicted the teaching and tradition of the church he had been a part of for so long. He trusted Jesus as his Savior and now the Bible has become his sole authority in all matters of faith.
To set the tone for this program, Mike began by defining what is meant by the term, ‘apostasy’. Mike noted that the Bible defines it as a departure from the apostolic faith that was once and for all delivered to the saints.
Mike also described how this is not something new. It’s been happening for 2,000 years as two streams of Christianity have operated side-by-side ever since Jesus began building his church in the 1st century.
Born again Christians don’t have to fear apostasy. They are sealed by the Holy Spirit who is the deposit guaranteeing their eternal inheritance. However, for those who profess Christianity but have never been born-again, they are prone to deception as they have little discernment. We saw the first occurrence of this in the life of Judas.
Mike sees apostasy as being on the increase, which shouldn’t surprise us because Jesus said that growing deception would be one of the signs of his return. Included in this deception are false teachers, false prophets and false christs. The ultimate apostasy will be when the antichrist goes into the temple at the mid year of the tribulation period and declares himself to be God.
From there, Mike took listeners through the 4 steps of apostasy.
The first one involves defection from the Word of God. This takes place when churches, denominations, seminaries or individuals no longer submit to the supreme authority of God’s Word for faith and practice.
Sometimes this happens through TV evangelists, through heretical books, or following traditions of men and even psychology. Sometimes it happens when pastors see they’re not getting the church growth they hoped for so they throw away God’s blueprint for building His church.
Those trying to defend the faith are often looked at as divisive, intolerant or unloving. This can lead to false teachers who aren’t exposed for who they are. At that point, doctrinal error and sin begin to be tolerated. Pastors are called not only to feed the sheep but to protect the flock as well. They need to be exhorting their people to be aware of the wolves that surround the church and even name names so that others will not fall to deception.
Those who resist are asked to leave. This is a sign that that particular church is moving toward the next step. Review this important Crosstalk broadcast to find out what’s involved in the final two steps so that you can avoid apostasy and help others do the same.
Mike has a DVD containing 2 messages: The first is ‘False Converts in the Church’ and the second is ‘Witnessing for the Glory of God’. He also has a gospel tract called: ‘True Faith or False Hope—How can I be Sure?’ Normally the DVD is $15 but is available to Crosstalk listeners for $12 (includes the tract). Go to www.proclaimingthegospel.org click on ‘store’, then ‘video messages’. You can also call the ministry at 1-817-379-5300.