Acts 20:30 – Men Speaking Twisted Things

In our reading of the psalms, we come to two inescapable conclusions.  The first is that David had many enemies.  The second is that he placed his entire faith and trust in the Lord to deliver him from his foes.  An issue we have to ponder, however, is whether David was exaggerating as to the number of wicked men in general, and if there were really that many who he personally feared were trying to take him down.  Was David seeing evil men behind every proverbial tree, or were there truly that many surrounding him?  Then we have to ask: How does his view affect us today?

David wrote often of his affliction caused by others.  In Psalm 25:19 he wrote:

Consider how many are my foes,

    and with what violent hatred they hate me.

Because of such men, he declared in Psalm 26:4-5:

I do not sit with men of falsehood,

    nor do I consort with hypocrites.

I hate the assembly of evildoers,

    and I will not sit with the wicked.

From these verses, it certainly appears that David was in the midst of those who wanted to do him harm.  Yet he knew the faithfulness of Yahweh and could say with assurance as in Psalm 27:2:

When evildoers assail me

    to eat up my flesh,

my adversaries and foes,

    it is they who stumble and fall.

Obviously, few men would actually come to physically devour David’s actual flesh – this is hyperbole – but the intent is that they would stop at nothing to eliminate him from this earth.  Despite that, his confidence was in the Lord to prevent such an event before his time.

How about in our day and age?  Are there so many who would seek to destroy us?  In a word: yes.  We never have to forget what Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14:

“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”

His implication is that the world is filled with many more people who reject God than choose to follow Him.  That being the case, a certain percentage of them will be extremely hostile to those who are truly faithful and love the Lord.  It was such people that came against David; these are the ones who today are plotting and scheming to destroy God, our nation, and we who defend the Lord and all things good that He has given us.

There are a few extremely wicked men at the top of the hierarchy; what we would call the global elite or the evil cabal.  They are rich and powerful; they seek to rule and control the world by placing themselves over people as their gods.

Unfortunately, a huge number of men and women buy into what these few propose, and they work to enact draconian structures to enslave others.  They see reward.  Many will find it for a season.  However, many in this group are also what we would call useful idiots.  They blindly follow and obey, doing what their masters dictate.  However, history demonstrates that such people – once the ruling elite has cemented its hold on a populace – are often among the first to subsequently be eliminated.  Their usefulness has reached its end; they are expendable.  They think they are more vital to the cause than they actually are, and they receive an unpleasant surprise ending.

The church is not immune to all this.  When Paul took his leave of the Ephesian elders in Miletus, he warned them in Acts 20:29-30 that their church would come under attack:

“I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them.”

In fact the church is a prime target of Satan to devour, and he has been very successful.  Paul’s message applied not only to Ephesus, but to every other church throughout history.  Today, we see the bitter fruit of why he so succinctly warned about this problem.  It was prophesied that in this Church Age, at its end, many would fall away into apostasy.  This has been happening and is increasingly true.  One of the reasons for this is that God is shaking up the church so as to winnow out those who are not true and faithful followers.  Those who fall away often turn violently against the church for perceived harm.  They become the fierce wolves and the men speaking twisted things in order to confuse others and draw them into their hostile mindset.

All around us are people who profess to be Christians, but do not meet the Biblical definition of having been saved by faith through grace (Ephesian 2:8-9).  They are what I call ChINOs, or Christian in Name Only.

In preparation for the coming Tribulation, God has removed His right hand of protection.  This nation is experiencing the result.  The Holy Spirit is still present, and many are miraculously still being saved.  At the same time, antagonism toward God is increasing exponentially.  All this is causing churches to lose those who were never born again and who have no desire to surrender to God and repent of their sins.

Many true Christians who believe in the pre-Tribulation Rapture have had the false notion that God would keep us from tribulation.  He will keep us from THE Tribulation, but Jesus promised we would experience trials and difficulties in this life.  I have maintained for years that the American church will by necessity go through such tribulations before Jesus rescues us by returning in the clouds to snatch away His faithful ones.  Why have we thought that we in America should be immune to the persecution and suffering of God’s servants that we see in Third World nations?  It’s been a false sense of security.

This is one of the reasons that Pastor Dana Coverstone’s dreams have resonated with me (see for his various dreams since early 2020). The message God has consistently imparted is that we – the church – must brace ourselves. People can argue and dispute the validity of these dreams as to whether they are from God or not. I believe they are; and they have invariably been a warning. Should not the church have been warned?  Yes, God always brings warning before judgment, if we only listen.

I believe that more shaking will occur.  Many will be put to the test before we’re Raptured out of here.  Despite that, we should rejoice along with David as he expressed in Psalm 27:13-14:

I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord

    in the land of the living!

Wait for the Lord;

    be strong, and let your heart take courage;

    wait for the Lord!

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