It’s all too easy for believers, especially new believers, to be fascinated by, or deceived by, “deeper truths” based on visions and other paranormal experiences allegedly given by “the Lord.” Still more dangerous is the temptation to put visions (and even alleged manifestation of the Spiritual Gifts) on an equal footing with Scripture in formulating doctrine. Visions are exciting for the very fact they’re rare and other-worldly. In our eagerness to plumb the depths of spiritual things we must maintain godly discernment in a world where satan’s demons are only too happy to accommodate Christians who long for unusual experiences in their Christian walk.
A group of Latin American young people set out to go on a picnic but ended up taking a tour of hell instead, allegedly conducted by the Lord Jesus Christ. “Jesus” quoted many grim Scriptures to the group to lend legitimacy to their experience. But even the devil can bait his hook with scripture to ensnare believers, as Jesus found out in Matthew Chapter 4, when satan tempted Him in the wilderness. Throughout the “vision”, Jesus remains a passive spectator of hell’s torments, powerless to help anyone, even when He is moved to a little pity. MY Bible teaches that ALL power in heaven and in earth is ALREADY given to Jesus (Matt.28:18).
Most of the vision is so graphic and lewd only the most unbalanced sicko could enjoy it. Just reading through it made my insides crawl with an oppression I knew wasn’t of the Lord. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy and peace, along with other POSITIVE traits (Gal.5:22). MY Bible teaches us to do all things “unto edifying” (I Cor.14:26). Doesn’t the good Lord set the example in how we’re to conduct our Christian lives (John 15:13)? Would you teach YOUR children holiness by leading them through a stinking cesspool of graphic lewd tortures which would make Hugh Heffner blush? Now if the brutalities depicted in the alleged vision aren’t edifying the tour group and teaching them about the love of God, then isn’t this alleged “Jesus” breaking Paul’s exhortation to “do all things unto edifying”?
How can anyone harmonize this religious dung with “whatsoever things are lovely”, etc., think on those things (see Phil.4:8)? Does Paul ever teach Christians to cogitate on possible torture techniques satan could cook up to do God’s “dirty work” of punishing souls in hell? The sky’s the limit! But I can’t imagine MY Jesus commanding His little children to keep their hearts pure (Matt.5:8) while guiding them through a post-mortem Abu Ghraib where helpless captives are repeatedly burned and brutalized by barbed snakes.
God created hell for the devil and his angels (Matt.25:41), although the story of Lazarus and the Rich Man makes it clear that wicked men end up there too. But God’s PRIMARY goal in creating hell was to punish satan and the evil angels who rebelled with him eons ago. Why, then, would this vision depict fallen angels (demons) as God’s executioners in hell? THEY’RE the ones meting out God’s alleged penalties for sins they themselves tempted humans to commit, and yet they’re spared the same punishment they inflict on humans. Is the mastermind of the sin above the law and its penalties? People go to hell largely because satan tempted them away from Christ. Why should the tempters of mankind be given preferential treatment down in hell, devising and dishing out the torture, while they get off scot-free? Did GOD sanction such unspeakably lewd and horrible punishments that are beyond the imagination of the most demented sex fiend? The apostle John said that God is Love and God is Light and in Him is no darkness AT ALL (I John 1:5;4:8).
Even if you shrug off the vision’s Marquis de Sade brutality because hell IS a horrible place of suffering, this vision and the “Jesus” giving this tour still fall short of God’s perfection. The weakest link breaks the strongest chain. I’ll expound upon other broken links I found in this vision.
Contradictions abound between this vision and Christ’s policy of showing mercy toward enemies, the nature of His resurrected body and the physiology of Roman crucifixion.
The author stated: The man extended his skinny hand towards the Lord and started to cry out, saying, "Lord, have mercy on me! Lord have mercy on me! I am in pain! I am burning! Please have mercy and take me out of this place!"***My comment: Rom.10:12-13 says the Lord is rich (in mercy) unto ALL who call upon Him, and whosoever will call upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved (no mention of whether that one is dead or alive). ALL live unto God (Luke 20:38). Jesus repeatedly asks His own followers to love their enemies and do good to those who hate them (Matt.5:44). Yet the “Jesus” in this vision repeatedly turns a deaf ear to heartrending pleas from broken, tormented souls for forgiveness and mercy. Doesn’t this “Jesus” practice what He preaches? Even James, the most legalistic of the apostles, describes God as being “very pitiful” (taking pity and showing compassion) and of tender mercy.
The only way I could reconcile Jesus’ inability to forgive and save lost souls after death would be the INABILITY of those people to sincerely seek forgiveness and mercy, because by then they would be permanently hardened into a state of rebellion against God (see Heb.3:12-19), since the Holy Spirit is no longer dealing with them about their need to be saved (see John 16:8). It’s true that God’s Spirit reaches a point of “no return” where he will no longer strive with men, and sinners hardened in unbelief must take the consequences (Gen.6:3; Prov.1:24-31).***
The author: The Lord looked at him with pity, and I started to feel something warm in my hand. I looked and it was blood...the blood of Jesus! The Lord's blood came from His hand while He was watching this suffering man engulfed in flames.***My comment: This reminds me of the Catholic doctrine of the bleeding stigmata. Historians claim that Romans crucified by nailing WRISTS, not hands, to the cross. There is a tiny gap between the bones of the wrist (the space of Destot) strong enough to support the weight of an adult male. Had the Roman executioner driven the nail through the palms of Christ’s hands, the weight of Jesus’ body would have caused His metacarpal and phalange (finger) bones to rip away from the nails. These long bones have nothing but soft flesh, tendons and ligaments between them. Like other crucified men, Jesus would have repeatedly raised Himself up to avoid suffocation before exhaustion and unbearable pain made him drop down again. As Jesus writhed in such agony, His hands would have given way to the strain, even if His feet were also firmly nailed.
In Scripture, there is no word for “wrist” as such. In KJV translations of both Hebrew and Greek Bible texts “hand” could signify any part from the forearm down to the actual hand. Eliezer put bracelets on Rebekah’s “hands”(Gen.24:22). Bracelets aren’t worn on the palms of the hands, but on the wrist, or maybe even further up. Jesus now possesses a resurrected body of FLESH AND BONE (Luke 24:39). We also will inherit the same type of body Jesus has (Phil.3:21). Flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God (I Cor.15:50). Jesus has already offered up His precious blood ONCE in heaven for our sins (Heb.7:27; 9:12;13:12). Jesus does not still shed His blood, and certainly not down in hell! Jesus still possesses the marks of His wounds, but they don’t bleed anymore. When Thomas inspected Jesus’ hands, nothing was written about blood coming out of them. For this author to state that he held Jesus by the hand and felt blood oozing out of it is suspicious. Based on God’s standard of perfect faithfulness to “it is written”, this “Jesus bleeding in hell” vision fails the “prove all things” (I Thes.5:21) test. My teacher would say at test-taking time: If part of the question’s wrong, it’s ALL wrong. That goes for visions from “the Lord” too. Jesus warned that false Christs would proliferate in these Last days and deceive many, even God’s own elect if possible (Matt.24:24). Doctrine must NEVER be based on extra-Biblical visions. The REAL Jesus always bats 100%. Jesus’ standard for Himself is flawless perfection, not inconsistency (John 8:46). So this vision must be a religious deception of satan, given through “another Jesus” (2 Cor.11:4).***
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Another Broken Link: “Jesus” rigidly enforces an unscriptural monetary tithing Law on believers who aren’t even under the real Law of Moses.
The author stated: We continued walking, seeing thousands and thousands of people. There were young people, adults and elderly people suffering in torment. We arrived in a place that looked like a big swimming pool of fire, with thousands of men and women inside of it. Each of them had metal plate on their chest that read: "I am here for not giving tithes and offerings "***My comment: More confirmation that this is a FALSE VISION! The REAL Jesus NEVER punishes people for failure to keep unscriptural doctrine! If Christians could lose their salvation for non-tithing, the lack of warnings about this in Paul’s epistles is scandalous! Satan doesn’t mind 99% truth, so long as he can sneak in 1% arsenic to kill people spiritually.
Salvation is God’s FREE gift! (Rom..5:15). If money (or other sacrifice) must be paid by the believer to keep this free Gift of God, it’s, no longer free. Instead you’re only renting salvation for the length of time you’re willing (or able) to cough up the cash, and if you don’t pay your “rent” this OTHER CHRIST (see 2 Cor.11:4) will throw you out of the Ark of Salvation, just like the landlord will evict you from your apartment! Do we have to pay “protection money” to KEEP God’s free gift with so-called tithes and offerings? At best, you could compare such a “free gift” with a Christmas puppy which is freely given, but you have to PAY (pet food, etc.) to maintain its existence. Who keeps us: God, or Me, Myself and I (John 17:12; Jude 24)? Judas was the ONLY disciple Jesus lost, and I doubt it was because he didn’t tithe on his thirty pieces of silver!
The rebukes of Malachi aren’t aimed at the NT church, but they’re for the priests and sons of Jacob (Mal.2:1; 3:6). Surely the REAL Jesus remembers those particular verses and can distinguish between Old Covenant Jews and New Covenant Christians! Surely God is able to remember who He addressed various rebukes to in Scripture. Jesus doesn’t teach false doctrine, or add postscript laws to the COMPLETED canon of His Written Word.
The fact remains that NO form of tithing is commanded to the NT church, and NOWHERE in either testament does God command tithing to be done on money! MY Jesus sticks strictly to: IT IS WRITTEN (Matt.4:4,7,10). God rebukes those who ADD TO His commandments, just as much as taking away from those commandments (Deut.12:32). Christ denounces those who teach for doctrines THE COMMANDMENTS OF MEN and substitute man-made traditions for Scriptural truth (Matt.15:9; Mark 7:9) ***
The author stated: When I read that, I asked the Lord, "Lord, how can this be possible, that people are here for this reason??" The Lord responded, "Yes, because these people thought that tithes and offerings were not important, when my Word shows it as a command***My comment: Circumcision and animal sacrifices are also commands, but not for us! Why pick and choose the big money-maker out of the Old Law when Jesus doesn’t punish people for failure to offer drink oblations and bullocks on the church offertory table?***."
The author: In Malachi 3:8-9 it says "Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me. But you say, 'How have we robbed Thee?' In tithes and offerings. You are cursed with curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you." ***My comment: God is addressing a NATION here, a particular territory of the earth (see Mal.3:12, where the OTHER NATIONS, Gentile peoples, praise ISRAEL for being a delightsome LAND)! Tithing was PART OF THE LAW, given BY MOSES FROM MT. SINAI TO THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL ONLY (Lev.27:30-34). Money was NEVER deposited inthe Temple storehouse (Heb. outsair, or granary) of Malachi !***
The author: The Lord told me that when His people withhold their tithes, it hinders the work of the Lord, and then the Gospel is not preached***My comment: Why didn’t “the Lord” of this vision mention this minor point in any of the apostolic epistles to the church? Whenever giving (never tithing) is taught, it is usually in conjunction with giving to the poor (Rom.15:26). Peter. James, John and Paul preached the Gospel just fine without ever dunning their flock for “tithe money”. Peter was broke but he still managed to get people saved and healed (Acts 3:6; 2:41; 5:15). Paul had NOTHING and yet possessed all things (2 Cor.6:10). Why didn’t Paul remedy this sad situation by threatening his flock with the terrors of hell for non-tithing? Paul plainly stated that he had faithfully shared ALL the counsel of God with his hearers (Acts 20:27). Paul teaches gracious GIVING, but where are his instructions on how to tithe properly?
The apostle John’s missionary team took NOTHING from Gentiles they preached to (3 John 1). Was John endangering those Gentiles’ souls by neglecting to tell them they’d better tithe or be toast? Did the writer’s “Jesus” forget the souls won by John and his 2000 years ago? And what’s wrong with Paul, boasting that he wanted to make the preaching of the Gospel free of charge (I Cor.9:18)? Didn’t John the Revelator foresee that “Jesus” would someday reveal to future visionaries this profound new truth: that souls can’t hear the Gospel without tithe money?
The author: People in this place suffered a thousand times worse than others, because they knew the Word of the Lord and disobeyed.***My comment: God forbid that any preacher use this “vision” to “prove” tithing. Just the insinuation that non-tithing deserves a thousand times as much punishment in hell as your average thief, rapist, or murderer. Talk about tampering with a Christian’s conscience! So it’s the fault of non-tithers if unevangelized people roast in hell because they disobeyed a MANMADE church tithing law! And used-to-be Christians will be fed to infernal worms for refusing to feed their debit card into the church ATM (Automatic Tithing Machine), while this alleged “Jesus” doesn’t care if we break other OT laws, such as eating pork BBQ and ironing a shirt on Saturday (the true Sabbath Day). Preachers resort to the worst emotional torture and spiritual intimidation to enforce a doctrine of devils for carnal gain! This is satanic spiritual witchcraft (see Gal.3:1) which robs Christians of their liberty in Christ. Threatening some poor widow with diamond back rapists and acid Jacuzzis should be more than enough to SCARE every red cent out of her coin purse! The Mafia wouldn’t be so mean!
Preachers profit from bringing God’s children back under bondage to Law. Unwarranted threats of salvation loss and hell fire should do the trick for greedy parasites who’d rather inflict profound psychological damage on unsuspecting Christians than work an honest job. There IS a curse, but preachers aren’t warning against the correct one. Far from being “cursed with a curse” for failure to tithe, you bring a curse upon yourself for coming back under Law and for failure to keep this particular OT law according to God’s precise specifications (i.e. tithing ONLY on what is grown in the Land of Israel (Lev.27:30), restricting the tithing law to ISRAEL ONLY (verse 34), using part of your tithe to enjoy a meal of Thanksgiving at your place of worship (Deut.14:23), giving ALL the tithe every third year to the poor (Deut.14:28-29), exempting the priesthood from religious taxation (including so-called tithing, Ezra 7:24), and giving people a break every seventh (sabbatical) year from tithing (No tithes could be collected on the produce of Israel every seventh year when the land rested, see Lev.25:4).
Speaking of a non-tithing priesthood, it just so happens WE’RE the NT priesthood according to I Pet.2:5,9). Why should Jesus tax His own priesthood if this was never done under the Old Covenant, which is called a BETTER covenant (see Heb.8:6)? MY Jesus said God’s children are free from having to pay taxes to their own Kingdom (Matt.17:26). Where in all the gospels does Jesus EVER collect tithes to finance His own ministry or ever command His disciples to fund “their ministries” this way? When Jesus sent His men out to preach, He spoke only of FOOD as being their earthly reward (Luke 10:7). No mention of “tithe money” being needed to sustain their missionary journey! The attitude of this particular “Jesus” towards filthy lucre is dramatically different from that of the Jesus of the Bible Who warned against reliance on earthly wealth (Matt.6:19; Luke 12:21).
Jesus KNEW He had no right to demand tithes, even tithes from the fruit of the earth. Jesus was a Jew from the Tribe of Judah. Neither He nor the majority of His disciples qualified to collect tithes, as most of them were from the Tribe of Judah. Only sons of the patriarch Levi had a commandment from God to take tithes (Heb.7:5). Is your preacher a Jew from the Tribe of Levi? If not, he’s already breaking God’s law by taking tithes from you, even before you consider all the other provisos of this law which have been genetically modified by sinful religious leaders over the centuries. Jesus does NOT inflict post-mortem punishments on believers for failure to keep any late amendments He made to a Law He set them free from in the first place (Rom.8:2)!
Jesus and His men performed loads of miracles. They were supported by freewill (not forced, or compulsory) offerings alone (Luke 8:3). NOT ONCE does Jesus even hint that people will fry in hell for failure to pay His alleged representatives ten per cent of their wages or salaries. Preachers strain God’s patience by acting like He’s too senile to remember the clear instructions He gave for correct law-keeping in His own Written Word. God must be getting up in years, some think, and didn’t really mean what was recorded in His Word. So Biblical scholars think they can do a switcheroo routine behind God’s back, and He’ll never notice the difference. But, this isn’t like turning Old Coke into New Coke. You can’t fool Mother Nature, and you can’t fool the Creator of Nature. Modern tithing doesn’t pass the taste test for sound Biblical doctrine, anymore than cheap margarine passes the “real butter” taste. Much money can be made by fooling consumers (and Christians). Suppose a butter manufacturer decides to maximize his profits by taking all the rich, expensive cow cream out of butter, then he adds chemicals, water and fake food coloring to whip up “Blessedly Buttery.” By the time two or three generations have smeared this adulterated goo onto their toast, the taste of true butter is forgotten and a profit has been made by eliminating the vital elements which comprise real butter.
Tithe teachers would find it very costly to confess that they’ve lied to God’s people for centuries. Biblical tithing has been changed beyond recognition. Its purpose was to feed poor people (Deut.14:28-29). Man’s New-and-improved tithing threatens the poor with hellfire for buying food with their own hard-earned cash instead of tithing it to rich preachers. Just like corporation accountants advise manufacturers to eliminate quality ingredients from processed foods to save a penny to maximize profits, the true Biblical tithe has been stripped of its key characteristics and turned into a profitable racket. God’s clear instructions have been discarded in favor of man’s own rules and regulations. But whenever a poor believer suffers demonic depression from unwarranted guilt over non-tithing, God claims no credit for that and counts it as sin against the preacher who instilled the oppression in the Christian. Modern tithing in no way resembles the true Biblical version, except for the ten per cent figure preachers have retained for their own benefit.
Preachers lade grievous burdens (see Luke 11:46) onto Christians who are not under Law, but grace (Rom.6:14; Gal.5:18). Like old-style Pharisees of Jesus’ day, these hypocrites refuse to touch any of these burdens themselves.
Keep one law, you must keep it ALL (Gal.3:10). Galatians 5:4 warns Christians not to try to earn God’s favor through law-keeping, or they’ll fall from grace. So why does this alleged Jesus take away people’s salvation for failure to keep MAN’S version of Moses’ tithing Law given to Israel only? Why wasn’t this particular Jesus more concerned about believers coming under the curse of the Law and falling from grace? Why did the council of apostles in Acts 15 fail to even hint that Gentile believers in Jesus are required to fork over ten per cent of their salaries and wages to preachers? That apostolic council would have been the PERFECT opportunity for the Holy Ghost to bind a perpetual tithing obligation upon the (mostly) Gentile church. So why didn’t the Holy Ghost burden the church with tithing from the very outset of the Church Age (Acts 15:28-29)?
Why would “Jesus” wait until people are already roasting in hell fire to announce He’d made a few last-minute amendments to NT law and that’s the reason these people are wearing a big brass sign accusing them of welshing on their tithes? Is it fair for “Jesus” to inflict retroactive penalties on people who broke the un-Biblical monetary Tithing Law before He threw in the towel and endorsed this COMMANDMENT OF MEN? If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em! After excoriating the scribes and Pharisees for enforcing manmade traditions instead of being faithful to “it is written” (Matt.4: 4,7,10; Mark 7:9), what made “Jesus” cave in to centuries of pressure from money-hungry preachers and decide to give manmade religious traditions the same weight as Scripture? Why would “Jesus” wait till it’s everlastingly too late for non-tithers to repent of breaking this modernized tithing regulation which the apostles neglected to mention in Acts 15?! Why doesn’t this “Jesus” worry that the inmates in hell forgot to keep all the other OT ordinances, from sidelocks to circumcision? These things are Biblical commandments too! But then again, there’s no MONEY to be made out of those other defunct Mosaic laws! ***
I rest my case.
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The first paragraph is clear and I followed along and had nothing but agreement.... then I got lost. It looks like the whole article is very well written, but by the time you said "MY Bible" for the second time ... I was skipping over sections.
A group of people going for a picnic ... what IS this "one vision"? I agree - it collides. but where did it come from? I admit (confess)... it could all be cleared up later in the article. I didn't get through it. Too deep for me today.