Are you ecumenical? Be worried. Be very worried. I learned today what it really means in Greek – to be a registered citizen of this world system, and in the Bible, that is not a good thing to be. This nugget of truth came from Dr. Alec Passmore, the beloved British prophecy preacher, who was teaching on the Book of Revelation at the church we attend in England. The Greek word oikoumene, from which we get ecumenical, occurs ten times, and it is not good. In fact it is the opposite of being a Christian, whose citizenship is actually in Heaven according to Philippians 3:20.
Dr Passmore said he found that ecumenical people do not like his preaching one bit, since he tells people they need to be born again and that only faith in the Lord Jesus can save them from an eternity in Hell. This does not sit well with many churches today.
As Dr Passmore is a true gentleman, and one of the most gracious, loving speakers you will ever hear, it is strange to think of his simple gospel message encountering hard-hearted resistance from church goers and clergy, but that is the case. They are ecumenical, you see.
Dr Passmore said that on a trip to Romania, he was reading from Revelation 3:10. It says that for those who persevere and keep Jesus’ commandments, He will keep them from the hour of trial (the terrible Great Tribulation) which shall come on the whole world.
But the Romanian listeners interrupted and said their Bibles translated it differently, that the hour of trial would come upon the ‘registered citizens of the earth’.
Later Dr Passmore researched the Greek and discovered the word oikoumene, registered citizens of a world system. He said that yes, a global system is coming, as it was in Jesus’ day, when ‘all the world’ was taxed. In the one world government that is predicted, the citizens will be part of a political-religious system, and the registration will be the Mark of the Beast (Rev 13), a number on the right hand or forehead without which people will not be able to buy or sell.
Anyone who takes that number is condemned to Hell for eternity, as is clearly stated in Revelation chapter 14, verses 9-11. God is full of love, yes, and He is also the righteous Judge. He has warned us in the Bible, and nothing could be more loving than that! But many churches do not want to teach on Hell and punishment.
If this all sounds incredibly weird, and you have never heard a single word about it in your church, you are not alone. Most churches teach nothing about Bible prophecy, although it is such a large portion of the Bible. But now there are lots of books on the subject, and teaching on the internet, and you can start learning.
Choose your teachers carefully, because the wolves in sheep's clothing are out there. Dr Passmore is with PWMI, the Prophetic Word Ministry International, which has been trying to restore Bible prophecy teaching to the church for many years. In America Chuck Smith and Dr J Vernon McGee, both now with the Lord, are two of my favorite teachers. You can hear their teachings free on the web.
I don’t know about you, but I do not want to be among the oikoumene, the registered citizens of the world, with my heart and soul wholly given to a unified world and church system. I want to be a simple follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, waiting for Him to come back and trying to be ready for that greatest of all events.
How about you, my friend? Have you trusted the Lord Jesus to forgive your sins and make you one of His people? He promises to wash you clean of every sin and make you fit for Heaven. The first letter of the apostle John says: ‘The blood of Jesus Christ, God’s Son, cleanses us from ALL sin.’ 1 John 1:7.
Also, this precious promise: ‘If we confess our sins (to God) He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’ 1 John 1:9
You do not have to confess to a man or a priest. Jesus is our great High Priest. He is standing at the door. Will you not open the door of your heart and invite Him in?
*I hope to put more of Dr Passmore’s marvellous teaching on the Book of Revelation on this website soon.