Total Depravity: 4. Counter Example of Daniel

Daniel’s Righteousness versus Total Depravity

Total Depravity
By David Cox

Total Depravity and DanielAgain the elements repeat themselves. In Daniel’s time, Israel was corrupt again, and this corruption seemed to be a very common thing, that “everyone” had turned from God.

The second element of a single individual Christian or believer stands apart from the crowd with a devote and holy life before God is what God points out to us.

Again the examples of the Bible is to live holy and devout lives of sacrifice and obedience before God even though or especially when you are in an atmosphere of total ungodliness. God calls us to this, and this is something that the individual HAS TO DECIDE WITHIN HIMSELF. While God provides strength (ability) and a long list of other things (patience, compassion, love, energy, endurance, etc.), everything is hinged on your deciding and doing this.

Dan 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself. 

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Total Depravity: 5. Righteous men delivering their own souls

Righteous men: The Righteousness of Noah, Daniel, and Job to deliver their own souls

righteous menRighteous men: I want to make it very clear from the beginning that I do not believe that a man can “make himself righteous” before God. This making one’s self righteous in order to find or fabricate merit before God in relation to gaining salvation is simply a false doctrine.

Having said that, once a person trusts God’s provision of a Savior, he is saved, and then the righteousness of a person becomes very real in the pleasing of God.

The argument of Ezekiel is keyed on “every man”, or each individual person.

Ezek 18:2 What mean ye, that ye use this proverb concerning the land of Israel, saying, The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge?

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False Prophets and Teachers Overview (updated 1/28/2022)


This post and the other posts here are taken from my book in Spanish “False Prophets and Teachers”

Here I am just going to list each of the points, and gradually, I will make a separate post for each of these points. Note that a lot of the points here are themes that I take up regularly in my writings against false prophets. Some of those things will also appear under each point.

1Pet 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Everything Satan touches leaves “his mark” on it. This is very distinctive. It is not the will of God, although Satan tries to make it look like what God does, and look like the will of God.

Definition: False Prophet – Somebody who perverts, twists, or manipulates the message of God for his own personal purposes. In this, he does not give the message of God such as God gives and commands us to give it, but he puts his own “touch” on it slightly or greatly changing it. (David Cox)

2Pet 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake [as they were] moved by the Holy Ghost.

God has to be behind every true presentation of truth and the gospel, and Satan perverts or changes it for his own purposes. What those purposes may be is not so important as that it is not God’s will.

1Pet 1:10 Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace [that should come] unto you: 1Pet 1:11 Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. 1Pet 1:12 Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.

One of the great overpowering elements of a true minister of God is that they feel a great compulsion to be exact and in agreement completely with what God’s Word says. Over and over again we find this great respect for authority is the core difference between a true man of God and a false prophet.

1Pet 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

Col 4:6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

For a true man of God, the Word of God validates or convicts his ministry and message. He falls or stands by how well he stands with and presents the Word of God, Scripture. It is as if every encounter that the man of God has with another person, he will give account to God for that encounter. He must present in action, attitude, and speech correctly what God wants him to show that person. As a minister of the Gospel, he understands that he personally is an example of Jesus Christ (1Pet 5:3 “being ensamples to the flock“;  Heb 13:7which have the rule over you… whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation“). No true minister of God will take any of this lightly. False prophets often give a pretense of being serious, but so often they are not really serious in obeying or uplighting this great office of spokesman for God.

Note: If something shows up as a link here, the connection may not be obvious in the title, but a section of that post will deal with the issue. Continue reading

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FP: Identifying a False Prophet (updated 1/29/2022)


How to Identify a False Prophet

false prophetIt is very difficult to “identify a false prophet.” Simply put, for most people, if you are different from me, you are a false prophet. This is simply unacceptable. We need criteria by which to judge what is false and what is true, and we cannot use anything except Scripture itself. If I could emphasize anything here, it is that we must use Scripture correctly exegeted (interpreted, explained, and understood).

In my book on False Prophets, I identify three methods or forms that we can use to identify a false prophet, and I will repeat them here (these posts were basically taken from my book in Spanish on the matter).

We can say that such and such doctrine is the true doctrine, and anything else is false. Actually, that would be the fundamentals of the faith. In part that is true. But unfortunately as evidenced today by so many examples, many false prophets have adopted these “fundamentals” or these core doctrines as their own, but they are still false prophets. The problem comes in they refute the Bible axiom that sound doctrine produces correct conduct. They have sound doctrine but don’t believe in it because their life is still filled with sin, and sin which contaminates whole churches because they are leaders.

The issue is that people lie. Unfortunately, ministers lie. And when a good pastor tells you the truth, or when a liar pastor tells you something that likewise looks like the truth, it is hard to discern.

How to Figure out when you got a Wolf by the Tail

It is unfortunate that there are bad churches with bad pastors and preachers in them. But God has his purpose in allowing even these things to happen to his people. God’s purpose is to make clear those Christians who are faithful to Jesus versus those who only give lip service to him. Many Christians will follow Satan himself into the pit of hell. They don’t care as long as it looks good to them at the moment.

But if a normal Christian, a new believer, is really wanting to follow his Savior, how does he do it? The problem is that if he knows doctrine really well, then he can discern the good pastor from the hireling and the wolf in sheep clothes. But most new believers and Christians who are not experienced do not know their Bible well. So if we by-pass doctrine for a moment (and we understand we are doing this until the individual believer KNOWS his Bible well, that all. This is a secondary way to discern a wolf in sheep’s clothing.) then we can look at the trail of disaster the wolf leaves behind him. By his effect on the sheep, by his methodology of working, the wolf is clearly seen and identified.

Purpose of these studies

These studies are basically for God’s people that are having problems with their church and/or pastor. These are Bible expositions so that we can understand clearly what is going on, and identify and get away from a false prophet, even if he tries to identify himself as a really good man of God.

For an overview of this, see
False Prophets and Teachers Overview

We can discern a false prophet by:

  1. His fruit – What he does or produces by his life and ministry.
  2. His methods – How he does what he does.
  3. His Character – What he is, or what is in his heart (as seen by the outworking of his life).

Finally, we will look at our defense against false prophets.

The rest of these posts (beginning with “FP:”) will explore many characteristics of the false prophet.

Final Exhortation

Please, please do not give up hope. This is the objective of Satan in throwing these firebrands at the church to destroy it. God’s men are not abusive. If you are in a church with an abusive pastor or minister, then you MAY BE in a church with a false prophet. Do not be discouraged by this. Learn from it, leave and find a good church, and throw the entire weight of your life and ministry and resources behind a good church with men of God over it. This is what we need to take away from bad experiences.

The church is not broken. The men of God are not broken. These things work, and they work very well. The entire genius of God’s eternal wisdom is put behind God’s creation of the church. He did it right the first time, and there is no need to change anything or “fix” anything broken with the church or preachers. The only thing we need to do is to study and heed what God has done, understand it, and obey what God has told us.

If we would have taken the time to study and truly verify the spirituality, yea, even the salvation of our preachers and pastors BEFORE they entered into their offices, we would not have these problems today. Man is lazy, so the layman’s laziness caused these men to get into church office. Do not throw off all the responsibility on “the pastor”. When churches lose their pastor, and they are in the process of selecting a new pastor, or when a Christian move into a new area and is looking for a church home, these are layman problems that nobody wants. They take the first thing that “looks okay,” and then they think they can put up with things if a few things are out of order. They don’t go to Scriptures and insist on their church and pastor being biblical.

Here enters your faith. If you insist with God that the pastor and church where you are going to attend is biblical, not perfect in every sense, but a group and individuals highly following God’s Word, and you do not give up the faith that God can provide you that, then you will be rewarded. Settling for trash usually ends poorly for anybody who does so. Just look at man’s poor statistics with marrying each other, and you will see this born out.

More Posts on False Prophets

Posts that mention false Prophets in them

    More Posts on Spiritual Abuse and Cults


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    FP: Using Scripture or Following Scripture?

    Using Scripture or Following Scripture?

    Using Scripture or Following ScriptureUsing Scripture or Following Scripture?
    By David Cox

    Isa 55:6 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:

    In this installation of our ongoing study of the false prophet, we look at how the false prophet understands and treats (mistreats) Scripture. We look at the distinct different of view from the true man of God towards Scripture, and the false prophet’s view towards Scripture. Note that a true man of God esteems “time is short” to obey what God teaches because there is a point in which God will “cut us off” as he cut off Israel if we blatantly refuse to obey his Word and Will.


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    FP: False prophets worship other gods

    False prophets worship other gods

    False prophets worship other gods
    By David Cox

    False prophets worship other godsThis article establishes that false prophets seek to worship other gods, and they teach and arrange things for the same within their church. Although this is not apparent, it is very true.

    First of all, the worship of the true God of heaven is focused in an identification, an understanding, and an imitation of the divine character. This is essentially holiness. This character of God is discerned through studying the Scriptures, and once discerned and understood, then the believer would apply this divine character to their own life.  Continue reading

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    God as Creator

    God as Creator

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    We are not Saved by Baptism

    We are not Saved by Baptism is an article looking at salvation in baptism, and outside of baptism. People saying they are saved because of baptism.

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    Is doing good works the same as being righteous?

    Is doing good works the same as being righteous? Examines a fine issue in our thinking, is doing good works the same as righteousness? No.

    See my Tracts

    See also these posts

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    Cults: Double Standards and Hypocrisy

    Cults: Double Standards and Hypocrisy is a post about how cults have double standards, but the true work of God does not.

    The entire mindset of a cult is to construct an organization which serves the cult leadership. A biblical local church is an organization built to serve God and His purposes, to do the work of God. This difference is very abundantly clear when one has been hurt by a cult organization. Continue reading

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