Holding to a form of godliness

In the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. (2 Timothy 3:1)
Because we are accustomed to the environments and circumstances in which we have grown up, we hardly recognize the times in which we live. The believers more readily understand that God once spoke to the ancestors by the prophet’s then that he speaks to them today through his Son, Jesus Christ. (Hebrews 1:2)
The countless Christian communities, churches, and sects, which for the most have an appearance of piety, differ only by their rituals and their confessions of faith. What they have in common is the same weakness of the preachers to announce the whole Word of God to the people, to proclaim victory over sin, and encourage the faithful to work out their salvation.
But if they had stood in my council, then they would have announced my words to my people, and would have turned them back from their evil way and from the evil of their deeds. (Jeremiah 23:22)
Shepherds and teachers who stand in the council of God have no other wish than to announce the words of God to the people, turned them back from their evil way and from the evil of their deeds. But as the crowd does not like to hear the word of God, the orators tell touching stories and intoxicate listeners with exciting speeches. They no longer speak about repentance, conversion and the new life in sanctification and piety. Thus, the unsuspecting visitors become intoxicated and seduced and return to everyday life without having received help. It is only in everyday life, where everything remains the same, that some are sobering. The dream of a life blessed with victories has dissipated. How so? Because the heard splendid, exciting speeches and ears tickled stories was neither the Word of God nor sound doctrine. The apostle warns from this sad state of things:
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. (2 Timothy 4:3-5)
Humans have a different sensitivity. Sometimes they are receptive to the truth and love it; sometimes there are times when they prefer turn aside to hear preachers who tell stories that tickle their ears rather than to preach the sound doctrine, the Gospel.
The prophet who has a dream may relate his dream, but let him who has my word speak my word in truth. What does straw have in common with grain? Is not my word like fire, and like a hammer which shatters a rock? Therefore behold, I am against the prophets, who steal my words from each other. Behold, I am against the prophets who use their tongues and declare, The Lord declares. (Jeremiah 23:28)
Pious stories, fables, and dreams are nothing but straw and chaff. True faith is engendered by the preaching of the Gospel of Christ. (Romans 10:17) But who sows the Gospel in such a way that it takes root in the heart like a grain of wheat? The Word of God is truth, but it does not always sound pleasant. When Jesus' words help to make a great fishing (John 21:6) are all inspired by his love; but when they admonish incredulity by a: "Get behind me, Satan! (Markus 8:33) it is not understood that it is love, love which wants to push towards.
Only a few preachers believe, and even less dare to proclaim these terrible truths that John, the alleged apostle of love, mentioned in his letters:
- The one who says, “I have come to know Him” and does not keep his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. (1 John 2:4)
- The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now. (1 John 2:9)
- The one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. (    1 John 3:8)
- Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. (1 John 3:15)
- If someone says, I love God, and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. (1 John 4:20)
A fairly large number call them self Christians while living openly in sin. But that does not prevent them from getting up in the assemblies, singing loudly, clapping hands, dancing and shouting Alleluia. Such behavior shows that hearts have become insensitive and hard as rocks, that a hammer. It takes a hammer, the hammer of truth, to break them.
Is not my word like fire?" declares the LORD, "and like a hammer which shatters a rock? (Jeremiah 23:29)
In any case, this is how the Word of God is expressed. But who still differentiates today true servants of God who seek to help men out of their sins, and those who think that godliness is a means of gain and who seduce whole assemblies with their lies and loose speeches? (1. Timothy 6:5)
There is nothing new under the sun. There were also true and false prophets in the old covenant. But God gives the promise to put an end to these deceivers.
Behold, I am against those who have prophesied false dreams," declares the LORD, "and related them and led My people astray by their falsehoods and reckless boasting; yet I did not send them or command them, nor do they furnish this people the slightest benefit," declares the LORD. (Jeremiah 23:32)