Have you ever wondered how we can have million dollar church buildings and pack in huge crowds on Sunday, but have no power in our witness? Do you wonder how about half of the people in this country claim to have had a born again experience, and how the churches are having so little of an impact? Have you been amazed at the fact that American society is becoming increasingly antagonistic to the church?
How can this be?
The answer seems to be that it’s because the pastors in the pulpits have sold out to the ‘Seeker Sensitive’ movement. We’ve opted for programs, lights, smoke machines, stage props, and the prosperity Gospel.
Pastors preach the Gospel of Self-Fulfillment and talk about how we’re destined to reign. Our pulpits echo with: ‘God wants you to be happy’ and ‘You can have your best life now’. We have major tele-preachers holding ‘camp meetings’ where the ‘preacher’ shouts, ‘Let’s celebrate you!’
I heard a preacher say once that if you have trials in your life, then you don’t have enough faith. What a ludicrous statement and how utterly non-Biblical!
Paul had more faith than most of us and he never stopped going through trials. We talk faith and prosperity while the church around the world grows in not merely number, but in depth and maturity. They see miracles and God’s power; they sense His presence.
How? They’ve learned to persevere through trials. A Charismatic Episcopal Church Bishop in Pakistan had a Muslim slit his throat, throw him off of a bus and leave him for dead just because the Bishop was a Christian. But the Bishop’s ministry grows and he sees the fruit.
Christians in other parts of the world weep for revival in the American church. What does that say about us?
It means that we are weak and self-absorbed.
I heard another television preacher turn the tables and suggest that a preacher who focused on subjects like F. F. Bruce’s, The Hard Sayings of Jesus, was not preaching the Gospel and ignoring the truth of the Word! ‘They didn’t want to hear that’ he claimed!
What utter disregard for the truth! Jesus said, ‘”The Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head,”‘ and told His followers of His coming arrest, trial, torture and crucifixion.
This means we’re deceived and taken with greed.
There are no tears for revival and the only One weeping is Jesus. He bled and died for us and we proclaim that the Gospel is a means to prosperity, power and influence. Church services look more like pop concerts and the preaching is only a babbling collection of self-absorbed slogans and how God wants us to be happy!
No, God wants us to be holy!
Where is the message of repentance? Where is the ‘”If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily and follow Me”‘?
Folks, the message of the cross is foolishness and offensive to the world. Paul told us that 19 1/2 centuries ago.
Paul also told us that if he wanted to please the world, he would not be a follower of Christ.
Can you imagine Elijah having a chat with the wicked King Ahab about how we can ‘Coexist’? Or, do you think John the Baptist should have opened a dialogue with Herod about tolerance?
No, those mighty men of God were sent to confront the leaders of their time about the sin in the society! Why is it that our evangelicals spend their time trying to cozy up and make nice with our politicians while there are souls perishing hourly and going into a Christ-less eternity?
This is the message that will transform this culture and turn this country around.