A POSSIBLE YOU
FINDING GOD’S DESTINY FOR OUR LIFE
HOLY SPIRITUAL REVOLUTION
There are Christian leaders that are falling all around us and most of the world has come to disrespect and not trust anyone that professes Christ. Christians have portrayed the religious ideas and done a lot of talking over the years but what the world needs to see is someone who walks in the image of Jesus. Whether you and I are dwelling at this spiritual level or not, it does not mean that God’s expectation is not real or that His Word is not true! When preachers preach God’s truth and fail to live it, this does not mean that God’s commands are not expected, it is impossible to live, or that we should stop trying to follow His instructions to be holy as He is holy. It just means that many who know what to do – are not doing it! This may discourage us but it should not keep us from fulfilling what God is telling US to do! In fact it should inspire us even more to become what God has called us to be so that we can “prove” and demonstrate His authority. We will only be responsible for OUR sins and the choices WE have made which means we should spend less time judging the failures of others and be more concerned with how we are living. In discussing the difference between the believers and the disciples and with the help and wisdom of the Lord, let us continue trying to understand the way we have been living and what we need to become that we might give Him the glory He is worthy of.
I have been in many church services throughout my life. This does in no way make me an expert but it does give me some insight to compare different situations and religious style. I will be completely honest today and admit that I have been disappointed with most of them. It is not that church is conducted in a wrong way because most all assemblies have a traditional format and seem to follow a familiar agenda. For example, I recently visited a small church in my area on a Sunday morning and it was a typical service of opening prayer, two songs, a message and an alter call. Like I said, there is nothing particularly bad about a meeting like this because as some would ask; “what more do you want?” Others may be thinking another question like, “why don’t you start your own and show the world how it’s done!” I understand the attitudes and intentions of these responses and instead of trying to defend my statements, I am humbled by the thoughts and feelings within my own weaknesses and inadequacy. I am not criticizing technique, but rather intentions concerning the reason I am writing about this in the first place – the lack of God’s visible power in the church! There are tons of activities and people that can go through the motions of religious contributions but where are the miracles? Where are the obvious manifestations of His glory that was seen on a regular basis when Jesus walked the earth? I thought the church is to be His assembly of disciples that move in the power and evidence of Christ who is the healer, the deliverer and the one who can change any circumstance or situation!
It seems there is always a box filled with “excuses” why the power of God is not present in the church but rarely do we hear messages about the real reason. It is because we are all to blame and we do not want to deal with it or talk about it. To face the reality of our lack of spirituality is just too insulting to our pride. Most church members will become angry and ready to fight when someone challenges them or even insinuates that they may not be as knowledgeable or holy as they think they are. It is common to look in the mirror and feel quite confident of our Christian walk especially if we have been involved for a long time because our ego associates the idea of time spent with spiritual maturity. This is NOT the same thing! As I have said before, the time spent behind the walls of the church has very little to do with how spiritual we are. I realize this is like a foreign language to many people but it is the truth. Another thing that can also cause deception along with our collection of knowledge is how much support we have contributed toward the cause of church. Just because someone invests their time and money into a religious activity does not automatically fill them with the Holy Spirit or the attributes of Jesus. I realize it is hard to believe that a church could be filled with members and have plenty of money in the treasury yet be spiritually dead but it is not only possible – sadly it has become normal.
“Now brother, I think that all Christians are good people and all Christian churches are representing God in the earth.” If only that were true. As we have said before, the first problem is that many “members” of the local church are not members of God’s family. The wheat and tares look very similar and most of the time cannot be detected as being any different. The reason why the tares do not know they are lost is because they have nothing else to compare their life to. In other words, they themselves do not know the difference between God’s presence and their emotions because they have never experienced God personally. The second part of the problem is that the ones who are truly His children have allowed the world to pull them away from the outline of what the “real” Christian life is supposed to be. As much as my flesh loves to believe that we do not need to do anything for God, my spirit is not that dumb. We can play games of fantasy and live in an imaginary realm of fiction and deny that we are going to be held accountable for our life but God’s Word is very clear about His demands. I have thought about this for many years and I will admit that it has hindered me in my willingness to join churches, (even though I have been a member of many different types). I realize that people are the church, but the gathering together as an assembly has given me much grief. I am not saying that much of my frustrations are not caused by my own misunderstanding because I do believe this could be the case many times, but I am also convinced that God’s people (including myself) are hesitant to obligate our life to His service the way He is calling us to do.
I do not want to spend a lot of time about this because we have talked about it in the past but it is good to recall just how sensitive God is to the way we think and act as believers. I get a little enthusiastic about this passage and feel a fire within my heart when I read about the condition of a soul that has been rocked to sleep by the deception of religion. How many times will we need to be reminded that if we are not red hot – we are NOT being pleasing to God? It is not what we do or how much we do; it is being obedient to His voice within the sincere passion entwined around our intimate love for Christ! This is not a message to Mars but to the church and has always been the prophetic word of wisdom for His church. “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that you may be rich; and white raiment, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of your nakedness will not appear; and anoint your eyes with eye-salve, that you might see.” (Revelation 3:18) When people hear these words, usually the first thing they think of is how God spoke to this church 2000 years ago because they were blind and carnal. I personally believe that He is speaking this now to the modern church of today. He mentions GOLD that is tried in HIS fires of purity which signifies cleansing and the divine value of true holiness. He speaks of His people wearing white clothing which represents being a spot-less bride, a sanctified disciple and putting on the garment of praise, love, peace and joy. And the third point is the salve for the eyes of the heart which is a type and shadow of spiritual clarity, focus, devotion, correct priorities, worship and the faith to seek heavenly insight and wisdom to live as an overcomer. The devil is a heavy influence on those who are living comfortably in their lives as he tries to reassure our flesh that we do not really need anything. This life of pleasure and comfort can be a blessing from God but can also be a distraction from doing His will. The church world is filled with abundance and everything seems to be going wonderful just like the Laodicean assembly. However, this story was told in order that we might NOT make the same mistake and allow me to say this is devastatingly serious! “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot: I wish you would be one or the other. So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth.” (Verse 15-16) Do you believe this means they are going to heaven? This is more than chastising because when we spit something out, we dispose of it, cast it away and it is gone forever. Let us go on. “Because you say I am rich and increased with goods, and have need nothing; yet you do not realize that spiritually you are wretched, and miserable and poor, and blind, and naked.” (Verse 17) Many of the churches today have beautiful buildings, riches, and professional programs but are empty when it comes to releasing God’s anointing and power. What good is having a service if God is not there? The reason why religion is popular is because many are trying to ease their guilt. The Pharisees did not realize that God was displeased with them and neither did these Laodicean church members. All they were concerned with was putting on a beautiful show and performing all of their programs and meetings with worldly quality and excellence. Even assemblies that do not have the resources still have become so set in their ways of ceremonies and rituals that they are not even concerned with what God really wants to do in their church – or their life!
I have always heard that worshiping God is very personal – and I do agree. Most people do not desire to show any emotion at church and heaven forbid that they would ever step out in faith and exercise a spiritual gift. One reason is because many Christians do not believe that such things exist which conveniently excuses them from even seeking to be used in this capacity. The traditional group is convinced that spiritual gifts and demonstrations have passed away and that we do not need all of the “spooky” stuff. On the other side of the spectrum, we find the highly charged emotional crowd that seems to place more emphasis on trying to produce a phenomenon than to learn how to be filled with the nature and character of Jesus. It is sad but true that many Christians really do not care whether they do anything for God or not. I can say this confidently because most of the Christians I have ever known have lived this way. Many that proclaim to follow Jesus have been taught that if you are a believer in Jesus, you are saved and guaranteed a place in heaven for all eternity. It has been widely presumed with the help of songs and sermons that mention cabins in the corner of glory or making it in by the “skin of our teeth” that it does not take much effort or sacrifice to enter into the pearly gates. I personally feel that the masses are convinced they are OK if they do nothing, the same as they will if they do a lot – so what is the motivation to surrender the will? For some reason many have accepted the concept that a person can just “believe” in God, yet live however they want, and float through life without being obedient to God’s perfect Word and they will be accepted by God with open arms and all the angels will sing “joy to the world.” God’s grace and the power of His love are awesome – but this may be stretching this reality into a dangerous fantasy. An overcomer is a disciple that has given everything in order to fulfill God’s purpose for saving them. Jesus said that if we are not an overcomer we will not be invited to be with Him around His throne. “To him that overcomes (wins the victory) will I grant to sit with Me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with My Father in His throne.” (Revelation 3:21) The church sings “Victory in Jesus” but most do not understand what they singing about. Yes. It is true that Jesus won the victory but He desires and is waiting for you and me to live victoriously over our flesh and the devil by faith and courage in the Name of Jesus! If we truly have faith – where is our demonstration? Selah.
I understand that it takes time to spiritually develop and that God is patient unto those who are sincerely trying to learn and grow in Him. But our topic lately is very blunt about the possibility of being deceived in our thoughts of salvation. Disciples are believers but not all believers are disciples! We are all guilty of picking and choosing certain verses that give us peace but being saved must be studied in the entire context of God’s requirements and our accountability. His grace was not given to be used as an excuse or “free-pass” for our rebellion, but rather an opportunity to embrace His truth that we might be transformed into His holy bride. I believe that many churches are not teaching the depth of God’s Word and the masses have drifted away from the reverential fear of His holiness. We are to teach the same gospel that Paul was inspired to relay in that it is time to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling, that we may be found blameless and harmless as the children of God, without rebuke in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation. Many times I have felt that maybe I am expecting too much from the church services but then I begin to wonder that if our services are dry and powerless then is this not a reflection of the people’s hearts? We do not need more programs – we need a holy spiritual revolution! Yes, it is good to fellowship and make friends in church and yes it is good to feel that we are a part of a community and family of like-minded believers but what good is all of this if we are not being God’s disciple? “Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and DIE, it abides alone: but if it DIES it brings forth much fruit. He that loves his life shall lose it; and he that hates his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. If any man serve Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve Me, him will My Father honor.” (John 12:24-26) Are you “dying” to be His disciple?