SCRIPTURE PRV. 29:18, HOS. 4:6 NOVEMBER, 2016
Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee,
that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.
SUBJECT - NO VISION, NO FUTURE!!! [PT. 11]
When I ended last month's message, I presented a particular scenario in which a particular individual, who is blind, goes in to 2 different churches on 2 different days, seeking food, clothing and other things that he has need of.
The first church, is one that is beautifully designed, with all sorts of the modern day amenities, air conditioning, cushioned pews, wall to wall carpeting, stained glass windows, the latest in electronic equipment for broadcasting services and pastored by a man that has all sorts of degrees.
This church has a membership of over 1000, members.
When the man goes in, the workers take him to the place set aside to feed the needy, and give him something to eat. They then, take him to another place where he can get some new clothing and after that, they bid him God's blessing, and send him on his way.
This action is typically what is known as doing what Christ commissioned the Church to do, from a practical standpoint, in that the parable of the good Samaritan [Lk. 10:30-37], outlines what is to be the standard response of any Christian, to all that have needs, no matter who they are.
This church gets an 'A', in that area.
The next day, this same man goes to a little, out of the way storefront church that, unless you knew the address of it, you wouldn't know that it was even there.
There is nothing fancy about it. Many in the neighborhood don't even know that it is there. It has very few members, less than 25, and most of them are members of the pastor's family, and his close friends.
Anyway, this man goes in, seeking the same things that he sought at the big church the day before, even though he realized that there may not be much there because it is such a small place, and the pickings are probably few, if any.
He is greeted by some workers who invite him in, and ask him can they pray for him, to which he says yes.
They get some oil, and place it on their hands and lay hands on him, and begin to rebuke the blindness that he is afflicted with, and ask God to restore his sight.
The next thing the man knows, his sight is restored [assuming that he once had sight but lost it], or he has never had sight, and is seeing for the first time. The man is beside himself, he doesn't know what to say. He does however begin to thank God, and the people at the church, and after receiving some food, and other things he needed, he goes on his way [St. John 9:1-38].
Now, what is the moral of this story??
Not to put all churches in this boat, but, just because a church is big, and beautifully constructed, with all sorts of enticing amenities, and pastored by someone who has the best education possible, does not mean that it is functioning under the direction/or anointing of God.
As I mentioned some time earlier, an atheist, one who doesn't believe there is a God, could quite easily get a degree in theology, or some other degree or doctorate, and start a church and get in there and preach what they figure the people want to hear, and seem to be doing the work of the Lord.
But, in the end, there will always be something missing.
Then we look at the storefront church. The one that is easily overlooked, because of its size, and the fact that no one knows who the pastor is. If they saw him on the street, they would not recognize him because he looks and dresses like everyone else.
However, this church, despite its size, is functioning under the anointing of God, and as a result, is head and shoulders above its larger counterpart.
Now, think about this.
Of the 2 churches, which of them do you think this former blind man would likely come back to??? Which of these churches would you think he would tell his friends about??? Which of these 2 churches, fully demonstrated the fullness of what the ministry of Christ was and is about???
Let me get personal with you.
If it were you, which of these churches would you much rather be in??
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that one out. The one where a blind person can receive their sight.
Let me go further.
Instead of a blind man, let's try a person that is crippled, or one that is deaf, dumb, paralyzed, psychotic [demon possessed], has cancer, or any of the other maladies that afflict mankind.
The same thing happens. They go to the big church and get what they need to essentially survive another day.
They go to the small church and get delivered, or healed, so that they can begin to live their lives the way God intended for them to live.
Which one do you think you would want to go to??!!!
In this little scenario that I have just presented you with, you can see the problem that we have in this nation, and how the church is failing miserably in addressing the problem.
You see, the problem we have in this nation, is not one that can be addressed properly by the religion of politics, legislation, laws, the courts or any thing else that is man made and designed.
The problem we have in this nation, is a direct result of our ignorance of spiritual rules and laws, put in place by God, who designed every thing to function within those said parameters.
We as humans, have a nature [spiritual], that goes totally contrary to those rules and laws. And as such, are therefore subject to the punishments, judgments, penalties and such, that go along with breaking them.
Now, who is it that is responsible for giving us the warning of what is coming when we break those laws??
This could mean pastors, on down to ministers, and lay people, as long as they are saved, and have the correct vision of God.
If they don't have a clear vision of God, then He will not anoint them to be able to demonstrate any thing close to what is proof that He approves of them.
Look at what the apostle Paul wrote concerning the anointing that God put on him, and others.
1Cor 2:4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in DEMONSTRATION OF THE SPIRIT AND OF POWER:
1Cor 2:5 THAT YOUR FAITH SHOULD NOT STAND IN THE WISDOM OF MEN, BUT IN THE POWER OF GOD.
What we have today, in most instances, is people flocking to churches and preachers who capitalize on the very things that the apostle Paul, disdained.
He even said this, 2Tim 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; BUT AFTER THEIR OWN LUSTS SHALL THEY HEAP TO THEMSELVES TEACHERS, HAVING ITCHING EARS;
2Tim 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
People today, want to be told what they want to hear, and not what some old hard nosed relic of a preacher that is out of date with the times has to say.
They don't want to hear what 'Thus saith the Lord!!' They want to hear what 'thus saith man!!' And, the more he says what they want to hear, the more accolades they bestow on him. Not to mention money!! The 2 go hand in hand. That is why I said earlier that a lot of people want to go in to the field of ministry, just for the money, fame and power.
And the other thing is, a lot of politicians seek them out for advice, and they tell that politician what he/she wants to hear, so that they, the preacher can garner great influence in political circles, when it comes to laws and policy.
Most of these preachers, have become, what they call 'progressive.'
When I look at what they are doing, I can say they are just that. They are 'progressing' away from Christ, towards the Antichrist.
If you will notice, every thing they do, if it does not go directly against what Christ says the church is to be doing, they will water it down or compromise with the enemy, just so they can get along with everyone.
There is no way, according to Christ that the Church, and the enemy can exist amicably, when it comes to how God says things should go, and have total peace!!!
Are we to live at peace among our enemies?? Of course!! That means we are not to antagonize them, but show the Love of Christ towards them.
However, that Love, carries with it, the idea that we are not to give our support to them in their evil deeds. For to do so, is to say that God is giving His blessing on what they are doing.
Now, check this out.
Using the example of the 2 churches, and the blind man.
Let's change the big beautiful church, for a religion.
Now, just for the sake of discussion, let's say a person that is a devout believer in Islam, and believes their religious beliefs are just as valid as our Christian beliefs.
Being politically correct, and not wanting to offend them, we say nothing about how their beliefs are futile, because they will end up in hell, when they die.
That is showing love, because love is never having to say you are sorry.
But, what is a person to do, if they know the end result of this person's religious path, without offending, or belittling their religion??? You definitely are not showing love, if you will allow them to continue on that path to their own destruction.
What is the remedy????
Demonstrating the Power of God!!!!
The best way to win over people of all other religious persuasions, without attacking them or making them feel bad, is to demonstrate what Christ did, and ordained the Church to do, John 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, THE WORKS THAT I DO SHALL HE DO ALSO; AND GREATER WORKS THAN THESE SHALL HE DO; BECAUSE I GO UNTO MY FATHER.
John 14:13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
John 14:14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
Notice, Jesus, not me says we would do GREATER WORKS THAN HE DID!!!
What does that mean??? What could be greater than that!!!
Your guess is as good as mine, seeing that He raised people from the dead.
Anyway, it would become obvious, even to this devout Islamist, that there is something missing in his religion, and he would seek the Truth.
When I think about all those millions of followers of Islam, who are essentially good people, ending up in hell because of my, or some other Christian wanting to appear friendly, by not challenging them on their beliefs, it is actually showing hate, for them, rather than love.
But, by the same token, as an old saying goes, 'talk is cheap.'
Some times, their knowledge of the Koran, and even the bible, might be head and shoulders above yours or mine, and they can make us look like imbeciles, with their intellectual speaking.
However, that doesn't hold a candle to what the Power of God can do to turn the tables on them, and make them look stupid.
Next month, I will be drawing this message to a close. And hopefully, you will have a clearer vision of what God, Christ, and the Church are about, and you will fall in line with them.