1 Corinthians 4:2-5
“But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness nor handling the word of God
deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God.
But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.
For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus’ sake.”
In the 1980’s there was a famous marketing campaign designed to point out that fast food hamburgers were shrinking in size. An elderly lady would pull up to a drive through window and shout, “Where’s the beef?”
Today I so want to make like that woman and shout... “WHERE’S THE BIBLE?” and “WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH THE CROSS?”
“Behold, days are coming” declares the Lord GOD, “When I will send a famine on the land, Not a famine for bread or a thirst for water, But rather for hearing the words of the LORD” (Amos 8:11).
“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” (2 Timothy 4-3).
A few years ago, a family set out to find a good, healthy restaurant that they could trust, where the food served was good and safe to eat. In their quest they finally found a place that became their favorite restaurant. YEAH! They started telling friends and family about the place. They had the best chips n’ salsa and lots of great people frequented the restaurant. But after a couple of years something changed. In an effort for the restaurant to grow they started using different, questionable ingredients.
This husband and father, in an effort to ensure his family’s health, began to inquire what was going on with the changes in the food served. He had recently seen a story in a national paper warning of restaurants replacing beef with modified foods. Of course his response was, “Uh oh, I sure hope our favorite restaurant hasn’t started doing this!” Out of concern he copied and pasted that article and forwarded it in an email to the restaurant owner with a note saying, “Please don’t go down this same path.” The restaurant owner assured the man that he could “trust him” and that maybe the man was beginning to become hypersensitive and critical. So the man took it to heart hoping things would be okay.
But then to his horror he saw that on the new “Wednesday Night Special” at the family’s favorite restaurant would now be serving, as it’s main course, something containing the very ingredients he has asked the restaurant NOT to serve his family. Vexed to the core this man and his family, and also those to whom he had been endorsing the restaurant, began to speak up. He first went to meet privately with the restaurant owner. “Please, please don’t feed us this stuff, please read up on the side effects and the problems it can lead too.” In fear and desperation this man began to warn of the national trend, crying out against the main distributor of this modified food.
He did this hoping that people would listen and take heed that this change in food was causing “food poisoning” to those who were eating it. Due to this man’s outcry, he began to be labeled s a troublemaker “food critic” who was just trying to “bash” those trying to feed people. Crushed, the man began to doubt his own motives and methods. But he had initially gone privately to the owner and only out of genuine concern not only for his own family’s health but all those whom he had recommended the restaurant to. All he wanted was a safe place to eat real, authentic food that wasn’t based on a stolen recipe from someone else who was “cutting healthy ingredients” in order to market or franchise food to the masses. Sadly this type of story is happening all across this nation to those who are seeking after solid food, and because of it, there is a “famine in the land!”
All across America, and gathering from the emails I receive from (apostate food critics in Jesus’ name) the gospel has been compromised. But all across this globe there are many true believers hungering and thirsting after righteousness. They are desiring for shepherds who won’t plagiarize their latest sermon series while claiming, “I have a word from the Lord” only to find its from a best seller not based upon the Word of God, but based on what is selling to the masses. God, through the Prophet Jeremiah warned against these very things.
“Therefore,” declares the Lord, “I am against the prophets who steal from one another words supposedly from me” (Jeremiah 23:30).
True believers don’t want to be sold horsemeat and be told they are getting beef. They don’t want to be asked to digest messages from men who have removed the cross and the blood from their sermons replacing them with clichés and quotes from pagan mystics. They don’t want to be told to get into a “mystical circle” to pray. This is one of the latest trends of deception as promoted in the blasphemous occult-based book, The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson.
Understand that this type of ritual does not come from Scripture but from unbiblical mystics from the darkest depths of the occult. True seekers don’t want to be told to be “Purpose Driven,” but rather disciplined into being “Spirit led.” We are living at a very apostate time. It is my prayer that pastors and ministers alike will read Jeremiah chapter 23 and repent from looking unto anything other than God Himself for what they are sharing with their people.
Should the Lord tarry, we urgently need a “biblical awakening.”
The standard of a sound biblically-based solid church not only touches lives, but one that first and foremost consistently proclaims: THE GOSPEL to convert the soul. And leadership that uncompromisingly sticks to God’s Word in training those who have been gospel converted.
A Vital Church Grows by Conversion
“Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.
And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation. Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.
Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need. So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.”
And the LORD did not add that those preaching the salvation message were to blitz the area with flyers, use gimmicks and sell coffee to attract future converts. They just preached Jesus Christ and Him crucified! Makes you stop and think…
Does it bother you like it bothers me, that today we tell people to close their eyes and bow their heads to raise a hand for Christ?
Yet the early believers were being martyred publicly and yet daily their numbers increased. Think about that. People were seeing Christians tarred and lit on fire or thrown to lions all the while saying, “I want what they have!”
Don’t we need to ask what has happened that we would try and market and sell Jesus instead of just preaching the gospel? Is it possible that today’s standards are so watered down that we are on the wrong side of the Jeremiah 23 plum line? This may seem like semantics but it’s a big semantic. Does the clay tell the potter what its dream is OR does the clay YIELD and surrender to the will and purposes of God?
I read nowhere in the Bible that Jesus came to someone and said, “Tell me your dream and I’ll make it happen.” I do read all throughout the gospels where Jesus said. “Take up your cross.” “Follow Me.” The multitudes followed Jesus for their “perception” of what He could or would do for them UNTIL He stood up in the midst of the multitude, and spoke John 6:53, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you.”
It is recorded in the Bible that many left Him and “followed Jesus” no more. Jesus turned to the few remaining and asked, “Are you going to leave me too?” Peter answered with an answer which believers all across this land need to resolve, to say the same! “Where else can we go Lord? You alone have the Words of eternal life.” It seems that there has been a polarizing line of demarcation set forth in Christendom. To either be “Purpose Driven,” or to build “Your Best Life Now” treating God as if He is a cosmic Santa Claus, asking for our will to be done, building man’s kingdoms falsely proclaiming, “The best is yet to come” on this sinking Titanic, behaving like Lot’s wife -- hanging on to a world that is perishing.
On the other hand there is a voice crying, “Take up your cross, crucify your selfish carnal desires, join with the Spirit as the bride,praying, “Even so Jesus come quickly.” That voice is preparing the way of the Lord. It’s crying for people to make themselves ready. Ready in what way? By telling the bride, the church, to prepare for her holy wedding day by coming out from amongst those in this evil age, repenting of anything that would seduce our hearts from our Bride Groom.
The sheep of God’s pasture eat what is fed from the Shepherd, knowing His voice. Goats will eat anything. The message that asks: “What is your dream?” is equivalent to your “best life now” mindset or “kingdom now.” It runs polar opposite to, “Take up your cross and follow Me.”
Look for a city whose Builder and Maker is the Lord (His everlasting kingdom.) I say this in love, PRAYING for a mighty move of God’s Spirit…A Titanic awakening in Jesus’ Name!
I pray for those who have ears to hear, please hear and for those who have eyes to see, please see. I don’t say this to be critical, but with a holy desperation for God’s foundational truths to be restored while there is still TIME.
“This is all the more urgent, for you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed” (Romans 13:11).