Some missionaries in China recently reported about their work and their congregations saying, “We can’t afford any big programs or fancy gospel presentations. All we have to give people is Jesus.” Is Jesus enough? What have we come to expect from churches? The world expects many things from the Church, so they’ve made their own. When did Jesus quit being enough?
The masses want to be saved, but not to be disciples. They forget to be disciples come to Jesus and learn from Him (Matt 11:28–30). They forget to be disciples and listen to their teacher and observe all things that Jesus commanded (Matt 28:20). They neglect that loving Jesus means obeying His words (John 14:15, 21–24). These believers are arrogant that they doubt the Spirit’s guidance of the words of the apostles (1 Cor 2:13). They do this even thought Jesus said that He gave His words to His apostles (John 17:8) and Jesus said, “If they kept My word, they will keep yours also” (John 15:20).
The teachers of the man-made churches have been caving into immorality. Congregations are changing “according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth.”
Is There a Love of the World in the Church?
Do we want more than Jesus? Do we love what the world has to offer us? The Spirit says in First John 2:15, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” Have not members even whole churches been led away into the world? Can we say that we do not love the world? Do our actions say that we do not love the world?
The Holy Spirit says in First John 2:16, “For all that is in the world — the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life — is not of the Father but is of the world.” See, it is lust and pride that lead people away. Do you think people want their appetites and their pride fed in the Church? I think many do.
First John 2:17, “And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.” This world is not going to last for your body or in itself it will burn with fire. Do we love what the world can give us? Do we love our possessions? Do churches want to resemble the world? Do we want to spend our Sundays in recreation and with our families and claim to fellowship God? Doesn’t the world do this?
What Does the World Do?
Isaiah 5:20, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” These are those days revived.
There are those who call evil good.
- Killing the unborn is called a “choice.”
- Teaching children that they are apes is called “education.”
- Promoting immorality through conjectures is called “science.”
- Neglecting the discipline of children is called “building self-esteem.”
- Forcing people to live and trade with the corrupt is called “tolerance.”
- Perversions are called “alternative lifestyles.”
- Coveting your neighbor’s possessions is called “ambition.”
- Slandering, reviling, and profanity are called “freedom of speech.”
- Pornography is called “freedom of expression.”
- Pre-marital sex is called a “personal choice.”
- Adultery is called “adventurous.”
- Separation for irreconcilable differences is called “divorce.”
- Unholy conjugal unions are called “marriages.”
Then, there are those who call good evil.
- Christ’s words are called “intolerant.”
- Christians are called “closed minded.”
- Going to church is called “self-righteous.”
- Praying in public is called “oppressive.”
- Reading the Bible is called “hate speech.”
- Evangelizing is called “rude.”
- Bringing up your children in the training and the admonition of the Lord is called “abuse.”
This is the time when evil is called good and good is called evil. This is the marketing of evil. This is what is fed into our homes. They dump refuse in a box. Write a “good” on it. Then, market it.
What does the world want you to do? The world does not just want tolerance. It wants your approval. They seek approval from one another trying to confirm and sooth their consciences. Romans 1:32, “who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.” The world hates you when you do not approve of their vices with your own. The life of a true disciple of Jesus reminds them of their life in judgment to God. Proverb 17:15, “He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the just, Both of them alike are an abomination to the LORD.” The world wants you to justify them while the world condemns you.
Why does the world want you to call evil good and good evil? Isaiah 5:21, “Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, And prudent in their own sight!” It is arrogance that the world does this, but we find this among believers of Christ too. God says to these in Isaiah 55:8, “‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,’ says the LORD.” This is the arrogance that boasts that our thoughts and ways must be God’s too. Are the church’s thoughts God’s thought? What your thoughts? The Spirit says in Jeremiah 10:23, “O LORD, I know the way of man is not in himself; It is not in man who walks to direct his own steps.”
The truth is not in you. The truth is in Christ. His word is the truth (John 17:17). This is the truth that will set your free. Your thoughts are not God’s thoughts. Unless your thoughts are from God’s thoughts. We have to submit to God. Jeremiah 10:24, “O LORD, correct me, but with justice; Not in Your anger, lest You bring me to nothing.” This is the prayer that we must have. Have you ever prayed to God to correct you?
Jesus said in Luke 16:15, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God“. On judgment day, we will not be justified by the words and actions of others. God knows our hearts.
The hearts of the world are defiled. Jesus said Matthew 15:19-20, “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.” It is the evil thoughts in the hearts of men that defile him.
If you don’t see a contrast between the evils of the world and your beliefs, then you need to change your heart. Jesus said in Matthew 6:19-21, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Who are you? Are you a Christian or are you of the world?
What is Your Identity?
Are we God’s kingdom? Jesus said in John 18:36, “Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.’”
Are we God’s chosen people? Second Peter 2:9 says, “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;”
Second Corinthians 6:17, “Therefore ‘Come out from among them And be separate, says the Lord.’” Do you surround yourself with evil? Second Corinthians 6:14, “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?” First Corinthians 15:33, “Do not be deceived: ‘Evil company corrupts good habits.’” Your habits will be changed by your friends.
Still Jesus gives the invitation in Matthew 11:28–30, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Jesus said in John 10:10, ‘I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”
Jesus’ teachings are not highly esteemed by the world or the churches of men. Jesus said:
- “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live” (John 11:25).
- “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I AM, you will die in your sins…Jesus said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM‘” (John 8:24, 58).
- “Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32-33).
- “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance” (Luke 5:32).
- “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:16).
Do you believe in these words of Jesus? Jesus said in Matthew 12:30, “He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.”
Your thoughts are insightful and truly confirm why people act the way they do toward Christianity. The Bible says the same. Thanks for your honestly and its honest reflection toward our convictions.
Thank you for this wonderful article, Scott!
While you bring up the very valid point that nobody likes a fake or hypocrite, I don’t think that such people are the cause of society’s growing antagonism against your religion. The problem, as I see it, far more pernicious and fundamental.
I think Christianity is being “attacked” because it is a religion with rules and it’s the “establishment.” It gets in the way of society’s growing desire to do whatever feels good and to let anyone else do so as well without judgment or complaint.
As you said, “[sic]…And the way is narrow and few will find it.”
Since telling people who are different from you that anything they do or have done is or was wrong is seemingly “sinful” under the new paradigm, Christianity becomes a target for derision and attack.
That’s my opinion of the causation anyway.
As for your hopes of my conversion – I truly thank you for them. I’m not amenable to conversion – my Goddess does not tolerate apostasy, especially amongst her priesthood – but I do appreciate the thought and the sentiment behind your hope, PK.
Thanks, Jonolan, for the clarification. The LOL kinda threw me off, I guess.
So, I am curious…since you see the world becoming more evil and that those who believe in Christ and the Bible are becoming more targeted as an enemy, by society in general…why do you think that is? As Scott said, many have defamed the very name “Christian” by their hypocrisy and flagrant sin, but they world doesn’t hate them so much for being Christian, but rather because of the fact that they prove themselevs not to be who they say they are. Nobody likes a fake.
With society beginning to hate anything that pertains to what we believe God has said and becoming more self-centered and unkind, isn’t that more indicative that God, Christ and the Bible are good and not evil? I realize that there are Pagans who feel their beliefs and Christianity are not that far apart. But, a good analogy might be:
When you are a passenger in a plane, does it matter if the pilot lands on the runway or is “close enough” okay?
Jesus declared that He is the way…period. And the way is narrow and few will find it. I hope that you will seek and find the true Christ and not settle for anything less.
Oh – quick follow-up for clarification:
I was also stating that, if someone like myself is agreeing with Scott, things are really,really bad.
Think of it sort of like how bad it would have to have been in the 1970’s for the US and USSR to be on the same side of an issue…
Then I didn’t make myself clear enough in my comment. While on some points I differ from Christians in my opinions of what is immoral, I agree on a lot of the points – or close tangents to them – and find the growing moral bankruptcy of our society as very bad for everyone.
I can’t deny, however, that Christianity is drawing far, far more fire than my own faith is – which is probably why my comment could be misinterpreted.
Yeah. I agree that I’m a bit curious what he meant.
You ask, Scott, “Does the church love the World?”
Unfortunately, many in the visible church do, and excuse, many of those things you list under “There are those who call evil good”.
I am a bit confused about Jonolan’s comments in that he agrees “society has become morally bankrupt”, yet I sense he doesn’t necessarily think that is a bad thing, in general. Just bad for “us”.
“Christianity” may deserve it, but Jesus and His disciples do not.
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.”
LOL And just to show you how bad it has really gotten, I say that I agree with most of your assertions.
The reason why I say my agreement with you is proof that things have gotten bad is I’m one of those immoral and perverse people you dislike.
I’m Pagan and Polygamous.
So, if I’m agreeing with you, a Christian, that our society has become morally bankrupt and has actively turned towards attacking Christianity, things are pretty bad from your perspective.