Monday, January 6, 2020

The Armor of Light Sermon.


Theology According to Truitt.

Put on the armor of Light. And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of Darkness and put on the armor of Light. 13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh. Rom 13:11-14
While preparing a series of messages on spiritual warfare, I ran across this passage of scripture. I am sure that we are all familiar with the passage in Ephesians 6 that talks about the whole armor of God. You may have had a Sunday School teacher who had you make all the armor from cardboard and remember the verse that went with each piece of armor. This passage in Roman is hidden in the message of how we should conduct ourselves as Christians being people of the day and not of the night.
What started as reading a few commentaries on the 12th verse which took me on a wild ride of information jumping. You know where you are reading something, and a new idea is presented, and you follow it, and another new approach is presented. Well, this ride was exciting.
I was waiting for a meeting to start, so I thought I would check out some more on the "armor of light." I was trying to find how Light could be the armor of the Christian. No luck. This got me to thinking about when Adam was created-- how was he clothed? It has long been taught that he was covered in Light. So this started me on a new search. But before I get to the exciting information, let's go back to the command.
Christians are commanded to "put on the amour of light" and "to put on the Lord Jesus." What does this mean? To be clothed with a person is a Greek phrase, signifying to assume the interests of another--to enter into his views, to imitate him, and be wholly on his side. Putting on the armor of Light is being clothed with Jesus Christ, signifies I have put on Christ, and consequently having the mind that was in Christ.
Christians are soldiers in the midst of spiritual conflict and must have personal protective armor that they may stand against the enemy of the soul. A Christian undressed is unarmed. The graces of the Spirit are the armor, to secure the soul from Satan's temptations and the assaults of this present evil world. Put on the righteousness of Christ for justification; be found in him (Phil. 3:9 ) as a man is found in his clothes; put on the priestly garments of the elder brother, that in them you may obtain the blessing. Put on the Spirit and grace of Christ for sanctification; put on the new man (Eph. 4:24 ); get the habit of grace confirmed, the acts of it quickened." Jesus Christ is the best clothing for Christians to adorn themselves with, to arm themselves with; it is decent, distinguishing, dignifying, and defending. Without Christ, we are naked, deformed; all other things are filthy rages, fig-leaves, a sorry shelter. "Put him on as Lord to rule you, as Jesus to save you, and in both as Christ, anointed and appointed by the Father to this ruling saving work."
I think we get the point of how important it is to identify with Christ. But what is interesting is that Paul would use the expression "the armor of light." The fact that God is light is essential to our study of putting on the armor of Light. It includes a description of God's character as well as implications for the life of Christian discipleship. The nature of God as Light and the Christian putting on the armor of Light has its foundation in the creation of Adam. This is where I started down a long road of inquiry.
Adam was created in God's image and likeness, which includes the appearance of God. We can reason more of how Adam was before he fell into sin by understanding how he was clothed in Light. Adam was covered with Light as with a garment, similar to his God. Bless the LORD, O my soul! O LORD my God, You are very great; You are clothed with splendor and majesty, covering Yourself with Light as with a cloak, Ps.104:2
We also have seen that the Holy Spirit was indwelling in Adam when he was created. God breathed into Adam and he became a living soul. God created Adam in His image and likeness concerning his general shape (head, shoulders, hands, and feet), plus Adam was emitting Light like God, and he was also filled with the Spirit of God. The question that I had to ask myself was, where did the Light come from?
This question sidetracked me into searching for the answer. Here is what I found. Fritz-Albert Popp thought he had discovered a cure for cancer. It was 1970, and Popp, a theoretical biophysicist at the University of Marburg in Germany, had been teaching radiology -- the interaction of electromagnetic (EM) radiation on biological systems.
What Popp discovered was that benzo[a]pyrene (cancer producing molecule) absorbed the UV light, then reemitted it at a completely different frequency -- it was a light "scrambler." The benzo[e]pyrene (harmless to humans), allowed the UV light to pass through it unaltered.
Popp was puzzled by this difference and continued to experiment with UV light and other compounds. He performed his test on 37 different chemicals, some cancer-causing, some not. After a while, he was able to predict which substances could cause cancer. In every instance, the carcinogenic compounds took the UV light, absorbed it, and changed or scrambled the frequency.
Popp kept wondering why a cancer-causing substance would be a light scrambler. He began reading the scientific literature specifically about human biological reactions and came across information about a phenomenon called 'photorepair.' The quick summary of this phenomenon is that light aids in the healing process of the cells. Well, this led me to another question, is there Light within the body?
What is it that enabled tens of thousands of different kinds of molecules in the organism to recognize their specific targets? Photons (Light) control everything in the cells of our body. Photons switch on the body's processes like an orchestra conductor bringing each instrument into the collective sound. At different frequencies, they perform different functions. Popp found that molecules in the cells responded to specific frequencies and that a range of vibrations from the photons caused a variety of frequencies in other molecules of the body.
Remember, in the Gospel of John, "That was the true Light, which lights every man that comes into the world." If the cells of our body repair themselves through a process of photo repair and Light controls every cell within our body, could light then play a significant role in how man was designed? So I asked myself this question, does Light play a part in our DNA?
To save you from all the scientific language, let me cut to the chase. One of the essential sources of light and biophoton emissions is DNA. DNA was like the master tuning fork of the body. It would strike a particular frequency, and specific molecules would follow. Our DNA not only emits Light, but absorbs Light as well. It would seem that our DNA is like an electric capacitor which can store tiny amounts of electricity and then discharge it. Similarly, we can speculate that the Light that was coming from Adam was not being produced from his own self, but was first absorbed from God and then reemitted, very much like how things glow in the dark. Glow-in-the-dark objects need to be exposed to Light, or charged, in order to glow.
Adam must have emitted large amounts of Light or photons from his DNA. When he sinned, the Light that he received from God, the source of the Light, was presumably extinguished. Proverbs 13:9 says: "The light of the righteous rejoices, but the lamp of the wicked will be put out," Then Jesus spoke to them again: "I AM THE LIGHT of the world. Anyone who follows me will never walk in the darkness but will have the LIGHT OF LIFE." (John 8:12) In HIM WAS LIFE; and the LIFE WAS THE LIGHT of men. (John 1:4 KJV)
The conclusion of Dr. Popp's research was best summarized in his own words, "We now know, today, that man is essentially a being of light."
When Paul told the Christians at Rome to put on the armor of Light he was telling them to become a new creation. Our new man has been created in God's image – imagine that! We, as new creations are in the image of the One who made us! Paul states that Jesus is the image of God: "He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation" (Colossians 1:15 NET). Then he states that we are in that image using the same Greek word "and have been clothed with the new man that is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of the one who created it" (Colossians 3:10 NET). We must not forget, however, that Adam was initially created in the image of God. Thus if in our new man we will be like God (not be God in all of his glory, but like Him!), then we must conclude that when God made Adam in His image or likeness and Adam emitted Light in a way similar to God. As long as Adam was connected to the source, he was protected from the enemy of his soul.
When we put on the armor of Light we are connecting to the source of Light and are protected from the enemy of our soul. Have you put on the armor of Light?

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Ministers

But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; because of whom, the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. 2Pet 2:2-3
I have spent over fifty years in the ministry fulfilling duties of a pastor, evangelist, missionary, and teacher. I have endeavored to preach the real Jesus and be faithful to His complete message. This means I will continue to preach against the societal and political sins of our nation. I am appalled when I hear ministers say they were called only to preach Jesus and the Gospel and will not address the sins of our nation. They have limited the life of Jesus to His thirty-three years of physical ministry, death, and resurrection and tickle the ears of the congregation with touchy-feely sermons on Love every Sunday. The real Jesus is not just in the New Testament but in the complete Bible.
As a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I must proclaim the full message of Jesus Christ. Justice and wrath are as much a part of the message of the Gospel as love and mercy. Maybe if ministers had the courage to preach the real Jesus that took a whip to the money changers, told the disciples to buy swords, called the religious class the children of the devil, refused to speak to the reprobate Herod, spoke a curse of destruction on Israel, we wouldn’t have half the messes we have today.
Ministers have forgotten the real Jesus. The Gospel of John, in the opening few verses, uses the word Logos as a powerful way to describe the enormity of Jesus.
In the beginning, was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him, and without him was not anything made that was made. John 1:1-3
Simply put Jesus is described as the “Word”, he was with God before creation and is how the thoughts of God become manifest. This statement used by John purposely invokes Genesis 1:1 “In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth,” all by speaking it into existence. We are being given a “Word Picture” peering into the actual mechanics and power behind creation.
Jesus is simultaneously the physical order and moral order, as well as the historical person we find in the Gospels. Jesus is more than the Gospel narratives before our world existed, He was the Eternal Word of God. John the Apostle got this, as well as the Apostle Paul. Paul speaking of Jesus said,

Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. Colossians 1:15-18

If the minister would proclaim the entire volume of the Old Testament and not just a few feel-good soundbites in the New Testament, people who have become so tied to their "employment" they have forgotten their calling. It takes courage to proclaim the harder things of scripture, the things many ministers love to avoid. Anyone who exposes sin will enter the world of controversial subjects that will not win you many friends in the world and even within the congregation.
I hear ministers say they are praying for revival. Revival needs to start in the pulpit. Ministers have the responsibility as teachers and prophets to proclaim the full message of the Gospel. Many ministers do not preach from the Old Testament because they have a problem with a God of wrath and anger against sin. They cannot reconcile the LORD of the Old Testament with the LORD of the New Testament. Ministers have failed to take the time to gain knowledge or insight into the principles of the Old Testament as they relate to the New Testament. Preaching the full message of Jesus Christ is a lost art. That message starts in the Old Testament.

Again, looking at 2 Peter,  When angels sinned, God did not let them go free without punishment. He sent them to hell. He put those angels in caves of darkness, where they are being held until the time when God will judge them. And God punished the evil people who lived long ago. He brought a flood to the world that was full of people who were against God. But he saved Noah and seven other people with him. Noah was a man who told people about living right. God also punished the evil cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. He burned them until there was nothing left but ashes. He used those cities as an example of what will happen to people who are against God. But he saved Lot, a good man who lived there. Lot was greatly troubled by the morally bad lives of those evil people. This good man lived with those evil people every day, and his good heart was hurt by the evil things he saw and heard. So, you see that the Lord God knows how to save those who are devoted to him. He will save them when troubles come. And the Lord will hold evil people to punish them on the day of judgment. That punishment is for those who are always doing the evil that their sinful selves want to do. It is for those who hate the Lord’s authority.

Where did Peter get his examples--the Old testament. Why did he give this example? He gave this example to show that God has not changed and that it is serious business to deny the love of God.
When we preach the entirety of scripture, we are confronted with scripture that speak on unjust war, abortion, the sanctity of life, natural rights, natural law, revealed law, reprobate sin, jurisdictional limitation of Government, self-defense, the justice and wrath of God, the sexual sins of the flesh, the danger of false religions, the separation from sinful people, and a host of other subjects. These are all issues we are required to preach on as commanded by Christ Himself. Don’t call yourself a preacher if you can’t reconcile these things for your flock, the lack of knowledge on these subjects immediately unqualifies you from the ministry according to the Great Commission itself. Jesus Himself quoted from 24 Books of the Old Testament during His ministry, He even took the time on the road to Emmaus to demonstrate to the two disciples that He is found everywhere in the Old Testament,
And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. Luke 24:27
If the Old Testament was important to the ministry of Jesus it should be important to minister’s today. The message of God's love is important, but the message should start with why God loves us? We should understand the seriousness of rejecting the love of God and that His love is based on obedience.
Paul warned the church at Thessaloniki that in the last days there would be a "falling away" some translation calls it "the rebellion" that is what apostasy is the abandonment of the Truth. The result of ministers not preaching the complete message of Jesus Christ is a rebellion and abandonment of Truth.
The result of ministers not preaching the full message the Gospel is found in Paul's letter to Timothy.
Remember this: Some terrible times are coming in the last days. People will love only themselves and money. They will be proud and boast about themselves. They will abuse others with insults. They will not obey their parents. They will be ungrateful and against all that is pleasing to God. They will have no love for others and will refuse to forgive anyone. They will talk about others to hurt them and will have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. People will turn against their friends. They will do foolish things without thinking and will be so proud of themselves. Instead of loving God, of they will love pleasure. They will go on pretending to be devoted to God, but they will refuse to let that “devotion” change the way they live. Stay away from these people! 2 Tim.3:1-5
Paul wrote extensively on ministers who were false teachers. They were fakes. Working for a wage, not for the glory of God. This should demonstrate the requirements of ministry, if pastors nowadays can’t even fulfill the Great Commission (teaching them to observe all things I have commanded) in entirety and do exactly what Jesus did, which reveals His Laws and Principles in scripture as He did on the road to Emmaus as a perfect example, then they have no business in the Ministry. Furthermore, congregants that continue to attend these churches, satisfied with the lack of substance they have no business calling themselves Christians. You either take Jesus as who he is, which is the God of the Old and New Testament or call yourselves by another name. A fake, watered down Christ is no Christ at all. If we are to have a revival, we must first start in the pulpits of America.

The Approaching Storm

Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong. 1 Cor. 16:13
Not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as you see the Day approaching. Heb 10:25

In looking at the news headlines, we should see that things are not looking good. There is a supervolcano forming under China Lake in California, more massive than Yellowstone. In the past seven days, over 200 earthquakes with a five or above have taken place in the United States alone. There are 10 million acres that were not planted in the US compared to 2018. There are food shortages in some areas of our nation this week. 

 We are a divided nation. We have an increase in deaths from cardiovascular disease. I could go on, but I think you get the point.


For some time now, I have been sensing that for believers, followers of Christ, that we need to be seriously preparing for a coming season of storms, but sadly many of us are not. Why are so many willing to find themselves in the predicament of being unprepared?

We don't know the meaning of all things. We don't have all the answers to explain all the tragedies in the world and our neighborhoods. However, we know, we are sure that the LORD has promised to be with us. His words I will never leave you or forsake you is a comfort. Knowing the LORD's promises, our questions completely change. Instead of asking, "Why did this happen to me?" or "Why doesn't God care about me?" we say, "Well, I know God loves me; I know that. So, what can I learn from this experience?" How can I prepare for the storms that are coming?

Sometimes we think our trials come because we did something wrong. That's not always true. Adversity is simply part of life. From it, we can grow and progress if we choose to. Yes, some trials come because of our disobedience, but many tests are simply part of life.

It seems like common sense to prepare ahead of time for a hurricane, tornado, or blizzard. How about the storms of life? Should we prepare in advance for periods of trial and suffering?

Most of today's churches are caught up more in the social issues of the Day or trying to determine how they can grow their congregation. To not offend, the Gospel message has been watered down so much that it is no longer served as a meal full of the truth that saves and restores the hearer but is cheap grace that does nothing for the soul.

We do not want to be seen being intolerant and unloving, so the Gospel message of repentance and needing a Savior is hardly heard anymore. Some pastors are teaching that a God who would require a Savior to be sacrificed is a heartless, ruthless God that they would not want to follow! The mood always has to be upbeat, and the music has to be appealing enough to get one's emotions stirred up. The goal is for all to feel good about their walk with God. However, we don't want to bring up any discussions that may make us do solemn self-examination about how we are living, or how we are allowing sin and our flesh to keep us as babes who still need milk, who cannot tolerate even the sight of meaty truth. 

How will believers, who are being taught to expect only the best from God, that they will have no difficulties in life, and who have feel-good sermons and worship services every week, be able to handle the storm that is soon to come? 

How will they be able to discern good from evil when Scripture tells us that it is only spiritually mature that will be able to do such a thing? Hebrews 5:14 reads, "But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil." How are these babes in Christ (if they are genuinely born-again believers) going to handle things when all they can handle now is milk and not the solid meat of the Word? 

Sadly, many have little desire to learn about what they consider tedious Scriptural teachings such as the need to become spiritually mature and holy, how to pray and intercede, the need and benefits of fasting, and, more importantly, the lessons regarding spiritual warfare. They see no need to learn how to defend themselves from the attacks of the enemy by growing closer to their Lord and Savior. The enemy is gathering his troops, planning his strategy. The first line of attack will be against these very people who were too complacent or did not want to be bothered to learn how to grow strong through prayer and a stronger relationship with their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. 

I believe that it is essential to prepare our minds and hearts for the inevitable trials of life. Without a Biblical foundation in place for how to face such storms, we are at a higher risk of being blown over by the fierce winds of suffering when they arrive.

You must have a Biblical foundation. What does it mean to have a Biblical foundation? It means having a theology of suffering: knowing what we believe and why about God, his sovereignty, and the hardships we experience in this world.

The prophet Ezekiel was alive during the time the Israelite's were taken captive to Babylon and was taken along with them. The book of Ezekiel is his record of what happened while in Babylon. While trying to reassure his fellow captives that they would be restored to their land after the time of God's chastening, there were many influential false prophets who, claiming to speak for God. These prophets tried to convince the captive Israelites that everything would be okay, that there would be peace regardless of what they heard from Ezekiel. They were doing everything they could think of to undermine God's warning that was being brought forth from Ezekiel.

We read in the book of Ezekiel 13:1-5 that the Word of the Lord condemned the false prophets who were saying all the things they knew the people wanted to hear, that they were not conveying what the Lord wanted was His people to listen and understand. They were claiming that what they were saying were the actual words of God, all the while; they were blatantly lying to the people to keep them deceived. Later in verse 10, it says, "Because they lead my people astray, saying, 'Peace when there is no peace'."

What are some practical ways we can prepare for the storms of life? Here are four simple ways that we can prepare for the storms of tomorrow.

Study the Word. We need to study what the Bible says about trials and suffering. How does God use pain in our lives? We also need to investigate what Scripture teaches about God, who he is, and his character. It makes a big difference whether we believe God is out to get us or whether we believe that He is holy, righteous, and right in all that he does.

Affirm God's sovereignty. What we believe about God's sovereignty plays a significant role in how we face suffering. Do we think that he is in absolute control over everything that happens? Do we trust that He will use all things, even our pain, for our good and his glory? How can we believe in and find hope in His sovereignty?

Memorize Scripture. We need to learn and memorize verses that point to the truth about suffering and the trials of life. We can memorize passages on God's promises toward us, the hope we have in Christ, and how God uses suffering in our lives for our transformation and his glory. There are several essential verses in Romans 8, such as Romans 8:18, 28–30, 35–39.

Pray. We need to develop an active prayer life. During the mild seasons of life, we need to grow in prayer and learn to turn to God for all things. The more we trust and rely on God in prayer, the more we will utilize prayer during the trials of life. In a crisis, we tend to do things by instinct. Prayer should be like breathing.

Facing the storms of life, unprepared is frightening as well. It's in the times of peace and calm that we need to develop a theology of suffering by steeping ourselves in Scripture and praying through hard questions. And we need to pray for a faith that faces the devastation that storms of life leave behind, a belief that can say, "Blessed be the name of the Lord!"

Are you ready for the coming storm? If not, you can see today, now is the time. Don't put it off it any longer. Find that place along with the LORD and get your soul ready for the coming storm.

Thorntown Community Service

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Rom. 1:16

Over the years, I have watched as the emphasis in the Church has changed from preaching the plan of salvation to adapting to the life of the sinner. (Although you do not call them sinners, they are disenfranchised.) The message is one-sided. We preach and teach about a God of love and forget the God of wrath. One writer put it this way, A God without wrath brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross.

For whatever reason, ministers have been adjusting the gospel of Jesus Christ. Is it because they are ashamed of the gospel of Christ? Very few ministers want to preach about the death of Christ, paying for the sins of humanity through His substitutionary death on the Cross. This requires them to address the nature of sin and its result, which is spiritual death and eternal punishment. 

Many churches have lost sight of the message of the gospel-repentance. The transformation that the plan of salvation gives to the individual will answer the needs of society. The Church will never alleviate the suffering of humanity caused by poverty, disease, oppressive work conditions, society's injustices, civil rights abuses, drug abuse, abortions, broken marriages, and a host of other social issues. Those who preach this "gospel" also believed that relief from their spiritual ailments of misery would improve the moral nature of those so deprived.

The Church has bought into the "War on Poverty," and the "War on Drugs." After 54 years and 22 trillion dollars poverty, today is the same as when President Johnson declared an unconditional war on poverty. The War on Drugs is a waste of time, money, and lives. It cannot be won. It has been a failure. There is a higher drug problem today than when the war on drugs began in 1971. We spend $52 billion a year on this war. We will never alleviate the issues of society by addressing the symptoms. We must address the root cause, which is sin. Only the gospel of Jesus Christ can transform the heart of the sinner and free them from the bondage in which they live.

I understand that many ministers believe you can reach more people with honey than with vinegar. They think a message of love is all that is needed. However, their message of "love only" has compromised the biblical message of repentance and has dishonored God, who gave His Son to provide a means to redeem humanity. Those who attempt to reach the lost without confronting their sins are operating on a false premise ". .a way which seems right unto a man" is not the way God's plan of salvation works. The problems of the world are all symptoms of the root cause of man's problems-sin.

If you think for one minute that putting aside differences for the common good, treating others the way we want to be treated, acting morally, ethically, and sacrificially—and that doing so will endear humans to God, you are deceived. When men deny God's perfect plan of salvation and reject His perfect justice, they deny the sacrificial atonement of His Son for the sins of man. Salvation is "not of works, lest any man should boast." In fact, it is "by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God" (Ephesians:2:8-9 There is no other way because God's perfect justice demanded that the penalty for sin for every human ("for all have sinned"-Romans:3:23

The only hope for reconciliation with God is through the name of Jesus: "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me" (John:14:6)

A few years ago, I was put in the class of a bigot who was unloving and did not have a love of Christ in my heart. Why? Because I could not embrace the corrupt practices and lifestyles of those who have been "disenfranchised" by society, and that means supporting them in their struggles brought on by their lifestyles of sin. I was informed that Jesus associated with the "disenfranchised" people of society. That is true. However, he did not embrace their sinful ways, but instead told them to "go and sin no more."

Is it any wonder our churches are filled with people who don't know that they needed to repent of their sins (if they even grasp what those sins are). It is no surprise, then, that those who have never been called to repentance begin to ask the Church to accept their sin as normal behavior, and ask the preacher to not preach out against their lifestyles. 

We are no longer preaching a message of repentance from sin, but have changed the message to social relating. We are ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ and have replaced the voice of God with the view of human reasoning. The news today is God's plan of salvation is suspect and should be avoided. Many ministers are afraid if they preach against sin and the punishment that sin brings, they will offend people. Lives will never be transformed until the message of repentance is given.
It is time for the Church to wake up and realize that God's plan of salvation is the only hope for the ailments of society. We cannot see individuals freed from the bondage of sin when we distort God's method of reaching those bound in the chains of sin. When we preach another gospel other than the gospel of Jesus Christ, we are rejecting the authority of God and denying the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ for the atonement of sin.

At present, the Body of Christ stands at a crossroads. In our present society, there has been a significant shift in worldview and Christianity. We are living in an era where the world is turned upside down. For over 1500 years, Christian Truth has been taken for granted. Today, however, Christians can no longer depend on the present culture to back up the teachings of Christianity. After centuries of a privileged status, Christians have become "Christ-less" in their actions.    

This move towards a more "loving" direction has weakened the message of salvation. When Christians are afraid to confront evil because it might offend the evildoer, then the message of salvation is no longer life-changing. In looking at the life of Christ, he spoke the Truth about the scribes and Pharisees when he called them hypocrites, children of the devil, and the blind leaders of the blind. This language was given in love as a warning of what would happen if they did not turn from their wicked ways.   

Ministers are more enlightened than Christ. His message was filled with hate speech, bigotry, and was unloving. In the world of the political correct un-offending love is the message of the Church today; if it offends, it is not a message of love. Even though Christ gave us the command to love our enemies, he did not command us to support their evil ways and condone their sinful actions. Is it not love when we warn someone of the impending doom is coming their way if they continue down a path of evil? Is it not love when we speak the Truth so that decisions can be made that will alter the course of a destructive life? Is it not love to talk about the Truth? 

There is hunger in the world for lives that live in the power of Jesus Christ. There is a hunger for authentic Christianity. The Old Testament prophets did not hate the people they hated their actions and lifestyles. 

It is time for the Church to return to the ways of Truth and Life. It is time to cast aside the ideas which have separated us from God and to allow the message of Truth to become once again the life-changing message it has been since the time of Christ. There is a desperate need to change quickly to seek a transformation that results in total surrender to Christ. 

It is time to dispense with the lies and tell the Truth. We live in a society that lives on lies because no one wants to hear the Truth---we accept the lies and deny the Truth. 

The Church has lost its first love and has forsaken the Truth. Some misinformed Christians believe that we are not to be critical of the evildoers. However, we are given an example by the same Apostle Paul that told us to submit to those who are in leadership. In his letter to the Church at Thessalonica, Paul says, "You know, brothers and sisters, that our visit to you was not without results. We had previously suffered and been treated outrageously in Philippi, as you know, but with the help of our God, we dared to tell you his gospel in the face of strong opposition. For the appeal we make does not spring from error or impure motives, nor are we trying to trick you.

On the contrary, we speak as those approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please people but God, who tests our hearts. You know we never used flattery, nor did we put on a mask to cover up greed—God is our witness. We were not looking for praise from people, not from you or anyone else, even though as apostles of Christ, we could have asserted our authority." 

Paul states speaking the Truth resulted in him being treated outrageously. He goes on to identify the group who was creating him problems. "You suffered from your own people the same things those churches suffered from the Jews who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out. They displease God and are hostile to everyone in their effort to keep us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved. In this way, they always heap up their sins to the limit. The wrath of God has come upon them at last." If Paul were speaking today, he would be accused of hate speech toward the Jews. Did he hate them? No. In fact, Paul said, "Brothers and sisters, my heart's desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved." Rom 10:1 He was showing them love by telling them the Truth. 

It is time to get back to speaking the Truth. If we want to preach a message of "love," then it must be based on the Truth. 

In 535 B.C., a Bible prophet saw what was happening to his nation. The same is happening in our country.

Zechariah 11:16 "For behold, I am going to raise up a shepherd in the land who will not care for the perishing, seek the scattered, heal the broken, or sustain the one standing (godless leadership), but will devour the flesh of the fat sheep and tear off their hoofs . . ."

Because the spiritual hoofs have been torn off our people by self-serving church leaders who have forsaken God, we no longer know how to walk the Christian walk. It wasn't always that way. There was a time when Christians in this country put serving the LORD first. Their priorities were spiritual rather than material. There was a loyalty to the Church and its mission. Today, we worry about how to protect our assets when the dollar goes belly up or the stock market crashes, as both will happen soon.

Before the LORD brought judgment on Jerusalem, the prophet Ezekiel received a message from the LORD:

Ezekiel 9:4 "The LORD said to him, 'Go through the midst of the city. . . and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations which are being committed in its midst.' And to the others (angels) he said in mine hearing, 'Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity: Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary.' Then they began at the ancient men (the church leaders) which were before the house" (of the Lord, - the Church).

Do you believe a sovereign God, Creator of the Universe, is going to act differently now, just because you go to Church on Sunday, know the four spiritual laws, and have said the sinner's prayer? As He did in Israel so long ago, the Lord is once again putting His mark on His remnant. If you have that mark, you know it because you recognize the lateness of the hour. How late? 

Isaiah 26:20-27:1 (NAS) "Come, my people, enter into your rooms and close your doors behind you; Hide for a little while until indignation runs its course. For behold, the LORD is about to come out from His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; and the earth will reveal her bloodshed and will no longer cover her slain. In that day the LORD will punish Leviathan the fleeing serpent, With His fierce and great and mighty sword, Even Leviathan the twisted serpent; and He will kill the dragon (Satan) who lives in the sea."

It's not going to be easy for those who speak the Truth. From here on out everyday, we are closer to a time when the wheat and tares will be separated. For those who believe that they do not need to watch and pray and be ready because they will be "raptured" out of the troubles coming on use remember what the prophet Amos said:

Amos 5:18-20 "Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! To what end is it for you? The day of the LORD (comes during a time of spiritual) darkness, and not light. As if a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house, and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him. Shall not the day of the LORD (come during a time of spiritual) darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?"

We are living in that day, are you ready? Are you ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ?