But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.(James 4:6-8)
Where is the church militant? Where are the watchmen upon the gates who will sound the alarm as the heathen rage and the enemy within moves at will among the congregation of the faithful? Where are the kings and priests of the Most High who by the power of God are commanded to tear down every stronghold (2 Cor. 10:4) and earnestly contend for the faith that was once and for all delivered unto the saints? (Jude 1:3)
And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful. (Mark 4:18-19)
The Christian life is a life of obedience and sacrifice to the Risen Savior, Jesus Christ. It is the abandonment the old man and to putting on of the new. (Romans 6:6, Ephesians 4:22, Colossians 3:9) It is to wrestle against the powers and principalities, the spiritual wickedness in high places of this sin sick and dying world (Epehsians 6:12) and to proclaim the Gospel (Mark 16:15). The Christian life is militant as we see from the word of our King in Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
Furthermore the Christian life is marked by – through the grace of God alone – an absolute, radical and revolutionary change in worldview. Before salvation all our thoughts were processed through the sinful and corrupted ultimate authority of our own darkened and vain reasoning. After salvation we are delighted to subordinate all wisdom and knowledge to the revealed truth of Scripture, the TRUE, singular, and ultimate authority. Before salvation we were content to drift along through our lives using our natural depraved intellect as the highest court of appeals for all things. After salvation we bow our knees to our Infinite Creator and Judge and declare “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom”! (Psalm 111:10)
The true Christian is not contented to stand idly by as his Master is publicly shamed by the perverse imaginations of “fools who have said in their heart there is no God” (Psalm 14:1). Instead he is imbued with power from on high to “take captive every thought unto Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5) and to boldly press the unbeliever who is blithely and blindly secure in his false worldly wisdom – so called – by asking the rhetorical question “Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this world? Hath God not made foolish the wisdom of this world?” (1 Cor. 1:20) The simple truth, of course, is that there is no wise, there is no disputer of this world because there is none who can effectively gainsay the manifold wisdom of God Almighty.
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. (Matthew 5:13)
Matthew 5:13 is a clear picture of what our Lord Jesus thinks of the lukewarm professing Christian who believes he can have his “get out of hell free” card punched by saying a few words and possibly getting dunked beneath some tepid tap water. Sadly this type of false conversion is all to commonplace in today’s meat market church environment wherein “decision cards”, baptismal records, church attendance rosters, and dollars in the offering plate are the gold standards by which “minsitry effectiveness” is bench marked. Oh how far she’s fallen! Oh how foolish is this harlot bride! Forgive us, oh Lord!
And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matthew 7:23)
And again we see from the Matthew 7:23 the sad end state of Tammy Talebearer and Bob Benchwarmer who “having a form of godliness [denied] the power thereof”. (2 Timothy 3:5) Do we care enough about these people to tell them the truth? Do we believe that hell is hot, dark, and forever? Can we appreciate what’s at stake in this spiritual struggle between eternal life and eternal damnation? Yet may every man be a liar and God be true! (Romans 3:4) For God is faithful and sovereign and His will cannot be thwarted; therefore let us who are called by His name be faithful servants and be obedient to His command to preach the Gospel to every creature under heaven. (Mark 16:15).
Sadly the professing church has gone whoring after strange gods and has left its first love (Revelation 2:4). Nothing is surer than God’s judgment against idolatry, and we know from the Holy Writ that judgment begins at the house of God. (1 Peter 4:17). We also know precisely what the Ancient of Days thinks of the vomitous, lukewarm, apostate last days church of Laodicea which obviously abounds before our very eyes today; “So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.” (Revelation 3:16)
When the body of Christ stops fighting for the truth, when it stops contesting the enemy for the souls of men, when it sacrifices the whole counsel of God for the sake of utilitarian political expediency or a false temporal peace then it has ceased to be of any use whatsoever and has become as “whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.” (Matthew 23:27). Like a moth-eaten article of clothing or a shattered vessel it is fit for nothing except destruction.
But with God all things are possible! For within the visible modern day churches of deceit and spiritual adultery is the church invisible which clings to the Lord and holds fast to His teaching! These are they to whom to our Lord would say “I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.”
Oh Lord, strengthen your remnant! Teach us to walk in your ways! Write your Word upon the tables of our hearts that we might be “always ready with an answer for the hope that lies within us”! (1 Peter 3:15) Amen.