Just what kind of "Christianity" do we have here in America today? I read my old King James Bible and see where it mentions the "fear of God," and I then read after "Christian" writers and they tell me that "fear" means "awe" or "reverence." I then see where my old KJV tells me of "hell, where the fire is not quenched" and I am then told by these theologians that means "separation from God." Again, what kind of "Christianity" is this that we have?
The Bible tells us that Korah, which had displeased God, came to a sudden end. "And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods. They, and all that appertained to them, went down alive into the pit, and the earth closed upon them: and they perished from among the congregation." Was this done to inspire "awe" or "reverence"? Well those Israelites that witnessed it ran like scared rabbits. They weren’t in awe, they were scared to death.
But I am told, "that was Old Testament times; God doesn’t do things like that
anymore." Try telling that to some child in Haiti who was buried alive for days in rubble before being discovered! "For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed." Mal. 3:6.
I am told that the fruit of the Spirit is "gentleness, goodness," etc. Uncle Jehu used to tell me that "its not your position, its your disposition," meaning that it was not what I am saying that bothers people but the way I present it. I knew well what he was saying because the way he said it made it hard to take. (This was the 70s.) I recall being in a service when he was preaching and He preached straight at me. I knew it and he knew it, I didn’t imagine it. It angered me and I thought of turning and walking out; but I didn’t! He gave an altar call and I wrestled with it, but then went forward and knelt, not just at the altar, but right at his feet. Why? Because I had the sentence of death in myself. I didn’t sign a pledge card or go to an altar and shed a few tears or turn over a new leaf: I died like a yellow dog out under the back porch. Dead! Crucified! Murdered! Slain! I made up my mind some 43 years ago that I was going with God all the way to heaven, and nothing nor anybody was going to stop me. Not Uncle Jehu, not my mother nor my father nor my brother, my wife, nor my best friends, nor the love of my life, my children, the "church:" nobody is going to stop me; I am going to heaven!!!
The apostle Paul, who said, "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me" was shipped by his church brothers back home to Tarsus. He was stirring things up, and when he was shipped out they had peace. Later he was brought back by Barnabas and then sent out to preach the gospel. For his trouble he was ran out of Iconium, laughed at in Athens, stoned and left for dead in Lystra, nearly pulled apart by a mob in Jerusalem, and reportedly, beheaded in Rome. Why? I suppose it was his "disposition" not his "position." He should have been more "gentle and good." What a bunch of wimps!!
God called me to preach the gospel. I answered the call. For my trouble, I have been sued, forced to resign my church by my denominational superiors, told to, "set down and shut up and I might learn something" at a "holiness" convention. When I didn’t it was suggested I should leave. I left! I have had my credentials threatened because I forwarded an email with some language in it that some people didn’t like. Mostly I have just been ostracized! Why? I suppose it was because of my "disposition" not my "position." Boy, I must be one ornery jerk.
Jeremiah is often called "the weeping prophet.” He wept for his beloved nation, Israel. God finally told him, "pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee." He then said, "the harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.." Things were tough in Israel, many had been forced into captivity, their once great nation was no more, and those left behind wanted a better life. Did Jeremiah whisper sweet nothings in their ears? What he said was: "If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and if in the land of peace, wherein thou
trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?" Does that sound like sweet talk? Finally they came to him and asked him to get directions from the Lord for them. He did and after much prayer he told them they should stay in the land and make the best of it. They said God hadn’t told him that, then packed up and went to Egypt, forcing Jeremiah to go with them. He was never heard from again, as far as we know.
Have things gotten tough in America? Brother you haven’t seen anything yet.
Rush Limbaugh, Newt Gingrich, Glenn Beck, and all the rest of the "conservatives" are not going to save us. Our economy and money system are headed for "COLLAPSE" and that very soon, and there is nothing to be done about it. Let me ask you a question: if you have run with footmen and they have wearied you, what are you going to do when things get really tough. I weep for my fellow American "Christians." Why? Because I see no reason to believe they have the character to stand "in the swelling of Jordan."
When I was in High School, back in the middle of the 20th century we had a speaker brought in, who I believe was an European. He addressed the entire student body in our gym. He tried to tell us that while WWII was tough on us it was nothing like it was in Europe for we had an ocean between us and the action. We really hadn’t seen the horrors of war. I thought he had done a good job, but as we departed what I heard was complaining that we were being criticized for not being actually in the war.
I have learned to my heartache that you can’t tell people what they don’t want to hear. I am reminded of General George Patton who got in much trouble for what came out of his mouth; yet he was kept in uniform and promoted for they needed him to win the war, the wimpy generals like Eisenhower, and Marshall who were his superiors, could never have planned and executed the battles and won. But after the war he became persona non grata. General MacArthur received similar treatment and was eventually fired by Truman. MacArthur just wouldn’t keep his mouth shut and do as he was told. He had the audacity to declare that "War’s very object is victory, not prolonged indecision." Who listened?
Well I guess I have put myself in with some elite company: Jeremiah, Paul, Patton, MacArthur: but that gives me no comfort or joy. I would much rather that people would listen; I would rejoice in that.
T hink about the things that bother you, such as sickness, not enough money, unwanted advice, preaching you don’t like, deaths of friends and love ones etc. etc. How are you going to do in a world where all these trials still exists but then real and excruciating tribulations are added to them. Can you run against horses? can you stand in the swelling of Jordan? Are you a Christian or a wimp?
DO YOU HAVE THE SENTENCE OF DEATH IN YOU?