Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Falling Away

The appetite for God exalting preaching in America appears to be on the decline; and America in general is walking the same path Europe has taken as they have become what amounts to a secular dark continent.  And while it would be presumptuous to comment with any certainty the condition of the world, it would seem plausible this holds true for it as well in spite of missionary endeavors abroad.  However, God has always had His remnant (1 Kings 19:18; Isa 1:9; 10:20-22), the Scriptures tell us that in the last days there shall be a “falling away” (2 Thess 2:3) prior to the “the day of the Lord.”  And so it appears this decline of God honoring preaching is the “falling away” at least in application here in America and the world in general. 

Even those who tolerate preaching (if that is what it can be called) can only stomach a milk toast “God loves you and has a plan for your life” type message.  Don’t dare give them the truth of a Devil’s hell and that those who reject God are cast there for that type of message is to harsh and unloving.  But God’s people will endure sound doctrine; who will not seek a preacher just to satisfy their own passions and follow after myths (2 Tim 4:1-4) but recognize the power of His word preached.

In 2 Tim we not only see the negative commentary of the hearer but that also of the “preacher” who willingly feeds their passions in this market driven church age.  And while there is nothing wrong with changing the presentation of the Gospel message to fit the audience (within limits), there is everything wrong with changing the message so as to fit the audience.  Many in America have bought in to the idea that size equals success but how do we answer Jeremiah who had not one convert and yet he was God’s prophet;  or Noah who out side his family had no converts after 120 years of work.

And as a pastor it can be discouraging to work in the field day in a out only to have little harvest in the basket.  But we must hear the encouragement of Paul to Timothy “preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching [even if they] will not endure sound teaching” (2 Tim 4:2-3a).  Paul here tells Timothy his beloved son in the faith, you be faithful to your calling in spite of the visible results.  And this is his charge to us all regardless of location or vocation whether we occupy a position of pastor or custodian, if you filling your God appointed roll “You be faithful to the Lord.”


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