Many preachers stand behind a pulpit and instead of declaring, “Thus saith the Lord,” they pronounce, “Try whatever you like”. Where we stand and why we stand makes all the difference in the world.
But know this that in the last days grievous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, railers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, implacable, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, no lovers of good, traitors, headstrong, puffed up, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God; holding a form of godliness, but having denied the power therefore. From these also turn away (2 Timothy 3:1-5).
What I would like to highlight is Paul’s last statement, that they are “holding a form of godliness, but having denied the power therefore. From these also turn away”.Paul was not referring to the pagan world, else he would have said “ungodliness”. Instead, he was addressing the Church.
The thing our churches are most interested in today is attendance at meetings. Another gospel has replaced the Gospel. It is one that pretends to meet the needs of someone, but in effect, does not meet any of their needs at all. The only thing it accomplishes is the massaging of the audience members’ respective egos.
What is really needed in this age of moral decline is some sort of foundation upon which we can really stand. If you cannot stand on the Word of God, then there is no place at all to stand. The Word of God gives the individual a true foundation. It is particularly relevant to this present time for people not to believe in truth. The problem today is that we live in a relativistic age: one’s opinion is one’s opinion and that is fine. This brings contentment because everyone is happy with what they believe; they are neither eager, nor willing to seek out the truth, however important it is.
I recently attended a church service where there were only five of us in a hall. The Pastor was the usher, worship leader, and preacher. It felt like a normal church service with its seamless liturgy. However, from the start of the service, the pastor kept mentioning the devil and the power he supposed him to have. I became rather uncomfortable as this went on and on. At the end of the service, I thought I would have a chat with this pastor to make sure that he did not believe in a dualism between God and the devil. We had a lengthy discussion, but I was making no progress in conveying my point of view since there was no absolute foundation on which he was basing his argument. He jumped from one scripture to another, from one thought to the next, so that when I finally cornered him, he said, “You believe what makes you happy, and I will believe what makes me happy”.This is such a typical approach, for in the past, when there was a contrast of views in the church, a council would be held to resolve any issues.
However, today, anything goes. Everyone has something new and different, yet all are targeting the same audience, offering something better than the next guy. Where is the Word of God in all this? What place does the Bible take in Christendom today? In a world where there are no absolutes, everyone is free to do what they will because there is no standard by which we can be measured. There is no absolute judgment, for if there were, truth and right and wrong statues would be required. Yet, there is no such thing.
In a world, such as this, where there are no absolutes, there is no meaning to life. The sad part is that many Christians have conformed to society’s relativistic system. If there is no truth and there is no absolute authority, then there is no meaning to life; therefore, it must be best just to go into the world and satisfy the desires of the flesh. However, if we do that, then there will be no churches; this leads to no ministry; this then leads to poor and penniless pastors who concoct prosperity gospels and seeker-sensitive gospels to attract the crowds. Christianity without Biblical authority is just a passing furore in an age of passing furores. When the Church loses the sight of the importance of the scriptures, it also loses its purpose and a place to stand. If we do not actually believe that the entire scripture is the Word of God, we will run into problems when we read passages such as:
Every scripture inspired of God is also profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for instruction which is in righteousness. That the man of God may be complete, furnished completely unto every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
If we do not believe what Paul says, then the scriptures for us cannot be profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for instruction; and they will not make one complete.
Categories: Defending the Faith