A few weeks ago I was talking with a woman (who happens to be my mother, and the smartest woman I have ever known) concerning some heavy things that have been on my heart recently about the state of the church in America.
My heart was overwhelmed with defeat and a sense of urgency that I’d never experienced before. As I was pouring my heart out, she stopped me and shared a vision/story that I’ve been processing and replaying in my mind for the last few days. I want to share it with you and explain where I think we are headed as the church living in a post Christian era, and what we must do if we are going to survive the coming years.
Before I begin, a quick disclaimer: I love the church with every fiber of my being. This isn’t a blog intended to bash the church or give the church a terminal diagnosis. After all, we know the end of the story! We know the gates of hell itself will not prevail against the church! However, I believe we can avoid some fatal ditches if we just open our eyes to what is happening around us. This is a call to the church. It’s a call to pastors and shepherds to get their sheep ready for the persecution, confusion, and chaos ahead.
Here is the vision from this precious woman of God.
She began describing a typical church service in today’s culture which includes the fog machines, the concert like atmosphere, and the new cafe-to-go style services. She said everything was normal in the vision except that sitting in the pews were sheep. You know… like the animals. These sheep were having the time of their lives. They were fat and sassy, some with beautiful wool so thick the little guy took up two seats. Style’n sheep they were! They loved their shepherd. He gave them ANYTHING they wanted. When he talked, they listened to every single word! He was so kind to oblige when they asked for the nice sugary oats (not those yucky bland and healthy kind). Sometimes he even gave them pure sugar cubes!
Whatever they wanted, their wish was his command! If the sheep got mad, he’d have a couple of extra sugar cubes to slip them under the pew! It was all good.
One day a man came into the service with a set of sheers. He walked to the front of the sanctuary and began to sheer the sheep. This was not out of the ordinary this time of year as they usually gave their wool away to the latest project set up by the mission committee. But, something was different this time. As the man began sheering the sheep, he noticed there was a problem. Under the beautiful thick wool, he found nothing but skin and bones. The sheep were malnourished, and some were so feeble that just the touch of the scissors knocked them over.
Rumblings from all over the auditorium began to grow louder and louder as the other sheep noticed there was danger outside in the foyer. You see, wolves had followed this man with the scissors, in hopes of finding a stray weak lamb that he’d leave behind. There were thousands of wolves in the foyer…… waiting.
Inside the sanctuary, were thousands of starving, naked sheep with no strength in them to fight. The only thing sugar cubes and fancy lights had done to these sheep, was make them unable to fight the ultimate enemy. With their wool gone, and only a pile of bones, they had nothing to hold them up. I knew where she was going with this story.
This is the state of the American Church.
Our pews are packed to the brim. Stadiums are bursting with people who for years, have gravitated to these services. Shiny pop-star-preachers have delivered exciting sermons week in, and week out about how “good” we are, and how God just loves to shower us with good things and blessings from the mountain tops!
Our churches have hired top-of-the-line business marketing gurus who are now the puppeteers behind our church agendas. They own the mouths of our preachers, removing the nutrients of Scripture one calorie at a time.
People don’t want to hear the uncool portions of Scripture anymore. The church has been so concerned with engaging the world without even realizing it, finds the world now controls our pulpits. We’ve been told that we must change with the culture to remain relevant. If we do not relate with the world, we’ll lose the young people. By doing this, we’ve built a sanctuary full of VERY SICK SHEEP.
The wolves have moved into the foyers of our churches, waiting for just the right moment to burst open the sanctuary doors and eat until their hearts content.
Our sheep are sick, naked, and cold.
Some are simply ignorant to the voice of their shepherd. Some have gotten the disease of “Stockholm Syndrome” and now are in love with their enemy. They haven’t heard the true Word of God in years, and they are about to be devoured.
This is a crisis.
If something doesn’t happen quickly, we are going to lose millions of malnourished sheep to the ravaging hungry wolves.
Persecution is coming. The wolves are now at the door. We need an IV drip of truth brought into the pulpits of the American Church before we see carnage all around us.
Here’s the good news.
There are sheep within our pews who have learned to self-feed on Scripture. A remnant. They know truth when they read it, and they’ve sensed the wolves out in the foyer coming after their fellow pew sitting sheep. They’ve put on the belt of truth, picked up the sword of the spirit, and they are ready to fight off the wolves.
Church, if you have gone to one of these churches, it is not too late for you to escape. If you have a preacher who only has the sugar cubes, it is not too late to leave. If we are to survive the coming persecution, we MUST be strong enough in the Word of God that we can fight the enemy. Millions of Christians today don’t even know how to use their sword. Worse, most don’t even know they have one! Most Christians have been so busy twisting the Word of God and deceiving others to believe the false gospel, they wouldn’t even know what a wolf looks like!
It’s time to expose the wolves for who they are, but first, we must figure out who WE are. We must let the man sheer the sheep to see what is underneath all the wool. Are we starving? Can we take on the enemy as he comes into our churches? The first step in changing is to acknowledge we are starving. Once we do that, we can begin to feed on the real Word of God, and build strength to fight off the wolves.
Is your preacher preparing you?
Because if he is not…. you will be the first to fall when persecution hits our door. <<<<<Notice I said when.>>>>> The enemy has been exposed. He no longer hides his agenda. Don’t fall for it. Don’t fall for the seeker friendly gospel sending people to hell. Don’t let the “progressive”interpretation of Scripture creep into your circles. It is straight from the pit of HELL. God is VERY clear in Scripture what He wants from His people. It is not a secret code to be translated into the culture of the day. It is His Word.
Are you prepared to stand in the face of the politically correct disease that has swept our nation? Are you prepared to stand alone?
In order to do this, you must know what you believe and why you believe it. You must know who you are in Christ. If you don’t know this, you will fall the first time the heat is turned up. You will become a casualty. When they call you a bigot, hater, and unchristian, do you reluctantly twist the Scripture just a “tad” so you are not so “bigoted?” Or, do you know what God says?
Do you know He said.. you are a child of the King of Kings, and no weapon formed against you will prosper?
I know what it feels like to be called a bigot. It hurts! But friend… God did not say it was going to be easy. He did not promise roses, as some preachers like to say. He promised that you will be hated. He promised that you will take up your cross and die if you follow Him.
Oh how unlike the sermons of today.
Be strong. Be prepared. And for the love of our Creator…. if you attend the sugar cube church, who is about to open the door to the wolves… realize you are malnourished, beef up, and RUN WITH ALL THE STRENGTH YOU HAVE IN YOU.