Whatever attributes, attainments or accolades credited to black Americans, Christianity and the spirited, homogenous churches we were compelled from bigotry to form are going to be identified with us until the Lord returns! As much as the distinctive pigment of our skin, physical features and abilities, Christianity and our churches are an inseparable part of Black History. This trilogy of black Americans, Christianity and churches is yet another of our self-made accomplishments to hear many especially black liberals in willful ignorance tell it. However, in a biblical worldview the trilogy exists at all because of a gracious God who is not pleased with the failures and apostasy of His glory stealers!
The faith of our Christian forefathers from slavery is a precious historical reality I never tire of celebrating and trumpeting as widely as possible. As the Lord leads me to warn once again this Black History Month though, their Christian faith was supposed to flower into an amazing community-wide testimony of and to His glory, not ours as the contemporary black Americans that are guilty would have it. For black Americans to glory in Christianity as a construction of our doing in any part, it would actually have to be the case. To the extent this is the case, it is wickedly not of God, but the responsible black Americans as a work of human religious invention as I have written before.1
The Henry Louis Gates, Jr. written, produced and hosted two-part documentary, The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song that aired this past week on PBS is the most recent display of self-congratulation and glorying in Christianity as a religious invention of blacks. This purpose can be read in the promotional statement on the documentary’s official Web Site before ever watching it. In part it says, “The documentary reveals how Black people have worshipped and, through their spiritual journeys, improvised ways to bring their faith traditions from Africa to the New World, while translating them into a form of Christianity that was not only truly their own...”2
Even a superficial reading of the Bible’s New Testament makes it clear Christianity did not originate with any mortal ethnicity, but God! As it is written, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory of the only begotten of the Father full of grace and truth” expressly identified as “Jesus Christ,” (John 1:1, 14-18, NKJV). Sent down to earth by God the Father in love, He preached the Gospel that willing mankind can be saved from our sins, receive new birth, eternal life and entry into His Kingdom through repentance and faith in Him (John 3:1-21, 34-36).
The Lord’s first coming is the culminating fulfillment of prophetic promises made through and to the Jewish people as one of them (Matthew 1:1-17). Even so, His message of salvation and the Kingdom from the Father by His sovereign will transcends His Jewish ethnicity and their historic culture (John 14:6, 18:35-38) to reach all of the ethnicities, tribes and languages of mankind on the earth (Isaiah 49:5-6)! Indeed, Christ declared on the strength of who He is and the course of His work, “I will build my church” (Matthew 16:13-18, NKJV) and after His death, burial and resurrection, tasked apostles to labor with Him before ascending back to Heaven (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:4-11).
Now, if Christianity and the Church are of Christ, where does any ethnicity of man except the Jews as the original recipients, beneficiaries and conduits for disseminating the Gospel get off attempting to lay claim to these as their own (Romans 1:1-17, 9:1-5)? Surely, the Lord knew the faith would face tremendous pressures to be culturally conditioned as it was spread throughout the earth and in the worst case, corrupted, from the counter working of Satan as it did still in the first century. For this reason, His apostles sternly warn all who embrace the faith against altering it or His Word in any manner (Galatians 1:1-10, 5:1-15; 2 Peter 2:1-3, 3:14-18; Revelation 22:18-19).
Otherwise, God who created mankind and ordained diversity of skin pigment, physical features, abilities, languages and unique ethnic cultures is glorified when they “in spirit and truth” offer up thanksgiving, praise and worship to Him for His great salvation with faithfulness to the Word and obedience (John 4:21-26, 14:15; Acts 17:24-29; Romans 15:7-13, 16:17-27, NKJV)! The faithful among these peoples never forget or lose sight of the fact it is God in grace and mercy that found and saved them through the Gospel of Christ! His Person is to be exalted and His transcendent holy Word, Kingdom principles, values, morals and ethics held in highest esteem over anything they might think, feel, believe or do culturally. In short, they do not allow their culture to overcome the faith.3
1 Read the two-part post beginning February 8, 2015, Strong Through God, Not Religion, under the category, Black History.
2 See the full promotional statement at https://pbs.org/weta/black-church/.
3 This is as I write in my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics, in a word to pastors. Published by Open Door Communication Ministries, Inc., the book is available
in print or digital formats at major internet booksellers. You can also purchase a print copy in the Strong Man Store.
Nevertheless, as the Gates documentary unabashedly shows, taking cues from their former masters and dominant white culture, black Americans too, created their own forms of Christianity, churches and various denominational entities.4 Common to many including the Church Of Christ without instruments is the uninhibited expression of emotion that God winked at in the most painful of historically oppressive times. But if all you have and come away with from church is an emotionally cathartic temporary experience, you have missed God and His help in the eternally satisfying qualities of life and transforming power of the Holy Spirit through biblical Christianity (John 10:10)!5
As portrayed in the film, the driving force behind the Christianity of black Americans is their native West African religious traditions to include a nod to Islam. Out of the severe adversity of capture, transatlantic transport and enslavement, blacks “made a way out of no way” for themselves! Furthermore, absent a biblical worldview of the black experience, the Gates documentary fully incriminates black religionists and the utter failure of their manmade religious construction to measure up to authentic biblical Christianity by admitting and reveling in such heretical acts as reinterpreting the Bible in their own image and making purposeful cultural adaptations.
Not the least of these reinterpretations and cultural adaptations as a deliberate theme throughout the four hour film is freeing women and gays from oppression by whites and stuffy blacks operating out of a Christian conservatism ostensibly beyond biblical Christianity in its restrictions. Ever for the oppressed no matter what, God is presented as working in all of the circumstances and black self-efforts through the engagement of their churches and many well known leaders to free not just our people, but women and gays too, from the tyranny of conservative oppressors. Gates himself tearfully returns to the presently white woman led Methodist church he grew up in to end his film.
Educated experts and cultural icons notwithstanding, Christianity and churches as a religious invention of black Americans may be a pride-filled marvel of sinful mortal flesh, but not the God of the Bible (Matthew 7:21-23, 15:1-20, 23:1-33; Luke 16:15)! As with all other forms of Christianity corrupted and dominated by culture as manmade religion, that of black Americans is counterfeit too; a knock off of the real deal prophetically foretold would be extant in the “perilous times” of these “last days,” (2 Timothy 3:1-9, NKJV). Clearly from this prophecy, no counterfeit form of Christianity by anyone is acceptable to God who judges and calls His faithful out of the harlotry (Revelation 18:1-8).6
Also, since most of our people can now, read the Bible to know what it says for themselves, ignorance of its content is no longer an excuse. Because of this, God has not for a long time been winking at what can only be described as willful ignorance waiting for the guilty to see the light and repent (Acts 17:30-31; 1 Timothy 1:12-14; James 4:17). The disproportionate ruin and God’s remedial judgments widely seen in our community are evidence of willful ignorance in rejection of biblical Christianity starting with the Gospel as salvation from sin defined in His unchanging Word as well as many choosing to be victims in rebellion and refusing to fulfill His good ends for our people’s capture, transatlantic transport, enslavement and freedom (Hosea 4:1-5; 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10)!7
That God, the living God of the Bible would allow people to suffer being slaves on purpose is unapologetically presented therein (Psalm 107:10-16). Seeing so much of our experience in the Egyptian bondage of the Jews, we should also see that God did not just show up afterward to deliver them in surprise it had happened, but ordained it beforehand (Genesis 15:12-16; Exodus 2:23-3:8)! Moreover, the Lord later punished Israel with slavery by many nations, most prominently Assyria and Babylon. Of the Jews that came out of Egypt, many perished in the wilderness and never reached the Promised Land because of unbelief fed rebellion. For while God is for the oppressed, it is only the “humble” faithful who trust in and obey Him that are blessed (Psalms 9:10-12, 10:12-18, NKJV).
For this cause the writer of Hebrews warns all professed Christians about unbelief fed rebellion and being “hardened through the deceitfulness of sin,” (Hebrews 3:7-19, NKJV). Certainly, Satan, sin and self has deceived and they are thoroughly deluded who believe God has set aside His Word in these latter days to uphold rebellion against Himself (Psalms 2, 119:89; Isaiah 40:8; Mark 13:31; 1 Timothy 4:1-2)!8 Such willful ignorance is destroying our people as it once did Israel in the land. As it is written, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” And because they rejected knowledge, God rejected ancient Israel from His purpose and does so today among our people; the lively worship in invented religious forms and churches drawn from them dead before Him (Hosea 4:6, NKJV)!9
Therefore, if the Gates documentary is the final answer to God by black Americans practicing their own form of counterfeit Christianity and sin to include stealing His glory while resisting His call to repentance, then, know He is about to turn your “glory into shame,” (Proverbs 14:34; Hosea 4:7, NKJV). As it is written, “My glory I will not give to another” (Isaiah 42:8, NKJV) and ‘“he who glories, let him glory in the Lord,’” (2 Corinthians 10:17-18, NKJV). With hearts set on sin and "iniquity," God will “punish” you for your “ways” and “reward” your rebellious “deeds” of “harlotry.” Not repenting, your obstinate persistence in willful ignorance is proof of apostasy from which there is no return and only His wrath (Job 36:5-21; Hosea 4:8-10; Romans 1:18-2:11; Hebrews 6:4-8, 10:26-31, NKJV).
4 Read the September 4, 2016 post, Christianity The Religion American Style, under the category, Call To Repent.
5 See Strong Through God, Not Religion. Also, read especially part three of the post that begins February 28, 2016, When The Messengers Are Bound, under the categories,
Black History and The Cause. It was God that was the true “refuge” for our “oppressed” people who were looking to Him, not the place of assembly (Psalm 9:9, NKJV)!
This truth should be abundantly clear by now, to all that are willing to see it after over a year in some cases of not being able to assemble in church buildings due to God’s
6 Read the January 26, 2020 post, The Spirit Of Harlotry, under the category, Call To Repent and the two-part post that begins June 7, 2020, Days Of Separation, under the
category, Bible Prophecy.
7 Read the two-part post beginning June 7, 2015, 150 Years After Slavery and beginning February 26, 2017, the four-part God Of Restoration And Judgment both under the
category, Black History. The biblical worldview of the black experience in the From Slavery To Victory Education Project the Lord led me to present is firmly built on the foun-
dation of His foreknowledge and sovereign will! The enslavement of our West African forefathers could not have happened without God knowing about and permitting it.
Visit the project Web Site, https://fromslaverytovictory.org to consider something other than the false narratives of victimization through content such as The Journey and in
the Journal Archives, The Renewing Of Our Minds.
8 The delusion God has set aside His Word encompasses what is written in it condemning all instances of sexual immorality and establishing His order of mankind with men
as His elect leaders from creation in the home and churches loyal to Christ’s Headship (1 Corinthians 6:9-20, 11:1-12, 14:34-40; 1 Timothy 2:11-15). Rather than belligerent
defiance, professed Christian feminist rebels and their male supporters ought to be in fear of the ongoing judgment upon them the Lord had me proclaim in the October 25,
2020 post, Women Pastors: Rank Rebellion, under the category, Call To Repent!
9 See the February 9, 2020 post, Reputation And Reality, under the category, Call To Repent. If “lively worship” is so important to God He is willing to overlook sin in the midst
as many contend, then, plainly this thinking during the Coronavirus church shutdowns has been exposed as false as it also is in the post (Isaiah 1:13)!
On this Palm Sunday 2016, the Lord has directed me to repost this edited 2013 blog that as it turns out was a prelude to important posts on apostasy He led me to make in February 2014. After reading this blog, I encourage you to follow it up by reading “The Falling Away” and “The Man Of Sin” under the category, Bible Prophecy as well as “Is There No King Among Us” under the category, Call To Repent. Concerning this repost, I am certain that in the midst of all the outward display of religiosity by professing Christians beginning today through this upcoming Resurrection Sunday--my 39th spiritual birthday, the Lord is giving us a reality check (Luke 6:43-45). Hear the Word of the Lord! In honor of the occasion, this post will stand until a new one is made on April 3rd. Hosanna!
Originally Posted March 24, 2013
It is Palm Sunday 2013 and who could have imagined that a major issue in the churches of Jesus Christ at this hour is the rising tide of apostasy in Western Christianity? Contrary to the position of some that Christian apostasy is impossible, the Bible not only says it is possible, but foretells it with deceit as among the evil features of these latter days before the return of the Lord (Matthew 24:3-4, 9-10; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4; 1 Timothy 4:1-2). Now, if God in His Word says something is not only possible, but will occur, what man is there filled with the Holy Spirit and coming to Scripture ready to be taught solely by what it says that will teach otherwise?
The same Scripture teaches only men devoid of the Holy Spirit or quenching His fire that come to the Word with their minds already made up, who refuse to accept its teaching and impose on its sacred verses their own doctrines will teach other than what is written. These are impostors, false prophets and teachers, carnal men and apostates walking about in cynical unbelief creating divisions; men of which as well are members of Christianity the religion’s educated elite who arrogantly exalt and cite themselves as wise authorities and blindly lead one another into the ditch of divine displeasure (Matthew 15:12-14, 24:11; 1 Corinthians 1:10-13, 3:1-4, 18-23; 2 Peter 2; Jude 3-19).
For the sake of clear biblical definition, apostasy is in subsequent unbelief to willfully forsake, turn from following, deny or renounce the Lord or the faith outright or to practice sin without repentance after having first truly believed (Ezekiel 18:24-26; Mark 8:34-38; Titus 1:10-16; Hebrews 3:5-19). It is silly to interpret Bible passages that speak of apostasy as referring only to persons that never believed and are later exposed as impostors. An impostor is a fraudulent pretender from beginning to end, while Scripture teaches the apostate actually believed God’s message and enjoyed its fruit but after a time, completely turned from Him and His Word in unbelief. The only things the impostor and the apostate share in common are unbelief and where they will spend eternity after the judgment of God (Luke 12:42-46; Romans 11:19-22; Hebrews 6:4-8, 10:26-31).
Apostates are of two kinds: willful and de facto. One that is willful openly turns from the Lord. A de facto apostate is one such as the apostle Paul refers in Titus 1:15-16 that professes with his mouth to know God, but actually denies Him by his corrupt doctrines and unrepentant lifestyle. To this hour, such have been the greater number of apostates since the first century who discover too late in Hades that God does not judge us by a one-time profession of faith, but by deeds that demonstrate faith’s continuing vitality in and to the end of our lives (Matthew 24:13; Romans 1:16-17, 2:5-11; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Galatians 5:19-21, 6:7-8; Hebrews 3:5-6, 14, 10:35-39; James 2:14-26).
The tide of apostasy in Western Christianity has been slowly rising for the last five centuries since the failed reformation attempt of Catholicism and splinter groups of every kind formed under the umbrella of Protestantism. All manner of heretical instruction has infiltrated the post-Reformation daughter churches of Catholicism not just by patently false uncredentialed teachers, but as already mentioned, those calling themselves scholars, theologians--the religious educated elite.
As the Lord leads me to discuss in the final chapter of my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics directed to pastors and churches, the last hundred years have been especially devastating in the churches as under the guise of academic freedom and theological discourse, proud professionals as cynical unbelievers and de facto apostates have churned out or upheld any number of false, confusing and conflicting doctrines in a not so funny comedy of errors that often has persisted even after being challenged. As I point out in my book, for example, this evil state of affairs has led to churches not upholding the biblical worldview of marriage, family and men as God’s appointed leaders.
Now, with worldly political correctness, tolerance, truth and moral relativity added to the mix in the churches along with related entities, there is a free for all where men and women with credentials from esteemed institutions hold any viewpoint and spout any kind of doctrine that can no longer be challenged from the Word of God because that is his or hers expertly held personal theology. Those that challenge these de facto apostates anyway in earnestly contending for the faith are considered intolerant, divisive, out of touch and “holier than thou.”
Meanwhile, willful apostates are not only found in the Bible colleges and seminaries of Western Christianity, but in steady increase church pulpits. This growing apostasy will continue to flower until it reaches the near at hand foretold culminating event in the face of severe global persecution and before the Antichrist’s appearing followed gloriously by the Day of the Lord (2 Thessalonians 2:3)!
Originally Posted January 26, 2014
God’s New Covenant (just as the Old) is broken only by its mortal parties to the second part not for one sin or ten thousand that are forgiven upon confession and repentance. It is broken by a persistent, unbelief driven return to the willful practice of sin in disobedience without repentance along with stubborn resistance to the convicting work of the Holy Spirit and church discipline as a de facto apostate (Isaiah 63:7-10; Jeremiah 7:21-27, 8:4-6; Acts 7:51; 1 Corinthians 5:9-13; 2 Corinthians 12:19-21; Philippians 3:17-19; 1 Timothy 5:6-15; Titus 1:10-16; Hebrews 3:7-13). It is also broken by willful and blatant apostasy (Jeremiah 2:1-13, 11:1-10; Matthew 10:16-33; 2 Timothy 2:11-13).
The deliberate apostate is immediately condemned (Luke 11:24-26; Galatians 1:6-9; Hebrews 6:4-8; 2 Peter 2:1-3, 18-22; Jude 4). In the case of both the de facto and willful apostate, the rejection of Christ and His once and for all sacrifice for sin leaves them with no other sacrifice or covenant. Also, God considers their rejection the unforgivable sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit with no outcome but eternal destruction (Luke 12:8-10; Hebrews 10:26-39; 1 John 5:14-17). Truly, the Lord Jesus plainly warns prospective followers and parties to the second part of God’s New Covenant about His demand that they make Him their ‘“first love’” and declares His willingness to destroy those who will not (Luke 14:25-26; Revelation 2:1-5, NKJV). Therefore, let every professing Christian give full heed to Hebrews 3:14-19 as does the aspiring strong man of God. The risen, living Christ continues His cry among American churches, “Who is on the Lord's side?”
“Get your head in the game,” coaches in all sports may be heard to firmly bark at a player that is not focused because of being distracted and making mistakes as a result. Spiritually speaking, “get your head in the game” is what the Lord Jesus is patiently, yet, insistently urging guilty pastors, other leaders and the churches they serve in this critical last two minutes before the world as we have known it in this present age comes to its end! Distracted by selfish and worldly motives in ministry and religion, they are not watching the unfolding of prophetic fulfillment or the corresponding clock indicating time is short. Kingdom work and priorities are not taking center stage as a result!
The Lord Jesus has set His Kingdom agenda in this present age as going into all the earth to preach the Gospel, make, baptize and teach disciples as He has equipped us with the Holy Spirit and gifts to do (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 1:8; Ephesians 4:7-16)! In accord with the divine latter day prophetic emphasis and Christ’s focus and example, the first priority of His agenda is men so they may be restored and in turn, restore their families as I have written in my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics and many other places (Malachi 4:5-6; Luke 1:5-17, 3:1-6, 5:1-11).1 This is the work with men as the priority we are to be fully engaged in until He returns (Luke 19:1-27).
Of my greatest sorrows in doing this Kingdom work and surely the Lord’s exasperation (Mark 9:14-19), however, is seeing great numbers of men and boys come to or rededicate to Him, but having very few churches for one or another mostly sinful reasons that I can send them to for quality discipleship and instruction in biblical manhood.2 These reasons include pastoral self-preoccupation, disinterest, lack of Kingdom vision and priorities through the practice of religion and tradition, fear of offending women, holding to a rebel feminist worldview, fear of virile men and exposure as spiritually weak and inadequate, racism, pride, envy, ignorance and no financial incentive to name some.3
I have also approached pastors and churches to stand with and support us in doing nothing but what is of the Lord’s Kingdom cause and work in the Gospel to restore men. Most of their reasons remain rooted in carnality and disobedience as distractions and keep them from doing so. Of course, some demonically inspired quick thinker will say, “Just because we have not supported your Ministry, does not mean the Lord is displeased with what we have chosen to do for Him.” And again, the Holy Spirit quickly reminds us all that stewards are not in a position to set their own agenda for what they have been entrusted and are insubordinate when they do (Matthew 25:14-30)!
Certainly, having been one, I understand that until now, a relative, faithful few local church pastors and their leadership teams might have said no to us because they act in obedience to what they have understood the Lord has directed them to do Kingdom-wise. The truly Kingdom minded, though, discern the importance of all Kingdom work and as we still do at this tiny Ministry, set aside a tenth of our income to support others doing what we are not! As a result, even among this group of pastors we are told no mostly because of an internal, often arrogant myopic focus that unless it fits their view of worthy, are in control or benefitted in some way, they will not support other ministries.
The pastors and church leadership teams in the majority, however, do not even have a vision for doing any Kingdom work much less its divinely insisted latter day return to restoration through the Gospel and priority of men or a budget! Thus, not having their heads in the King’s game at all because of distractions, they are set in church maintenance mode first which makes saying no to our Ministry doing Kingdom work easy. Once more, someone will say, “How can you ever expect pastors to support your work when you criticize them?” It is not with malice, but the heavy heart of the Lord in tears of love at times that I speak the truth and hope for repentance leading to revival among pastors (2 Corinthians 7:8-12) who in Christ’s image, should lead the way as team captains by precept and example in these last two minutes (Mark 10:32-34; John 12:26, 21:15-22; Hebrews 13:7).
I know that a few pastors bound by the human traditions of religion mean well, but all operate out of the same spiritual ignorance Israel’s religious establishment had when they called for Christ’s execution instead of receiving Him as their Messiah (Acts 3:11-17; 1 Corinthians 2:6-8). God in great patience gave those leaders a generation to repent from their ignorance before unleashing His wrath upon them and the entire nation at the hands of Rome in A.D. 70. There is no excuse for such willful ignorance among guilty pastors today, who want me to believe this or do that jumping through hoops before implying falsely they might do God’s will with men or help us. Like the proverbial frog in the pot, they do not realize God’s foretold judgment of His house first is in progress (1 Peter 4:17-18)!
Pastor, you will give an account! Your distractions of carnality and disobedience leading to dull hearing and lapsed watchfulness are destroying not only men’s lives, but churches in this final two minutes of the game (Luke 12:35-48; 1 Corinthians 3:1-23)!4 Business as usual church may have worked before what is almost unanimously understood as a post-Christian paradigm now in the West, but never again. And how will you justify your sinful distractions to King Jesus at His judgment seat (1 Corinthians 4:1-5; 2 Corinthians 5:9-11)? Let the willing that are guilty repent and get your heads back in the game before it is too late! Also, support ministries like ours already in the game! The risen, living Christ continues His cry among American churches, “Who is on the Lord's side?”
1 My book in Print and E-Book editions is available in the Strong Man Store as well as all major internet booksellers including Christian Book and Rainbow West Christian
Supply. For related Blogs, read the three part, In God’s Revival Men Are Restored, posted January 8-22, 2017 and all others this year under the category, The Cause.
2 Take a look at the number of churches listed on our Web Site Ministry and Church Link Page after seeking to engage pastors with Strong Man Ministries since 2005!
3 Read my two part Blog, Christianity The Religion Of Men, under the category, Instruction, the September 25, 2016 Blog, A Leadership Caused Failure and the October
2, 2016 post, Gifted With A Prophet’s Heart both under the category, Call To Repent for an elaboration on manmade religion as a significant hindrance to quality disciple-
ship and teaching of biblical manhood conducted by pastors in the churches.
4 Read my sobering August 23, 2015 Blog, Babylon Is Falling! under the category, Bible Prophecy and the two referenced in the footnote along with the related climatic
September 13, 2015 post on the coming end of the local brick and mortar churches as we have known them, Praise For The Lord God Almighty! under the category,
Glory To God!
In the final paragraph of my December 3, 2017 post, “Pastors And Developing Men” under the category, The Cause, I lamented as I do in my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back to Basics, that another important reason many pastors do not teach and develop their men is because of being weak in sin themselves as professing Christians. In this edited 2012 repost, I elaborate further on this tragic reality which I have seen and experienced in my own journey from the pew to the pulpit. As I stated in that previous post, this is not about anyone being perfect, but God’s expectation of spiritual maturation among all of His sons including pastors and our zeal to pursue it (Philippians 3:12-16).
Originally Posted November 11, 2012
As a babe in Christ, I had no idea at the time that His burden for the churches He placed in my heart during a commanded seven day fast without food or water in February of 1979 was a formal calling to serve Him in the gifting of a watchman/prophet and teacher (Acts 11:27-30, 13:1-3; Romans 12:6; 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, 28-29, 14:1-5; Ephesians 4:7-16). I did not seek the associated gifts, calling and ministry nor did I initially embrace them. All I know is that as the Lord discipled me I gained an insatiable desire to know His Word and was drawn to the Old Testament prophets and their prophetic utterances with amazing understanding.
I also boldly spoke out against the wickedness in the churches that I only later began to realize I had been seeing since I was a child! After the thoroughly disappointing and humiliating Fort Worth, Texas launch of Open Door Communication Ministries, Inc. in the fall of 1985 that included calling pastors and churches to repentance with no result, by the spring of 1986 I was broken before the Lord and about to quit. He took me to Ezekiel 33:1-9 and made me understand the biblical and spiritual grounds of my service on His behalf and at His exclusive pleasure (Revelation 1:9-20). I surrendered in obedience and have been faithful ever since in His strength through many trials.1
In those early days, a number of pastors--a few well intended--told me I was not being heard because I was young, not a pastor and did not understand what pastors have to go through. Then the Lord made me a pastor and I was told you only have a small church and are not impressive enough for pastors of stature to hear you. Now, it is I have no standing to be heard by or to instruct pastors because I was not a successful pastor after having the most recent church I shepherded close its doors (Matthew 11:16-19).2 In the meantime, what the Lord has taught me in over thirty years of service to Him in the churches is that pastors are sinful, fallen mortals as all other men.
Pastors can and many do allow their sinful flesh rather than the Holy Spirit to rule their lives and impact the way they pastor (Galatians 5:19-25). Far from crucifying the flesh and its passions they even indulge it. Prominent is pride, lying, dishonesty, selfish ambitions, covetousness, stealing, envy, jealousies, evil plotting, lording it over the people, heresies, sexual immorality, alcohol and drug abuse. Rather than holding each other accountable for righteous conduct, many even celebrate each other’s sinful deeds. In the same way the outwardly religious people they shepherd do not want to hear and obey the truth of God from His Word that rebukes their sins, so also many pastors.
As I write in my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics, it is a great tragedy that many pastors are not aspiring strong men of God in the image of Christ.3 Not answering the call themselves, these pastors will surely not teach their men to become such men either. Therefore, as I have from the beginning in obedience to the Lord’s call on my life, I warn and strongly appeal to pastors that are guilty of being willfully weak in the flesh to repent and turn back to Him in all brokenness that the Lord might forgive and restore you. It is a lie from Satan and you have been greatly deceived to believe that because you are a pastor, somehow you have a judgment “get out of jail free card” from God (Deuteronomy 7:6-11, 10:17; Colossians 3:23-25).
If He has not yet severely dealt with you because you have failed to develop as a Christian before Him and to develop other men, chalk it up to His longsuffering, patience and forbearance not your indispensible position as a pastor (2 Peter 3:9). Thus, it was not because I was unfaithful to the Lord or had forsaken my own spiritual development that I know the pain of a disbanded church as the Lord’s judgment on His house. But I was too faithful in standing on and preaching His Word uncompromised along with growing mightily in it to suit folk steeped in religion so that a number over time departed from under my leadership (as even some depart as offended readers of this blog), while the Lord left me standing strong (Jeremiah 23:28-29; John 6:41-71)!4
Now, if my burden to proclaim the Word of God uncompromised and in growing spiritual maturity to live out biblical righteousness destroyed a local church in God’s will (2 Chronicles 36:15-16; Revelation 2:1-5), what really is holding together the one you shepherd, brother pastor, as you willfully sin against the Lord? How much longer do you have before His judgment finally catches up to you if it has not already (Numbers 32:23b; Jeremiah 23:1-2, 9-40; Micah 3:8-12; Matthew 7:15-23; Hebrews 10:26-31; James 3:1; 1 Peter 4:17-18; 2 Peter 2:4-22)? And if it is all like that for the men God actually does call to serve as pastors, where from His Word is your comfort, sister? The risen, living Christ continues His cry among American churches, "Who is on the Lord's side?"
1 The Lord keeps having me repeat the story of my awakening to His calling to the end, I am sure, that sooner or later someone will realize it is biblically consistent and
authentic since by His will, all New Testament spiritual gifts continue to be given by Him until He comes and ends this present, mortal Church era (Zechariah 13:2-6;
1 Corinthians 13:8-12). Without biblical declaration otherwise, the denial of the ongoing display of prophecy among all spiritual gifts is only of sinful human suppo-
sition and suppression in rebellion as is typical of those practicing a manmade form of religion, their proud and arrogant religious leaders and educated elite (Mark 11:
27-33). Other posts with my calling testimony include the October 2, 2016 post, Gifted With A Prophet’s Heart under the category, Call To Repent and more recently
on October 1 this year, Not A Market Driven Work under the category, Glory To God!
2 Read the August 30, 2015, post, When Strong Men Of God Weep under the category, Glory To God! and the one that follows to learn more about my most recent ex-
perience as a local church pastor.
3 The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics is available at all major internet booksellers and in the Strong Man Store.
4 Because of my experience, the Lord has given me a tender and empathetic heart for faithful small church pastors and their struggles. If I can encourage, pray for or
serve you in some way, pastor, please contact me through this Ministry. Stand strong; you are precious to our Lord!
To deny Christianity the religion of men on earth is long overdue severe divine judgment is to be completely out of touch with Bible history and reality. Yes, it is true that God is merciful and patient with us as my willfully weak and sinning brothers like to remind me. Yet, the instruction and events of the Bible show that God’s longsuffering patience and forbearance to judge His people finally does come to an end. That time has come for great Babylon and her daughters! Of the many centuries long sinful practices professing Christians have that you can be sure are lumped into the unfolding judgment of God in His house is racism by all that are guilty.
It is commanded (not suggested) by Jesus Christ that His followers love each other as He has loved us so the on looking world will know that we are His people (John 13:34-35). Clearly, for centuries professing Christians in great numbers have not obeyed the Lord as seen in the many unloving ways we do each other and in no less a manner than the evil practice of racism. As a result, we have failed to give the world the right picture of Christ in us as His followers. Prominent among those historically guilty of practicing racism are those of white, European descent, the dominant ethnicity in Western societies and many others by conquest.
Conquered and enslaved ethnic peoples were introduced to many forms of Christianity, but generally not shown its love driven racial and ethnicity harmonizing biblical reality in most cases as history records. Now, in this 21st century, the world is fragmented along racial and ethnic lines to such an extent, the fulfillment of the Lord’s prophecy about widespread conflict as an important sign of His near return is beginning to occur (Matthew 24:7a). Here in America, so many have in great delusion wanted to believe racism and ethnic strife was behind us, but as I lamented in my November 29, 2015 blog, “When The Glory Comes” under the category, Glory To God, not so!
To my ongoing grief out of loyalty to my Lord Jesus and His Kingdom first, rather than having been part of the solution, professed followers and churches identifying with Him are a major part of the continuing problem of racism in our nation.1 I repost this 2011 blog in part because it is still my hope that with godly sorrow and repentance from the sin of racism (2 Corinthians 7:8-11), Holy Ghost fired national racial and ethnic love driven harmony will finally come forth among all who profess to know Christ and led by those of the white ethnicity as is appropriate (Romans 5:5). Then maybe we can say something to the world about how it is supposed to work in Christ by our example.2
Until then, sadly, I must report that my most recent hopeful effort on mission from the Lord to be part of the solution at the church named in this blog repost failed as the reflexive and entrenched carnal attitudes of racism and religion displayed by the pastor and elders stymied my every attempt to fit in as I am and be accepted on biblical terms which I also shared with them. Though I was blessed to make a few lifelong friends from the experience, my departure for the sake of peace in December 2014 resulted in me returning to “my place” in a predominantly black American congregation.
This leads to the other important reason I am making this repost. It is to give the following solemn warning to all professing Christians: Jesus Christ means business about all of the commands and instructions of His will stated in His Word (John 15:9-17)! Therefore, realize the historic failure of professing Christians in their churches to love in celebration of God’s racial diversity initiative has brought and is bringing His severe judgment upon the guilty (Matthew 23:8; 1 Peter 3:8-12).
And as the ones who knew the Lord’s will in the Gospel and were given much to fulfill it in carrying it to the races and ethnic groups in the most far flung lands on the earth, those of white, European descent will suffer many more stripes for even defiant disobedience to His command to love in the willful practice of hating in racism what are supposed to be your brothers in Christ (Luke 12:47-48; 1 John 3:10-15, 4:20-21). Those stripes include watching their proudly beloved idol, Western Civilization, crumble to the dust (Isaiah 2:12-22). Intensifying global ethnic strife and persecution of Christians going forward will fully expose all that have no love to their eternal anguish (Matthew 25:31-46).
Originally Posted December 11, 2011
After much prayer with amazing answers from God, regular attendance, visitation with our prospective leaders and fellowship with the people, my wife, Mary and I sought membership and were received into Hinson Baptist Church of Portland. While at this late date in our nation’s existence it should not matter, it does, so, I share that the church is predominantly made up of Christian white Americans. This is one of the reasons my wife and I are convinced our Lord has sent us to Hinson that we may on purpose be vessels of His love in obedience to His command to all Christians found in John 13:34-35.
The historical wall of race that continues to divide churches in America is a great sin and tactical error that Satan has exploited to fullest advantage. Indeed, we Christians are disqualified to speak with authority on why worldly diversity initiatives of tolerance are wrong to include same sex relationships as acceptable when we cannot accept brothers and sisters in Christ that we know are racially different by God’s purposeful design. The picture of Heaven is that of the ethnicities gathered together in Christ before the Father’s throne in joyful assembly (Revelation 5:9-10). It is not perfection that enables that reality in Heaven as much as it is willful sin in us that hinders it on earth.
Growing up in the small community of Seaside, California in the sixties, we were forced by integration requirements to go to public schools where we mixed with persons from a variety of backgrounds. Amazingly, all things considered, we kids got along pretty well though I, among others felt compelled to hold white adults in authority accountable for being fair. Blacks, Whites, Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans, Pacific Islanders--you name it, all were represented. Did I mention we were sinners and not all honoring Christ’s command or empowered by the Holy Spirit to love each other? My wife had a similar experience growing up in San Jose. Our experiences of living in racial diversity no doubt have contributed to our willingness to obey the Lord’s leading to join Hinson.
If sinners of the world can celebrate and enjoy racial diversity, what is up with the people of God? Again, it is willful sin manifested in bigoted, racially intolerant attitudes and flesh driven religiosity that allows it. Those that are guilty must repent and submit in obedience to our Lord’s command to love each other. This can be done without abandoning the ethnicity and cultural heritage God blessed us to be born into. Those that require this are sinning against the Lord. Of their many attributes, the strong man and great woman of God celebrate God’s racial diversity initiative by accepting their own racial identity and honoring others in theirs as from Him! Get my book, The Strong Man Of God to learn more about the character and demeanor of His strong men and great women.
1 Read the May 4, 2014 blog, Moral Pressure Rightly Applied, under the category, Call To Repent.
2 Read the March 8 & 15, 2015, blog reposts Known By Our Love, Pt. 1 & 2, under the category, Instruction.
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