Revelation 3:16
So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.

The materialism of modern Christianity in America is completely out of control.
The teachings of Jesus about denying yourself, forsaking all, taking up your cross and following Him are foreign to modern Christianity. Like the rich man, they walk away because many worship their possessions and comfortable way of life.

Numerous Christians of our day are lazy and lukewarm and keep going to church because that is where they can find peace without hard work and personal responsibility. Most churches have far too many nice guys and gals. They are so very nice that they will let the unregenerated sinner go straight to hell unobstructed. Offending sinners by telling them the truth about themselves and their future without Christ is just too disrespectful for the modern ears to hear. “It’s just the wrong method,” they say.

Proverbs 24:25
But to those who rebuke the wicked will be delight, and a good blessing will come upon them.

The modern Christian has far too many distractions: pets, tv, computers, hobbies and ownership of too many things. None of those things are bad, but the modern Christian seems to want them all, therefore, pointing to material idolatry. Materialistic things, plus sports and entertainment take far too much of the Christian’s time.

Ephesians 5:15-17
Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, 16) making the most of your time, because the days are evil. 17) So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.

Christians talk big in their protected closed environment -- their church. But most don’t have the guts to take the urgent Gospel message out to the ones that desperately need to hear, which are the unsaved.

Many churches today are big business. But what really happens in churches from God’s perspective? Are the churches healthy and vibrant in the eyes of God or are they sick and lazy?

1. The problems are many.
Churches send millions of dollars overseas to affect lives for Jesus Christ, while their own country burns with sin. Recently, the World Cup soccer playoffs were in my town. I went down there to be a witness attempting to be faithful to the words of Jesus in Acts 1:8 but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.

There were unsaved people from all over the world. But other than myself and a few Jews for Jesus, no other representatives of Jesus Christ were to be found. There were no church people passing out tracts or anything else in this city with a hundred or more churches. When you think about this it’s enough to make any spiritual Godly person sick.

James 2:20
But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless?

It appears that the church people are hiring individuals to do what is far from where their own hearts are. They are spending money for others to do what they won’t do. This often causes them to think that they are off the hook with God, as if He can’t see their hearts and actions but only sees their money. Sad as it is, this is how it is in almost every place in America with very few exceptions.

From start to finish the main theme of the Scriptures is redemption, love for God and love for mankind; yet, love without actions is not love at all.

Who is responsible for these self-centered impersonal churchmen that take such pride in calling themselves Christians, yet have no willingness to personally follow the example of Jesus, the apostles and prophets?

A bull and a steer look alike, yet the bull is action oriented and reproduces. Whereas, the steer is primarily good for nothing other than hamburgers. So it is with the Churches. Some are bulls; but most are steers.

2. Consistently passive pastors that breed apathy are the problem.
Oh the shame of it. They are to be the example leading the march as the song sings, “Onward Christian solders, marching as to war.” But no, they want to look like big shots for God, as they attempt to build their little empires. Some may think I am bitter or that I have had some bad experience with a church or pastor. Please do not make that mistake in judgment.

After over 40 years, I look around and see churches that are quick to run to religious fanfares, music, so called praise, or so called growth groups: all centering on how I can personally benefit from being a Christian. Pastors and leaders are primarily to blame, along with the devil, for promoting this self-centered mentality and lack of love for the masses who will spend eternity in hell.

The purpose of the church is education and building disciples who in turn have the ability to build disciples.

We should measure success by Biblical knowledge that is coupled with the application and practice of Biblical knowledge. Many churches have fallen short in placing far too much value on Biblical knowledge as a means to determine a person’s worth, rather than the practice of Biblical knowledge and the condition of one’s hearts. A man should be measured by his walk with God primarily, not the schools that he attended and degrees that he earned. I am not saying knowledge is not important because it is; but it’s not to be worshiped and used as a device to determine spirituality.

The devil has had 2000 years to mess up the churches and he has done a good job of accomplishing his goal.

Exception: If you’re one of the hard working saints within the churches working with the children, this section is not directed towards you. God sees your labors and your value. It’s a wonderful needed ministry that you have been called to. I am primarily directing this section to the church cows that are continually chewing their cuds in the name of Jesus. Let’s face it, how many times does a person have to hear the same basic message before he will get up off the pews and follow the example of Jesus, the apostles and early church: 5-10-20-30-40-50 years?

3. Prideful, power hungry, time-vested elders, deacons and board members, who love to be viewed as pillars of power and godliness, who do almost nothing in relationship to following the Biblical model and the fulfilling of Acts 1:8, are a big problem.
Acts 1:8
But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.

The local church must have effective leadership. A good leader cannot have two masters. A church cannot be content to bury its treasures in order to keep them safe for the Lord’s coming. A church requires involvement by the leaders in a personal way with people.

Questions for leaders.
1. How many people from the church have you visited this month?
2. How many phone calls have you made to the people of the church this month?
3. How many people from the community have you contacted this month?
4. Have you done a church mailer this month?
5. Have you handed out a tract this month?
6. Have you shared your faith with someone this month?
7. Have you had a Bible study with someone this month?
8. How many new contacts have you made this month?
9. Have you invited someone to church this month?
10. Are you fully using the talents of the members of the Church?
Please consider these items. We have been given a great responsibility. It’s an honor and a privilege to personally represent the Lord Jesus Christ. Heaven and hell is reality.
It is an urgent message.

4. Church dysfunction.
I believe the basic structure of the local church is defunct and breeds dysfunction. Furthermore, each church has the freedom to choose whatever structure it wants. But oftentimes freedom can be the very noose of the hangman around our necks. That’s why a careful look at the Biblical model is desirable.
Note: There is no education system I have ever heard of that is as inefficient as the normal church. For example, each week the members all come walking into a building for about one hour of which about half the time is made up of music. Then week after week, the same person stands to speak for about 30 minutes. No one has the freedom to raise his or her hand and ask a question during that 30-minute presentation. If one would raise a hand to ask a question, he would probably be viewed as a troublemaker or as being disrespectful. This mode of education is not found in the public schools, college or any other educational institution of learning. It is not seen in the Bible. This is just another classic example of where Luther did not totally break away from Roman Catholicism and allowed Roman Catholicism to infiltrate Protestantism.

1 Corinthians 14:26
What is {the outcome} then, brethren? When you assemble, each one has a psalm, has a teaching, has a revelation, has a tongue, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification.

All members of the local church have a most important function. The church can only be the church that God intended when all the members of the local church are actively functioning. Please don’t use the dumbbell excuse, “Well I am just waiting to find out what God’s will for my life is.”
OK friend, wait all you want to find God’s perfect will for your life and place in the Church; but in the meantime, go talk to someone about Jesus. Share your faith faithfully and I guarantee that you won’t be too far from hitting the bull’s-eye.


5. Solution to the pollution. In times of old, they would carve out of wood or stone false gods to be worshiped. Today the same thing is done, but they are carved in the so-called Christian’s mind. This is false imaginary gods that are promoted in many churches.

I can step into just about any church and ask their youth or adults some simple Bible 101 questions and almost all will fail the test. Yet, if I were to ask simple questions about sports, music, or business, most would pass with flying colors. If you don’t believe me, just try it for yourself. Here are some simple suggestions for questions. Please note: in most cases we are not looking for perfectly correct answers. Just about anything in the ballpark would be ok with me.

1. What’s the difference between the Old Testament and the New
2. What’s the central message of the book of Galatians?
3. What’s the central message of 1 Corinthians chapter 13?
4. Give me the best verse you can think of for the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ.
5. Give me any verse that shows how a person can be saved.
6. Name three attributes of God.
And so on…

At the same time they project this Biblical ignorance, many will have big smiles on their faces and want to brag about how great and wonderful their church is. This should make any pastor, who is worth his salt, hang his head in shame. Keep in mind that if this is true, it’s not the people’s fault primarily. It’s the pastors and leaders that are in love with a church structure that produces Biblical dunces.

Also note that there are those members of the cult of the intellect that may be able to answer just about any question asked. They all appear to be Godly, sincere and are faithful to show up Sunday morning. But for the most part, they are good for nothing. They are hearers of the Word, but not doers. Most would speak highly of Jesus, but care little to follow His example. It’s interesting how people used to pick a Church based upon the doctrine and teaching, but now it’s personality and music.
Many churches today are run like commercial businesses. Honestly, most people would have a better chance of spending quality time with the CEO of a major corporation than many of the pastors of our day. The true goal of numerous pastors is not seeing people saved and built up in the fear and admonition of the Lord, but to build themselves up and outdo their fellow pastors in regards to the size of their church.

The Local Church...

is to be active, action-oriented and on the offensive. This is seen in the life of Jesus and the privileged men that God has used as examples for us through the ages. It is seen over and over again in the Scriptures.
For example,

Matthew 22:37-39
“And He said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.” 38) This is the great and foremost commandment. 39) The second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

This requires something on our part.
1 John 3:18
Little children, let us not love with word or tongue, but in deed and truth.

For the local church, “deeds and truth” are teaching the Bible and preparing and training the saints to become reproducers. The whole idea of the local Church is to get the people off milk and onto meat. In addition, people would personally be a part of fulfilling the Great Commission.

How is this measured?
1. Are the people learning the Scriptures?
2. Are the people learning Bible doctrine?
3. Are the people learning to defend the Scriptures?
4. Are they learning to share their faith and becoming reproducers?
5. Are they being given opportunities to share their faith and become reproducers?
6. Are they attempting to live out the Scriptures, being disciples?
7. Do they realize their responsibilities of being a child of the King?

The responsibility of the Church is a great one. From the children to the elderly, from the budget to the youth programs, it is all encompassing. We all need to realize that the running of a church is not easy. In far too many cases, pastors and leaders are smothered by people’s problems that in most cases are solvable by the people themselves, if they were to only practice Biblical principles.

The board members, in many cases, are less concerned with the kingdom of God going forth into the world than they are protecting their position and operating their church business.

Church entertainment, music, jokes, and impersonal Bible teaching is the devil’s deception for many in our day.

Frequently, churches have conformed to the world believing that the answer is building churches and running them like a corporate business. They have lost touch with Jesus’ commands. And as a result of their love for money, it is doubtful that they will change.

Matthew 28: 19-20
Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, 20) teaching them to observe all that I commanded you;

The churches should be made up of people that are personally involved with other people. That is genuine love: such as making phone calls, visiting people in their homes, and getting together in coffee shops, etc. Relationships centered around the Bible and the example of Jesus Christ are the backbone of the Church.

1.) Belly to belly encounters with people.

2.) People accepting their own responsibility as members of the Body of Christ.

3.) Small group meetings of 6-12 people makes for wonderful opportunities for growth. This stimulates them to encourage and exhort each other to become active for Jesus.

The object should be to let people know that you have a legitimate interest in their lives. It is so important to train believers to realize who they are in Christ and to help them be all they can be in Christ. By personal activism on your part, you can set the example for them to follow, just like Jesus did. They then, out of appreciation to God, will desire to testify and provoke others to love and serve Jesus.

One reason revival may not occur in America is because the Body of Christ (across denominational lines) has constructed an aberration to the teaching of the Bible that will not allow the Great Commission to go forth, other than in a limited way. The Church has created a system that does not allow its members to exhale what they have inhaled (with few exceptions).

Acts 18:9
And the Lord said to Paul in the night by a vision, “Do not be afraid any longer, but go on speaking and do not be silent;”

1 Timothy 4:13
Until I come, give attention to the public reading [of Scripture,]
to exhortation and teaching.

Acts 4:31
And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak the word of God with boldness.

Excitement about Jesus comes as a result of being active.

In dealing with the churches we should always keep in mind:

Ephesians 4:1-3
I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, entreat you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, 2.) with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing forbearance to one another in love, 3.) being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Romans 14:19
So then let us pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another,

Colossians 3:13
Bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.

Matthew 6:15
But if you do not forgive men, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.

6. Warning.
In our dealings with the churches, there are some things that we need to keep in mind.

Firstly, the Bible speaks very clearly of religious people who think they are Christians when in reality they are not. Secondly, it is evident that these people attempt to weave themselves in with true believers.
The writers of the New Testament speak to the churches with this understanding.

For Example:
1 John 2:19
But they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.

2 Timothy 3:5
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

2 Thessalonians 3:2
And that we may be delivered from perverse and evil men; for not all have faith.

If you think you are a Christian but do not have good works continuing after your initial salvation, then more than likely you are not a Christian at all.

James 1:22
And be not just hearers of the Word, that deceive themselves...
(False believers), but be doers of the Word.

2 Timothy 4:3
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires...

False Believers
Satan controls false believers within the churches. What is his intent and where are they to be found? Satan’s intent is to keep the churches from being what God wants them to be.

False believers can be found anywhere. Satan’s goal for false believers is to have them in places of influence, leadership, teaching, church boards, elders, and even pastors.

They will speak the truths of the Bible at times.
They will tell half-truths.
They will tell just enough truth to keep them from being detected.
Their intent is to keep the truth out of balance.
They will appear to be Godly.
They value people because of who they are, not what they are in Jesus.
They do not want to follow the examples of the apostles.They do not want to follow the examples of the early Church.

Oh the sorrow of many well-meaning saints that have been on church boards in places of authority and leadership. Regrettably, they discover that their decisions and church polices were influenced or controlled by unbelievers whom they thought were true believers. Luke 8:17

Some things to keep in mind:

Do they speak out against sin?
Do they address the need for the Savior?
Do they advocate righteous living?
Do they teach that man is responsible for his sin?
Do they teach that there will be a judgment?
Do they teach that people will go to hell if they reject Christ?
Do they teach the urgency of the message?
Do they set the example by their actions, just as Jesus did?

The True Believers

Demonstrated by Paul:
“I am under obligation” Romans 1:14
“I am eager to preach the Gospel” Romans 1:15
“I am not ashamed of the Gospel” Romans 1:16

False believers are happy to talk about Jesus, but are not willing to follow His example of personally getting involved with unsaved people by attempting to reach out to them with the message of salvation.

They do not want to teach the urgency of salvation and that Jesus Christ is the only way of salvation simply because they are not saved themselves.


7. Advice.
The object is wisdom. Attitude is everything. The Church is the body of Christ and our purpose should be objective, demonstrating love, and setting the proper example of service through action in word and deed.

Proverbs 17:10
A rebuke goes deeper into one who has understanding than a hundred blows into a fool.

Proverbs 27:5
Better is open rebuke than love that is concealed.

The churches are the fields of our day that have many weeds, yet there are good plants growing side by side with the weeds.

Our involvement with the churches can be twofold. One is to reap the harvest and the other is to water the plants so that they may grow.

More than likely the open air preachers of the future will come from the local Churches just like many of us have.

Let us not forget that the churches are a resource that we can wisely use for the fulfilling of the Great Commission. Fear is one of the main reasons many churches are so inefficient. Many are fearful that someone might say the wrong thing or do the wrong thing. There is little flexibility for error, which cuts the lifeblood from the training field.

We act as if God doesn’t know were going to make mistakes.
Ask yourself, would your God rather have you make mistakes
doing something or not make mistakes doing nothing?

It is possible many of the silent saints, when they get to heaven may say,

“Knowing what I know now, boy oh boy, if I could just
go back down there, I sure would let it rip for Jesus.”

Matthew 6:9-10
Pray, then, in this way: Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. 10)Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.

If you want to change a dead church into an alive church,
go talk to someone about Jesus.

If leaders want to be like Jesus, then go talk to someone about Jesus.
If you are depressed, go talk to someone about Jesus.
If you are lonely, go talk to someone about Jesus.
If you are sad, go talk to someone about Jesus.
If you want to be in God’s will, go talk to someone about Jesus.
If you want to see God work through you, go talk to someone about Jesus.

Activisms For Jesus Is The Answer!

Acts 4:31
And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak the word of God with boldness.

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