A Call To The Remnant

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Clear and present danger facing the American Church-bro Mark

Posted by appolus on April 28, 2014

The hot topic these days in the media but even in Christian circles is the coming crackdown on religious freedoms, even perhaps to the point of full scale persecution against believers in America. Yes this is a real threat but I seriously wonder if this is the biggest or most serious threat to Christianity in the west? I believe that Government persecution and removal of our rights are in fact “small fry” issues compared to the unseen enemy “giants” that are presently wreaking havoc in the Christian church – seemingly crushing everything in their path!

Over the last 25 years or so I have watched as this present darkness of spiritual forces have systematically slaughtered and brought untold ruin to Christian families, churches and entire movements! There has been a steady decline in the western church and like many of you I have wept as I have lost friends in the fight. Some of my friends who I grew up with have long since abandoned their faith and many of them are now divorced and others have turned to homosexuality. I have even had some tell me that they don’t believe that God really even exists anymore! It has been heart breaking to watch as so many believers (including close family) have slowly drifted away from the Lord to pursue other things.

But it’s not just “regular Christians” – I have also watched as friends who are Pastors and Christian leaders, have turned their backs on the Lord and completely abandoned their faith. Some are now “Success Coaches” chasing money and others have even become “ministers” in the new age movement, opening themselves up to the occult. And then there are the great company of men who were once mighty in God, who served the Lord with pure and un-defiled motives, but they too have become casualties, swept up in the rat race of success, money and fame, all under the guise of “ministry”.

THE LAST DAYS FLOOD
This great shaking is really a great flood that has been rising steadily for several decades and is sweeping all away in its path. All except those who cling to the Lord Jesus Christ! The Lord foretold this would happen in Matthew 24, ”…the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Then two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one left. THEREFORE STAY AWAKE!”

WICKED RULERS IN HEAVENLY PLACES
Brother and sisters, our fight is not against earthly governments, nor is it with men who attempt to take away our earthly freedoms, in fact it is not against flesh and blood at all. Our fight, our daily battle is against a vast, dark, unseen spiritual empire which is hell bent on causing as many believers as possible to fall away from the Lord.

This is in fact the greatest and most deadly threat facing Christianity in America and in the west! Just look at what these satanic schemes have accomplished over the last few decades…it is indeed chilling! As we look at these things I am gripped with the sobering thought, “by the grace of God, there but, go I”.

LUKEWARMNESS
For most professing believers in America and in the west, Christ is no longer their “first love”, instead He has been replaced by a love for this world or a love for so called “ministry” and even a love for social causes! We have forgotten that the greatest single thing that Christ said we could do was to sit at His feet and listen to His every word. What is it to return to our first love? It is to simply “listen” to the Lord, all the time and obey Him. We will never know what it is to “live” if we do not learn what it means to “listen” to every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.

Many believers today are slowly becoming lukewarm and this in turn gradually brings with it a compromising attitude towards sin. And from this gradual compromise comes a cover up and this is how we become hypocrites. This is what happened in my own life and if it was not for the Lords mercy in waking me from my “sleep”, I would probably have died in my sin by now. When we become a hypocrite, our spirituality is nothing more than mere words, and while we appear to be acting out the right part for others to see, we are in fact inwardly cold, lifeless and in many cases utterly filthy!

Where is the religion of the early church at work today in America and the west? Where are those who will stand up and be counted for Christ? Do you see it very much anymore? It is gone! Todays religion is in “form only”, there is no spiritual fruit, no spiritual life and it is completely devoid of spiritual power!

When was the last time that you heard a call to serious prayer and fasting? When was the last time you encountered a company of believers where prayer and fasting was a priority, because they knew that if they didn’t seek the Lord they would fall by the wayside and would no longer desire to do His will? It just doesn’t happen very much anymore. And for the most part Christians don’t actually even need God anymore, they can live quite well without Him. American society and her abundant resources have become the source of supply and the new god of the lukewarm, last days church.

ICHABOD – “THE GLORY HAS DEPARTED”
Where is the hunger and thirsting after the Lords Kingdom and His righteousness? Where is the burning desire for the Lord to revive His church again? It is nowhere to be found. In its place is a hungering and thirsting for cultural acceptance of our Christian brand, with hardly even a mention of Christ and His call to follow Him wholeheartedly.

Why bring Christ into it anyway if you can simply blow people away using music, money and marketing! These things have completely replaced the gospel and the power of God. And it works…people are flocking to these expressions of “church”. The message is always positive, always telling people how awesome they are, how loved they are, how they are the best looking, most amazing people on the planet and how much Gods wants to bless them. And this is exactly what this narcissist generation wants. This self absorbed, self loving and totally selfish generation is looking for a style of Christianity that panders to…THEM! It’s all about them, just take a look at social media sometime. Me, me, me, me! And modern Christianity is serving up a “me gospel” to them by the gobfulls! But it is all a house of cards…completely and utterly devoid of Gods presence. When you peel away the gifted and charismatic personalities, the bright lights, the music, the business machine and the hype…what you have left is spiritual emptiness…God is not there…He has left the building!

DRY, BITTER & JUDGEMENTAL
On the other hand we have another group of believers who have also drifted from the way, but this time because they have become bitter and judgmental, binding others under a cloud of legalistic condemnation. They focus merely on the outward, rather than on the heart, hating everything that is not just like them! In their minds, no one is good enough and there is absolutely no good work for Christ in existence, outside of their tiny-sterile-sanctioned-little-world. These are the types of believers who will cut you if you do not agree with them (and their doctrines) and they will become divisive and full of rancor over just about anything!

COMPROMISING WITH THE WORLD
The Apostle Paul contrasts a believers life against an unbelievers life and says that they are so different that it is like comparing light against darkness, they are as different as Christ and the devil (belial). Yet today you find that the average christian has slowly lowered their standards and begun to accept the worlds standards. The Christian life has become so watered down that you can hardly tell the difference anymore. We are no longer living as salt and light in this world and the world knows it and is not fooled.

Now, I am not condoning total abstinence from alcohol but I am shocked at how many Christians today have turned to social drinking and could not care less if they are a stumbling block to others. What’s next, social pot smoking? Many believers don’t even blink an eye when it comes to compromise. They approach it with a calculating coldness – thinking nothing of flaunting their “freedom in Christ”. And as always it is the young and the weak, the “little ones” who suffer as a result of our so called freedoms!

LOVE OF MONEY
Materialism has replaced Christ as the new god of this age. The love of money practically grips the entire church. Almost nobody lives as Christ has called us to live…”do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth…but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven…for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

John Wesley had much to say about this and contends that the heathen of third world nations obey this command of Christ while western Christians blatantly ignore it…and he wrote this 250 years ago!!! Perhaps there is no greater and widespread offence against the Lords command, than the way in which Christians treat money! We can only surmise one thing, that we have become bound to money, we love it…it is truly our god!!!

NO DESIRE FOR SOUL WINNING
And where has all this gotten us? Today, for the most part the average Christian has no passion and no desire to reach the lost, to take the gospel to the nations. Oh, there are plenty who desire to take “mission” trips so we can have put a little adventure into our lives and perform a street drama or two, but this doesn’t exactly equate to taking the gospel to the nations! In reality there is no desire to reach the lost even in our own back yards, let alone take the gospel to the Unreached People Groups around the world – now numbering almost 3 billion souls!!!

FALSE GOSPELS
To make matters worse, to this lukewarm and apathetic Christianity we have now added new and “better” versions of the gospel that do away with sin, repentance, the atoning work of Christ on the cross and self denial. This is a false gospel that only addresses love, acceptance and tolerance and ignore the reason why we need the “Good News”…to escape the wrath of God! Yet those who attempt to teach the truth are labeled as “preaching law rather than grace”. Good is now called evil! The clear truth of God’s word is being questioned and maligned on every quarter – to the point that the truth about an eternity hell and Gods righteous judgments are apparently no longer in keeping with Gods good character…so let’s just rip those things right out of the bible shall we?!!!

NO DEPENDENCE ON THE HOLY SPIRIT
And finally there is the battle raging to elevate intellectual knowledge and doctrine ABOUT God while diminishing any and all experience WITH God. The early church, both experienced God AND were also taught the gospel. In fact, in many cases while the Apostles were yet teaching or praying, the Holy Spirit fell on the hearers…and the people actually EXPERIENCED God!!! Today, these things are pushed into the shadows, overlooked and even called demonic. Yet it is all right there in the bible! To this end, millions of believers have no knowledge or understanding of the gifts and ways of the Holy Spirit. They desperately struggle to live the Christian life in their own strength and continue to fail because they are being wrongfully taught that they are already “filled’ with the Holy Spirit the day they first believed. We have become so afraid of the “bathwater” that we have thrown the “baby” right out the window. And the body of Christ is suffering as a result. This is all the work of the enemy!

LORD REVIVE US AGAIN!
These are just a few of the clear and present dangers facing the American church and the church worldwide. Will governments pose a threat against Christianity? Yes probably so, but this will only strengthen the church, not weaken her. The best thing that could happen to the American church is in fact government persecution and the taking away of all our rights and means to live. This will force the church to become truly dependent on the Lord.

My prayer is that the Lord will wake us up if we have succumbed to any of the schemes of the enemy listed above. I pray that our eyes would be opened to see the true state of our lives, that we might seek the Lord for complete renewal and press on towards the upward call of Christ Jesus. Lord, revive us once again!!! ( Bro Mark, a dear Australian brother living in Texas)

10 Responses to “Clear and present danger facing the American Church-bro Mark”

  1. sharon said

    There is some of this in every congregation. It is just wheat and tares growing togeather. We have been warned. Those who have a true,love for their Lord will endure. The lukewarm, well we know about that.
    Hope is preached for the weary, that is good and helpful.
    Young people are no diffrent today than in my youth thirty years ago.
    If they are truly saved, they will endure. If it was just a whim, then peril is ahead.
    Pray without ceasing for all the church.
    The head of this church is well able to guide all who hear His voice.

    • appolus said

      Amen Sharon. God has His people, although He consistently warns us that the promises are made to those who endure or overcome. He council’s those in the first three chapters of Rev to repent and return………….bro Frank

  2. Amen. Thank you for posting this. It is incredibly lonely out here in the wilderness at times but Jesus said, ” I will never leave or forsake you.” He has never failed to keep his promises! Also, there is nothing to distract me from praying for those who are lost or still in the battle!
    This is well said…”our fight is not against earthly governments, nor is it with men who attempt to take away our earthly freedoms, in fact it is not against flesh and blood at all. Our fight, our daily battle is against a vast, dark, unseen spiritual empire which is hell bent on causing as many believers as possible to fall away from the Lord.

    This is in fact the greatest and most deadly threat facing Christianity in America and in the west! Just look at what these satanic schemes have accomplished over the last few decades…it is indeed chilling! As we look at these things I am gripped with the sobering thought, “by the grace of God, there but, go I”.

    One of the most important lessons I have been learning in the last 5 years is not to battle with flesh and blood! It’s saved me from empty words and ill spent energy many times. I found most of my desire to fight these earthly things is based in my ego. I have only one God given right ( in my opinion) and that is to live unto and die for Christ! That’s keeping me busy enough and it too is only by God’s grace.

    • appolus said

      Sister Shelly writes …. ” I have only one God given right ( in my opinion) and that is to live unto and die for Christ! That’s keeping me busy enough and it too is only by God’s grace” Amen sister, I agree entirely…………….bro Frank

  3. I cannot but help to completely agree! I am reminded of L. Ravenhill’s quote, “The greatest miracle that God can do today is to take an unholy man out of an unholy world and make him holy, then put him back into that unholy world and keep him holy in it.” That is my prayer for us individually. And then that we would go back into these churches, taking the love of Christ, the power of the Gospel, the true grace of God, and by the Spirit, into the very same churches, highways, byways, and etc.

  4. A clear encouraging word for us to check our own hearts.

  5. Steve said

    A good post. I’d strongly agree with this list of symptoms: and with your point that the cause of the Church’ sickness-unto-death is spiritual.

    You rightly re-affirm scripture’s insistence that our war is against “spiritual forces of wickedness in high places.” That our war is not against flesh and blood, human beings: which I’d suggest includes flesh and blood “high places,” human rulers and governments of men. Warring against these is complete misdirection (by guess-who), and as you say, “small fry” issues.

    I understand “spiritual forces” to act through heart-attitudes, the operative thoughts by which men live. As Brother Frank observed in his recent “Do You Hate the Government ?” post, ““The point is…the state of our hearts.” The spiritual point is the spiritual state of the heart: in scripture’s terms, that as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.

    If the Church is gravely ill, what false operative thoughts and spirit have we taken to our heart ?

    Probably first is the exact misdirection you start with: that our war IS against flesh-and-blood. The primary form this has taken in vast parts of the American Church is Obama-bashing, “liberal”-bashing, and government-hating. We’ve all been cyber-places where it seemed participants’ “Christianity” was measured by how vicious their comments about the president, or how violent their hatred of the government. I try to avoid such places. But even in my own congregation of “good,” ordinary middle-class small-town Christians, it would be extremely shocking, and call one’s Christianity into question, to even mildly suggest the president might be an honest man (to the extent any politician is), or honestly trying to do what he thought was good for the country.

    If misdirection were not enough, there is in this the manifest spirit of disobedience. First in warring against flesh and blood, contrary to scripture’s express warning. Second in regarding and resisting human government as an evil, when scripture characterizes as “a minister of God to you for good,” In the operative thought of many American Christians’ hearts, God is flatly WRONG on this score.

    Operative thoughts contrary God’s are clearly from the enemy, who has contradicted God’s word since Eden (“did God REALLY say ?…You shall surely not die”). To a Church already misled into fleshly warfare, the enemy vouchsafes to Christians his contrary operative spirit through those with whom we’ve foolishly made fleshly common cause. To the heart of a politicized Church, the enemy has masked his “spiritual forces of wickedness” as operative political thoughts, from politicians we admire and follow.

    When Ronald Reagan asserted in his inaugural address that “government IS the problem,” the Church took to its heart as political principle the spirit of rebellion: satan’s own character.

    When George W. Bush asserted in his 9/11 anniversary-speech that “America…is the light of the world,” the Church attuned to the flesh heard “patriotism,” and not blasphemy.

    When the Church’ political “friends” put forward the priest of a demon (who claims to be “Jesus”) to lead us, the fleshly Church overwhelmingly assented to follow: esteeming the man’s politics of GREATER importance than the anti-Christian spirit in which he walks.

    I’d agree with the symptoms you list, and the spiritual cause, and author, of them all. To my understanding, all those heart-attitudes by which the enemy seeks to destroy us have been fed us as political principles…which we’ve willingly taken into our hearts.

    Father, forgive and heal us !

    In Jesus, Steve

    • appolus said

      Good word brother Steve, as was brother Mark’s word. Coming from Britain, I know how powerful the force of patriotism can be, I believe it to be one of the most easily manipulated of all the emotions. We must be careful and give all of our allegiance to God. The time is coming soon when all nations shall be the enemy of God’s people. The days are growing darker as each one passes and the hate and prejudice against the saints of the earth is growing. We are being marginalized around the world and separated from society piece by piece. Now, I consider this to be a good thing, for indeed many if not most in Christendom has been caught up in the systems of the world. Brother Mark is right in pointing out what truly afflicts the people who cal themselves after the name of Jesus. The forces of Babylon and Baal are stronger than any persecuting forces. Now it is written, the gates of hell shall not prevail against us, His Church. The enemy knows this and if he cannot kill us into submission then he buys us. This has been the pattern for almost 1800 years. Such is satan’s hatred for the church it so often spills over into outright violence, and when that fails he falls back upon buying God’s people. It is the opposite of Job’s life. Satans’a accusation against him was that if he had everything stripped away that He would curse God. Now, if those who call themselves after His name are enriched and blessed as the world counts blessings, then the accusation would be that we forget God, we have little need for God and we have next to no dependence upon God. This would be a charge hard to defend for much of Christendom………….bro Frank

  6. Elisabeth said

    Well I have seen all of the things that have been happening in our country and in our churches and I am astounded at the accelerated rate of increase of evil and confusion. I was saved as a child, however it was not until about seven years ago that I actually began an obedient walk with Jesus. I committed big sins against God during those rebellious years, and I am sorry I did what I did; but, God has taken everything I went through and is now using it for his purposes to help others through the testimony of Jesus in my life. Lately I have been struggling with the desire to go to church, but every time i go to a church I wonder why I even bothered. went to one last month, liked the worship but as soon as I saw the guest preacher there was a revulsion in my Spirit. He was demonic and his whole sermon was money money and more money. I stood up and left. don’t understand how no one else could see what I was seeing. They were ooohing and awwwwing over every word he said. Am not going to try and find a church anymore. The wilderness is pretty peaceful considering how awesome it is worshipping at home and God’s presence is so strong and wonderful. I read my bible and listen to the old time preachers have recorded on computer. Was almost caught up in the anger over our government and how rotten it is, but felt like the Holy Spirit has been telling me lately just to hide in him. I know that doesn’t really sound like a christian thing to do to hide but lately it is the only way I can keep my love for people. When I am home praying for people, it is a lot easier to love them in my heart. I was a member of a denominational church and was turned off by the Jezabel way of doing things. Instead of going to God to get things done the women of that church go to each other and gossip to get things done. was having a hard time keeping my love for them so I left. Now I love them with all my heart! and pray for them daily. I get great joy just worshipping and praying at home, talking to God and trying to listen and hear him. I know I am a sinner, I battle the enemy daily, not trying to be holier than thou I just want to keep my love for others strong with no bitterness or unforgiveness in my heart. I want Jesus to find me in love with him and in love with others when he comes back, not full of anger or any of the fruit of the enemy. Anyway I just know that the more I hide in Jesus the happier I stay, is that being selfish? I still get out and do things for God but it is not in any sort of organized religious way. I love letting the Holy Spirit give me divine appointments and being led by him to do things. Jesus said he gave us his peace and he meant it, if this is the only way I get to have his peace then so be it, Amen

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