Pastor's Heart

January 2nd, 2016

The Dead Church

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Written by: Gene

As these End Times seem to be quickly upon us, I feel compelled to look at The Seven Letters to The Seven Churches as written in the Book of Revelation.

The point of this, is strictly for personal evaluation, but I may reflect on the actions and reactions of others to keep me focused.

The letters, were written not as a way to point out the wrongs of others, but for the believer (those who call themselves christians) to make sure their lives are on the up and up when it comes to their walk with Jesus.

The fifth letter is to what God refers to as “The Dead Church…”

Revelation 3:1-6

“And to the angel of the church in Sardis write, ‘These things says He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars: “I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God. Remember therefore how you have received and heard; hold fast and repent. Therefore if you will not watch, I will come upon you as a thief, and you will not know what hour I will come upon you. You have a few names even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”’

I think that there is nothing more spiritually frightening to me, than to have the the world call you a spiritual person, and for Jesus to say you are dead to Him. The utmost last thing I ever want to do is to try to please man more than God. I never want to get to the point where I fear man over God.

Think about the term “the fear of the Lord…” So many people use this term incorrectly, that I am compelled to explain what it really means against the common misconception. To have a fear of the Lord, is not to be afraid of the punishment you will receive for doing wrong, but is means that you love The Lord so much that the last thing you would want to do is to sin against Him.

When you enter a relationship for the first time, and things are all new and mushy, you work hard to try to learn who your new love is and what makes them happy. But as pleasure becomes work to maintain, things get mundane, minds and eyes start to wander elsewhere, your unfaithful thoughts become guilt, and as you start to project the same attitude on your love, the relationship becomes abusive (either verbally, mentally judgmental, and/or physically).

Isn’t the devil a liar? Isn’t that what he did when he asked, “did God really say?” But ask yourself, was the process of leaving started with me, or with God. Who became unfaithful and abusive? At what point did you decide that you were afraid of being abused by The Almighty?

The Lord is pure love, and if He died that you could have His grace and mercy, why do you assume that to fear Him is to be afraid that He will go all bipolar and start to beat on you. When in fact, it is us who tends to look elsewhere, and then try to project unfaithfulness onto Him.

That would be why He tells us that without faith it is impossible to please Him. To not believe Him and trust what He says as true, is to call God a “lying deceptive selfish control freak with anger issues.” Yeah, that kind of personal relationship will go far.

So here we have a church with a wandering eye, using the name of God for personal gain, neglecting His Word while embracing the Political Correctness Bible, more concerned with not offending man (their real love), all the while talking smack about how abusing God is to the gals in the powder room, while cheating on Him with the world.

The church started off wanting to please God, but somewhere along the way they let the love die. And Jesus is saying, “if you don’t return to me, the last act of love I can offer is to give you, is that divorce that you desire…”

Yes, Jesus fully understands what it feels like to be cheated on and divorced, because His bride does it to Him everyday. This is fairly clear with the references to coming as a thief and wearing of white. The Lord is referencing the coming of the bridegroom, wedding clothes, and keeping of oil in our lamps.

I use this explanation of likening the dead church to an unfaithful bride, because personal relationship is what God is after. He doesn’t want us to know second hand rumors about Him, but He wants us to know Him on a personal level. But like He said, he is a selfish God, and He doesn’t want to share us with His enemy the devil.

You cannot court the both at the same time… When you think about it, the church calls the structure “The House Of God,” but has move in other lovers, and God has had His belongings thrown out into the street. Their relationship with Him is dead, and all they want is His alimony (blessings and power.)

Jesus, You are first in my life. You bring life, and sin brings death. I cannot please two lovers (the ways of the world one second and then Your ways the next.) The last thing I want is a wandering eye and an unfaithful heart, because You never did that kind of thing to me. You Lord are a great God.

I am ready to be taken away to spend eternity with You, and until then I will strive to be one who is after Your own heart.

About the Author

A husband to an awesome wife, father to 3 beautiful girls, step-father to a beautiful girl and smart son. Preacher, Designer and best of all a Servant to a loving and gracious God.

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