This new gospel
This new gospel
By Pastor Rasheed Z. Baaith
“Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.” (Galatians 1:7)
I believe it was Dr. Voddie Bacham who once said, “As it often does, the church echoes a new cultural movement.” This can be a good thing as it was when the church led the way with its involvement in the Civil Rights Movement or it can be a bad thing as it is today with the Church adopting a new theology.
It is a theology in which carnal Christianity is not only accepted but promoted. It is a theology where personal sin is explained away as something that a Holy God would understand and forgive because He loves us, and it is a theology where putting people in the seats is more important than the pursuit of God.
In far too many of today’s churches, pastors don’t preach about spiritual accountability or God saying “be ye holy as I am holy.” The people want to come as they are and pastors won’t teach that come as you are does not mean stay as you are. Not to even try to walk away from our past and its sinful behaviors is to deny the transforming Power of the Holy Spirit. If the Bible teaches and it does, that we are “new” in Christ, why are so many holding on to what separates us from God in the first place? And why are so many Pastors not preaching against it?
Again, Bacham writes that “to interpret the Scriptures based upon trends we see in culture is a choice.” We keep listening to “cultural voices” more than we listen to the Voice of Christ. Because those voices are louder than they ever have been before, some Pastors are surrendering to their influence. They are giving up certain foundational and fundamental Biblical principles that as a result are making irrelevant the holiness of the Christian character. We are choosing to do so.
Not just in the character of the individual but even in the character of worship itself. The allowance of dances that belong in the club and not the sanctuary, worship “leaders” whose sin life is open and well known but are in charge of services; music being played filled with everything but the Holy Spirit; miniskirts, blouses open to show what only a husband should see and dresses so tight movement is barely possible, these things have become the norm in many of our sanctuaries. How can we expect an authentic visit from God when the atmosphere is so anti God? How long will our Pastors be silent about this carnal Christian behavior?
It is neither archaic nor unloving to expect professing Christians to at least act like Christians. This is not an issue of expecting perfection or judging someone; it is an issue of legitimizing outwardly what we have said has happened inwardly.
There is, of course, a growing backlash against those of us who hold to the traditional view in the church. That too is a reflection of the Church listening to the culture. Self-aggrandizement, hedonism, seeking to please the self instead of seeking to please God is an accepted way of living today.
Jesus came to rescue us from our sins; He did not come to encourage staying in them. It is as always, a matter of choice. Joshua put it best: “And if it seems evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom you will serve… but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” (Joshua 24:15 a, c)
No matter how unpopular it becomes.