Friday, December 08, 2006

Jeremiah on Trusting God

Just a while ago I was reading Jeremiah. I got to chapter 2 and read the following:

" 5 This is what the LORD says:
"What fault did your fathers find in me,
that they strayed so far from me?
They followed worthless idols
and became worthless themselves."

When I read this, I couldn't help but think of how far off the contemporary church is. With the seeker/PDL/PDC/Emergent errors, I can't help but think that maybe, just maybe the Lord is asking us the same question today.

What fault have we, the church, found in God that we should stray from His Word and His Will? We say we love God's Word, but we ignore it. We read it, we don't obey it!

We are following the worthless idols of contemporary "growth" strategies. We bow down and worship numbers. We have the heretical notion that gaining numbers means we are doing real worship and obedience! How far off track we've gotten!

We are the "plastinated church" as Steve Camp has put it. Our vitality is gone, but we have a structure that makes us look alive even while we are dead. The living cells that were led by the Spirit have "died". What has replaced them is activity and human strategy.

I ask you, what did we find wrong with God's Way? Of preaching repentance and faith in Christ alone? Since when did we become wiser than God and decide that His ways are irrelevant and foolish? Our times have changed? I challenge that argument. Our society, really, is no different than the pagan times of the birth of the church. Read Corinthians. Yet they preached repentance and faith. So, when did we become wiser than God?

Augustine said that "If you believe what you like in the gospels, and reject what you don't like, it is not the gospel you believe, but yourself." Well, let this be true for the whole of Scripture. You say you believe the Bible? They why, in our hearts, dare we edit God? We do this when we dismiss any part of what He has said. We repeat the words of the adversary, who said "...has God really said...?".

At what point did the Lord of Heaven and Earth become unworthy of our allegiance? And at what time did earthly wisdom become worthy of our worship?

We are like Israel:

13 "My people have committed two sins:
They have forsaken me,
the spring of living water,
and have dug their own cisterns,
broken cisterns that cannot hold water..."

And again:

23 "How can you say, 'I am not defiled;
I have not run after the Baals'?
See how you behaved in the valley;
consider what you have done.
You are a swift she-camel
running here and there, 24 a wild donkey accustomed to the desert,
sniffing the wind in her craving—"

Must the church be so bent on "sniffing the wind" to see whatever direction it will prefer to go? Are we not simply followers of fads, bowing down to gods of our own making? We want popularity, so we excuse our practices and say we are trying to be 'relevant'. Isn't the truth that we simply want acceptance? The Lord Himself says if we are faithful, we won't find it!


Repent, Church, repent!

2 comments:

ann_in_grace said...

Amen and amen.
The more I learn about God, the more I agree with these truths.
the path is narrow, as is the gate, and few shall find it. And I think this will be not because the gate cannot be seen, but because they will not want to see it.

danfromtn said...

Tim,

I finally got around to reading this well-written post. The last two lines jumped out at me after a more careful reading…

“Isn't the truth that we simply want acceptance? The Lord Himself says if we are faithful, we won't find it!”

This is core! People want to be accepted by others in this lost world more than anything else (or anyOne else). The truth of your last line doesn’t even register with them.


ann_in_grace,

That gate that they don’t want to see has the longest line and they hate to wait in line. But though it has the longest line it also has the fewest people passing through it and that’s because it is narrow – a single file gate. But the other gates are as wide as superhighways and people never have to wait … no lines. Yea!

The problem is that they believe all the gates lead to the same place. Probably because that’s what they are being led to believe by their spiritual leaders and they rightly observe that the majority are passing right on through unhindered. So why not?