A very good article written by Michael L. Brown follows my comments here prefacing his words.
Without individual repentance, without individual revival, without individual faithfulness, without individual devotion, intent, continued daily being nourished in the Word of God — not merely reading, not only on occasion, not only certain parts and favored verses — but ingestion, proper digestion upon reading, prayer, meditation and study within of God’s Word to have it written on the individual heart, to live with a Biblical view rather than a worldly one — THAT is what is required for the Church to revive and come alive in the Spirit of God.
Submission. Discipline. Service. Faith. Honor. Praise. Thankfulness.
And church leaders found sound in the Word. Expository sound Bible-centered preaching, teaching, and commitment to.
No appeasement. No muddying with other isms, ideologies, words, or ways.
No accepting of sin and calling sin sin. Period. Openly. Strongly. Always turning to the Word in all things.
That my friends and dear ones is what the BEGINNING of true change would require.
Are we prepared to gird our loins, put on and keep on the full armour of the Word of God? To not just hear it but to live it, do it, be it! To finally, truly be the salt of this fallen, corrupt, perverse world made so by our sin, and only by our sin. To finally truly be a light unto the world?
It begins within each individual.
Just as the Church began with One, the Holy One, the Lord of lords, King of kings, Saviour, Rabbi, Prophet, and fully man, fully God come to earth and with only 12 He chose. Just as He has chosen each true believer henceforth.
May each of us be keenly aware of these most, most, most important matters in this life for they all determine the eternity to come. One in which there will be eternal life or the opposite — eternal death and suffering separated from God in the depths of hell.
It’s all upon each person. Each individual.
which path, which words to believe, who, and what to serve.
Be separate from the world. Distinct. Pure as possible. Untainted. And cast aside appeasement and the lie that all go to heaven and there is no sin and everything, anything goes and the God of the Bible, the Lord Who came to earth to suffer and shed His precious blood, the Holy Spirit accept those lies and false teachings so prevalent in this current time.
Yes, revival is possible. It takes repentance. True repentance. Not just remorse or empty words of full church pews. It takes each heart, each soul, each mind, each spirit individually to comprise a healthy body obeying the Head.
It takes understanding, maturity, and growth.
Are we prepared and now going to begin walking forward? Or remain stagnant and going backward, idle, pretending, lukewarm as so many are and have been?
If we aren’t going to do this for real why pretend?
We are witnessing the Great Falling Away in the last of the last days. Romans 1.
But no one is a bystander. No one is merely a spectator, a pawn in this ongoing spiritual war. And each person can either believe the Word of God, adopt the Word of God, hold to the Word of God, live the Word of God as best each person can — or else they have surrendered to the Enemy. It’s really that clear and simple.
Really, it is.
We’re either obedient disciples, truly of the Lord Jesus Christ. Or we aren’t. We’re then pretenders, or of the world and none of His.
There is no other grandstand, seats, arena, place to sit or stand.
And are we going to sit?
Or stand. And not merely stand, but move forward in the Word? Living it and that takes KNOWING it and BELIEVING it. Not merely reading it, having head knowledge, so on.
While having the faith of a child…
if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
2 Chronicles 7:14 — English Standard Version
Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
Isaiah 5:20 —King James Version
Hearing and Doing the Word
Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
James 1:19-27 — English Standard Version
Tuesday, October 12th, 2021
ACP — A Crooked Path
I Refuse to Accept the Current State of the Church
October 11, 2021
By Michael L. Brown
Reprinted from ASKDRBrown
I refuse to accept that the Church as we know it in America and the West is the very best the Church will ever be. I refuse to accept that the anemic, divided, often powerless version of the Church that we are so accustomed to seeing here is the only version we will ever see in this world.
Not if the Bible is true. Not if Jesus is Lord. Not if the Holy Spirit has been poured out. Not if God’s promises are real.
To the contrary, because the Bible is true. And because Jesus is Lord. And because the Holy Spirit has been poured out. And because God’s promises are real. We will see a glorious Church, walking in grace and victory and purity and power. We will see a bride fit for her Groom. We will see the Messianic community that He Himself is building. And the very gates of Hades will not overcome that Church.
That is God’s vision and that is God’s promise, because of which I will not accept the status quo of “Church as usual” today. I cannot accept it. And neither should you.
It is an insult to the blood of Jesus and a slur on the power of God, and we should not accept it for a moment as a reflection of the best that the Father has to offer to this world. Not a chance.
That version of the Church will not change the world. Or inspire sacrifice and dedication. Or transform sinners into saints. Or set captives free. Or bring glory to God. It will only bring reproach and breed compromise. That version of the Church is like the salt which has lost its saltiness. No wonder the world tramples it under foot.
But the Church that Jesus is building will ultimately be “a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless” (Ephesians 5:27). This is our destiny, our ultimate calling. This is how we will look when we reach our final destination. And that’s why we should work towards this and believe for this every day of our lives.
Even if that speaks of our eternal state once we are out of this fallen world, it is the direction in which we must be going. As Paul wrote to the Ephesians, “Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.”
He continued, “Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” (Ephesians 4:11-16)
This is supposed to have in this world, in this age. Is the Lord unable to do it?
Over one century ago, Catherine Booth (1829-1890), the fiery co-founder of the Salvation Army, knew that there was something very wrong with Church as usual. (For the record, the Salvation Army in its earlier history was much different than it is today.) She refused to accept the status quo, mincing no words in the process.
She said, “Here is the reason why we have such a host of stillborn, sinewless, ricketty, powerless spiritual children. They are born of half-dead parents, a sort of sentimental religion which does not take hold of the soul, which has no depth of earth, no grasp, no power in it, and the result is a sickly crop of sentimental converts. Oh! the Lord give us a real, robust, living, hardy, Christianity, full of zeal and faith, which shall bring into the kingdom of God lively, well-developed children, full of life and energy, instead of these poor sentimental ghosts that are hopping around us.”
May the Lord do that again today, giving us that “real, robust, living, hardy, Christianity, full of zeal and faith, which shall bring into the kingdom of God lively, well-developed children, full of life and energy.” May it be so!
The truth is that all over the world, God’s Spirit is on the move, and the Church is growing numerically like never before. Miracles of healing and deliverance are also increasingly common, especially when the gospel message is heard for the first time. Perhaps God will deepen our unity too? Perhaps He increase our love for one another? Perhaps He will conform us even more to the character of His Son? Is God unable to do this?
In 1990, I wrote, “There were fewer than 10 million Christians in Africa in 1900, but the projection for 2000 is 324 million.”
It turns out that projection was way too conservative. There are roughly 685 million professing Christians in Africa today.
I wrote in 1990 that, in Latin America, “evangelical Christianity grew from a mere 50,000 in 1900 to a projected 137 million in 2000. . . Even in the extremist Hindu kingdom of Nepal, shrouded by the Himalayan mountains, the Lord has found for Himself a people: in 1960, there were only 25 baptized believers. By 1989, there were over 50,000 — in spite of intense government opposition. And this is only the beginning.”
Today, there are over 661 million professing evangelicals in Latin America, shattering the predictions of growth.
As for Nepal, there close to one million Christians, according to Operation World.
I ask again: if God is growing His Church numerically, why can’t we expect growth in all other areas? And why can’t He grow His Church again in the West, even dramatically? Where is it written that we should not believe for this and work towards this and expect this?
Later this year, I will celebrate 50 years as a follower of Jesus, which means that I have seen a lot of bad with a lot of good. I am quite aware of our many warts and failings, both corporately and individually, starting with myself.
But just as Jesus did radically change me from who I was into who I am and who I am becoming, so also He wants to do that for all of us. And since I know He is not finished with changing me, I’m confident He is not finished with changing His Church.
The opening chapter of my newest book Revival Or We Die: A Great Awakening Is Our Only Hope, is titled, “There Is More.”
I am confident that the Lord Himself adds His “amen” to those three words. Be assured that, in Him, there is more – much, much more. Let us, then, press on towards our high calling in Him, starting today, right here and now. “Make us into something beautiful, Lord!”