"Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints." ---Jude 3

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Many today embrace a gospel that is not the same as our forefathers knew, or as Jesus and the disciples taught.  We sometimes wonder, what happened to the old time religion which our ancestors believed, taught, and walked in.

Today, we see a seeker-friendly type gospel in which some ministers do not want to offend anyone, and who are afraid to call sin, as unrighteousness which will doom a man's soul to hell, unless he repents.  The preachers of yesterday, such as Jonathan Edwards, preached such messages that made men cry out in agony, because of realizing their sins would destroy their soul.  These men of God preached that the foot of the wicked would slide in due time, and that God would judge all sin.  The vengeance of God was threatened upon the wicked, because God's Word declared it.  These taught that the only reason men had not already fallen, who were living wickedly, was because it was not yet God's appointed time.

Today, many ministers have thousands of followers whom they do not want to offend with even the mention of sin.  Many preach a gospel of how to be healthy, wealthy, and wise, and omit how to stand victoriously and resist the devil.  Some of these have publicly stated they will not offend with preaching about sin, but instead seem to focus on self-help and how to be successful in life.

The successful Christian today is seen by some, as one who drives the best car, has the biggest mansion, and pays the most tithes into a church to help support a social type gospel.  Yet, love for God first and others, helping the poor. and walking in the Spirit of the Lord, is true birthmarks of a believer that is successful in Christ.  God expects us to give as we have prospered, yet it is more than giving of finances.  One can give all they have, yet if they have not love for God and their fellow man, all their giving has accomplished them nothing.  Our priorities must be right, and our motivation for our deeds must be out of a heart for Christ.

We are to present ourselves to the Lord as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable.  This is our reasonable service, or the very least God expects. There are lifestyles which are an abomination to a holy God that are being accepted by many denominations.  Even homosexuals are being ordained into the ministry in some congregations, which is an abomination to a holy God.  An "anything goes" type of ministry to gain a following is not the same type message the Lord told his disciples to teach, or one which we should follow today.

The early church fathers taught that drunkenness was a sin.  Today, we see it called a disease.  Yet, we all know that diseases are not bottled and sold.  It is a bondage of Satan which needs to be broken by the power of God.  The old time religion called breaking the marriage vows as adultery, not an affair.  The seriousness of sin has been watered down by men who only proclaim that "God is love" but do not teach that God is a God of wrath who is coming back in judgment one day soon.  We need balanced messages today which teach the truth from God's Word, for God will not be mocked.  The wages of sin is still death and what a man sows, that will he also reap.

There are no little white lies, as all lying is sin, yet in today's society there seems to be less black on white type teaching each day.  America needs to return to the old time religion that was good enough for our forefathers, and which will take us to heaven, if we walk in the ways of God's Word.

If God went back to the ways which He punished in the Old Testament, we would see stonings of those who sinned.  Yet, we have God's grace and live under the New Covenant of grace, a new and better way because of a living sacrifice, Christ Jesus.  We should be thankful for God's mercy, yet not sacrifice the truth on the altar of grace and love.

Jesus is coming again.  From the signs of the time, we see His coming is drawing near, although we know not the day nor the hour.  The message of the old time religion should still be the message for today.  In the Bible, we see in Revelation, a few believers in Sardis who had not defiled their spiritual garments.  Yet, those who were defiled by sin were not worthy to walk with the Lord in white or have their names confessed before the Father.  A little leaven can spoil the whole lump.  Sin will take one further than they want to go, keep them longer than they expected to stay, and cost them more than they thought they'd have to pay.  It is important to hold to the message that the thief comes to kill, steal, and destroy, and Jesus comes to give us a more abundant life.

The believers at Laodecia, in the book of Revelation, thought they were rich and increased with goods and had need for nothing.  Yet, they were poor and miserable, naked and blind.  This describes many in the churches today, who have left their first love.

It's not the the "Purpose Driven Life" that will save a man's soul, but a life that has purpose because God has put a desire in it that cannot be taught, but is sought.  It's not a twelve step program that will deliver a man out of the bondages of sin, but it is taking a step in faith toward the old rugged cross, and laying all our sins and burdens upon the one who bore them and still saves and delivers today.

The Bible tells us that "the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils....1 Tim. 4: 1. We see this today, and see many who have turned from the faith once delivered to the saints of old.  Some now believe a gnostic type doctrine, or that we are "little gods" who can command the Lord God.  This is not the same type gospel the early believers were taught.  These were taught to worship the Lord their God, and that we were servants of the Most High God, who was worthy of all honor and praise.

The Bible tells us that judgment begins in the house of the Lord, not in the Whitehouse, as many may believe.  It is God's people who are to humble themselves, repent, and turn from their wicked ways.  Yes, God's Word does tells us that His people can have wicked ways, and they need to turn from these and seek His face in humility and repentance.

Will things grow worse in the future as we see the day of the Lord approaching?  According to the Bible, I believe it will.  The Word tells us "evil men will wax worse" and we see this happening.  Regardless of what the future holds, we know who holds the future.  We must hold on to the old time religion.  James 1: 27 tells us "Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world."

Can we see God's admonition in the above Scripture, as to "keeping oneself unspotted from the world?"  This is God's plan for believers who have pure and undefiled religion.  We are called to come out from the world and be a separate people.  Although we are in this world, we are not of this world, but our conversation (lifestyle) is to be from God.

As we look around us and see men's heart failing them for fear, in these last days and souls departing from the faith, we cannot be moved.  We must remain in Christ, founded on the "Rock" of our salvation, without wavering.  The old time religion which was good enough for those in the Bible and our ancestors is still good enough for us.  If we abide in Christ and let His Word abide in us, we know He will take us to heaven.  For a child of God, the best is yet to come. Hold on to God's unchanging hand, for the next sound we hear could be the sound of the trumpet.

Blessings in Christ,
Jo Ann Kelly 7/7/07
J. P.'s Inspirations
http://www.my.homewithgod.com/jpinspirations/
Font is: Varsity Script JF




 

                   

 


 


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