A mid-summer’s Apostolic greeting! I trust you are staying cool—and if you live in the Midwest…dry. This is our nation’s birthday and I trust you are having a safe and enjoyable holiday.
Let me share an interesting item with you that crossed my desk recently.
The Day They Kicked God Out of Schools
Why didn’t you save the school children at: Moses Lake , Washington; Bethel , Alaska; Pearl , Mississippi; West Paducah, Kentucky; Stamps, Arkansas; Jonesboro, Arkansas; Edinborough, Pennsylvania; Fayetteville, Tennessee; Springfield, Oregon; Richmond, Virginia; Littleton, Colorado; Taber, Alberta, Canada; Conyers, Georgia; Deming, New Mexico; Fort Gibson, Oklahoma; Santee, California; El Cajon, California; Blacksburg, Virginia?
Dear Concerned Student:
I am no longer allowed in schools.
How did this get started?
I think it started when Madeline Murray O’Hair complained she didn’t want any prayer in our schools.
And we said, OK.
Then, someone said you better not read the Bible in school, the Book that says “Thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbors as yourself.”
And we said, OK…
Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn’t spank our children when they misbehaved because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem.
And we said, an “expert” should know what he’s talking about so we won’t discipline them anymore.
Then someone said teachers and principals ought not discipline our children when they misbehave. And the school administrators said because we don’t want any bad publicity, and we surely don’t want to be sued. And we accepted their reasoning.
Then someone said, let’s let our daughters have abortions if they want, and they won’t even have to tell their parents.
And we said, that’s a grand idea…
Then some wise school board member said, since boys will be boys and they’re going to do it anyway, let’s give our sons all the condoms they want so they can do whatever they desire, and we won’t tell their parents they got them at school.
And we said, that’s another great idea…
Then some of our top elected officials said it doesn’t matter what we do in private as long as we do our jobs.
And we said, it doesn’t matter what anybody, including the President, does in private as long as we have jobs and the economy is good.
And someone else took that appreciation a step further and published pictures of nude children and then stepped further still by making them available on the Internet.
And we said, everyone’s entitled to free speech.
And the entertainment industry said, let’s make TV shows and movies and video games that promote profanity, violence and illicit sex. And let’s record music that encourages rape, drugs, murder, suicide, and satanic themes.
And we said, it’s just entertainment and it has no adverse effect and nobody takes it seriously anyway, so go right ahead.
Now we’re asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don’t know right from wrong, and why it doesn’t bother them to kill strangers, classmates or even themselves.
Undoubtedly, if we thought about it long and hard enough, we could figure it out.
I’m sure it has a great deal to do with…”WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.”
A step further…
What if the principle expressed above by the anonymous author was applied to the Apostolic movement. How did we get to where we presently find ourselves…drifting, divided, wondering where we fit in, where to go from here, what lines of fellowship to cross or not cross, whether to speak out on the basic tenets of our faith or keep silent—and just where is that line in the sand? How did we arrive at this juncture?
Well, a partial answer is not too difficult to discern. In many venues it became unpopular, even old-fashioned, to reiterate our doctrinal positions. Surely everyone knows by now what we believe. Doctrine became boring and then “divisive.” Soon, it was rarely voiced. That made it easy to excuse those overseas, and even some in this country, who embrace false teaching. After all, our interpretation of the Scriptures might be skewed and perhaps they are right. “Touch not mine anointed….” And how could they be wrong if they are anointed and blessed? (What is skewed are the popular definitions of anointing and blessing, not our doctrine.)
The heavy emphasis on growth and numbers overshadowed the need to maintain our holiness standards. The message of separation from the world just wasn’t couth. Our worldly friends didn’t appreciate it, our backslidden brethren made fun of us, and talking about sin and righteousness made folks feel uncomfortable. And we want our unrepentant friends and lukewarm saints to leave our services feeling good about themselves.
Then we noticed that prominent churches and ministers could violate their ministerial agreement with impunity, that virtually no one was called “on the carpet” for anything (except financial arrears), that “charges” became passé, and that one could express virtually any lifestyle without being questioned. Fear of lawsuits made judicial procedure a joke. Just about anything could go on in youth conferences because it was viewed as connecting with the now generation.
It was just a matter of time before a call was made to begin removal of offending positions, excused for the sake of evangelism. Pleas were made to hold the line in the face of a culture gone wild, so our children would have a spiritual safety net, so our heritage could remain intact, so our witness to the world could be undergirded. Those pleas fell on deaf ears. “Reach the world” was the cry…but we only made it easier for the world to reach us.
Then any who dared to step back across the line to a safer position were castigated with slanderous accusations. Godly men who yesterday were spiritual heroes suddenly became heretics because they could not embrace a move to undo what wisdom, common sense and godliness had dictated for many years.
And we wonder why we are faced with our current problems…? Could they also have something to do with…”WE REAP WHAT WE SOW”?
Some interesting stats
Nearly 6,000 Southern Baptist pastors leave the ministry prematurely every year. More than 200 pastors are fired every month. Former SBC president Jimmy Draper asserted that a third of the SBC’s 62,000 churches have staff suffering from significant stress or emotional problems. – Jeffrey Weiss, “Wounded Heroes,” The Dallas News (March 7, 1998 )
Do you agree with John Hagee?
The megapastor from San Antonio who had a brief endorsement fling with John McCain was quoted by the Houston Chronicle as saying that Jews don’t need Jesus. He said, “I’m not trying to convert the Jewish people to the Christian faith…trying to convert Jews is a waste of time….I believe that every Jewish person who lives in the light of the Torah, which is the word of God, has a relationship with God and will come to redemption. Everyone else needs to believe in Jesus…but not Jews. Jews already have a covenant with God that has never been replaced by Christianity.”
In your opinion, is he right or wrong? What do you see as the Jews’ current relationship with God? What role will they play in the future fulfillment of prophecy, if any? How are Jews saved today, and will they be saved differently in the future? I would appreciate hearing from you on this question. Relevant responses, with or without your name, as you please, will be published.
Brother E. W. Whitmire pastors in Hearne, TX, a town of less than 5,000 population. In January, he challenged his church to teach home Bible studies, specifically using Into His Marvelous Light. That month they only taught two Bible studies, baptized one and one received the Holy Ghost. In February they taught four, had three to be baptized and four received the Holy Ghost. In March they taught ten Bible studies and had two receive the Holy Ghost. In April they taught 31 Bible studies, baptized 23 and 23 received the Holy Ghost. In May they taught 23 Bible studies, had 10 baptized and 10 received the Holy Ghost. Twenty-one of those who received the Holy Ghost were adults, including 18 men! The revival is continuing as they labor to assimilate all the new converts into the church. Pastor Whitmire notes a definite correlation between the number of Bible studies taught and those baptized and receiving the Holy Ghost. The Pentecostals of Robertson County are true believers the power of the Word as presented through Into His Marvelous Light!
Order your supply of IHML Bible studies today from advanceministries.org. The Word still works!
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The Parallel Bible
Here is a very useful volume you will want to keep on your study desk! It is the most practical complete Bible you can own—the King James Version (KJV) in one column and the New International Version (NIV) in the other on the same page! Immediate comparison! Includes a concordance for both versions! A beautiful Bible you will be use daily for quick, easy reference.
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To order books and Bibles from Advance Ministries: call 936-856-3419 or online at advanceministries.org.
Visit our web site to see the many books and Bibles that are available. Thanks for ordering from Advance Ministries. We are pleased to offer a great selection of Apostolic materials you may not find elsewhere.
Have a great weekend! And God bless America on its 232nd birthday!