WHAT IS THE CHURCH HIDING FROM?
I�m swamped today. I really am. I don�t have the time to write a commentary, too much other business to attend to today.
But the Holy Spirit won�t leave me alone. So here I go, hunting and pecking out my heart to you.
I sometimes wish the Lord would give me a happy message. It is sooooo much more fun to be liked. Don�t get me wrong, I�m not playing martyr and I don�t want your sympathy. But you would have to admit I write some pretty hard-hitting stuff: Stuff that keeps me from appearing in the pulpit of your local seeker-friendly church. Too harsh, don�t you know? Heaven forbid we would make Christians uncomfortable.
American-Christianity, the Moral Majority, Value Voters, call it whatever you like, is becoming a non-factor in the culture, sort of a cup-cake on the schedule, if you know what I mean. No one is afraid to play us. They no longer fear us. The politicos have boxed us into a corner and given us only one way out: Their man or the woe-man -- none of this �morality-stuff.� The Moral Majority, they tell us, must come to their senses and fall in line with Republicanism to stop Hellery.
We need look no further than the recent Value Voters Presidential debate. We are becoming irrelevant. We just don�t want to admit it.
Now don�t get me wrong. I�m not talking about Janet Folger, Joseph Farah, Phyllis Schlafly, Rick Scarborough, Don Wildman, Mat Staver, or the hundreds of others who have given their lives to defending the cause of Christ to the nation. Quite the opposite. I salute them. Where would we be without their faithful service in the ground-war for the culture? I know many of these front-line infantrymen. Most do it on a shoe-string budget with little fan-fare and recognition. But like the little boy with the thumb in the dike, we are rapidly running out of thumbs.
The cultural-hurricane descending on America will make the Katrina-ravaged Big Easy look like a wading pool. Instead of the American-Church doing her job by rebuilding the walls, she has spent her time looking for an ark�.a place to ride out the storm�.waiting on the Rapture�to rescue us from �the wrath to come.� Well, this category-five tsunami is building steam in the Atlantic and we �Christian-activists� are paddling for all we�re worth.
But I often wonder if we are even making a ripple?
All of the while, some pastors teach that �worse is better�; that somehow a further-degenerating America is evidence of Christ�s imminent return. If they believe it, why don�t they act like it? Why aren�t they on the streets 24/7 rescuing those who will be �left-behind?� They are Dumb Dogs, AFRAID TO BARK.
Witness what happened at the Values Voter Debate hosted by Janet Folger. Most Americans heard nothing of it. We need more men like Janet. She has more courage than most males I know. We could use a nation of pastors with her tenacity. See, voters ARE voting their values. That�s the problem. Christians now value the same things as non-Christians. The only difference is Christians claim to be �saved.�
The Values Voter Debate was a great idea; I wish I had been able to go. But can we look at the films a minute? None of the �Big Dogs� -- or as the controlled-media likes to tell us �first-tier� candidates, were able to make it. Rudy �didn�t know about it,� Romney was counting his money, McCain was absent, and Thompson was probably taping his next TV scene. NONE of them had time to face what the media tells us is the most powerful voting block in America�conservative Christians. Why? Because we have no place else to go. �You�ll just elect Hellery� goes the refrain.
But are we really that powerful, we Christians? Evidently not. None of the major media covered the debate and none of the true show-horses appeared. Mike Huckabee won the debate. I hate to say it, but who cares? Politicians no longer fear the Church. Most Christians don�t even vote.
Can I tell you why? Our pastors are MIA, missing in action. They have lost sight of the ball. Read the following Scripture closely; Jesus is the speaker. His disciples are the audience. Even Wikipedia recognizes The Great Commission as �the primary basis for Christian Missionary activity.�
What is The Great Commission? It is found in Matthew 28:18-20 �And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world." Amen.
But today we are hearing a different Gospel. One that Paul warned us about. Jesus commanded we go �teach them what He commanded us.� Instead, modern evangellyfishism is preaching a humanistic-gospel; A grab-all-the-gusto-you-can, non-offensive, love-them-all-the-way-to-hell, feel-good message. The world has become the �salt" of the Church.�
Read this from the book of Jude (Hello?...New Testament) �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. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ."
Most pastors will not contend for the Faith, they compromise it, wanting to be nice. Jesus told us to take our Truth to the streets. Today they invite the streets into the Church. �Come join us and learn how to live a happy life.� We�ve got it backwards. We must take the Gospel to them and �earnestly contend� for Truth.
My heart breaks for the soldiers in this cultural war. I pray that those who had the vision to hold the Values Voter Debate will not �grow weary in well doing.� But we are in need of some re-enforcements.
Wonder why we are losing? The re-enforcements are sitting on their butts in the pews. They don�t even know there is a war, much less that they should help fight it. The generals (pastors) who should be training up disciples for the �work of the ministry� have instead retreated into the safety of their �stained-glass fortresses� where they hope to hide from the Devil; Cowardly speaking about the devil, but never courageously to him. Our churches used to be �mighty fortresses� where we trained warriors. Today they are �hospitals for saints� -- nothing more than self-help centers with Dr. Phils in the pulpit. What a pathetic representation of the King of Kings today�s American-Christianity has become�.hiding from the enemy, praying for God�s blessings on our dear little souls.
So here is the scouting report. We can�t win without the pastors. No matter how hard the �Christian activists� fight, we cannot win without the pulpit. But as a pastor friend of mine said to me the other day, �I love you Coach, but your boldness scares pastors.�
Out of the mouths of babes�.pastors are afraid. No wonder they keep folks like me away from their sheep.
Here�s the trap. Our political leaders tell us that �moral issues� are religious, and our religious leaders claim that �moral issues� are political. Yep, it is always someone else�s job to clean up the mess.
I asked a group that I spoke to the other day this question: �What is the opposite of an activist Christian?"
No one would answer. They knew the ugliness of what they would have to admit.
Sissified-generals are leading milk-fed flocks. No wonder they can�t �earnestly contend for the faith.�
Church has become a great place to hide. Pull the shades and sing, �Open my eyes Lord, I want to see Jesus.� It makes us feel �spiritual.�
But Jesus will be waiting outside when you leave. He is looking for an army.
A year ago I wrote this to Dr. Dobson and friends. It is worth another read.
Can�t anyone awaken the pastors? The sun is beginning to set on America. Open the shades and look outside. If the Church won�t take on the Devil, who will?
in God�s Name, are you hiding from?
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Coach Dave Daubenmire, founder and President of Pass The Salt Ministries www.ptsalt.com and Minutemen United www.minutemenunited.org, is host of the high octane Pass The Salt radio show heard in Columbus, Ohio.
In 1999 Coach Daubenmire was sued by the ACLU for praying with his teams while coaching high school in Ohio. He now spends his energy fighting for Christian principles in the public domain.
E-Mail: [email protected]
has become a great place to hide. Pull the shades and sing, �Open my eyes
Lord, I want to see Jesus.� It makes us feel �spiritual.�