By Pastor Mike Spaulding
My message to you via this article is a call to action. Let me give you a frame of reference with a large dash of levity.
“Come listen to my story ‘bout a man named Jed.
A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed.
Then one day, he was shootin’ at some food,
And up through the ground came a bubbling crude.
Black Gold, Texas Tea.
Well, the first thing you know ol’ Jed’s a millionaire.
Kin folk said Jed, move away from there.
Said, Californy is the place you ought to be,
So he loaded up the truck and moved to Beverly,
Hills that is. Swimmin’ pools, movie stars.
Anyone remember that theme song? What was the show? The show was The Beverley Hillbillies. Hard to believe that the Beverly Hillbillies was THE top rated television program for 2 of its 9 years on the air; it spend several years as a top 5 rated program, and it was ranked in the top 10 every year. That’s mega-success by television standards.
♦ Did you know the Beverly Hillbillies received 7 Emmy Award nominations?
♦ Did you know that the Beverly Hillbillies had two spin-offs – Petticoat Junction and Green Acres?
♦ Here’s another piece of trivia – Americans loved the show but television reviewers – the “critics” – hated it.
It’s not hard to understand why the critics hated the show. The Beverly Hillbillies presented an America and Americans that had a conscience that subscribed to a Judeo-Christian morality and perspective on life, even though the script writers rarely mentioned God, Jesus, or the Bible. And the two spin-offs – Petticoat Junction and Green Acres followed the same script of wholesome values and moral teachings.
But in the 1960s Hollywood was changing. It wasn’t obvious to most Americans then, but the “enlightened” critics wanted television to be a vehicle for social revolution. Hollywood even in those days was becoming a hub for anti-American values and they especially hated Christianity. Friends, the seeds of censorship of the Christian message began in the 1960’s not 2018.
Let me take you back to that era for a moment. The Beverly Hillbillies aired from 1962 – 1971. Those were the days weren’t they? In 1962 I was in the 1st grade so it was a long time ago. Let’s take a quick stroll down memory lane.
In 1962 America’s children were still:
♦ Praying to God each day in the government school system.
♦ Reading their Bible each day in the government school system.
♦ Still being taught biblical creationism in the government school system.
Pastors were warmly greeted and asked to pray at sporting events, high school graduation ceremonies, civic organizations, school board meetings, city council meetings, and many other events.
When the Beverly Hillbillies aired, the wholesale slaughter of unborn children upon the demonic altar named “choice” was unconscionable.
When Jed, Granny, Ellie Mae, and Jethro Bodine entertained Americans with their homespun wisdom and thinly-veiled Christian morality, we didn’t have naked men, women, and children, dressed in the most sadomasochistic attire parading in our streets and celebrating their “pride.” Brothers and sisters hear me clearly – there is nothing to be proud about what men do sexually to other men or what women do sexually to other women.
America of the 1960’s my brothers and sisters, has been deliberately destroyed and a new America has risen from its ashes. We have gone from:
♦ Leave It To Beaver to the number one on demand video platform – Netflix – offering pornography available to anyone including children.
♦ We have gone from Happy Days where the trouble teenagers got into was drag racing in the streets, to Antifa which is bringing bloodshed to our streets.
Would you agree that America 2018 is a broken and crippled nation, far removed from the vision of our Founding Fathers?
Now, the question that I must ask at this point is this: What are we going to do? What are we going to do to change the trajectory of America? What are we going to do to push back against the darkness that has a stranglehold on the throat of America and is systematically choking the life out of this nation?
Here’s what we cannot do friends – we cannot continue to skip down the yellow brick road to Oz, thinking that it will all work itself out in the end. Inaction is surrender!
We cannot trust that our eschatology will save us. Can I give you a word of encouragement here friends? Stop fussing about the rapture! I could not care less what your understanding of eschatology is. Here’s another word for you: stop arguing about what day we are required to honor God on.
You are not more spiritual or closer to God based on what day you set aside to honor Him. You are not more biblically rooted and prophetically astute based on your view of the rapture timing.
And speaking of our holy huddles – whatever day you choose to honor God on – we have to stop thinking that gathering together with our brothers and sisters a few hours one day a week constitutes our service for God.
What about the other 6.5 days? What about James’ admonition that faith without works is dead? What about the Apostle Paul’s admonition to be living sacrifices to Christ daily, and to demonstrate that by being transformed in our thinking? Are we only to have transformed minds one day a week?
I hope you have your Bible close by. If not, use your phone and turn with me to Acts 1:1-8. This is a familiar passage to most everyone. Different people focus on different things when they read the Bible. Here’s what I want you to see from this passage.
Take note that in V4-5 God gives us power. The same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us. Some people ignore this power because they are more concerned about a proper theology and especially a proper view of the end times. That’s exactly the mindset of the disciples as stated in V6.
Remember my word of encouragement a few moments ago to stop arguing about eschatology? Jesus says the same thing in V7. Don’t worry about it. The Father has it under control.
Here’s what we need to be concerned about according to Jesus – V8.
What do we see in this passage? I see at least three things for you to remember. They are:
(1) Receive the Holy Spirit’s power.
♦ This is the power necessary to conquer the onslaught of evil in our day.
♦ This is the power that gives us boldness and unflinching courage.
♦ This is the power that causes the demons to shrink back and the darkness to flee.
(2) We are told that we must be Christ’s witnesses.
♦ Do you understand that this means we are to represent Him as He is not how the culture demands He be? Jesus is not a rainbow flag waving, socialist!
♦ Misrepresenting Jesus is a huge problem in America today because he has been refashioned by the Luciferians to use as a bludgeon against Christians who are too ignorant to know what is happening to them. Thus the Jesus these Christians witness of is not the biblical Jesus but a façade Jesus that hides the evil intentions and consequences of the demoniacs among us.
♦ Do you understand that this means we are to proclaim everywhere that only Jesus saves and that we are to do this without apology or compromise?
(3) We are to tell our family, friends, co-workers, and fellow citizens of the town that we live in first. We must start in our Jerusalem and only when our Jerusalem is saturated are we to move beyond that place.
♦ There is more than enough work to be done to repair the breaches in the communities that we live in. We don’t need to look for opportunities elsewhere.
♦ Expect push back from your family, friends, co-workers, and fellow Christians. Keep making your case anyway.
Coming up in Part 2 of this article I will continue to use the America of the 1960’s as a backdrop to explain what is happening today. Thank you for taking the time to read Part 1 and please share it broadly within your circles.
[BIO: Mike Spaulding was ordained to the ministry in 1998. Since then he has planted two Calvary Chapel churches – Calvary Christian Fellowship, St. Marys, Ohio, in 1998, and Calvary Chapel of Lima, Ohio, in 2005, where he currently serves as teaching pastor. Mike holds a B.A. in Organizational Management, a Masters Degree in Theological Studies, and a Ph.D. in apologetics. E:Mail Mike Spaulding: email@example.com]
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