These Troublesome Times
General James Green
T IMES ARE DARK, very DARK. Darkness, gross darkness, covers the land and the people of the earth; people are fearful, doubtful, and desperate! I don’t watch T.V., but I feel sorry for all you folks that do...I’m sure your home or work place is permeated with hopelessness. I was just talking with a sheriff and he was commenting about how BAD things are on a world scale—speaking about daily news on T.V. Don’t get me wrong, we are not ignorant of world events; in fact, ACMTC is right in the middle of it all—with the Gospel.
We are aware of the growing global arms race whereby “the erosion of the nuclear regime could become irreversible, and result in a cascade of proliferation” (Financial Times, 2004). I won’t waste your time or my space going into detail on this subject, but nations are raging, and religions are heating up for WAR. I’m sure you readers are well aware of all this.
Now, what are we going to do, as Christians, about all this? Such a development in negative current events should not frighten us, but challenge us. The cold war era has shifted to the edge...of world war 3? Who really knows for sure.
Contrary to what many so-called “Christian” leaders maintain, THERE IS TO BE NO SECRET RAPTURE TO WISP AWAY GOD’S WEAK AND SIN-SICK CHURCH. Sorry! The facts that face you and I are stark, but we can find comfort in God’s Word—His Holy Word—the Bible.
God’s Word is a storehouse of whose contents NO ONE can afford to be ignorant of. It is so true that “Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the Words of this prophecy” (Rev. 1:3). We can read and hear the Word in a general sense, but we here believe that the Lord reveals His deeper truths to the dedicated seeker thru the eye of faith. Those of us who study the Bible in a dedicated and devotional spirit, seeking for answers, He will regard.
As a whole, the Church has become so weakened in collective spiritual character that it simply lacks the moral fortitude, courage, and collective will, despite the sheer numbers and evident material and money, to confront the demons in the land. Ease and sleaze have literally gutted out the Church’s “will power” to engage the enemies both at home and abroad. Sure we have a small army out there, but why not a large one? Why are not ALL born-again believers marching off to war?...for Christ’s sake?
First off, I believe that one must love His Word, to have faith in It, before It will do much for us. Those who are fearful and doubtful will in no wise enter the battle. Most Church folks have become so lazy spiritually, that they would starve unless some pastor or teacher fed them with an ecclesiastical spoon and fork. Sadly, the modern clergy feeds their congregations Pablum. Can you be “strong in the Lord and in the power of His might” on baby food forever?
Sadly yet, the Church, as a whole, has to endure the invective (strong criticism, insults, curses etc.) from the God-haters of this world, plus from the vile left calling themselves “Christian” also!!
It is stated that “the nation that does not preserve its heritage is a nation not fit to survive.” Are we not called “a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye (we) should show forth praises of Him who hath called you (us) out of darkness into His marvelous light”? Tell me, are we, as a Church, trying to preserve our Christian heritage? The more the Spirit of God deals with the modern Church, the deeper she slides into utter moral and spiritual decline and decay. It is true!
Too often the Christian reads the Bible without interest or intent. Let me remind you that the Word of God “quickens” the soul (Ps. 119:50). It is also the “entrance” of the Word of God that gives “light” (Ps. 119:130). Also, the Word of God is the “sword of the Spirit,” (Eph. 6:17). The Word is the “law of the Lord,” that is “perfect, converting the soul” (Ps. 19:7). It is the “Word of God which effectually worketh also in you that believe” (1 Thes. 2:13). It is the Word of God which is able to build up believers, and to give them “an inheritance among all them which are sanctified” (Acts 20:32). Thru the “exceeding great and precious promises” of the Word, believers are made “partakers of the divine nature” (2 Pet. 1:4). Spiritual enlargement (growth) comes from running in the WAY of God’s Commandments (see Ps. 119:32).
As we been in service unto the Lord for over 44 years now, I have witnessed a real decline in righteousness among the professing Church. As we have traveled the world over several times, we see a lot of “religion” but little “righteousness.” The Church has went the way of the world. I know people don’t like me to say this, but say it I must. America especially has grown proud and haughty (her humility is a hundred miles wide and less than an eighth an inch deep), she refuses to walk in God’s old paths (the way the true prophets, priests and saints walked), but deliberately echoes Jer. 6:16: “We will not walk therein.”
Mark 4:24 tells us to take EARNEST HEED to WHAT we hear from God’s Word; and Luke 8:18 tells us to take heed HOW we hear. The demise of the nations, I believe, is the direct result of the church going whoring after other gods. Judgment is INEVITABLE! Godly repentance from our backslidings can bring God’s merciful intervention in the affairs of mankind.
We have too many “blood-sucking” and “money-grabbing” ministers that prey on the people...not pray for the people. There needs to be an end to their obscene prophets. Churchianity, especially Western Churchianity, has become a most profitable industry. What we have today, as a result of the above stated, is a Church with incredible abundance blended with unbelievable self-indulgence; motivational sermons or messages exhort the overfed and lazy Christians to pray for the rapture. IS IT TIME FOR GOD’S TRUE PEOPLE TO EXIT THIS EARTH LEAVING SUCH AN UN-EVANGELIZED MASS TO FACE HELL ON EARTH? To put it better, would Jesus really accept this cheap whore calling herself “His Bride”? In short, the Bride has not made herself ready. Get serious!
The people of God have an obligation to endure to the end, and also to take Jesus to all the world. We have a new generation out there that is “Jesus ignorant”…amidst the Apocalypse: famines, wars, plagues, and lots of DEATH? This is the best time to be a witness for Christ: when people are needy. If Christianity is RIGHT, and other religions are WRONG, as one former atheist writes: “it (Christianity) has to make this credible to a culture which is strongly resistant to any such claims to be telling the WHOLE TRUTH.”
What needs to be done, is the people of God need to rid themselves of their pet idols, wash away the stench of worldliness, circumcise their hearts, and show a genuine interest in recovering the Spiritual dimension to life, for themselves, and for the whole world. I see this prospect as nearly impossible, at least for 90% of the Church. If God’s people have no higher aspirations than the pagans, the salvation of souls will take the back seat.
But, at least some brave warriors for Christ are uncompromising and definitive when it comes to principles, and disciplined in the Word of God. While the “Christian” rock bands play on, and the Churchites inhabit the Tombs of death, the world gropes for new light, new Truth, or something, anything, to survive in a fallen world.
Even though the Bible is the most bought book out there, few take it seriously enough to pattern their lives after it. After all, Christianity is a new WAY, a new CULTURE. True, it has its difficulties (that is to us, not to God, for He knows what every passage means!): “one being the references to almost obsolete usages, the idiosyncrasies of the Bible writers, the Oriental imagery employed, the divine interpositions in miraculous deeds, the mysteries of divine providence, the severities and (apparent) cruelties of the divine administration, the (seemly) inconsistencies of certain Scriptures, and the amazing Biblical Characters, whose lives are recorded, and who, in spite of their sins, receive proof in words, and in official promotion of the divine commendation” (Rev. J. H. Vincent, L.L.D., Bishop of Methodist Episcopal Church, early 1900's).
Adding to what Vincent stated, the Bible is not written to please men, but to put forth doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness (2 Tim. 3:16). It is not a book that is systematic and carefully classified in series (in order) of plain and applied principles. IT MUST BE STUDIED AND PONDERED. It is not laid out like a school or college text book for different grade levels. It does feed the babes with milk, and mature saints with meat, but this comes as we grow. As one theologian once said, “concerning the difficulties of Scripture, the plain places therein are for our nourishment, hard places therein are for our exercise.”
The Bible was not meant to be an easy reading book, but when we find it hard at times (to understand), remember: for the soul that really desires to know, love, and obey the truth, there are NO insurmountable obstacles in the Word of God. John 7:17 tells us, “If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.” Those words were spoken by Jesus when He was teaching at the temple. The Jews marveled, saying: “How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?” (v. 15).
America would do well if she cast aside all this “anti-God” rebellion, and got back to the Bible. For the Word of God is rich, I mean RICH with, not only common sense, but Divine sense...something America is short on!
If we continue to follow the satanic pattern already set in motion, this country will surely end up bankrupt—literally and spiritually. If we would once again follow in the way of True Biblical principles and methods, processes adopted by patriarchs, prophets, and apostles of old in the proclaiming, upholding, applying, and enforcing of Truth, America would recover from her sin-sickness.
The Word of God, which America has so hatefully cast into the trash can, holds the key to abundant life, both for the individual, and nation (spiritually speaking). The Word has sound doctrine and divine ethics that is well able to flourish any nation which applies it.
No other book in the world has answers to objections, that can enlighten a darkened soul, extinguish fears, etc. But, without Jesus as our personal Saviour, the Word of God becomes merely a religious text-book of “do’s and don’ts.” Jesus IS the WORD! He IS the perfection of teaching and learning. He IS the MASTER of The HIGHEST ORDER. I personally believe that all this food, alcohol, drug, and sex addiction is the direct result of “Jesus-deficiency.” Souls are hungry for soul food, but the people turn to worldly rudiments for fulfillment...look at the DAMNED MESS we have now that is a result of walking after the flesh and not the Spirit. The appetite for truth has been overtaken (with the help of T.V. and radio) by the never ending bombardment of worldliness. This has affected the Christian community too, people are literally: eating, drinking, and sexing themselves to death like at no other time in the history of this nation. Why? Because we have cast aside the Word of God that leads, guides, and feeds the souls of men and nations.
Be it known unto ALL, the Word of God WILL judge EVERY person, and will appoint unto ALL men, women, boys, and girls their final resting place—HEAVEN or HELL FIRE, which is the Lake of Fire. When we reject God’s Truth, we automatically seal ourselves into damnation eternally. Make no mistake, God is not mocked. What we sow we shall reap and reap more abundantly: good or evil.
God’s eternal Word has an ethical significance and design. It was intended and is still intended to lay down laws of both religious and practical life. The Word is meant to guide men and nations into conduct that pleases God, not devilish conduct as men would prefer. All objects, incidents, comparisons, similes, metaphors, parables, and facts of the Bible have their divine design to teach all who are teachable. The Word of God must be employed in our generation.
Whatever happened to the family priest—the father who taught his family out of God’s Word? What ever happened to the politician who executed his duties by the principles of God’s Word? What about the Church? Where are the “Men of God” who are the true shepherds over the flock of God?...who care for the lambs and sheep, not rob and rape them?...who care for truth over error, and frown over favor? Where are the mothers and fathers of this nation who care enough about their children that they are willing to lay their lives down in their behalf? Where are the scholars who rebuke religious error, fight all evils, and teach their students the WAY of the LORD?...who teach them the love of Christ, to be honest, zealous, dedicated, consecrated, and separated?...who make conscience tender and intelligent, faith strong, and the will prompt and firm, with the outward life consistent and useful? WHERE HAVE ALL THE GOOD LEADERS GONE?