“Who do you say that I am?” (Matthew 16:15). The answer to this poignant question asked by Jesus over two centuries ago has stoked the unexplainable, uncontainable, and undeniable growth of His Body the Church. Fueled with a message of salvation, forgiveness, and hope, men and women from every strata of society have sacrificed their lives for the opportunity to see another person embrace this liberating truth. From Pentecost onward the delivery of Christ’s message has been more important than the life of any one messenger. Called to imitate heaven’s Deliverer, Christians have willingly embraced the ultimate sacrifice of their own lives to insure that “the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3)” would be passed on no matter the cost.
Today, we as believers stand in a regal line with a long heritage of spiritual ancestors who were willing to pay the price no matter the outcome. Their sole intention and purpose was to deliver the answer to Jesus’ question. And yet today acceptance, tolerance, and diversity are the buzzwords of a culture intent on bending God’s word to fit its own self-destructive destiny. Many parts of Christ’s Bride have waffled, wobbled, and ultimately capitulated the uniqueness of His message and embraced both a foreign and frightening fabrication as their message. A contaminated message diluted with little truth and fortified with a lot of lies has paralyzed her ability to take a stand and weather the ferocious but temporal onslaught of the enemy.
The Western Church is quickly losing her ability to proclaim the message because she no longer understands the message. Other things have taken the preeminent position that her Bridegroom once occupied. Her prophets have become pastoral maintenance men continually occupied with satisfying the egocentric bleating of overweight sheep, while their clarion voices are systematically silenced by an impotent inability to articulate the pure message of Christ’s Lordship and His call to die daily to self.
“Sacred” programs, which have been dead for decades, are petted, propped up, and canonized rather than accurately assessing their worth and burying them when they no longer accomplish their original intent, if that can even be discerned. Church programs are temporal tools for reaching the world not trophies to line the walls of denominational mausoleums.
Church politics – the games “little” men play to make them feel bigger—has decimated the purity of the Bride’s dowry. In exchange for the world’s power, the Church has committed adultery and idolatry and has forfeited her ability to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit. She has soiled her pure white garments with the hellish dirt of compromise and immorality. Instead of putting on the royal armor of the crucified and risen King, she has dressed herself unashamedly in the filthy rags of a prostitute.
To regain the single focus of our spiritual heritage, the church must once again embrace not reformation but revolution. Make no mistake about it, when Jesus died on the cross a revolution began. This revolution was and will be marked by passion—a single desire for the personal presence of God; by preaching—a bold clear declaration of “thus says the Lord,” by prayer—an unapologetic position of total dependence upon the power of the Holy Spirit; and ultimately by persecution—a faithful surrender of one’s life to become a voice that even hell cannot extinguish.
The battle cry of this revolution is the message – the word – for which millions who have willingly given their lives as martyrs for the Kingdom. Let the cry go forth! Let the gates of hell once again give way to the ferocious assault of a pure Bride, who once again will shout with a clear triumphant voice, “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God!”