To all clergy: heed God’s clarion call

Apr. 26, 2013 @ 08:31 PM

 

“And I brethren when I came to you, came not with Excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” — 1 Corinthians 2:1-5

In an hour where we are being inundated with a gospel that has more to do with wealth and prosperity than it does power and deliverance, there is an urgency for the body of Christ to return to the lifesaving, life changing power of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

As preachers, we cannot allow ourselves to yield to the temptation to preach a gospel that is not all inclusive. The authentic Gospel is one that includes the birth, life, ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Furthermore, it includes the impartation of the Holy Ghost, sanctification and the manifestation of the gifts of God’s spirit.

The power attached to preaching this gospel shall always result in signs, wonders and miracles.

I am watching so many in the Kingdom preach an altered version of the Word of God. Many are seduced by the glamour of ministry and therefore have sold out by preaching to the itching ear of our generation.

I believe God is making a clarion call to his preachers to contend for the faith at all cost.

We can no longer hype the church with charismatic clichés’ while appealing to their flesh. We must preach the wages of sin is death and that the gift of God is eternal life. We must admonish the people of God when sin separates us from his holy presence: no amount of shouting or dancing will get us into his presence.

While praise and worship is certainly a part of the life of a believer, it does not produce the power of deliverance. Only the gospel message of Jesus Christ can do that. The Apostle Paul declares in Romans 1:16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes.” The Apostle Paul understood the power of God rested in preaching the gospel of Jesus and none of the other mechanisms we try to use in the church.

I see a lot of fancy preaching in the pulpits: a lot of hype; a lot of emotionalism — a lot of “stuff” that looks real “churchy.”

But I am forced to ask myself if preachers are ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Rarely do we hear messages about the cross that Jesus died on or the blood that he shed. Rarely do we hear, other than during Easter or Christmas, messages about the resurrection power of Jesus.

I believe God wants to reveal himself to us in a mighty way, in ways that go past the realm of praise but that will take us into the realm of divine miracles. The Word of God declares in 2 Timothy, Chapter 3 that “in the last days perilous times shall come, for men shall become lovers of themselves, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof.” The Apostle Paul goes on to say in 2 Timothy 4:3 “that the time will come when the church will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts will they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears.”

I pray that the ministers of God will not become “itching ear” teachers, preaching what the church wants to hear in an effort to attract or keep a crowd. We must be instant in-season and out-of-season, reproving, rebuking and exhorting with all long-suffering.

We cannot preach with the motive of impressing the church, but rather preach under the anointing of the Holy Spirit that we may begin to see lives changed, set free and delivered by the power of God.