Will The Church Let The World Go To Hell?

TheCrossby Patricia L. Dickson8/23/15
America has witnessed our Supreme Court make same-sex marriage the law of the land with a 5-4 decision that changed the definition of marriage. After the decision was announced, one would think that churches all over America would have been protesting and marching in the streets. Instead, on the Sunday following the decision, only a few pastors and ministers addressed the decision with what I would call righteous indignation. On the other hand, many pastors addressed the subject by tip toeing around it and refusing to even say the word same-sex marriage during their morning sermons. Bishop T. D. Jakes, a popular pastor of a mega church with thousands of members, addressed the decision by downplaying it:

I’m not really as concerned about this as a lot of people are. I’m really not as concerned about it. I think that we should not lose our mind about the world being the world and the Church being the Church. This is not a news flash. The world is gonna be the world and the Church is gonna be the Church, and you have to understand the difference.”

Is it not the church’s job (mission) to reach the world with the message of salvation? This supposedly man of God is saying that he is not concerned about the Supreme Court changing the definition of marriage which allows homosexual men and lesbian women to marry their partners, and neither should the church be concerned. If the church is not concerned about the world’s immorality, then who is? The bible teachers the following in Matthew 5:13-16:

13You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.

14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.

15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.

16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

What if Jesus had said that He was not concerned about the world being the world? Jesus would not have gone to the cross if He was not concerned about the world. Bishop Jakes speaks as though the church’s mission has nothing to do with saving the world. If that is the case, what is the church’s mission? Although later in his comments, he told his members that they needed to start reaching out to all types of people and preaching, ministering, and sharing their faith with them, his opening comments about the world is going to be the world made it seem like there is no need for the church to try to reach the lost sinners. That stance is clearly contrary to what Jesus said the role of church is. In addition, while addressing the Supreme Court’s decision, Bishop Jakes never stated whether he believed that the homosexual lifestyle and same-sex marriage is a sin according to scripture. Jesus commissioned the disciples to go into all world and preach the gospel.

Mark 16:15

15 And He said to them, Go into all the world and preach and publish openly the good news (the Gospel) to every creature [of the whole [e]human race].

Its hands-off approach on the same-sex marriage decision reveals the church’s true condition. Not only did the church stand on the sidelines while the gay rights movement steamrolled through just about every American institution, it has been silent concerning the undercover Plan Parenthood videos showing clinic workers discussing selling the body parts of aborted babies. Is the church so weak and cowed that it has replaced the word of God with political correctness? Or has the church become so corrupt that its main goal is the protect its tax exempt status that allows it to rake in millions of dollars for fancy buildings while ignoring the very souls that it is supposed to be reaching? Will the church sit back between its four walls and just let the world go to hell?


PatriciaDicksonPatricia Dickson blogs at Patricia’s Corner.
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24 Responses to Will The Church Let The World Go To Hell?

  1. Timothy Lane says:

    Too many in the church, like too many in the GOP leadership, want to “stand tall in Georgetown” or the local equivalent.

  2. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    The ease, if not glee, that so many Christians have embraced sodomy is disturbing, if not also interesting.

    From where I sit (full of doubt more than faith), it brings into question the entire legitimacy of Christianity. If it can so easily turn on a dime and adopt not only sodomy but Marxism as its central paradigm, is “faith” and religion ever anything more than a cultural invention? Is God objective or does God just change with the times?

    Whatever the case may be — and I have no conceit that I will solve this question today — it’s apparent that the old Ten Commandments are out and the New Ones are in:

    1) Diversity
    2) Non-judgmentalism/Kumbaya-ism
    3) Multiculturalism
    4) Victimhood
    5) Grievance
    6) Racism (white guilt is just that, as is the idea that “people of color” are all victims of one sort or another)
    7) Darwinism
    8) Soft atheism
    9) Secularism
    10) Freudianism

    Different aspects are emphasized in different places. (A Christian — a pastor no less — told me the other day that with all the stars and planets in the universe, there must be life all over out there merely because of the odds…and this is a direct application of Darwinism, not the idea of a Creator…I’ll say more if you don’t get that). Some black churches, such as Pastor Wright’s where Obama went, are Marxist churches first and foremost (“Black Liberation Theology”) with the accouterments of Jesus thrown over the top. Other churches are not so harsh. But they stress the first four commandments so strongly, they can find nothing wrong with sodomy or even abortion.

    Note that I’m totally serious about the soft atheism and secularism that has come to infiltrate the church. Granted, with all the distractions we have these days, I can understand that it’s difficult to really believe there is a Creator of both love and judgment. It is so easy to wear church like a light affectation. Few are actually worried about where their next meal is coming from. Few face life-or-death pressures. Most already live in a fantasy world of non-stop entertainment (movies, TV, phones, tablets, etc). So what’s one more story or narrative?

    Patricia is an oddball because she really believes. And I certainly don’t. I won’t pretend otherwise. A Creator? Sure. Absolutely. A loving one who cares about my life? That’s a bit harder to swallow down. But that is supposedly what you sign on for with Christianity. There is a right and a wrong that you sign onto as well. But as Dennis Prager (I think it was him) was noting the other day, many atheists go to church because they like the kumbaya they can get there that they can’t get anywhere else. That’s strange in and of itself. Not that an atheist wouldn’t be welcome, for how else are you going to convert them? But that they can get all the benefits of kumbaya without having to do or believe anything is revealing.

    So as I’ve long noted and suspected, the churches have for decades now been hollowed out. And the answer to Patricia’s question is that, yes, the churches will let the world go to hell long before they warn people about the evils of abortion, the unhealthy lifestyle of homosexuals, or the dangers of turning Christ from a moral/Redemption program to a mere poverty program (aka “social justice”).

    • Timothy Lane says:

      One can believe in aliens and still believe that God ultimately created them (if only by way of natural processes) just as he did man, and may even have redeemed them as he did man. I don’t know that anyone considered Lewis’s Space trilogy anti-religious. An interesting take on the question of Christianity and aliens is James Blish’s A Case of Conscience, part of a series of books he did dealing with religious themes.

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        One can believe in aliens and still believe that God ultimately created them (if only by way of natural processes) just as he did man, and may even have redeemed them as he did man.

        Yes, but that is certainly not the subject that was brought up to me. There is this common idea floating about (one that I reject) that because the universe is so vast that life appearing on other planets is inevitable; that is it is a function of mere odds; that it is a function of neo-Darwinian evolution where life can kickstart itself through nothing more than random chance, given enough time.

        I’m sufficiently sold on the idea that given the “combinatorial resources” (as they say) of the entire universe since its inception, there are not enough odds working for life to have assembled itself, let alone for one 200-amino-acid-long protein. Neo-Darwinism (chance alone) is insufficient to explain life. Oddly, the person who fed me this line did so when years ago it was I who was more the champion to him of the random-chance/Darwinian line. What changed? I don’t know. It doesn’t really matter on a personal basis other than it shows what is “out there” in the culture at large, including the Christian culture.

    • David Norris says:

      “… it brings into question the entire legitimacy of Christianity. If it can so easily turn on a dime and adopt not only sodomy but Marxism as its central paradigm, is “faith” and religion ever anything more than a cultural invention? ”

      Excellent question Brad! To my understanding; faith, belief in, knowledge of a something greater or higher than us is not an invention. Religion however may be.

      “…does God just change with the times?”

      Another good question. Some say that God is an eternal and unchanging force, however our awareness and understanding of that force can wax and wane.

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        My own sense, David, is that Christianity has lost its head. I appreciate your distinction between religion and faith. And perhaps there is some merit to that. But I would have rather that our current symposium been about a topic that I suggested: How to live an authentic life in a world of plastic dreams.

        It’s easy to articulate the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost and the basic ideas in the Nicene Creed. But how to live a Christian life? How to live a life of purpose and meaning in a world of plastic dreams?

        We see from this Communist pope that there is a real possibility that the Christian head is dead, that the deep ideas that made Western Christian man a nobler man are being replaced by vapid political dogmas. The modern Christian may be able to regurgitate a few lines of scripture. But does he really “get” what it is all about?

        My sense is “no.” Oh, some here do. And I’m not talking about them. But I think churches have become as institutionally adrift and barren as the educational institutions have become. Not only must one home-school if one wants a good education, I think the same is true of the Christian life. You’re not going to find it in most churches today.

        I think Christianity has been reduced to a mere veneer, and one impregnated by the entertainment culture mentality. The point is not where you fit in the universal scheme of things. It’s how your emotions can be stoked to yet another emotional peek experience. And caterwauling over “the poor” while skipping over what “the poor” need most (good morals, education, and hard work) is the kind of feel-good moral exhibitionism that shows that many Christians aren’t serious about their faith. People are parsed in mere economic turns. Man is reduced to an income, or lack of same.

  3. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    I find Jakes something of an odd duck. He is a heretic as regards the doctrine of the Trinity which is followed by the vast majority of Western Christians. I also believe he is something of a charlatan, similar to that character Osteen in Houston. Both appear to be profiting quite well from their “ministries”. Which is what it is really about.

    I see that Jakes has recently been given his own TV program. I don’t mean a Sunday morning broadcast of his latest sermon. I mean something like that put on by Dr. Phil or Oprah. I suspect this is what it is really about. It might hurt his ratings if he says anything controversial about homo marriage. More importantly, the powers that control TV might cancel his program. It must never be forgotten that the lavender mafia permeates the media at all levels.

    One must wonder if Jakes suffers from avarice and vainglory as well as gluttony. Not a particularly great example as a minister, in my opinion.

    As to the question of whether or not Christians can accept homo marriage, I am still waiting for a Christian to refute the conclusion arrived at in my article below.

    http://www.stubbornthings.org/can-a-christian-support-homosexual-marriage/

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      It might hurt his ratings if he says anything controversial about homo marriage.

      Leftist Commandment #9: Secularism. One of its main aspects is entertainment-ism, also mass-appeal-ism, and make-a-buck-ism. As laughable as this may sound, ostensibly the role of the church is to teach right and wrong despite whatever the culture at large is doing.

      So you have surely stabbed to the heart of this beast, Mr. Kung. What’s driving Jakes (and many of the churches) is ratings, not Revelation, if you will allow this stretch of alliteration.

      I have a dear friend whose words I will always remember. She wanted to get involved in her own church, moved by the spirit to give something back. And she discovered what I would call a ratings monster behind the scenes. Everything was geared toward marketing with the purpose of maximizing attendance. She said something like “Let’s just teach the Gospel faithfully and the rest will follow.” She wasn’t quite laughed out of the inner church circles, but she did soon quit those circles in that one particular church.

      This is what is going on. I can confirm it with everything I see. Hey, I admit I’m no savvy capitalist. I’m a lousy businessman. I’m not Steve Jobs. But, good golly, when you look and see that many churches have better printing equipment than we do, that tells you something. They spend tens of thousands of dollars on sound systems, big screen TVs, color copiers, and even internal espresso bars (I kid you not). These things are marketed like laundry detergent to the masses.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        Tom Lehrer had some satirical suggestions for Catholicism (this ws the time of Vatican II) for how to “sell the product” in a secular age in his “Vatican Rag”. Perhaps someone should send a copy to the Peron Pope and see if he likes the suggestions.

  4. The current state of the church has been a persistent issue for me for quite some time. This nagging and pulling on my heart and conscience will not subside or go away (thank God). I was really prompted to write this article and mention Bishop Jakes specifically because of a comment under my article that was posted by someone on a blog read by black people. The article :
    http://www.stubbornthings.org/will-same-sex-marriage-be-the-nail-in-the-coffin/

    That particular comment has been bothering me for some weeks now. The main topic of the article is the black church and its loyalty to the Democrat Party. The commenter said that black parishioners did not have to worry about the issue of same-sex marriage because Bishop Jakes has already addressed it and told us (black people) not to worry about it. I was floored by that comment! It forced me to acknowledge the realization that so-called Christians (parishioners) are leaving their own salvation in the hands of men. After reading that comment, I googled Jake’s comments on same-sex marriage and found several other blogs covering his comments as well as a youtube. However, I could not bring myself to listen to the youtube.

    I don’t believe that many of today’s so-called pastors and ministers understand that God holds them responsible for the souls that sit under their ministry. Being in ministry is a serious job and no one should take it lightly. In fact, I tremble at the thought of being in full time ministry because of the powerful influence a person holding the position of a clergy has over people. I remember back when I was in bible college how we had to work the church ministry’s prayer lines every Thursday as part of our grade. People would call the prayer lines from all over the nation and the world. What struck me was how much faith the people had in the students( me) that we were truly God connected people and that we could petition God on their behalf. The people calling in did not know that we were students in training for ministry (nor did they care). They just wanted someone who supposedly had a genuine relationship with God the Father to pray for and with them about their problems. I remember being taken aback when one lady said to me “I’m calling you because I know that you are anointed with the Holy Spirit and God hears your prayers”. That scared me to death! How could this lady be so sure that I was truly a Christians? That is why I refuse to be part of any church that does not preach and teach the unadulterated word of God!

    I am friends on facebook with many of my high school classmates. Several of them have become pastors, evangelist and hold other positions in full time ministry. Although they post scriptures and affirmations daily, all of them support Obama and none of them have ever addressed the issue of same-sex marriage or abortion. I make it my duty as a sold out born again Christian to post articles about same-sex marriage and the atrocities of abortion on a daily basis. Under the articles I post comments calling out the so-called churches for refusing to address these issues. Not one of them ever responds to any of my post when I mention the sin of homosexuality and abortions. Not one of them in the past six years!

    I was living in the United Kingdom when the Supreme Court issued its decision on same-sex marriage. The Sunday following the decision, I streamed in my church service here in California (just like always) to see whether or not my then pastor would address the issue to my satisfaction. He did not. I told myself that when I returned to the US, that I would not attend any church unless the pastor speaks out against the evils of abortion and same-sex marriage. I googled pastors that have spoken out against same-sex marriage (there were not many) and found one here in California not far from where I live. Today I attended his church.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      I remember back when I was in bible college how we had to work the church ministry’s prayer lines every Thursday as part of our grade. People would call the prayer lines from all over the nation and the world. What struck me was how much faith the people had in the students( me) that we were truly God connected people and that we could petition God on their behalf. The people calling in did not know that we were students in training for ministry (nor did they care). They just wanted someone who supposedly had a genuine relationship with God the Father to pray for and with them about their problems. I remember being taken aback when one lady said to me “I’m calling you because I know that you are anointed with the Holy Spirit and God hears your prayers”. That scared me to death! How could this lady be so sure that I was truly a Christians? That is why I refuse to be part of any church that does not preach and teach the unadulterated word of God!

      You know, as I’ve said before, in my personal critiques of religion and people, I hold exempt and blameless those who perhaps reach a little too far, but understandably so, because they are sick, in danger, or out of hope. I hold contempt for no man or woman, no matter how superstitious they sometimes approach the idea of God. And those who are desperate will grasp at straws.

      I remember having some philosophical/metaphysical conversations with some chick from afar via email many years ago. She started to relate just a bit subservient and told me once that I would one day start a new religion. Oh, holy heck, that scared the heck out of me and I dropped that friendship like a hot potato. The last thing I need is a god delusion and the last thing I have is a god delusion. But I can relate somewhat, Patricia, with the weight you felt as others seemed to relate to you as if you were some kind of talisman — a lucky rabbit’s foot, for all intents and purposes. It seemed to be superstition, rather than faith, but I can’t blame those with true troubles for reacting in this way.

      But we know we shouldn’t idol worship. I wish some of my own afflictions would go away. But hoping and praying doesn’t seem to do much good. It just seems to be the way things are, good or bad, right or wrong…the rain falls on the just and unjust.

      Still, you can see how and why wisdom is needed in order not to set oneself up as a go-between. People may have good reason to relate to god as you would a rabbit’s foot, but that’s no reason not to remind people that the Creator of the universe is a real person (or personality) and not a glorified version of “step on a crack, break your momma’s back.” It’s still astounding to me that there could be such a person. And I’m not convinced yet this person is a personal person. But there is a distinct difference between a rabbit’s foot and a person. And Christianity does not understand God as a glorified rabbit’s foot.

      Perhaps our afflictions are lessons for our lives. We don’t know. But everyone has them and they can’t all be wished or prayed away. It used to be the Christian thing to do to hope, pray, have faith, and gather strength from our weaknesses. Scares the hell out of me too that what I consider the one and only force for fixing this country has become so corrupt.

      You really shouldn’t be the unusual case, holding out for a pastor who has reasonably orthodox views and treats the Creator as if He was real, with a real moral framework to hold to. But God seems to have been reduced to a focus group. If same sex marriage is popular today, then He must be for it.

      But you are increasing the rare case, black or white.

    • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

      I told myself that when I returned to the US, that I would not attend any church unless the pastor speaks out against the evils of abortion and same-sex marriage. I googled pastors that have spoken out against same-sex marriage (there were not many) and found one here in California not far from where I live. Today I attended his church.

      I am convinced most pastors who do not speak out against homosexual marriage are corrupt and have sold their souls, not just their birthrights, for for a mess of pottage. Some, of course, never were actually not Christians, but wolves in sheep’s clothing.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        But it’s such a large mess that they find the temptation too strong to resist. (As I said earlier, it’s the local equivalent — and in some cases not so local — of the desire to “stand tall in Georgetown”, as Allen Drury so aptly put it.)

        • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

          I also believe the fact that Patricia lives in the modern Sodom and Gomorrah, California, may contribute to the fact that so few pastors speak out against the worship of Moloch and Ashtoreh.

          • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

            Perhaps never have so many profited from something that is supposedly freely available (Redemption). It is that aspect of the Christian church (or Church) that leaves it open to being seen as a con. And certainly many use it like that. For others, it’s a great big smudge of grey area.

  5. oldguy says:

    The question that should be asked of these churches is will you perform a gay marriage? The state is already corrupt and is really of no concern to those who are believers. Render unto Caesar remember?

    • Timothy Lane says:

      But the churches not only shouldn’t perform homosexual marriages, but they should explain why — which requires preaching the Bible, not the degenerated culture.

  6. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Here’s an article worth reading. It’s about blackjack, Vegas, and low attention spans:

    Today’s young adults grew up with video games. They’re tethered to their iPhones and can’t wait for the next alert of a tweet or Instagram or Pinterest post. They don’t watch the news, they don’t read newspapers, and most of them couldn’t have read this far in an article, even one about them. They are, in today’s psychological terminology, “high novelty-seeking,” which, like most personality traits, has both benefits and pitfalls. They are easily bored risk-takers. They have the shortest attention spans that have ever existed in an adult human and care little for anything that doesn’t offer at least a brief rush of dopamine, adrenaline, or endorphin.

    And it shows in how they gamble. Off-strip, you find locals and older folks (which is to say born before 1980) playing cards for an hour or three at a time, enjoying the game for its own sake. A long, slow enjoyment — the gambling equivalent of a seduction — versus “kids today” who gamble the same way they treat romantic encounters: quickly and superficially, and with high stakes since they’re risking the same amount in ten minutes that I’d risk in an hour or two if not the whole weekend.

    Could something like this give an insight on how yutes are relating to church? There’s no time or inclination (or ability) for anything deeper? It’s just instant good vibes. Don’t ask me to think.

    Could this short attention spans have an impact on education?

    Think about how (or whether) students learn today, about how “screen time” is making it nearly impossible for young (and not so young) children to focus on a task or read a book or play outdoors for more than a few minutes without losing interest, about how “news” is digested by the Jon Stewart crowd, about Hillary Clinton’s bragging over a new “Snapchat” account — the purpose of which, separate from her bad jokes, is for messages to disappear forever within moments after being sent.

    And how many “solutions” to the problems in education simply cater to the short attention spans instead of trying to change them?

    This is what passes for awesome, or as my 9-year old daughter would say, “epic,” among today’s youth and young adults: Forget about the value of something built to last, forget about classics, forget about eternal truths or even the ability to hold on to a really funny joke or insightful quip. All that matters is the fleeting, the temporary, the it-makes-me-feel-good-at-the-moment, the hook-up, the latest upgrade…

    But when the young people of today can only enjoy life in brief moments of unnatural intensity it makes me wonder, “Am I old?” To which I respond, “For perhaps the first time, I hope so.”

    I like what this guy says:

    Well, I’m going to say it – I blame the ADULTS. Giving in to all their children’s wants. No chores, no disipline, giving them cell phones and I dont want to hear it’s a different world – they need a cell phone – baloney! No strong upbringing on GOD, but lots of disney world, tv, movies, and computer games! No losses, everybody wins, no challenges, no biking without a helmet, no skating cause you can bruise your knees, no dodge ball cause someone might get hurt, no tap water – even though I’ve said from day water – some genius put water in a bottle and sold it as pure mountain water. Education – forget that – it’s all about being politically correct – check out the school program from the early 1900 and compare it to todays – will make you cringe and cry at the same time!

  7. Pst4usa says:

    The answer to the title question is yes, some will, and no, some won’t. Our challenge is to figure out which one we attend, (which is really no challenge at all).

  8. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Patricia, here’s an article by a guy who won’t let the world go to hell.

    • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

      Sounds like he used the same method as Trump, i.e. tell the truth. Suddenly, people will see others are thinking the same thing. People need to be led, as most will not take the first step if they think what they are thinking is unpopular. That’s why leftist propaganda is effective. It makes people think that they are not in the mainstream.

      What ever happened to the idea of “Onward Christian Soldiers”, or “A Mighty Fortress is Our God”?

  9. John Sandhofner says:

    Great writing Patricia. I have to agree that the church has become weak kneed. We are scared of being criticized and don’t have the conviction to stand our ground. I pray to God that we have a revival in this country, NOW!!

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