According to Barna, nearly 72 percent of churches don’t look to the Bible as their final source of authority and direction. No wonder America is crumbling from within; the foundation is deteriorating. The reality is that there is only one solution and it has not changed for thousands of years.
Two wills cannot successfully live in the same body—our self-will and God’s will. We can’t defeat what we feed. God’s Word states, “For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world” (1 John 2:16).
It's not by chance that God uses powerful words from the pulpits to spark change. The pulpit has always led the way, from promoting God-given freedoms when the nation was born to the abolition of slavery a century later and from turning the tide of liberalism to directing the nation back to God. We find ourselves at a similar crossroads today—will pastors wake up, repent, and turn back to God, or will they continue to be woke but asleep to the things of God?
We hold religiously to the written Word because it is our guide—to test what is being said: “The spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets” (1 Corinthians 14:32). The speaker should be careful since his words must be under, or subject to, God’s Word. If those who look to the Word are accused of quenching and grieving the Spirit, we are reminded that Jesus used the Word of God for finality, discernment, and power. We must do the same.
Should churches use music from Bethel Music, Hillsong or Elevation Worship despite their home churches having questionable theology? Is using the music an endorsement of the music groups' home churches? To offer some clarity on this topic, I’ve put forth a few questions and answers.
Why would we fear encountering God in powerful and profound ways? To be stoic and stiff is fine for a graveyard but not for a dynamic worship service. I wonder if those who criticize charismatic moves of the spirit would be embarrassed if they were in the upper room when the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples in Acts 2?
Let me be brutally honest: many who show contempt for profoundly deep and moving experiences with God have never experienced them for themselves. If they avoid prayer meetings, complain about extended and emotional worship, never miss a meal for God, are unaffected by the depravity around them, and are too mature to go to the altar, are these people truly filled with God’s Spirit?