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The Kingdom of God is NOT a Reality Show

As I have stated in past blog posts, Christianity in this country has fallen into the grip and influence of Hollywood. We live in an age of celebrity preachers and very large churches that look and operate more like corporations than the temples where people are taught the unadulterated Word of God. The church at large no longer seems to be a place where people are delivered and set free from strongholds and bondages. It has become more like a place where people can come and be entertained with great music and charismatic sermons that are not designed to convict people of their sin. Not to mention, the word REPENT no longer appears to be a part of the church vernacular. People flock to churches because of the status of a preacher, especially if he is on TV or hobnobs with celebrities and professional athletes. And don’t let him be handsome or have an excessive amount of charisma.

So now it’s almost like the church has become no different from an exclusive social club where people are clamoring for attention and status. Yes, the church as I knew growing up no longer exists. Most of the churches that exist in this country are not changing the communities around them. Actually, it appears to be vice versa. For example, I get angry when I think about how most churches (especially black churches) lack ministries that cater to sexual abuse and brokenness. It makes me mad that I live in the metropolitan city that has the highest occurrence of sex trafficking, yet there are hundreds, even thousands of churches all over the place! What exactly are they doing?! It also pains me to see so few churches who are actively involved in rectifying this issue, as well as many others. Granted, I know that I might sound presumptuous, but I believe the fruit speaks for itself. I believe the community and surrounding areas would be a very different if the church was truly operating the way God intended. Now I do want to emphasize that I am talking about the American church collectively because I know that there are still true places of worship that are led by leaders who sincerely shepherd the flock that has been entrusted to them.

So why am I mentioning this? Well, after watching the first episode of “Preachers of L.A.,” I can fully understand why the American church has become an entity to be mocked and even hated. This new reality show profiles pastors who oversee fairly large congregations and who live lives full of luxury. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting that a church leader shouldn’t be financially prosperous, but why do their riches have to be paraded before the entire world? Shouldn’t there be some modesty and humility on their part, considering that they are the ones who are setting the example? I’m sure that just about all of us have the heard the scripture that says we can’t serve God and mammon, but these pastors are trying to and it surely is not working. Aren’t these leaders supposedly trying to model their character after the One who never owned a mansion or had money? As a matter of fact, the Word explicitly states that church leaders cannot be greedy for money. (See Titus 1:7, I Timonthy 3:3 and 3:8) I can only wonder what people across the nation were thinking when they saw the mansions, luxury cars, expensive suits and Rolex watches that these “men of God” sported. I wonder how many people in their congregations are struggling to keep a roof over their head and food on the table, and the number of the families in their churches that are headed by single mothers wouldn’t surprise me either. From what I can see, this show only gave unbelievers more ammunition to justify the reasons why they don’t believe in God or attend church. I bet you that the salaries these preachers are being paid from the show blinded them to the fact that “reality television” is always edited for the purpose of obtaining higher ratings. Did they not consider that their arguments and disagreements would always be highlighted because of people’s addiction to drama? The exchange between some of them towards the end of the episode was no different than what one would see on “Real Housewives of Atlanta” and all the other ridiculous reality shows that pollute the channels on television. Oh and did I tell you that five out of the six preachers are Black American? Yeah, you already know the deal… Stereotypes, stereotypes and more stereotypes… Did they not consider that their homes and luxuries would be on display just like on that show “MTV Cribs” or any other shows that feature lifestyles of the rich and famous? Seeing Bishop Clarence McClendon’s mansion was the perfect proof that this show is exalting these pastors; not the Heavenly Father. Did it ever cross their minds that people would get the wrong idea about Christianity and the church? The last time I checked, Jesus Christ did not die so that we could become celebrities or be rich. He died so that we may have the chance to be in eternity with Him.

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Now I do want to point out that I could respect the fact that one of the preachers goes back to his old neighborhood to win souls into the Kingdom. I respect the fact that he puts himself in harm’s way to minister to gang bangers. However, when he was able to get them to a gospel concert, something really disappointing and telling happened. This preacher summoned the men who were in gangs up to the stage during the altar call in order to lead them in a prayer for their salvation. Meanwhile, Deitrick Haddon (Award winning Gospel singer and one of the preachers) tapped him on the shoulder and told him he only had five minutes for the altar call. So in other words, his concert was more important than the eternal fate of these men’s souls. He needed to be on stage and the fact that these men were confessing Jesus Christ as their lord and savior was an inconvenience to him. But hey, this is what the church at large has been reduced to… People aren’t rejoicing and shouting over souls being saved. They’re getting hyped over the belief that their present sinful conditions are covered by grace and that they don’t have to change. They’re shouting over the fantasy that some extravagant, grandeur blessing is going to fall out of the sky because of the fact that they are manipulated into giving all their money to the church.

So for those who are defending this show, I challenge you to really do some soul searching and ask God if this show is truly honoring Him. If you believe so, then why is all the attention on the preachers and their personal lives? Why is the focus on their drama, their issues, their arguments, their families, etc..? Where is the focus on ministry??? Why is so much attention paid to their material possessions? Come on folks, it is time to put away the foolishness and get real! It is time for the REMNANT to rise up and spark a revival in this nation! It is time to distinguish the wheat from the tare. It is time to expose the spirit of Hollywood that has infiltrated the church. It is time to pray! Oh and no, I will not be patronizing this show, flooding my eye gates and ear gates with only a form of godliness. I need the real deal. The times are to crucial for me to risk being DECEIVED.

Nathan Allen Copyright ©2013

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6 Comments

Posted by on October 16, 2013 in Spirituality

 

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A Field of Tares

I want to start by saying that I don’t have a heaven or hell to put anyone in. We have all fallen short of the glory of God and have to be redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ. However, according to John 3:3, we must be BORN AGAIN. Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” This means that we are supposed to become a new creature and that the old man dies so that the new man in Christ can live. Yes, we will still have struggles in our flesh and our minds have to be renewed. Yes, God’s grace is sufficient but that does not mean that our lifestyles don’t have to change. Jesus Himself asks in Luke 6:46, “Why do you call Me lord but don’t obey me?” (paraphrasing) God’s grace is not a license to sin. It is a window of opportunity to come be cleansed and made whole. The Bible clearly states that we must work out our soul salvation and it also says to study to show thyself approved. What this boils down to is that there is in fact a standard. We who are children of God live differently than those who don’t believe and are in the world. The New Testament, especially the letters of Paul, is essentially about our new life in Him. The Bible is the code book, the script, the instructions that we are to live by. No one is immune to this reality. We cannot simply live any old kind of way and still call ourselves children of the Most High.

John 14:21 He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him

The reason I am writing this is because the below link is to a post on a blog that perfectly illustrates the reason why Christianity in this country is a complete joke. It is also a shining example of the pervasive lukewarmness that is in the American church. It is the reason why the body of Christ has no power and influence in this country. Those who share this mindset are tares and not wheat. This blog shows the kind of mindset that will cause many on that day to hear those words “Depart from Me, I never knew thee.”

Please click on the link below and read.

http://www.dontquotetheraven.com/2013/05/im-christian.html

Ok so now you’ve read it. I know; it’s pretty sad isn’t it? I can see why believers in other countries think Americans are CLUELESS when it comes to being disciples of Jesus Christ because too many folks have the exact same attitude as the blogger. By the way, if you saw the numerous comments in response to the post, you will find that the overwhelming majority are in agreement with the blogger. Thus, a field full of tares. Counterfeit… Scary!!!

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The blogger made the statement that no where in the Bible does it state that someone has to be perfect. But according to Paul in Philippians 3:12, we are supposed to strive for perfection in Christ. The ultimate goal is to be like Him. Right? I want to live a life that is pleasing to him. The kind of mindset exemplified in the shared blog post will never lead to a life that pleases Him. How do I know? Because the Bible says so. If your life hasn’t changed since supposedly accepting the call to follow Jesus then your salvation is in serious question. The concept of grace has been severely perverted by the modern day church in this country.

Romans 6:1-4 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? 3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

I’m not trying to sound harsh; I just want to be real with you. Sadly, the author of the blog post I shared is truly lost in their own world of self-indulgence and wanting to live a life that centers around their desires, instead of a call to holiness and dying to self. I’m paraphrasing here but the Bible clearly states numerous times that the old man must die so that the new man can live. People want to stay stuck in their old ways and proclaim Christ as their lord, but it doesn’t work that way. We must become a NEW CREATURE. Wake up church.

Matthew 13:24-30 24 Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field; 25 but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and went his way. 26 But when the grain had sprouted and produced a crop, then the tares also appeared. 27 So the servants of the owner came and said to him, ‘Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?’ 28 He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The servants said to him, ‘Do you want us then to go and gather them up?’ 29 But he said, ‘No, lest while you gather up the tares you also uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, “First gather together the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn.”’

Matthew 13:36-41 36 Then Jesus sent the multitude away and went into the house. And His disciples came to Him, saying, “Explain to us the parable of the tares of the field.”
37 He answered and said to them: “He who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one. 39 The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. 40 Therefore as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age. 41 The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness,

So there it is. Let’s remain wheat and not allow the DECEPTION of the age convert us into tares.

Nathan Allen Copyright ©2013

 
5 Comments

Posted by on September 3, 2013 in Spirituality

 

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