Friday, May 29, 2015

Food Which Endures

John 6:26 - Jesus answered them and said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled."

I read two articles the other day on the same subject--state of today's church. I talked briefly with a friend about how more and more the churches today are making it very comfortable for people to be there. And then I read reviews about a church in a community in Arizona I was looking into. One 5-star review: Good coffee, good snacks and great people make this a good coffee spot. Ummmm...

One 2-star review: We were told it was casual ... Many of the females, young and old, were dressed in street clothes that inappropriately showed too much skin. ... They were dressed like they were going to a strip club. It quickly became apparent that people treat it more like a social gathering at a club instead of a church. We came on a day when someone from the bachelor was there with his wife. They were drawing names of females to meet him even though he's a married man. ... He said to ask his wife, that their sex life was great... If you don't take Christianity seriously, enjoy talking about your sex life to the masses, and are looking for a big giant social gathering, than yeah this is your church. I'll stick to the smaller ones who are interested in talking about God... 

If coffee and snacks and being comfortable and bringing society's standards into the church are the selling points, that doesn't work for me. Needless to say, I will not go to that church. I've said this before: the Church is not a place where we bring the world in; it is supposed to bring God to the world. It is not a place where we indulge in everyday activities but take our minds off ourselves and reverence God (which we should do everyday).

A church doesn't need movies or television miniseries' with study and guidebook,  "awesome" music to get one revved up and excited for the amazing, fun sermon, or a coffee bar and doughnuts. I'm not so sure this is what Jesus wanted (but probably knew would eventually happen...after all He knows the beginning from the end). What about an honest message straight from the Bible? We shouldn't need more than this Book.

Yes, Jesus offered food to over 5,000 people...but these offers were miracles to point to Him and that thing of substance He offered, after showing us what sin is, forgiveness of that and salvation, providing we give our lives to Him. He spoke the rebuking words above about seeking and wanting signs and physical food, but not so much the salvation, not so much the Man who offered it.

Listen to the words from an article I read called Maybe Christianity is Dying Because It's Boring Everyone to Death by Matt Walsh (a very good article). He was quoting C.S. Lewis: Enemy-occupied territory--that's what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you may say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage. We have an enemy lurking. He disguises himself as an angel of light (2Corinthians 11:14) and many, including the elect, are being deceived. (Matthew 24:24) 

People, the Church should always be God-centered, not man-centered. We can enjoy going to church and being with church family and fellowshipping. But God needs to be the center. I've had lunch with believers after church and church continues in our conversation, not that we talk constantly about the Lord but He remains with us.

There is a righteous judgment we are allowed because the truth, not ours but of Christ, is being compromised or watered down. Somehow society has softened the Gospel message to make it more palatable. That is dangerous as many will believe God will ultimately accept all people. Sadly, people will die a terrible death without the truth. There is a reason sin is pointed out...we need to know. And we need Jesus. The immodesty in the church described above is just one out of a very many. We all have sin. We all need Jesus.

Churches which push comfort offer things that perish. Jesus offered Himself to all who would seek the offer of salvation only He can give...the food which endures. Look to Him for the promise of eternal life in Christ. 

John 6:27 - "Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which
endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.” 

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