There is a shocking lack of passion for Christ, holiness, and separation from the world in a great many fundamental Baptist churches.
A large percentage of church members only give lip service to separation and holy living. Though they might “dress up” a bit for church services, in their daily lives, they look like the world, talk like the world, think like the world.
They are not cold; they are not hot; they are lukewarm; and we know what Christ thinks about lukewarmness.
“I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth” (Revelation 3:15-16).
God’s purpose for man is that he love the Lord with all of his being. This is repeated three times in the law of Moses and three times by Christ. God must be first in man’s thinking and actions. Anything less is idolatry.
“And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might” (Deuteronomy 6:5).
“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment” (Mark 12:30).
The lukewarmness, unholiness, and worldliness is evident in the lives of many pastors. There is a lack of godly Christian character. Dishonesty, adultery, child molestation, even homosexuality are common in many Independent Baptist circles.
The lukewarmness, unholiness, and worldliness is evident in the emphasis on parties, games, fun, and entertainment. It is a Christianized version of modern society’s emphasis on entertainment. The average church’s calendar speaks volumes about its true heart and soul. Youth meetings are all about fun with a veneer of spirituality and a dab of Bible. The entertainment program might be interrupted for a few moments for a little Bible study, a short sermon, and a prayer, but soon it’s back to the “real program” of fun. The “senior citizen’s” program is little different from the youth’s.
The lukewarmness, unholiness, and worldliness is evident in the emphasis over the last couple of decades on “lightening up” and not being “too strict.” This is in direct disobedience to Scriptures such as the following:
“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you” (2 Corinthians 6:17).
“Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (2 Corinthians 7:1).
“And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them” (Ephesians 5:11).
“Abstain from all appearance of evil” (1 Thessalonians 5:22).
“Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world” (Titus 2:12).
“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations” (James 1:2).
“Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. (James 4:4).
“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness” (James 4:8-9).
“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever” (1 John 2:15-17)
The fundamental thing that is missing in so many church members’ lives is a true passion for the Lord Jesus Christ. In far too many cases, it isn’t that they have left their first love; it’s that they have never had a first love.
It is impossible for an unholy church to stand against the hurricane force winds of apostasy in these days.
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