Yesterday I received a email from a friend that was forwarded from prayerandprophesy.wordpress.com. It was titled, The Question that Changed My Life, by David Ryser. I want to quote from the article; “Christianity started as a fellowship; moved to Greece and became a philosophy; it moved to Italy and became an institution; it moved to Europe and became a culture’ it came to America and became an enterprise.”
Like the young student in the class, I respond with the statement that the church was to be the living body of Christ and Americans have turned it into a business and therefore, a prostitute. It has long been my complaint that The Church in America has created a “Big Business” attitude towards church membership, book sales and bean counting. But this is nothing new. In the Middle Ages, the Church of Rome and later, he Church of England also made a practice of Salvation by the Dollar. I grew up when TV evangelism was still new but Radio Evangelism was long going and the like of Rev. Ike and Beebe Patton where selling salvation like candy. And even before them, there were tent revivals that conned people out of millions of dollars with fake healings and promises of prosperity.
Many of us came to Christ because we recognized that we were sinners and unworthy of anything good. we came to believe that Jesus redeemed us and gave us worth. But somewhere along the way we started to expect Christ to become our servant rather than being the faithful spouse of Redemption. We sold ourselves out for the pleasures of the World and brought sin back into the house of the Lord, our souls. This may be the reason you are starved for the understanding of God. The Lord told Amos, “I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread or water but of hearing the words of the LORD.” There is a true lack of the Love of Christ in our lives, as a people of God and as a nation of Truth.
But what are we to do about it? Well, like Dr. Ryser says in his article, we are to become true lovers of Christ and not Harlots seeking gratification. We must stop asking God what he will do for us but open our hearts and our wills to ask Christ what we can do for him. While Dr. Ryser asks us to study Matthew 7:21-23, I would say read carefully Matthew 6:19-23. And be like the testimony of Jeremiah 17:7-8, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD whose trust is the LORD. He is like a tree planted by water that sends out its roots by the stream.” Our trust is in the LORD and not in the profits of the world. We can not sell ourselves into Salvation, we can only sell ourselves into slavery. We can not rely on the prayers of the money changers and the tax collectors in the “Temples” but we are to rely solely (souly) on Christ as our Husband and our True Provider.
While some people have given us wisdom and understanding by their books, lecture and videos, they can not save us. They can only offer you the opportunity to seek out God and ask to be His. So I ask this question; Are you relying on Christ? Are you being the loving bride of Jesus or are you just selling yourself to the desires of worldly wishes, asking God to provide you with creature comforts and false prosperity. Are you asking God for a paycheck or are you searching to be loved and to love in return? I am often reminded to return to Romans 12:9-11, “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, SERVE THE LORD!”