My Prayer Requests in 2013
I would, if you permit me, like to take a moment and this post to share with you what is on my heart and what my prayer will consist of during 2013. At least for as much of 2013 that God tarries and allows us to participate.
I believe that the gift of a “prophet” has been “lost” or programmed out of the local church today. I do not mean “prophet” in the sense of one who receives direct revelation from God and foretells future events.
Whether you agree or not, my position is that revelation closed with the last words God spoke through His Spirit to the Apostle John on the Island of Patmos. I do not believe that any man or woman today receives direct revelation from God.
For the record, I do not wish to discuss or defend that position in or with this post. My comment goes to the fact that the prophet also was able with keen discernment to identify sin, error, and heresy within the local church. I do not claim to be a prophet nor the son of a prophet. A prophet was usually despised, unwelcomed, and disliked. Very few (only the wise according to Proverbs) like to have their faults, errors, or sins made known. More and more I am falling into the group of persona non grata. Is it because of "prophet-like" discernment? I believe my spiritual gift is “teaching.” However, as I exercise discernment (Hebrews 5:14) and examine the local church of today, I discern the following troubles:
- Evangelicalism has become hopelessly contaminated and diluted with self-appreciating humanism.
- The local church has lost her moorings and has drifted into sensualistic “feel-good-ism” and has little or no impact on the paganistic unconverted.
- The great commission has been replaced with hedonistic self-indulgence.
- The local church has lost the sense of who and what she is resulting in confusion, disillusion, and indifference.
- The gospel has been “redefined” and has been reduced to a simple catch phrase of “try God” or “Jesus loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life.”
- The element of repentance, mourning, and shame for sin has been removed from the gospel message for a message of a gospel of hedonistic love.
- Doctrine is despised as something that is divisive rather than to be cherished and held to as the foundation of salvation and sanctification.
- “Unity” is prized more than purity. God’s glorious and majestic character is maligned in order to satisfy the “can’t we all get along” mantra of today’s neo-evangelicalism. I actually read the following quote this past week; “why can't we agree on Love and then let everything else just be a secondary issue?”
My prayer for 2013 is very simple. I encourage you to think about including these specific requests in your prayer closet this coming year. May God be moved by truly repentant hearts and prayer and engineer cleansing in his “local church.”
…that evangelicalism is moved towards a stronger biblical/doctrinal position
… that the church’s greatest need, a true revival, a recovering of biblical truths associated with the doctrines of grace be granted by a merciful and relenting God
… that a visitation of God through His Holy Spirit be experienced by His local church thereby displacing organizational programs
… that believers begin thinking of salvation in terms of the Holy Trinity and not in terms of hedonistic self-indulgence of themselves
… that the church would come to understand, practice, and preach the fundamental basis of the Christian life as found and delineated in Romans 6
… that the church would cease operating as if were Six Flags over Jesus and become the organism God intended for the evangelization of this world
… that sin would be once again be recognized as a hideous enemy that resulted in the full wrath of God hurled at His only begotten Son rather than as something almost inconsequential and to be tolerated
Praise God for the "exceptions that prove the rule." Thank God there are those pitifully few local churches that remain pure, true, and faithful to their Lord and Master and speak the truth in love. May God allow me to become associated with one of these rapidly growing minorities this coming year. If you know of a little group of believers huddling together someone who are waiting for someone to come and preach and teach without fear the truths of God's holy word, let me know. Have bible will travel.