Considering the gravity of our time, and the message I sensed the Lord was speaking to me about His Church, I have been somewhat slow to publish what I believe to be the mission for the Church in 2014. I needed more time than usual to meditate on God’s Word and soak it in prayer as I sought not just God’s mind, but also His heart for His Church. Here is what I believe the Spirit is saying.
1. You (America) have gone beyond the tipping point.
“You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting.” –Daniel 5:27 (NIV)
The people have re-elected a leader who not only neglects the rule of God, but in fact, wars against His sovereignty. As a result, God has lifted his hedge of protection and the U.S. will experience, in increasing measure, the effects of the curse. This will manifest in various ways including natural disasters, economic and national defense failures, and domestic chaos and confusion. This should come as no surprise to the “people of the Book,” as the Old Testament is replete with examples of how God deals with nations. The Apostle Paul tells us,
“These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the fulfillment of the ages has come”–. 1 Corinthians 10:11 (NIV)
So we are without excuse. Our forefathers have warned us:
“The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained”-George Washington,
“It is the duty of nations as well as of men to own their dependency upon the overruling power of God, and to recognize the sublime truth announced in Holy Scriptures and proven by all history that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord.”—Abraham Lincoln
More important than what our founders have said is what God says in His Word,
“if he condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; (2 peter 2:6)
Why would we expect God to deal with us any differently?
2. You must repent.
Judgment is certain unless we repent according to the formula God has given in His Word:
“If my people who are called by my Name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven, forgive their sin and heal their land.” –2 Chronicles 7:14.
National repentance must be led by the leaders of the Church as they repent of:
a) Pride and self-righteousness esteeming themselves more highly than other church leaders of different expressions of the faith.
b) Protecting factions and dissensions which are works of the sinful nature, (Galatians 5:20). The New Testament couldn’t be more clear about the evil brought on by pledging one’s allegiance to anything, or anyone other than Christ and His Gospel. Any division or “denominationalism” based on allegiance to anything other than Christ and his cause is idolatry.
This is the single most responsible cause for the powerlessness of His Church. Jesus taught us that a house divided cannot stand. His house is divided. Our divisions have been the greatest stumbling block preventing the manifestation of the supernatural power of God.
Sadly, this condition is preferred by some who would rather spread the Gospel with persuasive speech and the wisdom of men, than surrender to the sovereignty of God and a demonstration of the Spirit’s power (1 Corinthians 2:4). At best, this condition reflects Biblical ignorance; at worst, it suggests a pharisaical attitude that will not relinquish control to God, manifest in the Holy Spirit.
3. Leaders must pursue unity in Christ even at the risk of sacrificing doctrinal distinctives that are not foundational to the faith. We must practice the Augustinian rule: “In essentials, unity. In non-essentials, liberty. In all things, love. As has been said, “If it’s an issue, it’s an idol.”
The only Biblical distinctions for local congregations identify them by their location, i.e., “the Church of Corinth,” “the Church at Ephesus,” etc. That should be the heart’s desire of every local pastor, because that is the heart of Christ who prayed that we would “all be one.” How far we have fallen!
Leaders must put off their small-mindedness, often generated by their own insecurities, and become more Kingdom-minded. They must choose between building their own church or watching Him build His Church in our midst, and being grateful that we can be a part.
4. Then leaders must be equipped with the knowledge of the role God has played in the life of our nation, and they must teach the people. Just as God told Moses to remind the people continually of how He delivered them from bondage, and led them to a land flowing with milk and honey, so too, must today’s leaders remind the people of God of how He delivered us from bondage and tyranny throughout our American history.
Then, equipped with knowledge and faith for the future leaders must teach their people to pray fervently for God’s mercy. The Church must be a house of prayer, until we see a genuine visitation from God, a supernatural presence that will melt hearts and resurrect His Church.
5. Then we must get up to possess the gates of the enemy. The “gates” are the place where decisions are made for our community, like the school board, the PTA, the town council, and any other place in the civic arena where “we, the people” gather to make decisions for our communities. We must “re-Christianize” American politics if America is to be redeemed.
Human nature does not change, and just like the Israelites, we too, have been “complacent in Zion.” And like the Israelites, our “feasting and lounging” will end suddenly, unless we repent, (Amos 6).
This is what I believe God is saying to the Church concerning our mission in 2014. I would only ask that you would prayerfully consider what I have said, and to the extent God confirms this word by the power of the Holy Spirit at work in you, to that extent I pray that you would respond as He leads you.
I would be honored to help in any way I can to see this nation come back to God, for the benefit of my grandchildren, an unsaved world, and His glory!