Published July 18, 2017

Paul's Epistle

My Epistle here last week about rampant moral decline in today's society — even in the church — generated a lot of "amens" from readers. Pastor Gary Gillispie even passed along an excerpt from a recent sermon of his that supports my comments that, very fundamentally, God is truth — and His truth doesn't change. With Pastor Gary's permission, and because we can't be reminded of this too often, I want to share his comments with you...

"Taken Captive Without A Fight"
by Pastor Gary Gillispie

God's church and God's people are being oppressed from every side today.

The world says that we can't preach against sin, because it may offend someone. When did the world start dictating to the church what to preach?

The so-called liberal Christians say that we need to lighten up, be more tolerant, learn to diversify. Heb. 13:8 says, "Jesus Christ, the same yesterday and today and forever." So if Jesus hasn't changed, why should we? Get saved!

The apostle Paul writes in 2 Cor. 4:7-10, "But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body."

Seeing that none of this has changed, why should we preach and teach anything else? It's the only thing that will work!

The children of Israel had been taken captive by Babylon. The church is allowing the enemy to take them captive — captive to his will, his ways — slowly, but surely, stripping away [the church's] power, its effectiveness. We are allowing the lost to fit in, feel comfortable, as the enemy bates the trap for their destruction. As the church, we sit back and watch. The devil has lured us to sleep.

The Bible says in 2 Tim. 3:5 that we are: "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." And [sinners are turning away from the church]. But Paul was talking to the Christians! The sinners recognize that there is no power there, so why can't we see it?

The children of Israel were broken-hearted when they remembered Zion. We ought to be broken-hearted when we remember how the church used to be years ago and where we are today.

God hasn't changed! So why have we?

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