Ask The Chaplain

Ask The Chaplain

Monday, April 7, 2008

Problems With The Church Today

Over the years I have heard many Protestants criticize the Papal system and all of its pomp and arrogance. But if you spend any amount of time around some of our Bishops and Overseers in the various Protestant denominations you would think you were in the presence of a Pope. Some of our preachers are so pompous and aloof you would think you were in the Vatican. Many preachers today have become celebrities and idols. So often I hear Christians speak of their pastors and bishops with adoration that should be reserved for Jesus Christ. I believe we should respect and support our pastors and clergyman, but they are men! Men are fallible and are prone to make mistakes. We must remember that God uses fallible men to preach an infallible Word! We condemn the Roman Catholics because of their term “Papal infallibility”, yet we will get fighting mad if someone criticizes our favorite celebrity preacher! A good example of this is Kenneth Copeland, many noted and respected Bible scholars and teachers have exposed much of Copeland’s teachings as heretical, yet many Christian blindly and loyally continue to act like he is an “anointed” teacher. It is never popular to criticize or expose false teachers and prophets that are “celebrities”, why? Because we are just as bad as the Catholics, when it comes to how we treat our clergy. I am an ordained Elder in the Church of God in Christ. I love my church, but it is not perfect either. I listen to many of the members of my denomination and it is a sad commentary to hear people that have been saved for years, yet their knowledge of Bible doctrine is very minimal. Many will say “Well I believe what my pastor teaches” or “That may be in the Bible but my church teaches it this way”; The Bible IS ALWAYS the last word! I am appalled at the number of clergy that struggle with basic Bible doctrines that the average Christian should be well acquainted with.

According to 1 Corinthians 3:1 all Christians can be divided into the two groups, spiritual and carnal. A spiritual Christian allows the Holy Spirit to guide and govern him to do the perfect will of the Father. A carnal Christian has been born again but has not overcome the sinful nature of his flesh. Instead of being governed by the Spirit he is ruled by feelings, emotions, desires, greed, good or bad intentions, intellectual interpretation etc. etc. Our churches are filled with carnal believers that don’t depend on the Word for their daily guidance. By rejecting the Word they also reject the Holy Spirit that speaks the Word to our spirit and mind.

The Catholic Church doesn’t encourage it’s congregates to study for themselves because the priest is the source of revelatory knowledge, but the Bible (John 14:26 and John 15:26) and the Holy Spirit are all the help we need. Yes we need teachers (Spirit-filled teachers) to help us, but we are still responsible to study to show ourselves approved unto God.

Pastors and teachers have to take the church from MILK to MEAT, I would be horrified to see an adult wearing a diaper in church, but spiritually many saints are wearing diapers in the house of God. The reason we treat our pastors like gods is that we are babies and we are letting them carry us like babies! They should be taking us from milk to MEAT! We have to grow up so we can assist in the ministry and stop being a burden to the church. So many pastors quit because of burnout, but most of the time it is their fault! Imagine a woman trying to care for 20 to 30 babies at one time, she would eventually crack under pressure! We have to GROW UP SPIRITUALLY! We have to pray and study 7 days a week, not just on Sunday in the presence of your pastor. Martin Luther was a great man but we need MORE men and women like him today! Men and women committed to the truth of scripture over tradition, hype, and fluff! I leave this scary verse with you to meditate on.

Isaiah 2:6 (NIV) You have abandoned your people, the house of Jacob. They are full of superstitions from the East; they practice divination like the Philistines and clasp hands with pagans.

Chaplain Stevens

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