“I have been writing this volume while residing in Germany for a teaching trip. I am humbled by penning these 95 theses in the same country as Martin Luther did many years ago. I submit these to the evangelical church of our day and pray that God would allow anything of truth in these pages to bend and change men’s hearts back to God.” – Greg Gordon –
It is useless for large companies of believers to spend long hours begging God to send revival. Unless we intend to reform we may as well not pray. Unless praying men have the insight and faith to amend their whole way of life to conform to the New Testament pattern there can be no true revival. – A.W. Tozer
I am currently reviewing and commenting on 95 theses to the modern evangelical church “revised” by Greg Gordon. The following discusses Jesus’ Lordship and evangelism.
Repentance is considered a one-time act in modern evangelism rather than a way of life.
Revelation 3:19 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.
Hebrews 12:17 For you know that afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no chance to repent, though he sought it with tears.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow to fulfil his promise as some count slowness, but is patient towards you,[a] not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
In the Bible, we see plenty of stories of those who followed God, yet fell into sin after coming to that faith. Some, like Saul, never returned back to God. The Bible doesn’t state for a fact what happened to those individuals, but later Bible passages seem to indicate that they would be judged harshly after death. Others, such as King David, repented after falling. The Bible shows that God quickly forgives those who come to him in repentance.
While some churches emphasize repentance as part of the process to coming to a saving faith in Jesus, fewer teach about repentance after one has become a follower of Jesus. Considering how many fall into sinful habits after salvation prayers, we tempt the wrath of God by not coming to Him in repentance every day.
The Lordship of Jesus Christ is something that is not imposed on sinners initially and creates half-saved people who have a Savior but not a Lord.
Acts 2:36 Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”
1 Corinthians 12:3 Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is accursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit.
Romans 6:18 and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.
I have just begun a study of some of A.W. Tozer’s work which digs into this vey subject. Few churches rally teach exactly what it means to say “Jesus is LORD of all.” I hear the phrase tossed around enough, but until I read some of Tozer’s work, I did not understand all that it encompasses, and the impact of that truth in my life. I hope to blog about it more in the future. I would love to write more about true, holy living. Holiness always comes from true revival. Anything short of that is a sham.
We are not open to correction, discipline or rebuke. And most would rather just move to another evangelical church somewhere down the road.
1 Corinthians 5:5 you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.
1 Corinthians 11:31-32 But if we judged[a] ourselves truly, we would not be judged. 32 But when we are judged by the Lord, we are disciplined[b] so that we may not be condemned along with the world.
Hebrews 12:7-9 It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live?
I wish I could just find a gathering that would get to know me well enough in order to rebuke me when I go off the path God has for me. The vast majority of churches simply cannot get to know its congregants well enough because of their size. Only when someone commits a public sin bordering on a public scandal will you often seen church discipline in action.
Yet, Jesus spoke about it on a number of occasions. Correction is vital because it can help save someone headed for sinful self-destruction and, by extension, spare the victims from the consequences and pain of those sins. Jesus stated that we should rather cut off a limb rather than allow ourselves thrown into the fire of judgment from unchecked sin. Correction from the church can help us if we allow it. But, first, we need to find church gatherings intimate enough to have a clue when we go astray. Granted, people will often practice their sin privately, making it hard to detect in any gathering. However, a smaller group where all the members know each other as friends will stand a much greater chance of identifying any issues and addressing them than a church of thousands where one does not even have to speak, at all.