The Modern Betrayal of the Great Commission



And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath. But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers. And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.

Luke 12:42-48 KJV


It occurs to me that there is a lot of hate directed at the church these days. I suppose this is no different than it was from the beginning when they stoned Stephen, and maybe that is part of our error–that we think it is something new when in fact it is not. At least in America, it is not yet as bad as it was for the early church. We’re not being stoned/crucified/beheaded/immolated in the streets. So some of this hate is endemic upon the church; they hated our master, naturally they will also hate us.

But some of this hate is new, and it is invited upon us by our own behavior. Proscriptions against sinful behavior are things which we can enforce only within the church. We were never called or appointed to be the morality police for the world. Occasions in which the church (or any other religion for that matter) have done this have rapidly descended into chaos and worse. The church is within its right to compel ministers engaging in sinful behavior to vacate their office. It is within its duty as defined in scripture for the church to put members out of its fellowship if they are living wantonly. Individual Christians are within their secular rights to petition, protest, demonstrate, and vote as their Christian conscience leads them. It is the duty of government to maintain the peace and dignity of the people and uphold the rule of law. Included in this is the expectation of safety and enforcement of public decency.

Who of us, when we became Christians, came to Christ as a shining example of righteousness? None. Likewise, we are in error when we try to impose our church discipline upon the world. It will not have the desired effect, and it will create–it has created–animosity toward the church and worse, toward the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I’m not a fan of gay rights and all that. I’m not a fan of same-sex marriage, so I will not be marrying a person of my sex. The church has really fumbled the ball here, and gotten involved in a civics battle in which we were never intended to engage. The licensing of marriages is a creation of the state, and is really nothing more than a scheme to score a few bucks off a thing that a lot of people do. The fact is that for millennia people have married in ceremonies according to their religious or cultural beliefs.

And Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her: and Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death. Genesis 24:67 KJV

Did you get that? Jewish patriarch Isaac married Rebekah by bringing her into the tent. The NIV says “Isaac brought her into the tent…and he married her.” There was no ceremony, reception, or stomping champagne glasses in there. They consummated their marriage. Period. That was the ceremony. That was the wedding. Marriage is a ridiculously simple thing in the bible.

The church is behaving stupidly in this matter of same-sex marriage and, I believe, betraying the Great Commission.  Its behavior is comparable to the failure of the 1st century Israelites who were looking for a secular Messiah to come and overthrow their Roman oppressors, and so missed their King riding into town on a donkey.

You had one job, church–one job.

Homosexuality is a grave matter within the church. It has become a stumbling block to the real work of the church, and the church is the main reason. As I have said before, no practicing homosexual should be a minister in the church, nor should any practicing adulterer, thief, liar,  or gossiper (not an exhaustive list, by the way). Outside the church, these things are just facts of life. We are not here to change the world. Dominionism/Kingdom Now–the belief that the church must purify the world so Christ can return–is heresy, and what a heresy it is. We cannot purify our own thoughts and behaviors, yet somehow we are supposed to change the world up to God’s standards? What a joke! And that’s just one of its many heretical teachings.

I indict you, church, for your failure to execute the Great Commission, choosing instead to whore yourself out into the corruption of secular politics. You have failed. Rather than distribute that which you were given (the Gospel), you have elected to beat those whom you deem not as “holy” as you (and it extends far beyond homosexuality). The above scripture has a parallel in Matthew 24:45-51, and in it, it says “The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (vv. 50-51).

“And shall…appoint him his portion with the hypocrites.”


Do you want to halt the rising tide of the LGBT movement? Too bad, you blew your chance. A proper evangelizing of this country with the unadulterated Good News of Jesus Christ might just have thwarted it before it ever came. It will now have to run its course. Will you continue to shout to the state to give you Barabbas, or will you return to your task, that being the sharing of the Gospel with a lost world (yes, including those LGBTs)? Consider yourself warned.

Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many: And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready. And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come. So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room. And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper.

Luke 14:16-24 KJV


And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

Mark 16:15-18 KJV


And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

Revelation 22:17



The Golden Image of Apostasy


Hello, empty church. Today I am taking a little different approach. Rather than some off-the-wall current event inspiring this post, the book of Daniel is the inspiration. After all, the Empty Church doesn’t want to be like some Osteenian megachurch that preaches from People magazine. The future of such temples of apostasy doesn’t look too bright.

Then Nebuchadnezzar in his rage and fury commanded to bring Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Then they brought these men before the king. Nebuchadnezzar spoke and said to them, Is it true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, do not you serve my gods, nor worship the golden image which I have set up? Now if you be ready that at what time you hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of music, you fall down and worship the image which I have made; well: but if you worship not, you shall be cast the same hour into the middle of a burning fiery furnace; and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer you in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods, nor worship the golden image which you have set up.

Daniel 3:13-18 (AKJV)

I’d like to think that on occasion, God speaks to me, if only to tell me that He’s still there and in charge of everything. For what it’s worth, when I read the above scripture today, I felt that God was speaking to me. I’m always reluctant to say that, so if what I’m about to say ends up being incorrect, then obviously I was wrong, and in this case at least, God was not speaking to me. But I don’t think I’m wrong.

Persecution against the American church is underway. When an evil government can compel a Christian couple to pay $135,000 to a couple of lesbians for refusing to bake their “wedding” cake–that’s persecution, albeit only one of its many, many possible incarnations. This persecution will only grow. As a consequence, the true church will very soon be driven underground, but not to worry: there will still be plenty of churches open, even under the antichrist world system. Apostate churches will not only be tolerated, they will also be touted and promoted as they propagate their apostate message and false gospel.

As the apostasy gains momentum, we will see the reversal of good and evil reach absurd proportions. No longer will immorality, greed, and dishonesty be challenged with the threat of eternal hellfire. The only sin that the apostate church will deem worthy of eternal damnation will be the “sin” of intolerance. Homosexuality will not be preached against as a sin worthy of hellfire; intolerance of homosexuality will. “Hateful” preaching (i.e. preaching the truth, preaching against sin, preaching repentance and holiness, etc.) will be preached against. “Hateful” preachers will be shouted down and silenced. Their intolerance will be damned by the apostate ear-ticklers of the megachurches and the feel-good, prosperity television preachers. And if they won’t be silenced, they will be persecuted even more intensely, up to and including martyrdom.


Homosexuality is the image of gold set before Christ’s faithful for worship, and those who will not bend their knee to this idol will be made to suffer. Homosexuality has become the lightning rod that will attract persecution to the true church and divert persecution from the apostate church. There may well be others causes, but this is the master stroke against the church. This is the beginning of tribulations.

Doctrines of Devils


Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.   –1 Timothy 4:1

“It’s sad that people use religion and idolatry of the Bible to demoralize same-gender-loving people.” — Forrest Harris, President of American Baptist College, Nashville, TN

The above quote is from an interview with The Tennessean in which President Harris defends his decision to invite openly lesbian Bishop Yvette Flunder of the United Church of Christ to speak at the college’s Garnett Nabrit Lecture Series March 15-18, 2015.  This decision resulted in opposition and criticism from Baptist pastors, which is understandable from the position of pastors, who are charged with keeping of right doctrine within the church. From the college’s point, the presentation of alternate or opposing points of view is not necessarily a bad thing. If that was the motive of American Baptist College–to expand its students’ worldview to make them better leaders–then that might be okay. I suspect, however, that that was not the motive, but the furtherance of a liberal social and religious agenda incompatible with orthodox Christianity. But I digress.

What kind of stupid, STUPID statement is “idolatry of the Bible”? What does President Harris mean when he says that? Well, Jordan Buie of The Tennessean asked exactly that question of President Harris, to which Harris answered, “When people say (the Bible) is synonymous with God and the truth.”

Oh my. President Harris just went from stupid to blasphemous in one, short sentence fragment. Let’s examine his statement in more detail and in comparison to what the Bible says.

Is the Bible synonymous with God?

Unfortunately for President Harris, it is:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.  — John 1:1-4 (AKJV)

This is the hallmark scripture for the doctrine of Jesus Christ as the Living Word of God. It establishes the presence of the Word of God “in the beginning” at creation. Not only at creation, but since “the Word was with God,” it coexisted with God the Father in the eternal past.  The deity of the Word is established with “the Word was God”-– self-explanatory, I should think. If there are any lingering doubts, verse three declares that He (the Word) was the active force of creation.

Is the Bible synonymous with truth?

Not just synonymous–identical.

Sanctify them through your truth: your word is truth. — John 17:17

Strike two, President Harris.

But what is idolatry in biblical terms? Simply put, it is the worship of anything other than God Almighty, Creator of the Universe. And in that definition, President Harris may have committed the worst mistake of all. It is impossible to have an idolatrous relationship with the one, true God. Im-possible. The only way a person could commit “idolatry of the Bible” is if the Bible were not God. We have already demonstrated above the mystical truth that Jesus Christ is the Word of God (i.e. the Bible–although explaining it or even understanding it is far beyond human comprehension). Could it be said, that in his statement, President Harris is essentially saying that Jesus Christ is not divine?

It gets worse. 2 Peter 1:20-21Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. 21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” The Apostle Peter here clearly states that the Word of God as scripture was laid down by men as they were inspired by the Holy Spirit.

In Matthew 12:24-32, Jesus delivered a blind and mute man from demon possession, and healed him. The Pharisees said that it was only by Beelzebub, the prince of demons, that Jesus could do this.  It is because of this grave offense against the Holy Spirit that Jesus speaks of the unforgivable sin of blasphemy of the Holy Spirit, in that by their statement, the Pharisees have attributed the work of the Holy Spirit to the devil. In saying that people are wrong to equate the Holy Spirit-inspired Word of God with truth, could President Harris have said that the Holy Spirit inspired lies? Jesus says this in John 8:44:

You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and stayed not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

Only God knows how he regards this utter foolishness from the mouth of the apostate President Forrest Harris. Maybe God does not equate this as blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. I hope not, for President Harris’ sake. Maybe Harris could say in his own defense that he was just speaking off the cuff. It might be a problem, however, that right after his condemnation of the Pharisees for blasphemy, Jesus said “But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matthew 12:36-37

I doubt that uttering his folly in defense of the pet apostasy of the 21st-century church will help his case either. Things aren’t looking too bright for President Harris.

The more I look into the controversies surrounding homosexuality and the church, the more I am convinced that it is merely the symptom of a darker, more insidious problem.


Another Look at Homosexuality and the Church


It is time for some plain discourse on the issue of homosexuality in the church. Gay rights has become the hot topic of the past two decades (at least), and it doesn’t show any sign of going away. Tempers always flare hot on this issue when broached in the context of the church, and the screeching from both sides drowns out any chance for rational discussion. And yet, discussed it must be.

First, there is no place for politics in this discussion, for it is purely about the church’s response to homosexuality and homosexuals. So for now, things like wedding cakes and legislation are outside the scope of this discussion.

So where to start? Where all discussions on church matters should begin–with relevant bible scriptures. There are several references to homosexuality in the bible, but for now we will start with this one:

Romans 1:18-32

18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

Something one should immediately notice in this passage is that there is a lot going on besides homosexuality. In fact, the topic is mankind’s failure to acknowledge God (vv.18-21). This leads to foolish arrogance (v. 22), which is followed by idolatry (v. 23). From this point, God “gives them over” to their own lusts, and the original Greek indicates a very personal handing over of people to their lusts. It isn’t just God throwing up his hands and leaving them to it; the image it conjures up is like somebody handing a puppy over to somebody else. It’s a delivery into the hands of someone (or something) who now has control and ownership of the person, other than God. They are now in the hands of their own lusts, and descend into sexual immorality (a very broad term, covering a lot of different things). And so begins the downward spiral: idolatry begets slavery to lusts, which yields apostasy (false doctrine, or lies about God instead of the truth) which then begets idolatry (v. 25). What a mess.

Verse 26, “Because of this,” (v.25, the lies about God and the resultant idolatry) God again gives them up to their own “shameful lusts” (again, a pretty broad term). Here, homosexuality is finally mentioned, only after this long downward spiral of all kinds of sin. But homosexuality isn’t trivialized; it is highlighted as a special product of this sinful descent where even women and men lust after their own gender. Nor is homosexuality the point, for the apostle continues on with a litany of various sins that come as a result of not “retaining the knowledge of God,” and a third reference to God handing them over, this time to their own, depraved minds. The list of sinful behaviors seems strange at first, as it includes such seemingly minor trespasses as gossip and boasting, and major trespasses, such as murder, but all who do them “deserve death.” Wow.

Pardon the sermon, but there is a point to it. The above passage is a favorite one used when preaching against homosexuality. More often than not, I hear only verses 26 and 27 quoted, stripped of the other thirteen verses and their context.

There are two equally erroneous ways to regard homosexuality as a Christian. One is to treat it as if it is not a sin at all, or as just some minor infraction which God will tolerate. That is not the case, as the above passage clearly indicates, as well as other verses, such as 1 Corinthians 6:9 and 1 Timothy 1:9-11. The other erroneous approach to homosexuality is to regard it as if it were some especially heinous sin that is somehow more sinful than regular sin. The first error is the favorite of the world and of apostates. The second is the favorite of the self-righteous and hypocritical church.

Let me assure you: any sin will separate you from God forever. All this ranting and railing about homosexuality alienates people because it makes the Gospel seem harsh and unapproachable. It also produces an unintentional side effect in which certain sins seem less serious because this one is so sinful. There is no biblical justification for treating sin like it is on an HMO formulary, with Tier-1 sins, Tier-2 sins, etc. That is why in the passage above, murder is listed with bragging and disobeying one’s parents–because all sin is worthy of death.

For the wages of sin is death,” Romans 6:23

As far as this issue of homosexuals being priests or pastors of churches, quite frankly, this should not be. No homosexual should be in a position of leadership in the church. Nor should any adulterer, or fornicator, or liar, or thief, or murderer, or braggart, or gossiper, or slanderer. The issue isn’t which sinful behaviors a bishop or pastor should not engage in; it is that he should not be engaged in any sinful behaviors. The ministry of a pastor or bishop is a solemn one, and anyone who presumes to be one had better hold themselves to a higher standard. Everybody falls short from time to time, but no pastor or bishop (or any Christian for that matter) should be living in an active state of willful sin. To do so indicates an insincerity in their Christian walk, making any church leader in such a state a false shepherd–a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

Members of the Church, get over the fact that the world hates you; you were warned (John 15:18-19). Get over the fact that the world is filled with sin; it will only get worse. Sin is often brazen, shameless, hostile, and in-your-face. You may politically oppose the gay rights movement and it goals, but it is unbiblical to portray some sins as worse than others, when all of them end in death. There is one unforgivable sin, and homosexuality ain’t it (Matthew 12:31-32).

If you claim to be a Christian and you are a homosexual, then you are living a lifestyle inconsistent with your Christianity, just as a serial adulterer or a thief is inconsistent with Christianity. If that offends you, I’m sorry, but it’s the truth. Like every other Christian, you must make the choice between following your own sinful drives to their ultimate conclusion, or following Christ’s higher calling to righteousness. Get over yourself and the polluted thinking with which the world corrupted your mind. You are not a special class of citizen, or living an alternate lifestyle, anymore than an adulterer is. The world is enabling you in your sin, excusing you rather than warning you, so that in the end you will be destroyed.

For homosexuals who do not profess to be Christians, I say this: disregard the hostility to which some supposed Christians subject you. Your sin (sorry, that’s what it is) is no worse than any other sin, but it will kill you just as spiritually dead. I’m not here to judge you, and nobody else has that privilege, but God himself. He will judge us all someday, and all who have not accepted the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ will perish eternally, whether they be murderers, gossipers, adulterers, or homosexuals.