Friday, 26 December 2008

Word of God NOT rule of Faith

Contemporary understanding of worship in much of today's church is taken more from modern debauched culture, and is informed by man-centred psychology. It is not informed by Scripture, nor does it draw on the highest and best periods of the history of the Christian Church.

Humanistic relativism is the guiding principle for the worship of the Almighty, not the Word of God. It's what is fashionable and acceptable to youth culture that is allowed in God's house, not what's glorifying to God. Worship in the contemporary church is driven powerfully by youth cravings, and by a desire to please people.

It is becoming increasingly clear that what is influencing worship in today's church is the predominant philosophy such as was given expression in the 'rock and roll' period of the 1960s, with its bare-faced rejection of authority - ALL authority. Only in a church as decadent as the modern church would such a motivation be found. Youth rebellion is accommodated, not challenged and addressed, in the modern church. Every musical guru does what is right in his own eyes.

This man-centredness is designed to facilitate worldly gratification. Worship songs, as they are affectionately called, are deliberately man-centred.

So who really is being worshipped in today's church - man or God? Irreverence is accepted when they claim to be in the awesome presence of the all-consuming and Almighty God, when in reality it resembles more an American musical.

But why is today's worship like this? It is like this because Christians in the church do not know Who God is. They do not know the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ as He revealed Himself in Scripture.

So where does this leave subscription to the Westminster Standards within Presbyterian churches? It leaves it as the farce it is! Much more reverence and respect are given to our professions and to Queen Elizabeth II, than are given to King Jesus. Indeed, the comparison is inappropriate for many professing Christians today, because Jesus Christ is dismissed from His rightful place as Head of the Church as a persona non grata, mainly because He cannot be seen. For a materialistic generation like ours, what cannot be seen simply does not exist!

Sunday, 21 December 2008

The Pilgrim's Progress

I am currently reading a version of John Bunyan's masterpiece, The Pilgrim's Progress, and am re-discovering some very profound, yet simple, truths.

One of the simplest, yet often missed, truths is the fact that when we became Christians, we started on a journey whose destination is Heaven, the Celestial City, where the King lives and reigns. Sadly many believers forget this important truth, and substitute for it their advancement in this world and in this world's wealth. But this is where we are heading to, and everything that happens to us on the way either helps or hinders our journey; but nothing can stop us reaching our destination.

Like Christian in Bunyan's book, we too will meet all kinds of challenges. We will meet attempts to distract us from the Way of the King, attempts to divert us from the right pathway and lead us into all kinds of trouble. But we will also meet some good people who are also on the Way of the King, and going to the Celestial City. These are the encouragers, the helpers, the fellow-pilgrims who take us by the hand and help us through the times of danger. There will be fierce animals out to devour us, but because we are under the almighty protection of the King, they cannot harm us - they are held by chains that will not break.

One of the sad sights we will see on the Way of the King, is the sight of those who started on the Way, but who grew weary and did not finish. What a warning to us! They found the Way of the King which goes to the Celestial City just too difficult for them, and they gave up. They forgot just how much the King loved them, and that they were to trust Him in all things.

If you have not read Pilgrims Progress, perhaps now is the time to start reading it, and your soul will be 'strangely warmed' by the truths in it. Get to know it well, and teach it to your children, and to any Christian you might know.