Archive for November, 2016

Published by Pastor Tavares Robinson on 15 Nov 2016

Revised: A Nation Divided; A Church Delusional

Revised: A nation divided; a church delusional
By Tavares Robinson

An article I wrote in 2012 that seems clearly to be prophetic four years later.

I have never seen, in my adult life, so much division in the U.S. like I see now. This year’s presidential election has the ability to produce another Civil War in the 21st century. I will understand it better if this division stemmed fromunregenerate individuals who are in control and governed by the works of the flesh. But a large portion of this strife and chaos comes from those who say they believe and live by the teachings of Christ and claim to be born-again believers. I am appalled and ashamed by fellow pastoral leaders who use their influence, ethnic race, charisma, power and popularity to sway those under them to their own personal political parties.

The U.S. is divided because the church in this nation is under a delusion! This nation has forgotten about God because the church disregarded God. This nation’s immorality stemmed from the church’s lack of morals; the U.S. has gradually become anti-God because the church has become anti-Christ. This land bleeds self-centeredness because the church promotes narcissism. The people are drowning in humanism because the church’s main focus and objective is self-love. Society despises the Bible because the church doesn’t live and teach the Bible. People have evolved to shun God because the church in America doesn’t know God!

The pulpit is supposed to be the resource and dispenser for the truth of God to mankind, according to 1 Timothy 3:15. The voice and moral conscience of a nation that once flowed from pulpits have ended abruptly.
 
I’m reminded of Alexis de Tocqueville, a famous 19th century French statesman, historian and social philosopher. He traveled to the U.S. in the 1830s to discover the reasons for the incredible success of this new nation. He was impressed especially by the nation’s religious character. Here are some excerpts of Tocqueville’s observations: 

Upon my arrival in the United States, the religious aspect of the country was the first thing that struck my attention; and the longer I stayed there, the more I perceived the great political consequences resulting from this new state of things. In France, I had almost always seen the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom marching in opposite directions. But in America I found they were intimately united and that they reigned in common over the same country. Religion in America…must be regarded as the foremost of the political institutions of that country; for if it does not impart a taste for freedom, it facilitates the use of it. Indeed, it is in this same point of view that the inhabitants of the United States themselves look upon religious belief. I do not know whether all Americans have a sincere faith in their religion — for who can search the human heart? But I am certain that they hold it to be indispensable to the maintenance of republican institutions. This opinion is not peculiar to a class of citizens or a party, but it belongs to the whole nation and to every rank of society. In the United States, the sovereign authority is religious…there is no country in the world where the Christian religion retains a greater influence over the souls of men than in America, and there can be no greater proof of its utility and of its conformity to human nature than that its influence is powerfully felt over the most enlightened and free nation of the earth. In the United States, the influence of religion is not confined to the manners, but it extends to the intelligence of the people… Christianity, therefore, reigns without obstacle, by universal consent… I sought for the key to the greatness and genius of America in her harbors… in her fertile fields and boundless forests; in her rich mines and vast world commerce; in her public school system and institutions of learning. I sought for it in her democratic Congress and in her matchless Constitution. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great. The safeguard of morality is religion, and morality is the best security of law as well as the surest pledge of freedom. The Americans combine the notions of Christianity and of liberty so intimately in their minds that it is impossible to make them conceive the one without the other. Christianity is the companion of liberty in all its conflicts — the cradle of its infancy, and the divine source of its claims.

Great is the fall of our preaching today!

Pulpits have become weakened because we were sold a secular version of love that has placed a muzzle on many mouths. In our attempt to be more liked and accepted by society, we stopped proclaiming the hard truths concerning Christ and his word so we can appear more loving and less judgmental. This diabolical scheme was sold to the church, and we paid full price for it. Now, men, who the apostle Paul would have never placed in charge to be the voice to the nations, have hijacked the church’s leadership. Preachers are now businessmen and life coaches. These men no longer preach on sin, but instead, they proclaim and motivate self-esteem. 

God doesn’t need or want politicians in this hour; He needs prophets! He is looking for those individuals whom Jeremiah mentioned in Jeremiah 23:18:  “But who among them has listened to the Lord that he should see and hear His Word? Who has given thought to His Word and listened?” 

Knowing what God is saying to America should be an important role of churches today. Clearly, the handwriting of the Lord is on the wall, and time is approaching quickly when popular celebrity preachers will be called on to diagnose the signs. They, however, won’t have the answer.

Published by Pastor Tavares Robinson on 15 Nov 2016

Did The Church Miss It?

Did the church miss it?
By Tavares Robinson

Perusing through the scriptures, and thinking about our recent election, a thought ran across my mind: “Did we miss it?” 

Did the church lose her voice among those who struggled to believe in our Lord and Savior? Was God testing us to see if we would place biblical morals above promised success and prosperity? It is clearly evident that the culture in America is post-Christian. But I would dare to say that the church in America is not far behind. 

What do I mean by post-Christian? It is a culture rooted in the history and practices of Christianity, but the religious beliefs of Christianity have been either rejected or, worse, forgotten. It’s a culture where the views and values of the Bible are no longer the dominant voice; instead, the culture has gradually assumed values and worldviews that are not in line with biblical practices. 

It is one thing for the culture to drift away from biblical standards, but it’s deadly when the church follows in the same path. The rhetoric that’s coming from church leaders is lethal. These leaders are either to the left or to the right, and what’s bringing more confusion is that both sides are declaring that God is either with the new president or that he is not. 

I have heard of the names, “Cyrus” and “Antichrist” to describe president-elect Donald Trump. I think it’s truly vital that we exercise caution in pronouncing biblical names upon people, especially while divorcing the name from the biblical context. 

It’s hard for me to accept the title “Cyrus” for Trump simply because Cyrus was an ungodly leader who God used to help restore the temple. What we also must remember, he was a Pagan king raised up after the people of God suffered 70 years of judgment and became humble and ready to obey. I don’t see the marks of humility in today’s church, I see a pride that’s full grown.

God has never raised up wicked leaders to “bless” His people when they were prideful and walking on paths that were contrary to His way. In my opinion, It seems as if God was weighing the church by presenting two very immoral choices. We can go back and forth about which candidate was who God wanted. Many will say, “Well, Trump was God’s choice because he won,” and I will understand your point. But what if we asked God and He said, “Neither!”

In the book of Joshua, we read of an encounter that Joshua has with a Man (pre-incarnate Christ). 

Joshua asked the Man, “Are you for us or for our enemies?” 

The man replied, “Neither.” 

One would, without doubt, be convinced that he would be for Joshua. After all, those enemies practiced diabolical acts and offended God with their pagan worship. Like today, many will assume that God is with Trump because of the obvious evil beliefs of Hillary. But I would advise everyone to place a beware sign on Trump. An evil that’s deceptive is more dangerous than an evil that’s predictable. Has it crossed your mind how Vladimir Putin, Russia’s president, who is an arch nemesis of Israel, salutes and admires Trump, who’s supposed to be a great friend of Israel? 

Maybe Putin realized that defeating Israel from without is impossible, so instead, he found someone who would allow him to walk in the side door. Error laid next to truth is hard to see when you are blinded by that truth. Studying the history of God and believing that God will work His history even in judgment, forces me to believe this is all part of the great judgment of God. Sometimes God will allow cause and effect to take place on his behalf. He would allow the people’s decision to be the instrument of judgment. God allowed Saul to be king even though he wasn’t God’s choice. Clearly, he was what the people wanted, and God didn’t resist it. Why? He was allowing his judgment of cause and effect to purify and prepare the heart of his people for his choice: David.

Let’s be honest. God’s judgment, for America, is irrevocable. We have crossed a line in this nation that’s unforgettable. We have performed and carried out more sin than King Manasseh, and in spite of righteous King Josiah, God still didn’t forget the nation’s sins. His judgment is not only in the land, but it’s also in the church. Be careful of leaders who misinterpret God’s delay in judgment to suggest that He is too merciful to judge. As a matter of fact, strong delusion and a stupor are early indicators that His abandonment is approaching.

Did we sell our voice in exchange for a bowl of wealth? Have we lost the world’s respect when it comes down to morality? Was God creating a greater platform in which to preach the gospel, and we failed? Have we become like the church, when Hitler came into power, who said nothing and remained silent because she was enjoying her riches? 

When Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany in 1933, he scornfully dismissed the church, and her pastors, as an irrelevant force which posed no threat to the Nazi agenda for that great nation.

“I promise you that if I wish to I could destroy the church in just a few years,” he boasted to his inner circle. “It is hollow, it is rotten and false through and through. One push and the whole structure would collapse.”

He continued and gave insight on how to keep the leaders in bondage. 

“We should trap the preachers by their notorious greed and self-indulgence. We shall thus be able to settle everything with them in perfect peace and harmony,” he said. “I shall give them a few years reprieve. Why should we quarrel? They will swallow anything in order to keep their material advantage. They will be made to dig their own graves; they will betray their God for us. They will betray anything for the sake of their miserable jobs and incomes.” 

What a sad indictment! Am I calling Trump, “Hitler?” No. But there is a sinister plan going on. Hitler, under the influence of Satan, knew that in order to accomplish his plan, he had to make the church comfortable in her prosperity, thereby disqualifying her voice among others. We need men who can read the handwriting on the wall and not partisans’ “prophets.”

I’m not hopeless, but I am disappointed. I have hope because God will never leave Himself without a witness. He will always have a remnant who will refuse to go along with the prevailing crowds. He will always have people who rather suffer in the caves and not bow down to Baal. He will always have people who will not compromise character for cash and comfort. He will not have leaders who hold a position in Ahab’s house, but outwardly, are trying to protect God’s people.

While writing this, I ran across a statement that was made by Gregg Popovich, head coach of the San Antonio Spurs:

I live in that country where half of the people ignored all of that to elect someone. That’s the scariest part of the whole thing to me. It’s got nothing to do with the environment and Obamacare, and all of the other stuff. We live in a country that ignored all of those values that we would hold our kids accountable for. They’d be grounded for years if they acted and said the things that have been said in that campaign by Donald Trump. I look at the Evangelicals and I wonder, those values don’t mean anything to them? All of those values to me are more important than anybody’s skill in business or anything else because it tells who we are, and how we want to live, and what kind of people we are.

Reading his remark concerning Evangelicals brings me to my original thought: “Did we miss it?”