21 Comments

THE POWER OF THE CHURCH

He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. (Hebrews 1:30000023

The true power of the church lies in Christ personally. You may have all the stars that ever made bright the Milky Way with their combined sheen, but there is no power in them to kill evil or conquer sin

The stars of the church shine because God makes them shine. Their shining is not their own: it is a borrowed light with which they are radiant. But the power that overcomes evil, wounds the heart, pierces the conscience, and kills reigning sin is of the Lord alone.

“Out of his mouth went a sharp two-edged sword” (Revelation 1:16). Glory not, therefore, in men; for power belongs unto God. The power lies in Christ’s Word. “Out of his mouth went a sharp two-edged sword.”

“He that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully…saith the LORD” (Jeremiah 23:28). People are disturbed and troubled by the real gospel: under the false gospel they can sleep unto destruction. Bring out the sword: it is made to wound; let it exercise its salutary sharpness.

The gospel has two edges so that none may play with it. When they think to run their fingers along the back of it, they will find themselves cut to the bone. Whether we regard its threats or its promises, it cuts at sin.

Let us therefore know that the power of the church does not lie anywhere but in the Word as Jesus himself speaks it. Let us keep to his own pure, unadulterated, unblunted Word, and let us pray him to send it forth with power out of his own mouth into the hearts and consciences of men.1

Charles Spurgeon

[1] Charles Spurgeon, At the Master’s Feet [Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2005], January 27.

Hat tip to http://apprising.org/

About Stuart Brogden

Reformed Baptist, married to one woman since 1978, enjoy camping, motorcycle riding, solid books that assist in understanding the Word of God, fellowship with the Lord's saints, and some classical music. A wretch saved by grace, with nothing to give my Lord except my sin. Desire to make the gospel known and shepherd some of the Lord's sheep.

21 comments on “THE POWER OF THE CHURCH

  1. Excellent reminder! “The true power of the church lies in Christ personally.” If there were more faithful pastors preaching the truth of scripture, the “church” wouldn’t be in the mess it’s in today!

  2. Reblogged this on The Master's Slave.

  3. Amen, Rev Limiter! We MUST be satisfied with what the Lord has given us, for the only alternative is what our sin-twisted human minds can dream up. And we read in Scripture that human wisdom is not held up too highly and we see in our history evidence that correlates very well to the Word on that matter.

    Sola Scriptura!

  4. Amen Manfred. Great article, not because it was penned by any human hand but by the power of God’s Word.

  5. As I’ve said before the true Ekklesia the gates of hell have not, isn’t now nor ever will prevail against! This idea of chasing revival that so many preach is nonsense. The closest scripture to this deals with the call to “Return to your first love.” The American model of a 501 (c)(3) corporation of a building being the center of all is a hybred invention of men. Sure we need to meet somewhere, I get that… But the “church” is founded on the Apostles with Christ Jesus the Corner Stone and we all as living stones, being the elect of God.

    Christ Jesus being the corner stone means a star preacher at the top of a “Babylonian Pyramid Organization” is NOT His Ekklesia! In that system there is no room for “one anothering” nor is there a body where each member is an intergal part of the “living body” with the Holy Spirit orchestrated “one accord.” When the world is invited in to hear a preacher as every corporation member is taught to “invite your unchurched friends to the building” rather then to have them go out as all clergy and preach the gospel is just plain wrong! These are jesus franchises and nothing more. I’ve also said that scripture plainly shows elders function as guides to teach the body of elect believers to accurately go out an preach the gospel to the lost and dying. Then allowing those seeds of the gospel to be made alive in the reprobate unto repentance. Once this reprobate is made alive by the Holy Spirit we all as priests then and only then can bring them into the living fellowship of the saints for their training and edification. The Ekklesia is ALL CLERGY and no laity, according to scripture. Anything else, which is the fallen norm today, is known as the deeds of the Nicolaitans which things HE HATES! Doesn’t matter how you or I FEEL about it…

    These jesus franchises are the fullfilment of the parable of satan’s sowing seeds of the tares in with the wheat. Tares, being identical in to wheat in the manner of their physical appearance grow faster then the true wheat, choking out the fruitfulness of the wheat. Thus they reduce or even severely limit the growth of the true purpose of the planting. This calls into mind the parable of the soils where the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke out the seed leaving it unfruitful. This also calls to mind the fig tree that was full of unproductive foliage with no fruit! Having looked at these examples of scripture, can we not see the striking similiarities to the “buildings” today?!?! Much building growth, pews filled with carnal christians who are nominal at best, filled with the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, no maturity such that all the programs are psychological self help better life now coping skills…psychology being the “holy spirit of antichrist.” The only invitation is to come in be entertained with ear tickling nonsense. No fear of God, no repentance, no spiritual growth, and the doing of many things in His Name that were not His Good Work, but dead works that will one day earn these plugged in workers (of inequity) the announcement from Jesus, “depart from Me, I never knew you…”

    Great end time revival? Or Great Falling Away!! Jesus is clear, the “preachers” not so much!
    Read the Word in context, submitting to the Holy Spirit’s training, and refuse the traditions of men which make His Word of no effect!!! Please re-read the first paragraph again, and crying out for Holy Spirit directed eyes to see and ears to hear, ounting with St. Paul all your past religious training as dung, andd see if what I have written is accurate or not!!! Then, if you are among the very few who are in a true Ekklesia, where the elders are SERVANTS OF ALL, and not the anointed ones of churchianity…Who’se lives are poured out for the Lamb’s Work (Who by the way is now reigning as the Lion of Judah and is a Warrior soon coming to administer justice!!) Or do they live more like the tv preachers? Which servant of God had a better flesh life after forsaking all to follow Him? And should our lives not be more like the early saints then the tv preachers also?!?!
    If your Holy Spirit opened eyes show you are in a system that is different then His Ekklesia, then RUN, and cry out to God to lead you to His true fellowship of the saints, driving from you all the Babylonian traditions of men, while repenting, and returning to that First Love, when you first believed!! Do this also for your family. See! The virgins, both wise and foolish are asleep! Folks need to quit running to the purveyors of (snake) oil and allow the Holy Spirit to keep our lamps full as we stay discliplined to trim them so His Light can shine through us!
    There will be weaping and gnashing of teeth!

  6. Show the House to the house..
    ——————————————————————————-
    Ezekiel 43
    1Afterward he brought me to the gate, even the gate that looketh toward the east: 2And, behold, the glory of the God of Israel came from the way of the east: and his voice was like a noise of many waters: and the earth shined with his glory. 3And it was according to the appearance of the vision which I saw, even according to the vision that I saw when I came to destroy the city: and the visions were like the vision that I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell upon my face. 4And the glory of the LORD came into the house by the way of the gate whose prospect is toward the east. 5So the spirit took me up, and brought me into the inner court; and, behold, the glory of the LORD filled the house.
    6And I heard him speaking unto me out of the house; and the man stood by me. 7And he said unto me, Son of man, the place of my throne, and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel for ever, and my holy name, shall the house of Israel no more defile, neither they, nor their kings, by their whoredom, nor by the carcases of their kings in their high places. 8In their setting of their threshold by my thresholds, and their post by my posts, and the wall between me and them, they have even defiled my holy name by their abominations that they have committed: wherefore I have consumed them in mine anger. 9Now let them put away their whoredom, and the carcases of their kings, far from me, and I will dwell in the midst of them for ever.

    10Thou son of man, shew the house to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities: and let them measure the pattern. 11And if they be ashamed of all that they have done, shew them the form of the house, and the fashion thereof, and the goings out thereof, and the comings in thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the laws thereof: and write it in their sight, that they may keep the whole form thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and do them. 12This is the law of the house; Upon the top of the mountain the whole limit thereof round about shall be most holy. Behold, this is the law of the house.
    ****************************************************

    Now, where is the house of the Lord today? Jesus is the Corner Stone, The Apostles are the foundation, and we are the Living Stones. This is the measure of His “dwelling place” today.
    We are the dwelling place and no building. We MUST GET THIS and throw off the “traditions of men” that make His Word of no effect. See Matthew 14 and Mark 7. To the extent that the elders teach His Word, we are to do that. But to the extent that they live by their traditions and teach their traditions, elevating their traditions above the Word of God?…We are told by Christ do not do as they do!

    Come out of her, My people…!

    <>
    King James Version

    ——————————————————————————–
    1And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. 2And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. 3For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.
    4And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. 5For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. 6Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. 7How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. 8Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.

    9And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning, 10Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come.

    11And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more: 12The merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble, 13And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men. 14And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all. 15The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, 16And saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! 17For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off, 18And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this great city! 19And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas, that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate. 20Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her.

  7. http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=10852

    Here is the point being made for me in one simply article!

  8. Why so much growth but little FRUIT?!?! Mega churches opening branch campuses everywhere more folks attending but the nation going down the sewer!

    Manfred’s appropriate title being “THE POWER OF THE CHURCH” so let’s be completely honest. The “church,” that is the manmade hybrid has built great power and influence in the world but it is dead works power that builds itself up. Like cancer there is a rapid growth, then it branches out to other sites…Metastasis is the word.

    Please think about this, folks! See? Cain offered a sacrifice, but it was not an acceptable sacrifice. The Lord warned him that satan was crouching at his feet and he needed to go back and make it right.

    Able’s sacrifice was acceptable to the Lord, because he gave his best to God.
    Cain on the other hand offered a sacrifice that was in his mind good enough! Well good enough and flesh centered ISN’T GOOD ENOUGH!

    Now look at the “church system” today…Their sacrifice is good enough in their eyes, but it is a downgrade, and not what God requires! “They judge themselves by themselves.” Even we as individual believers can fall into this trap, “Well I am donating MY TIME, MY TALENT, MY TREASURY, whatever I give is good enough!” NO!! It is Cain’s sacrifice!!

    Able gave his best. Now catch this. Cain gave good enough, and didn’t make it right. Further, he did two things, he sought to discredit Able, and then he sought to eliminate the standard that was Able’s sacrifice!

    Those ever fewer biblical fellowships where elders function as guides for the youngers teaching the accurate gospel, and pour out their lives for the sheep they undershepherd and where they all go out as clergy to preach to the lost and dying the gospel accurately, are feeling the same treatment from those hybrid churches which live by Cain’s sacrifice.
    They are those that, like Able give their all to the Lord in the manner He requires.

    Our whole system has decraded to nothing more than Cain’s sacrificial way. The vast majority of those who name His name also live by Cain’s sacrifice…but it was not acceptable to God then and it isn’t acceptable today. But what do we think? Since God is patient and long suffering, we take it as license to continue on giving Cain’s sacrifice. God told Cain what his lot in life would be, yet Cain was still able to go off and begin what later through Nimrod became the Babylonian mystery system. Well God has declared in His Word what His Way is, and what the consequences will be for those who do not walk His Way also!

    “Good enough” isn’t! What it is though is man’s way, as man sit’s on his own throne as god, swallowing more of the forbidden fruit of the garden, and with it the lie that you shall be as god in your life.

    As for the power in the Ekklesia?!?! (the word church was always co-opted by satan) Walk the walk His Way, continually offering the sacrifice He expects and deserves and finds acceptable, and anything we ask for, when praying in accordance to His Will, will be granted to us as He furthers His kingdom through us. (There is no room here for our own flesh wish list, rather He will grant His power to accomplish His Will.)

    It is time for those who are His people, those who not only call themselves by His name, but walk His acceptable walk to humble ourselves, repenting of our Cain’s sacrifices, turning back to our first love, so that our prayers will be heard and granted from heaven…and when His power to change men’s hearts flows maybe He will heal our land.

    Behold the real power of Christ’s Ekklesia!

  9. Mickey – you keep talking about “the church” as if all local churches were corrupt. Two things – the universal and true church of God is pure and without stain or wrinkle. Each local church has error to one degree or another. One can argue about whether the word church is a good one – that’s a whole ‘nuther issue. The second thing – there are local churches that are true to the Word and biblical in their order.

  10. I said that in my posts Manfred, but as this site continues to see, that number is ever fewer.
    The pre-trib rapture heresy, from 1830 onward has folks convinced they will ride out of here before it gets bad. Thus they are fat dumb and happy…and not prepared for what is already in the works with our country.
    Anyone aver see this video?

  11. “The second thing – there are local churches that are true to the Word and biblical in their order.” -Manfred

    There are also countless thousands houses of ill repute sitting on every street corner with the word “church” on them. Jeremiah spoke in generalities in his day, I will follow his pattern and say the organized/institutional churches in America are accursed under the wrath of God. Are there a few good ones here and there and even some true brethren scattered about in the bad, for sure, I have personally met some.

    Make no mistake though dear Manfred, even most that hold to reformed theology are often roman catholic than new testament in their behavior. They may not be completely apostate and still uphold some sound doctrine, but they are very, very far from the new testament pattern in their actions and church life.

    In Christ -Jim

  12. Mickey – your posts were so long, there’s no telling what you said :-)

    That video is currently playing on my TV. The pastor teaches a post-trib rapture and hates the doctrines of grace. He does not specify (by the point I am currently at) what he means by “the tribulation” – is it 7 years or the entire present age? He does a good job proving several points that deconstruct the false theology of John Nelson Darby.

    I quit the video when the pastor got off track and began defending his erroneous view of The Revelation. The insistence that “after this” mandates a chronological progression through the first 11 chapters is specious – it merely means that John saw one thing after another, not that he was spelling out the future of our history.

  13. LOL

    Ya I know, the point is he does a good job with the false doctrine of a pre trib rapture, though it is immensely popular. In this world you will have tribulation. The Great Tribulation has conponents of satn’s wrath and God’s judgement, but it is not God’s final wrath which we could all agree on as not being for His elect.

  14. Wow, Mickey. You have more courage than I do in your portrayals of those who believe in a pre-Trib rapture. Where I come from, that is called “more guts than brains.”

    Those, “fat dumb happy” people that you disparage … you are denigrating the bride of Christ because you don’t agree with them about the Rapture. Now, if you were to denigrate my bride, there would be a conversation between us that you would not enjoy! How moreso would Jesus Christ respond against those who slander His?

  15. 072591: Yeah, it’s divisive. It’s also silly. Any pretribber who reads his Bible expects persecution and tribulation.

    We don’t believe the world is getting better. We believe evil “will wax worse and worse” and “all who live godly in Christ Jesus” will be persecuted. Persecution / tribulation will happen as long as we are in this world, if we follow Christ, whatever the time and manner of our departing.

    We even scribble about it sometimes. Like these, to give two. They might almost give the impression I expect to face persecution / tribulation:
    “There will never be peaceful coexistence between an increasingly corrupt society and a Gospel-proclaiming, holy church. Either society’s decline will be arrested, or Christians will be.”
    http://mindrenewers.com/2013/01/03/arresting-developments/
    “Persecution will come. Don’t get upset, don’t get angry, don’t get discouraged. It’s far better than having the kind of “Christianity” that isn’t even worth persecuting.”
    http://mindrenewers.com/2011/09/06/what-will-they-think-of-next/

    I’m not particularly fat. But I am pre-trib, and I AM happy! And I’m dumb enough to respond. :) So perhaps you COULD call me low-fat, dumb, and happy.

  16. LOL Jon Gleason.

    I am talking about folks who neither read their bible nor question what they are spoonfed by their anointed ones.

    072591 perhaps I am painting with too broad a brush?

    Yet because both of you have a different end time eschatology (sounds redundant of me) and both of you seem to be folks who are genuine in your beliefs, and bible time, perhaps you could point me to the scriptures that give you conclusive evidence to your pre-trib. views? Also scriptures that you would see that rule out a pre-wrath or post trib. position?

    Finally, perhaps you could help me to understand why scripture portrays the virgins, both wise and foolish to be sleeping when He returns?

    Bonus Question…Why were the 2 biggest purveyors of the pre-trib rapture view associated with liberal theology back then, and worse, (see link) and why should we believe their theory?

    http://www.bing.com/search?q=cyrus+scofield+convicted+felon&form=DLCDF8&pc=MDDC&src=IE-SearchBox

    http://www.bing.com/search?q=john+nelson+darby+heresy&form=DLCDF8&pc=MDDC&src=IE-SearchBox

  17. Watch ye and stand firm – for a post early tomorrow that will shed light on the end of time.

  18. Mickey, I’m not really interested in debating it. We’d accomplish little.

    I will respond thus far. We shouldn’t press the details too far — most parables teach one primary point. In this case, it is that we won’t know the exact time, so we should live accordingly. That makes mid-trib and post-trib views difficult (since believers would have a pretty good idea of the time). If both sleeping has prophetic significance (rather than just an incidental detail), it would support either the view that the tribulation is not a seven year period, or pretrib.

    The primary purpose of Biblical prophecy is not for us to nail down or debate the future timetable. It is to motivate us to holiness right now, comfort us in a wicked world, and help us rejoice in trials and persecutions. Secondarily, it will help those in the times of fulfilment to recognise the hand of the Lord and not be dismayed by events. Thus John 13:18-19.

    That does not mean there is no benefit in studying the prophetic timetable — but it is not a primary focus. God didn’t give end-times prophecy as sanctified soothsaying to satisfy our curiosity, or make us proud about how much righter we are than that other guy. Most prophecy debate exposes a lot of that kind of pride. The Scriptural mandate for me to sort out your prophetic timetable is thin. The mandate for me to avoid pride and disputing is hefty.

    Finally, as a pastor, I want you to know that anyone who reads I John (esp. chapters 2 and 4) knows you should love “anointed ones,” not make snide comments about them. :)

    Still happy, and hoping this comment hasn’t made me dumber for writing it, and others dumber for having read it!

  19. Manfred,
    It’d better be from the correct, aumil view.

    Todd
    Texas

  20. Jon, thank you for your reply…You have at least shed light on your traditions. My bible says we won’t know the day or the hour, but gives very specific details as to the events that will take place immediately prior to Jesus’ return. It also says it does so, so that we would NOT be DECEIVED by men!
    I wasn’t looking for a debate, but rather specific scriptures you belives support your position based upon your personal Holy Spirit lead examination and study of the scriptures in context.
    Never the less, thank you for your response and clarification on where you are coming from.
    Mickey
    Formerly dumb, still sanguin, and unfortunately still a …um…few inches under-height. :)

    Thanks Manfred for your most recent post.

    @ Todd…Thanks for the other option! Can I be Amil/pre-wrath? LOL
    ****************************************************
    I guess today we are supposed to be beyond, both contending/defending and simply take for granted what the “state certified” feed us.” Shut up sit down and pay your tithe,” for that is your part in the one anothering mentioned in the bible…unless you too are state certified to marry and bury and preach! LOL

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