I attended a church conference a while back and after attending this conference, again, put on by a church – I’ve come to the conclusion that apparently you can have church without God or the Bible. Now, that doesn’t mean that at this church conference that God or the Bible were thrown in trash barrels and burned as people danced around with glee. No.
However, at this church conference the Bible was not the final authority. God was not the all-knowing source of everything. In fact, just the opposite. As I listened to speaker after speaker, I realized that if you have education, if you know psychology, if you have a lengthy career as a businessman, then you know more than God and can be the Holy Spirit to the Pastor.
Does that sound rough? Of course it does. It sounds even worse as you are sitting, listening to speaker after speaker tell you that worldly practices are more important than Biblical disciplines. I listened to one speaker tell me how he was coaching one pastor in doing evangelism. This ‘coach’ has a background in business, not ministry. He is not anointed to do the job that this pastor was (hopefully) called to. How prideful! How pathetic! God help us.
That speaker and that pastor should be ashamed of themselves. As a minister of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, you do not go to a ‘life coach’ to find out how to run your church. You go to the Holy Spirit. You go to prayer!
“But what if God told that pastor to listen to that man?” Lies! God isn’t going to tell a pastor – a man of God – to go out and do the plans of a man. He’s going to tell the pastor to do the plans of God! The Bible says, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” —Romans 8:14”
God’s not going to lead His leaders (or anyone for that matter) by business books, life coaches, world seminars, but He is going to do it by the Bible, the Holy Ghost, and prayer!
Now understand, this wasn’t the only issue. Oh no.
At this same meeting, a pastor of a very large megachurch stood at the pulpit and mimicked a celebrity who has repeatedly been accused of molesting children. Does that sound like the appropriate behavior of a minister? Is this what God desires when He calls us to be holy and set apart?
Of course there was more. Among the things given away at this conference was a book by one of the guest speakers, another minister of a large megachurch. What would you think would be in this book – spiritual affirmations, scriptural principles for success, biblical ways to do this and that? No. It was filled with “words of wisdom” from worldly businessmen, religious figures (not Christian, religious), celebrities, and so one.
This was the theme of this church conference – that God and the Bible were not the source, not the answer for everything in life, but businessmen, psychology, life coaches, worldly leaders and their advice. Sadly, it’s not just this church that believe that. This has become a trend- if I can use that word – in the church world today. We have replaced the Bible, the Holy Ghost, and the prayer with the world, worldly people, and worldly advice.
Now understand, these churches that do this don’t come right out and say these things specifically. It’s all mixed in with the Gospel. In one sentence the man behind the podium is telling you about biblical principles and in the next sentence they are telling you what Steve Jobs says about success. Yes, there are things we can learn from anyone, but unless these things are grounded in Biblical truth, throw them out. We don’t need to know about the psychology of how to win someone to the Lord. We need to know what the Holy Spirit says about winning them to the Lord.
Don’t misunderstand me, I don’t think the majority of these ministers are meaning to do this. They’e just been lied to by satan and have embraced his ways instead of God’s ways in hope of doing what God has called them to do. They’ve been deceived – seduced. And the thing about being seduced is that you don’t know you are seduced.
We must not embrace this false way of walking out our Christian life. We must always remember that the Bible is the final authority, prayer is the answer, and the Holy Spirit is our guide. It doesn’t matter what the culture says, what this book or that person says. We need to go to God in prayer and ask Him to have the Holy Spirit lead us into what He would have us do and how we should do it.
Please pray for these leaders that they will return to the scriptures as their final authority, abandon the ways of the world and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. Pray that God would raise up leaders who would not compromise the Word of God, who would stand firm on the Bible and be led by the Holy Spirit.