You may be wondering why I chose to reference Galatians 6:7 in the title of my series. Here is why:
For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
Those that sow to the flesh reap corruption. In other words, corruption is proof that someone is ignoring the Spirit and indulging the flesh. And it seems that day by day, more corruption is coming to light in America’s churches. Ministries under investigation for tax fraud. Prominent pastors accused of sexual harassment and assault. Elders exposed for turning a blind eye to pedophiles in the pews. Church discipline that has been flagged as damaging and discriminatory. The scandals continue to pile up.
For decades, many of the leaders embroiled in these scandals have written hundreds of books and preached countless sermons on “spiritual authority.” They have presented themselves as being near the top of a “God-ordained” hierarchy that requires lay believers to submit—unquestioningly—to their direction. They have then used their subsequent success in ministry to “prove” that they have God’s blessing and approval in this system of power and control.
But God is not mocked. The laws of sowing and reaping cannot be subverted. Sowing unto unbiblical authority is sowing unto pride, and pride always reaps corruption. Always. As the Bible says, a good tree bears good fruit and a bad tree bears bad fruit (Matthew 7:17). Unbiblical church authority is churning out bad fruit by the bushels. It is not God’s will for His Church. Continue reading →
Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. ~ Galatians 6:7-8
There have been some disturbing things going on in our country in the past few years. I’ve tried to ignore it, but nearly every day for the past couple of weeks, I’ve come across another report in the news of people rejecting God’s decree and indulging their pride and arrogance to the detriment of the Church and her believers, and I cannot remain silent about it anymore. Cannot and will not.
Oh, there were many times I went along to get along. For a while, I accepted the argument that this is the way things are now and God approves of them. I bought into the hype. I went to the big conferences and gatherings, waved the colorful flags, bawled my eyes out. But I was deceived. God does not approve of this arrangement. Scripture says so. And the reports I’ve been hearing are proof that this heretical doctrine is endangering Christ’s Church.
I’m speaking, of course, about the controlling system of church authority. Continue reading →
In my last post, I talked about what it means to be a trauma survivor and how difficult trauma can be to heal. Today, I’m going to enumerate the ways in which the Church can respond to trauma survivors to help them find healing.
Before I delve in, let me be clear: This is a common problem. Most pastors would be absolutely gobsmacked to know how many trauma survivors fill their churches every Sunday. Current estimates put the incidence of child molestation at 1 in 3 for girls and 1 in 10 for boys. That means in a congregation of 100 people, 5 men and 17 women are likely child sex abuse survivors. And that figure doesn’t begin to include survivors of other types of trauma, such as rape, assault, mental and emotional abuse, neglect, war, abandonment and accident.
If the Church wants to get serious about helping survivors, this is what is needed: Continue reading →
Because of a sexual predator’s recent article in Christianity Today‘s Leadership Journal (which has since been removed, hallelujah!), an important conversation has been taking place online about trauma survivors and the Church’s poor response to them. Some bloggers have suggested that church leaders should be educated on what survivors experience and compassionate ways in which they can reach out to help them. To this end, being a survivor myself, I’m going to share what I’ve learned. Because it’s really important. Continue reading →
Walken must have heard the phrase “spiritual authority.” I know. I’ve looked this way often.
If I asked some of you to name the spiritual authority in your life, what would you say? Would you be confused that I only asked for one and give multiple answers? I ask, because the concept of “spiritual authority” is huge in the evangelical church. You can find whole books on the subject. Unfortunately, most of what they teach is wrong.
The Bible references three types of authority that humans can wield in this life: Continue reading →