Sunday, January 25, 2015

“ Teaching Christian Millennials To Avoid Shinny Things”

“ Teaching Christian Millennials To Avoid Shinny Things”

I have a great deal of concern for many of the next generation coming up here in America. Often times, they refer to themselves as “Millennials” and I suppose there are other terms or names that others may call them, but in any event, I am greatly concerned for them and especially their spiritual walk with Jesus of the Bible. Generally, Millennials have been left a legacy of a Jesus other than who is in the Bible and have allowed themselves also to be greatly distracted by culture. Please allow me to explain why....

Gadgets are distracting, Everywhere you look, practically every Millennials have something plugged in their ears, their eyes fixated on a computer, phone, tablet or other type of electronic device. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with technology. In fact technology is wonderful thing when used at the proper time and place. Unfortunately though, many Millennials treat their gadgets as if they were married to the dern things ! I'm not kidding. Personal and interpersonal relationships suffer greatly when anyone focuses so much of their time and attention on objects rather than on people such as what many Millennials do. In the church, I see many, not just Millennials using their Android phones and tablets to read Bible Scripture when the pastor or someone in the pulpit is preaching and or teaching. There is nothing wrong with that. I personally choose to be old fashioned I guess, and use a Bible in paper form, however one wants to read the Bible, that's on them. Again however, electronic gadgets can be misused. Don't tell me Millennials(and some older folks as well) don't get tired, bored and distracted and slip in and out of their Facebook Accounts during church services Let's be honest here, it's probably a good idea to leave those gadgets home rather than bringing them to church services.

Is that a worship team, or is that a rock band ?, In the last twenty years or so, I have visited, preached at and or shared at many churches across America. I can't always say I was blessed to be in every church for one reason or another. What disturbs my spirit in the churches I was invited to or visited were the church buildings with ceilings and or walls painted black. And when the “worship team” was doing their thing, on came all sorts of bright flashing lights, colorful lasers zooming all about and noises from those singing on the church building platform(or should I say stage?). I was taught and have seen the great Biblical fruit of worshiping Jesus without those lights, lasers and words that have no meaning (like “whoa”, “La La”, etc...). I usually see these sort of “shinny things” in the so called “Hipster Churches” such as those associated with Hillsong, some in the Assemblies of God and other Pentecostal “denominations.” OK, so by now, you may be saying by that I'm getting a bit legalistic here, but how do you account for thousands of Chinese, Vietnamese and other Christians outside the USA who during their church services choose not to have such types of distracting entertainment in their churches, but instead , because of their true love for Jesus, not entertainment, during their worship time you find them prostrated on their knees, weeping and crying out to Jesus and are absolutely able to be blessed with the awesome presence of the Holy Spirit. The fruit of their true worship results in their live for Jesus as seen in their daily walk with Him, not just on Sundays. These real Christians although are threatened with arrest and or torture by their governments, live without fear or oppression and in fact, joy in the presence of danger and see real miracles such as Jesus raising the dead in their presence. Rarely will you find that kind of church service and faith-walk with Jesus among Americans. In America, many Millennials have grown up to believe that church is all about being entertained, not about total submission to Jesus and the cross as believers outside the USA do(Luke 9:23) and rarely ever get beyond emotionalism.

Revival without repentance, This unbiblical belief has swept many Churches across America. One could easily blame the Baby Boomer Generation for starting that ungodly practice. Whatever generation is at fault, the problem we have now is that the unbiblical belief that “revival without repentance” has bled into the Millennial Generation now. America and indeed the world is now filled with false teachers and so called “prophets” who go about espousing that they have “the anointing of the Holy Spirit” and tell church folks that they can be “filled also.” There's no mention from them of Jesus, no mention of the Cross of Christ and following(only) Him, and no mention either of the Biblical need to repent of one's sins. I'm going to say something very strong here, and I certainly mean every word I say...what I am stating is not meant to harm anyone but I would tell all of you, do not let these so called “Holy Spirit Revivalists” ever touch you, or pray over you. If they do not mention in their words, sermons or preaching that people are sinner's and need to repent to receive Jesus, or to that “repentance” is not part of anything they “preach”, avoid them like the plaque. These people are nothing but money hungry charlatans.

Hearing preachers and “spitting out the bones”, My beautiful wife and I recently had several meetings with a local pastor near where we live. In all appearances he loves people, he wants to believe the best for all and indications are, that he loves Jesus with a deep compassion. Those are all great and wonderful, Biblical characteristics to have. He said one thing to my wife and I though regarding another world wide known preacher/evangelist he knows, he mentioned to us that at one point in first knowing that evangelist, he “had doubts” about her “but got to personally know her” and “now chews the meat and spits out the bones” when he hears her preach and teach. I have heard that phrase(a metaphor regarding spitting out bad or deeply erred Bible teaching) for years now. In fact, I vaguely remember sitting down with my good friend Jim years ago and asking him about such matters. Jim knew I was a baby in the Lord at the time and was very patient with my questions, but towards the end of our discussion regarding those who state they “eat the meat and spit out the bones”, Jim agreed with me that interpreting and receiving God's Word that way is a very damaging way to get “fed” because the believer in Christ can get easily confused and even end up in a religious cult if they are not seriously grounded in the Word of God. My fear for Millennials is that there are so many “bones” being preached and taught in churches today, that Millennials will only end-up bringing up their own children to believe in matters that are even more sacrilegious and unbiblical than what we currently see now.

There's plenty of blame to go around for the “shinny things” Christian Millennials do, speak and act. The time of blame is over and the need for true Biblical teachings and values is past due.

Rev. Paul P. Waldmiller~Black Robe Regiment Pastor

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