1 Corinthians 5:1-5 ESV
“It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.
“For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing. When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.” (Continue reading through verse 13)
In America, in the church (and/or in the institutional church) we have an even bigger problem than this. We have a large number of men and some women and pastors who are engaged in the use of pornography, and some of them are also involved in other sexual deviant behaviors such as extramarital affairs, sexual flirtations, prostitution, exposing themselves, voyeurism, homosexuality, pedophilia, and a whole long list of others.
“1 in 5 Youth Pastors and 1 in 7 Senior Pastors use porn on a regular basis and currently struggling. That’s more than 50,000 U.S. church leaders. 43% of senior pastors and youth pastors say they have struggled with pornography in the past. 64% of Christian men and 15% of Christian women say that they watch porn at least once a month. Only 7% of pastors report their church has a ministry program for those struggling with porn.”
*I don’t know how current these stats are.
I have seen statistics higher than these on other Christian sites, but I don’t recall which ones. But doesn’t this just break your heart? I mean this is huge! And it is destroying the church from within and the people’s lives and their marriages and their families and their relationships with other people, etc. And how many of these congregations are doing anything about it? Not many. And those who are doing something usually are just providing support groups for those addicted to porn and to sexual deviancy. But how many are doing what the Bible says to do? Do you know of any? I don’t.
And what help are they providing for the wounded spouses and children? In my experience, nothing. But I hope and pray that is not the norm, but it probably is. And why? Because so many of the leaders are engaged in sinful practices themselves, and/or they don’t want to do or say anything that will offend anyone. Except some of them have no problem offending the wounded spouses and/or those who are still standing for truth and righteousness. It is a very sad situation all the way around, indeed!
But I believe it appears that the majority of today’s modern “churches” in America have adopted a diluted and altered gospel message in place of the gospel Jesus and his New Testament apostles taught, and it is not teaching them that they must die with Christ to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. So many of them have done away with repentance (turning away from sin) and obedience to our Lord and to his commands. And they are calling that “works salvation,” which it is not.
For what they are teaching is that you can believe (not usually biblically defined) in Jesus one time and now all your sins are forgiven (past, present, and future), and heaven is now guaranteed you when you die, regardless of how you live your life on this earth. So no wonder sin is running rampant in today’s churches (or institutional churches). But that is not the gospel Jesus taught, and it is not the gospel message the New Testament apostles taught.
They taught we must die with Christ to sin, not walk in it, and we must walk in obedience to his commands and walk in holiness and righteousness or we don’t have eternal life with God. And they taught that we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared in advance that we should walk in them (see Ephesians 2:10, which follows verses 8 and 9, also Titus 2:11-14 and Romans 6:1-23 and Romans 8:1-14).
So in most of these modern market-driven churches, from what I have heard and experienced, we don’t see mourning going on over the sins which are running rampant, unless those mourning are the ones being sinned against, or unless the sinners are being brought to true repentance. Most of the people seem to be happy with the way things are, especially if they are growing in numbers and if they have plenty of activities going on.
But we, as the body of Christ, are to be keeping our lives pure. We are daily to be dying to sin and to self and following our Lord in obedience to his commands (New Covenant). Holiness, uprightness, godliness, moral purity, integrity, honesty and faithfulness to our Lord should be what describes our lives and not the things mentioned at the beginning of this.
And then we need to be taking what steps we can, as individuals, to help this situation by telling people the truth of the gospel and by exposing the lies and by praying for revival, for without it, the church is going to continue on this massive spiritual nosedive. For we are way past one man in a church congregation living in sin. Now we have the majority of professers of faith in Jesus possibly all living in sin, if they believe they don’t have to repent and obey the Lord. So keep praying and keep speaking the truth of the gospel.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
He Lifted Our Burdens
An Original Work / February 15, 2014
Based off Isaiah 9:2-7
People walk in darkness.
They abide in their sin.
It has power o’er them.
True belief escapes them.
Jesus Christ came to save them.
He gave His life up for them;
Crucified; died for our sin,
So we might be forgiven,
And have life up in heaven.
Many come to know Him.
God’s love now o’erflows them.
They rejoice in vict’ry.
Their sin is but hist’ry.
We were once bound in slav’ry.
Jesus lifted our burdens;
Set us now free from Satan,
So we now walk in freedom.
Sin has no more dominion.
Praise be to our Savior!
He showed us His favor.
He took all our burdens;
Cast them all upon Him.
He is our mediator;
The Light which shines in darkness.
Counselor in our troubles;
He gives peace now in our hearts;
Joy which is everlasting.