“In scripture, as far as I can tell, God does not consider death – even the senseless carnage of war – an essential or intrinsic loss – for it is temporal.”
Day 220 – Red Book
This has been a difficult week. Earlier this week, I wrote a dear brother a short note expressing my profound sadness with the most recent news surrounding the founder of Willow Creek Association, Pastor Bill Hybels. Bill and I are almost the exact same age. The last figure I recall was that his church, Willow Creek Community, had an average attendance of 25,000.
Years ago, when I was an elder at Central Christian Church, now Central Church, Bill came to Las Vegas to kick off the building drive, which ultimately resulted in building the 60 acre campus located at Russell Road and I-515. Back then, churches like Central, Canyon Ridge and hundreds of others across the country were part of the Willow Creek Association.
Before I go any further, I know clearly that 1 Cor 15:10 certainly applies to me, “But by the grace of God I am what I am………..” and my depravity terrifies me. Bill Hybels’ fall from grace is so sad (click here), because of its far-reaching effects. The injury that has been done to the Body of Christ is beyond measure. How do things like this happen? And yet they happen all the time, only to different degrees? I shared the following with my dear brother:
I can’t say for sure, but this may be the result of ignoring the clear Biblical teachings. If I had to break it down into 3 key areas where the church has failed, I would include the following:
- Obedience to the Word – People want to serve God on their terms, not His (1 John 2:4)
- Biblical Fear of the Lord – I run into church guys that say, “God doesn’t want me to fear Him.”
- Really? Here is a 100 of them to start with (click here)
- Accountability – Who is watching over your soul (Heb 13:17)
It also folds into a book my buddy gave me by Jeff Parker, “Killing the Church: The Failure to Confront”
And don’t forget Day 223 in the Blue Book that we have talked about for years:
As you know, one of our memory verses is: “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Tim 3:16-17)
How in the world can we expect to be adequately equipped for every good work if we are not teachable, desiring and open to be corrected and rebuked and to be trained in righteousness?
I remember the quote: “The church that marries the spirit of the age, will be a widow in the next generation?” Jerry Bangert’s book, Discipline of Delusion explains: How modern secular ideologies have seduced the church into listening to our culture rather than the Bible. You can order it from his website: https://e2.foundation/
Ok, I’m done…………..
See you at noon!
Broken and Dependent in Christ,
PS: By the way, the image above regarding the role of a pastor was sent to me by a Pastor Daniel Janagam. He, and others in India, understand what the pastor’s role is………………. Making disciples that will produce reproducers.