Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The Spirit of Cain Returns
Gal.3:1-12 - O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth,
before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
4 Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
5 He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
any evangelicals would strongly suggest that no one can be justified by the works of the flesh. And they also would believe that the works of the flesh can never achieve anything in the kingdom of God or the kingdom of the Spirit. And they would agree with the Apostle Paul when he contends that any teaching that elevates the works of the flesh to salvation or even sanctification status is spiritual witchcraft. They loudly and proudly refuse to genuflect to the works of the flesh in any spiritual applications, and most would see clearly that the works of the flesh have no part in God’s kingdom or in the life of God’s Bride.
And when asked if the church should use carnal schemes to change people’s hearts and minds, well most would answer a resounding “Never!”. Well then, what do we use to change people? Most would answer the gospel witness, prayer, and sacrificial acts of kindness designed to present Christ through the prism of our lives. And with that combination, we can hope for the salvation of souls.
A man begins to build a ship. He lives on an island. People ask him why he is building such a great ship, and the man tells them that a day is coming when everything on this island will perish and the only escape will be this particular ship. People mock him, and most ignore him and learn to live with him. Some people become convinced that the man is right, and they begin to help him build this great vessel.
There are some people on the island who are building other ships, but they are not seaworthy and will ultimately sink. They cannot save anyone. But many people on this island are interested in making the island better and more comfortable for those who live there. They meet regularly and discuss what changes should be made, and there is wide disagreement about that very issue. They argue and fight among themselves and do not get much accomplished.
These island people never refer to this man’s great ship, and mostly they ignore it. Some point to its craftsmanship and design, but they do not embrace it as a means of escape. Now while this man is working on the ship he becomes aware of the way the people are arguing, and he begins to pay attention to what they are saying. He becomes so distracted that he leaves his ship and attends their meetings. He presents his point of view and is met with a little support but also much confrontation.
Soon this man spends more time attempting to change the island than he does building an escape. Although he still believes his ship will ultimately be the only vehicle for escape, he still spends much time and effort making his views about the island known. He inadvertently becomes more interested in changing the island than he does building his ship. And in the end he and his ship become entangled with the affairs of the island and the ship slowly descends into a state of disrepair. The ship is no longer an issue.

And so it is with the church of Jesus Christ. Our Master left us with a clear commission called the gospel. We are not to be friends with the world’s systems and we are not to get entangled with the affairs of this world. But the church has become intrigued with changing the world through carnal methods and the meetings of mixed multitudes. We have offered our support to a melding of the believer and the unbeliever, and we go to their meetings, send financial support, and spend much time and energy to change this world through legislation. All night prayer meetings? Never!
This year thousands of evangelical churches will pass out pamphlets that compare the views of the different candidates. And this will be done at the worship gatherings. But you cannot serve two masters. You cannot dabble in the affairs of the world and still be completely faithful to the gospel message. The two are enemies and diametrically opposed to one another. One suggests that change can be effected through human voting blocks, while the other is committed to effect change by faith in the Savior alone.
One is spiritual while the other is carnal. One is faith while the other is works. One is of God while the other is witchcraft. One elevates the Risen Christ while the other elevates the collective power of man. One is a theocracy while the other is a democracy. One has life while the other is fallen. One is of Christ while the other is of Belial. One impacts the kingdom of light while the other impacts the kingdom of darkness. One is the commission of God while the other is the tradition of man.
And while God’s ship builders are away attending the meetings of men, the gospel ship is in desperate need of repair. The glory of that Ship is now just a couple of sentences on some statement of faith. And men who were called to believe and proclaim God’s Holy Word, now speak frequently and forcefully about the Constitution and its so called glory. The master now has two heads.
But in reality the church has left THE Head and is now frolicking like a wild ass in the pastures of this world. She snorts loudly about temporal things and butts heads with the wild asses in the pastures of darkness. And being enamored with her earthly power and all her activity, she, like Samson, doesn’t know she has lost her power from on high. Being involved with witchcraft does not always mean Ouija boards and pentagrams. It sometimes means an angel of light which convinces us that we can change this fallen world by the works of our own hands.
The more things change the more they stay the same. The spirit of Cain has returned indeed.

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