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Weekly Commentary
2867
“The issue of the day”
by Art Sadlier   
August 3rd, 2008

"And the children of Issachar, which had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do; "... I Chron.12:32

Basic spiritual principles never change, but spiritual warfare between God and Satan manifests itself in different issues at different times. To be able to recognize those issues and know how to deal with them is a key to doing what the Lord requires. Sometimes God's people do not understand the issue of the hour and are found moving against God's purposes.

Let me list just a few of the crucial issues of the hour at specific points in time. During the days of Ephesus the issue of the hour was "FIRST LOVE", it would determine whether an individual or a church would survive.

During the days of Smyrna the issue of the hour was "Ceasar is Lord". Believers would be challenged by soldiers with that statement, they would answer either, "Caesar is Lord" or "Jesus is Lord", the answer would have profound consequences, it was the issue of the hour. During the days of Pergamos, the issue of the hour was compromise with the world. During the dark ages the issue was Transubstantiation, men went to the stake for denying it. They could have said, its such a small thing, don't make an issue over it, but they did, they could not duck it and profess faith in Christ. During the days of Sardis, the issue was infant baptism, it seemed like such a small thing, but on it hung orthodoxy.

All down over the long church age there have always been crucial issues that had to be faced if the testimony of Christ was to be upheld in the world, if individuals and churches were to survive.

During the age of the church of Philadelphia the issue was to refute the apostasy of liberalism, to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints, on that issue hung the life of the church, Philadelphia won that battle.

Today the issue has changed, for the last 50 years there has been a new crucial issue, the issue of the hour, it has been the issue of the Laodicean age. That issue has been the issue of New Evangelicalism, to fail to stand against New Evangelicalism is to build it, and to lead to the decline and death of the evangelical church.

New Evangelicalism is the denial of that which the Lord of the church has declared the church is to be and to do and how it is to do it. It is an issue clouded with deception, the deception Jesus warned would come just before before His appearing.

New Evangelicalism compromises with liberalism, it compromises with the social gospel, it compromises with ecumenical evangelism, it has produced the church growth movement and the purpose driven movement and will absorb and be absorbed by the emergent church movement, and ultimatley be incorporated into the harlot church of Revelation 17.

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