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Weekly Commentary
9095
“New Evangelical / Laodicean Deception”
by Art Sadlier   
January 10th, 2010

It is heartbreaking to see the deception that is sweeping over the Evangelical Church. It began sixty years ago with launching of New Evangelicalism. The determination was to cease contending for the faith and to compromise with Liberalism and with the world. The underlying motive was to seek to build bridges with liberals and with the world. The supposition was that this influence would end in bringing the erring liberal and the unregenerate to the truth.

A series of new ideas emerged from this wrong philosophy. The first idea that began to sweep the Evangelical  Church was the idea that if we could impress the world we could get their attention and then we could give them the gospel. It sounded so good and it worked, at least it brought people into the church building. What could possibly be better than that? At least it seemed good to the little faithful churches that were ignored by the world because they dared to confront the world with sin, as the Lord had commanded them to do.

A series of principles for growth were developed by emulating the methods of the world and of business, the church growth movement was born.

At this point many Evangelicals launched into the new movement and those who did experienced growth in numbers, for some very dramatic growth. The very growth they experienced actually destroyed the church. The world came into the church and the church became something other than the church of Jesus Christ. It all happened so gradually that no one seemed to notice at first.

Changes came in waves:  the user friendly church, then the purpose driven church, now the apostate Emergent Church. Each wave led to the next one. Gradually the church was transformed, a transition that would make the church indistinguishable from the world.

With the new program came a new gospel, the gospel of easy believism , a false gospel that by passes repentance and does not call for a changed life, a gospel that the world can accept.

The same thing happened in the fifth century when the Emperor Constantine brought the world into the church, it may have seemed good, but it resulted in a thousand years of spiritual darkness.

Along with this process many changes came into the Evangelical Church, all with purpose of making the church look like the world, to make the worldly feel at home in the church. The churches music was sacrificed to the music of the world. The methods of Christ for the church were sacrificed to the methods of the world.

John MacArthur sums up the changes in preaching, `

Bible teaching, even in the best of venues today, has been deliberately dumbed-down, made as broad and as shallow as possible, oversimplified, adapted to the lowest common denominator-- and then tailored to appeal to people with short attention spans.

Sermons are almost always brief, simplistic, overlaid with as many references to pop culture as possible, and laden with anecdotes and illustrations. (Jokes and funny stories drawn from personal experience are favored over cross-references and analogies borrowed from Scripture itself.) Typical sermon topics are heavily weighted in favor of man-centered issues (such as personal relationships, successful living, self-esteem, how-to lists, and so on)--to the exclusion of the many Christ-exalting doctrinal themes of Scripture. In other words, what most contemporary preachers do is virtually the opposite of what Paul was describing when he said he sought "to declare . . . the whole counsel of God"

I believe we are living in the days of deception that Jesus warned would come in the days just prior to His coming for the church. It is heart breaking to see that so many evangelicals today have almost no comprehension of what the church is to be. Multitudes have itching ears and do not want the simple teaching of God`s  Word. They crave something exciting and entertaining.

The memory of what the church is to be has been erased from many today and in its place is etched the Laodicean  Church with its lukewarmness, its love of the world, its love of entertainment and its love of material  things.

We cannot but note, that the Lord killed Uzza for departing from His program of worship. The Lord cursed Jeroboam for departing from His program of worship.

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