A Church of Power
There is a growing focus in churches that is moving away from the power of the Word and the power of the Holy Spirit. You will find churches that focus on pleasing man and entertaining them with worldly tactics and schemes. They think that it’s okay to be like the world or that we should be like the world to reach them. They forget that friendship with the world is hostility with God.
Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility with God? Whoever wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
While it's true that we are still in this world and our goal is to share the gospel with them, we are not of the world nor should we rely on being like them to win them. We are to rely on the Word of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit to reach them. After all, it's God who does it and not us.
There are also churches that focus on the Word but haven’t been filled with the Holy Spirit. There is no ministry, no deliverance, no healing, no gifts, no moving of the Holy Spirit. They haven’t experienced a life on fire for God through the power of the Holy Spirit. As long as they read the Word of God, they think it’s a perfect church. They forget that the letter kills but it's the Holy Spirit that gives life.
2 Corinthians 3:5
our sufficiency is from God, who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
Then there are the churches that focus on the moving of the Holy Spirit but have very little understanding of the Word and become easily deceived by false healing, false prophecies, false teaching, false apostles and false spirits. As long as something spiritual happens in the church, they think it’s from God. They have forgotten to not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to know whether they are from God.
1 John 4:1
do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.
News alert!!… there are false spirits in the “church”. That’s how Satan deceives. He doesn’t deceive in the bars and strip clubs because they are already lost. He sends wolves in sheep's clothing right into the church. He could be sitting next to you in church, he could be the keyboard player, he could be the pastor. A true pastor encourages to always check the bible to test what is being taught and practiced. Satan's tactics are very cunning and his deception is very real. So test all things.
As we enter the end times, things are only getting worse. Now is the time to be ready. Know the Word of God and test all things. This may surprise some of you but, the main function of the church is not to hear the Word of God and it’s not to see the Holy Spirit move. The main function of the church is to pray. Yes, we need the Word of God, and yes, we need the Holy Spirit moving freely in the church. But Jesus said my house will be called a house of prayer.
He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer’
That is the first and foremost thing that a church should do. Because when we pray, God moves. Prayer changes things. When we humble ourselves and pray, the Holy Spirit will begin to impart the Word of God into our spirit and manifest the gifts in the church. Are we seeking God in prayer? 1 Timothy 2:1 says first of all for prayers to be made for all men. To be a truly effective church, we need to get back to the bible and be led by the Holy Spirit. In 1 Corinthians 12 and 14 we see that the gifts were how the Holy Spirit ministered to the people in the church. In chapter 13 we are reminded that love is the most important thing, but we are not to simply stay at love, we should grow in the gifts and let the Holy Spirit flow through us to minister to others. It’s not good enough to be a church that is Christ centered without seeing the moving of the Holy Spirit. It’s not good enough to be a church with the gifts of the Holy Spirit but not know false teaching when it's preached. We need to be a church that is Christ centered AND Holy Spirit centered. We need both the power of the Word and the power of the Holy Spirit.