Tuesday, August 26th, 2014
The Call To Overcome (Part 16)
The Corrupt Church*
You allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. And I gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, and she did not repent. Indeed I will cast her into a sickbed and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds... and all the churches shall know that I am He Who searches the minds and hearts. And I will give to each one of you according to your works.
Revelation 2:20-23 (NKJV)
Why do you let that Jezebel who calls herself a prophet mislead my dear servants into Cross-denying, self-indulging religion? I gave her a chance to change her ways, but she has no intention of giving up a career in the god-business. I'm about to lay her low, along with her partners, as they play their sex-and-religion games... Then every church will know that appearances don't impress me. I x-ray every motive and make sure you get what's coming to you.
Revelation 2:20-23 (The Message)
The Church in Thyatira was doing many things right, and Jesus commended the congregation: 'I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first' (Revelation 2:19). In other words, they were increasingly fruitful.
Even so, beneath the surface, Jesus found corruption. An uprising had begun, and the church was growing a new head: a false prophet with a 'Jezebel spirit:' so-named for the power-wielding, idol-worshipping wife of King Ahab. As queen, she seduced the nation of Israel. With a promise on her lips and a fork in her tongue, Jezebel led the children of Israel to worship pagan gods. Consider her cons, because they still play today:
'His ways are too narrow. My ways are more fun. He restrains you, but I will excite you. Prayer is good, but why limit yourself? He said 'Be faithful.' I say, be free.'
Actors, models and talent for Christ: beware false prophets whose goal is false profit. They will tempt you with freedom, but tie you to bondage. They will lure you by lust, hook you by loot, and reel you into their net. But the end of that line is a frying pan.
Admittedly, our world of limitless options makes it hard to believe we have just two. But unless we're talking ice cream, every important choice has just two answers: life or death, blessing or cursing, God or idols, right or wrong, good or evil, His way or their way, hard Words or soft edits, carrying a cross or wearing a trinket.**
Actors, models and talent for Christ: you are God's new church. You are led by one Head. His Name is not Jezebel, but Jesus. His way is not corruption, but incorruption. Because corruption is a sliding board. At its bottom is not a pit of sand, but a lake of fire.
To Be Continued...
* Previous AMTC Devotion on The Corrupt Church: http://www.amtcdevotions.com/which-church-are-you-part-6-the-corrupt-church
* Additional brief article on The Corrupt Church: http://www.gotquestions.org/church-in-Thyatira.html
** 'See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil, in that I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His Commandments, His Statutes, and His Judgments, that you may live and multiply; and the Lord your God will bless you in the land which you go to possess. But if your heart turns away so that you do not hear, and are drawn away, and worship other gods and serve them, I announce to you today that you shall surely perish; you shall not prolong your days in the land which you cross over the Jordan to go in and possess. I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; that you may love the Lord your God, that you may obey His Voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days' (Deuteronomy 30:15-20, NKJV).
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the The Call To Overcome series.