Isa. 14:14 π Mt. 6:10 π Mt. 12:25-26 π Mt. 13:41-42 π Mt. 24:10 π Mt. 24:13 π Lk. 4:6 π Jn. 13:34 π Jn. 14:26 π Jn. 16:13 π Acts 20:27 π 1 Cor. 5:11 π 2 Cor. 6:17-18 π Gal. 5:17 π Eph. 4:14 π Eph. 6:11 π Col. 2:6 π Col. 3:4 π 2 Ths. 2:3 π 2 Ths. 2:4 π 2 Ths. 2:11-12 π 2 Tim. 3:1 π 2 Tim. 4:3-4 π 1 Jn. 2:27 π 1 Jn. 3:11 π Rev. 12:3 π Rev. 12:11 π Rev. 13:1 π Rev. 14:1 π Rev. 14:4 π Rev. 17:3 π Rev. 17:5 π Rev. 20:1-3
A juxtaposition is two things being seen or placed close together with contrasting effect. Consider:
“Many people are leaving organized expressions of Christian religion. George Barna has documented that as many as a million a year in the United States are leaving. I have read other sources that indicate it is as much as 10-15 million a year on a worldwide level. The failure to reach our own children and their departure from organized Christian religion is also well documented. Depending on the source, I have seen numbers that range from 70-90% of children raised in evangelical homes will ‘leave the faith’ by the age of 21, never to return.” (Stephen Crosby, Foreword, Rethinking the Unthinkable, p. 1)
“If in fact you have been delivered from yourself and truly are living for the Lord, one thing in your life will be most certain, which is, that you will automatically manifest in the body that portion of a special function or office which you have as a brother or a sister.” (Watchman Nee, The Body of Christ: A Reality, ch. 5 )
In the juxtaposition of these two quotes – given almost 100 years apart – we can see, if we have spiritual eyes, the conflict of the kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan.
Why are so many leaving “organized expressions of Christian religion”? Of course there are those who have left the “church” for what are sure to be misguided, even carnal reasons. But that does not account for all who have left. We who “have been delivered from [our self] and truly are living for the Lord” must leave the “church” because we can no longer fulfill and manifest our “portion of a special function or office which we have as a brother or sister” in Christ. The entrenched status quo simply will not tolerate anyone who is truly living for Christ to be what Christ made them to be. At best, God’s grace must be stifled and gifting squeezed into man-made definitions and boxes – at worst, the work of God’s Spirit must be quenched and stifled at all cost and any genuine giftings driven off or completely coopted.
Paul foresaw this time and wrote, “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come…” ( 2 Tim. 3:1 ) The time of the apostasy, when the “church” is fallen from the faith (see 2 Ths. 2:3 , Mt. 24:10 ), is upon us and will only progress into further wickedness and lawlessness until the time when Jesus “will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into the furnace of fire.” ( Mt. 13:41-42 ) Surely, these days are soon upon us and it is our lot and portion to “endure to the end so as to be saved” ( Mt. 24:13 ) because it really does no good to list the sins of the “church” – the prostitute will never repent and such appeals fall upon deaf ears because both clergy and laity are quite content in their various and multiple strong delusions. (see 2 Ths. 2:11-12 , 2 Tim. 4:3-4 , etc.; top)
Those who have left the “church” so that they could freely be what Christ gave them the grace (mercy and power) to be are right to have come out of the “Christian” idolatry of the “church.” ( 2 Cor. 6:17-18 , 1 Cor. 5:11 ) Such as these will raise up a generation of “virgins” who have never been defiled by the carnal and even demonic “church” system, the prostitute and her daughters (see Rev. 14:4 , 17:5 ) and these, in their complete number, will stand with the Lamb upon Mount Zion, being the true ekklesia that genuinely attends to the issues and affairs of Christ’s kingdom of light and truth. ( Rev. 14:1; top )
A kingdom is defined as that realm wherein a king issues orders and edicts and the people of that realm obey them. The kingdom of God, then, is that realm, even among men on earth, where Christ and God are obeyed. ( Mt. 6:10 ) The kingdom of Satan is this world’s kingdoms and spheres of influence: economy, government, family, spirituality, education, media and celebration. These are, even now, being promoted as “seven mountains theology” in which a strategy for transforming society is being implemented by influential people who occupy high places within these seven spheres of influence. It is Satan and not Christ and God who stands behind the kingdoms and rulerships of this world ( Lk. 4:6 ) and long ago it was prophesied that the beast upon which the “church” would ride and the beast which exercises Satan’s domination over the world is in reality the old dragon himself who has “seven heads and ten horns.” ( Rev. 12:3 , 13:1 , 17:3 ) Satan’s entire agenda is summed up in his vow to “be like the Most High” ( Isa. 14:14 ) and to “exalt himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he [may] sit as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.” ( 2 Ths. 2:4 ) Satan, who was defeated at the cross but who will never voluntarily surrender, must be defeated yet again ( Rev. 12:11 ) prior to his capture and imprisonment when the King returns. ( Rev. 20:1-3; top ) This too is our lot and portion to participate in overcoming the devil just as the Firstborn overcame him.
W.W. Fischer wrote,
A divided Kingdom cannot stand. ( Mt. 12:25-26 , etc.)
Our present Church world is not nearly ready to stand in what the Lord plans on doing in this last hour. The world’s standards have invaded the compromising and anemic Church world, making it a divided kingdom.
The first preparation necessary for the Church to stand is a deep purging, cleansing and pruning. This first step cannot be evaded or eliminated. It is a “must” so that the Church will be delivered from the inward enemy of self-life, ego and compromise. We cannot minister in the power of the last hour until the inner enemy has been dethroned.
Our present state of rebellion in the Christian Church is led by the flesh-life (carnality), which is not ready to capitulate to God’s last hour outpouring. The flesh wars against the Spirit. ( Gal. 5:17; top )
Although many well-meaning Christians have prayed for and are looking forward to the end-time outpouring of God's presence, they have no insight into the implications and ramifications of its fulfillment.
In order to stand in this last hour as God moves by the fire power of His presence, no flesh shall stand, only those who have crucified their flesh in the furnace of God’s purifying crucible will stand.
The word became Jesus and His presence dwells in consuming power among us in this last hour.
This presence of God in this last hour will be an awesome display of judgment until the “mixed multitude” among the Christians will either be brought to their knees in total obedience or in their rebellion they will be consumed as Korah, Dathan and Abiram were in the Old Testament, and as Ananias and Sapphira were in the New Testament. (“ Standing in the Last Hour ,” The End Time Men )
It is time for us to quietly stand and simply be what Christ has made us to be. We do not need to overturn the world or disrupt the status quo – our mere presence as those who present Christ to a dark and dying world will do that enough and they will surely seek to destroy us for daring to bring light into their darkness. We do not need to march and vote so as to take over some political party nor do we need to rise up in bloody or violent revolution against the powers of this world – those powers are already defeated at the cross of Christ and we may participate in His victory if we will but stand and see what the Lord will do.
It has long been noted that the book of Ephesians stands as the clearest expression of the way of following Christ. The letter to the Ephesians can be seen as Paul’s letter specifically written to the end-time generation to help them overcome the effects of the apostasy – the letter’s form, structure and content provide the clearest, highest presentation of the mature life in Christ and it resonates with Paul’s passion to preserve the souls of those whom he loved and had discipled. There are other clues throughout the New Testament too numerous and detailed to explain here but consider that Paul told the Ephesian elders that he had “not shunned to declare to [them] the whole counsel of God.” – Acts 20:27 – and his later letter to them may well be a concise representation of this “whole counsel of God”! It is not to be missed that this letter is the chief place where Paul exposes the devil’s primary deceitful strategies (wiles) and the remedies against them. (see Eph. 4:14 , 6:11; top )
There is no new message – there is only the old commandment given by Christ Himself: “Love one another as I have loved you.” ( Jn. 13:34 , see also 1 Jn. 3:11 ) The Spirit of truth who leads us into all truth ( Jn. 14:26 , 16:13 ) will teach us to abide (remain, stay in and with, reside) in Him who is our life. ( 1 Jn. 2:27 , Col. 3:4 ) As we have received (come to know) Him, so walk (live, conduct your life) in Him. ( Col. 2:6; top ) There is no new gospel – only a fresh implosion of life poured into the original gospel by the Spirit of life for those who have genuinely been delivered from themselves and who truly are living for the Lord. This cannot be contained or restrained any longer in the old wine skin that is the “church,” those inept and ineffective and impotent and irrelevant “expressions of organized Christian religion.” The new life will again burst forth as it has always done when people step out in obedience to the call of Christ and God.
By the presence and power of Christ in our midst we will stand – no matter what the powers and the people of the darkness do.
Let he who has ears hear.
- Done With “Church” - Neil Girrard - ( in Adobe/pdf format ) Another significant segment of people are again abandoning the “church” – and this group has been labeled as “dones” and “called outs.”
- Leaving “Church” Behind; To Follow Jesus in Spirit and Truth – Neil Girrard (also on Paidion Books Home Page) If you're seeing discrepancies and differences between the New Testament and “church” - and not just your “church” but “church” practices in general - you are not alone by any means.
- 5. The Function and Harmony of the Members; The Body of Christ: A Reality - Watchman Nee There is no one having the life of God who is not a member of the body of Christ, and no member is so small as to have no function of his own.
- Responding to the Apostasy - Neil Girrard As the great falling away from the faith unfolds all around us, what response should we make?
- Perilous Times - Neil Girrard The deception of the end times is dangerous – especially for those who don’t believe deception is really there.
- Reform Is Not an Option - Neil Girrard The “church” needs changed but will it submit to what is really needed?
- Standing in the Last Hour; The End Time Men - W.W. Fischer Our present Church world is not nearly ready to stand in what the Lord plans on doing in this last hour.
- Ephesians: Paul’s Time Capsule - Neil Girrard - ( in Adobe/pdf format ) Some Bible scholars insist that Ephesians is merely a general letter for all believers - others question the authenticity of Paul’s authorship because Paul’s usual inclusion of eschatology (the study of prophesied end-times events) is absent. What is the real story and why is it so vitally important for us to understand Paul’s intent today?
- One Another Commands - Neil Girrard The requirements of the New Testament of what we are and are not to do and be “one to another” are awesome in scope and responsibility.
I’d love to hear comments and/or questions from you! Email me!