2 Chr. 7:14 π Mt. 16:18 π Mk. 10:42-43 π Acts 7:48 π Eph. 5:5-10 π Col. 1:13 π Heb. 5:9 π Heb. 11:6 π Jas. 1:27
Phil Robertson’s book, The Theft of America’s Soul, is a call to return to the godly living that made America great. The ten lies that this book focuses on that Americans have embraced as acceptable norms – God’s death, no devil, relativism, no Creator, selfish sexuality, virtue is old fashioned (irrelevant), lawlessness, disunity, separation of godly spiritual principles from daily life, silenced Christians – are each extremely devastating to our spiritual life in Christ and God. Phil has chosen well the issues that are plaguing and killing America and rightly places the fabricated death of God as the primary root of all the other deceptions. God is indeed not dead but He is only accessible to those who believe and obey! (see Heb. 11:6; top)
Phil’s uncompromising stand on the Bible as the source for all the answers we need for life and godliness is a refreshing contrast to the political correctness and liberal, left-wing diatribes against all morality and human decency of today. Phil is to be strongly commended for his bold faithfulness to preach the good news of Jesus Christ.
This book, along with his previous wake up call to America, UnPhiltered, stands as a clarion call for all Americans. There is no option left except to return to God if we want to experience the resuscitation of the real and godly lifestyles that made America great. And whether this effort to restore America to her godly heritage succeeds or not, the good news that Jesus Christ is risen and lives to grant men liberty from sin, Satan and their own selfishness will bring salvation to all who partake of it. Preach on brothers and sisters who dare to take on Phil’s challenges!
If there is any spiritual weakness in the book, however, it is found in the rare case of Phil not speaking the truth with as much force and clarity as he usually does and he almost becomes guilty of soft-peddling the truth! Phil writes:
There’s a lot of talk these days about the drop-off in church attendance. The news outlets point to the decline in church growth. The implication? God must be dead. People are leaving, they say, and so the message of the church must be irrelevant for modern America. And you know the saddest part? We’re the ones who’ve taught the world that the church is irrelevant.
Outside of the Sunday church services, are our lives all that different? Some studies show that 80 percent of Christians between the ages of eighteen and twenty-nine have premarital sex. By some estimates Christians account for more than 50 percent of abortions in America. Some reports show that 64 percent of Christian men and 15 percent of Christian women are addicted to pornography. The difference in divorce rates between Christians and non-Christians is negligible. And look around you: think American Christians are just as greedy, arrogant, and insolent as the rest of the world? You bet we are.
I’ve identified the problem, see, and the problem is us.
Over the last fifty years, the American church has been a dismal failure. Instead of trying to carry the truth of the Almighty out to the world, instead of sharing his love, we’ve created comfortable Christian communities where our faith is rarely tested. We gather together in multi-million-dollar facilities with comfortable stadium seating, concert-worthy sound systems, and laser light shows. We create experiences that are supposed to be relevant, rock shows that sound just like the music of the world. And as we’ve retreated to these places, these experiences, we’ve withdrawn from government, allowed our faith to be squeezed out of public schools, let our voices be silenced in the workplace. See? Under pressure of the advancing secular age, we retreated to our church buildings as society around us descended into godless chaos.
In this book I’ve outlined the lies the evil one has used to steal, kill, and destroy the soul of America. Of all the lies, perhaps the worst is the one he’s peddled to the church, the one we’ve bought hook, line, and sinker: church is an activity we attend two hours a week, and our faith is to be expressed there, not out in the world. Why is this lie the worst of the lot? Because we, the people of God, should know better.
Jesus never meant for his message to be contained within a building or confined to a service. (p. 159-161)
God has always said, “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” ( 2 Chr. 7:14 – emphasis added; top) It is not the liberal left-wingers who bear the greatest fault for the death of America or, as Phil says it, the theft of America’s soul. They are the sons of disobedience who routinely and instinctively do the bidding of their father, the prince of the power of the air. It is those who claim to belong to the Father of lights, to the Lord of life, the risen King Christ Jesus who bear the greatest guilt because they have buried away their fabulous treasure in the ground and, instead of doing the will of their heavenly Father, have practiced lawlessness in His name.
Phil does not at all adequately delve into the lies that constitute American “church.” Chief among these would be:
- American “church” is a business and not much more. Mammon is the god many “Christian” leaders serve even as they use the name of Christ and God in vain. Some “church” leaders get bored with the idea that the “church” needs further reformation and simply are not interested in anyone else’s views on “the church,” especially their particular franchise of it. Their own personal need to be well funded and to be well thought of and to exercise authority and wield power (beneficially, of course) are the driving force behind their “ministry,” not the work and word of the Lord.
- The American “church” is centered around things that cannot be found in the New Testament (except perhaps to be condemned) – things like buildings (see Acts 7:48 , etc.), clergy (see Mk. 10:42-43 , etc.), religion (see Jas. 1:27 , etc.; top), pulpits and pews. These last two are entirely absent from the New Testament yet every “church” is convinced of the need for them.
- Large scale meetings are held that give little to no spiritual ability for the passive spectator to enter into spiritual maturity. Knowledge, often Bible trivia, is passed along in the usual sermon as if knowledge of the Book were alone sufficient for life and godliness. It should be noted that Phil, as was also true of people like George W. Bush and Tom Landry along with countless others of their generation, went to church and Sunday school all their early lives and never once heard a clear presentation of the gospel until well into their adulthood.
Thinking, God-hungry people are leaving “church” because it has become irrelevant. It is a most difficult truth to convey to Americans that Jesus is the truth but “church” is a lie. “Church” American style is probably best described as three parts deception glommed onto one part truth. That is “church” refers to the “building,” the “clergy,” the “religion” and the “people.” Christ calls His people, upon their translation into His kingdom of light, to come out of the practices of the darkness of this world and to live as children of light. ( Col. 1:13 , Eph. 5:5-10 , etc.) Because “church” relies on three elements of deception (buildings, clergy and religion – none of which have any rightful place in following Christ), these three parts of modern “church” is nothing but a long-term, cleverly laid scheme of the devil. Yet, above all that, Christ’s ekklesia (His called out people) will prevail if they will simply follow Him and obey Him ( Mt. 16:18 , Heb. 5:9 , etc.; top) as the personal life of Phil Robertson so clearly attests to.
But until these lies are purged from our usual practice of “Christianity,” those who claim the name of Christ will remain completely unable to humble themselves, unable to pray in purity and power, unable to genuinely seek God’s face, and unable to turn from their wicked ways so that then God will hear from heaven and forgive their sin and turn and heal their land. They will remain ill-equipped or even completely unequipped and will be largely unable to leave the comfortable ear-scratching spiritual guru to whom they have addicted themselves. The American “church,” because it is largely the work of the devil, has no good news to carry to the secular world who so desperately needs Jesus because they still desperately need Jesus themselves and have instead contented themselves with mere words about Christ and God and with religious practices that comfort their flesh and deceive them into thinking that God is appeased by these practices. (May God richly bless those precious few exceptions to this general indictment!)
Phil is absolutely correct even though he does not emphasize it nearly enough. He has “identified the problem, see, and the problem is us.” Phil also wrote, “The truth is the truth, no matter how you cut it, and the truth is, the church should be the most unified place in all of America. We shouldn’t tolerate division… That leads me to this conclusion: the people who claim to follow the Almighty don’t. Instead, we’ve believed the lie of the enemy too.” (p. 148) The time has come for us to more clearly recognize and address this. The theft and misdirection of the “church” is the primary reason the devil has been able to steal America’s soul. Unless the “church” is abandoned and our spiritual practices reformed to conform to the leading of the Spirit of God, America will die even as it goes on to practice hatred and enmity against the followers of Christ and God.
Let he who has ears hear.
- Where Do You Go To Church? - Neil Girrard This seemingly innocent question covers a whole lot of territory.
- Babylonian Captivity - Neil Girrard - ( in Adobe/pdf format ) The “pastor” in the pulpit on a platform paradigm is the heart and soul of the deceptions that keep the “church” in its Babylonian captivity.
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