SOUNDING THE SHOFAR- Satan, the Cause of Church Woes
Satan’s job is to destroy lives and the churches, to take as many people, including Christians, to hell with him. Satan looks for opportunities to sow division and strife among the brethren through the worldly carnality of its leaders and/or members. The Bible tells us ‘neither give place to the devil’ (Eph 4:27), and that Satan can ‘take us captive at his will’ if we give place to him (2Tim 2:26)! Here is an example of how Satan has infiltrated the churches causing strife and dissension among the members!
I have been following a blog site by a group of believers in Asia whose mega Christian church of several thousand members has been undergoing a major financial and spiritual battle for the last few years. Great controversy has arisen because the senior pastor, his associate pastors, board members and deacons have tried to force a very expensive- tens of millions of dollars, church building project upon many dissenting and unhappy members. Plans for building a world-class landmark church complex have not met with the consensus of its membership who have been pressured into funding the project through their tithes and sacrificial giving.
A blogsite by dissidents of this megachurch clearly shows how Satan has sneaked in and is destroying the church from within. The kingdom of God, which is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost (Rom14:17), has been replaced by suspicion, carnality, envying, strife, and division among its members. Fundraising and pleas for money- ‘give so God will bless you kinds of messages’, guilt-trips, have become common, and are subtle and rife. Ugly power struggles relating to money management issues and spendings are at the forefront.
The Bible declares ‘For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work’ (Jas 3:16).
This is a standard ploy of Satan working in many churches! The love of money, the root of all evil (1Tim6:10) is often the focal point of many church problems; how to raise more money, how to support the extravagant lifestyle and travels of the ministry and leadership, how to keep the church growing, and the people returning to church through worldly promotions and entertainment, high-powered guest speakers and televangelists, and how to keep the people giving!
Jesus said ‘My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves’ (Mt 21:13).
A few hundred of their members have been disfellowed or not allowed to vote because they do not support the building project. Many have left the church, and some are encouraging on the website that others should also leave. The question arises among themselves- why should they remain and hope that something will happen to halt the costly construction of the project running in the tens of millions. Some who have left the church continue to blog to report how they are blessed attending another church. Others hope that the pastor may repent, apologize and admit to his wrong doings, which does not appear likely to happen anytime soon. Collections have dropped drastically presenting great difficulties for the church to meet its huge loan payments, including thousands of dollars for monthly interest alone.
Some of their blogging has gotten pretty nasty; the tone is very ugly interspersed with some four-letter words and name-calling. There are constant demands that the pastors and leaders step down, trade in their luxury cars and downsize their standard of living, in the same way that they are calling their members to sacrifice in order for them to give more money!
Their worldly and intransigent pastor is said to once have had an anointed ministry, but now lives like a millionaire, following mammon instead of God, as one blogger writes. He is criticized for living like the rich and famous with $2,000 suits and $500 shoes, pocketing and using church money for his own and his family’s lifestyle. He also kept designated mission funds and transferred them into his own personal overseas account. After the impropriety had been discovered, to appease the members, he returned some money back into the church treasury. Many of the posts reflect angry and hurt people; venting and calling their pastor a false prophet, a swindler and embezzler of sorts, a charlatan and a wolf in sheep’s clothing misleading the dumb sheep. Others express concern of an inevitable bankruptcy down the road as in the recent case of the Crystal Cathedral in California.
This church is a prime example of the grave apostasy in many churches today, and it shows how Satan has made great inroads in causing church splits and disunity. Often many churches spend more time on crisis management than on seeking God for guidance and/or preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This church scandal is a poor testimony of Christians to the world, with comments from believers and non-believers alike coming from all over the world! Satan has succeeded in bringing reproach to the Church, and to Jesus Christ, making both of them a laughing stock!
Satan is doing a great job “to steal, kill, and destroy” (John 10:10).
Jer 23:1 states “Woe be unto the pastors that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! saith the LORD”.
Rev 18:4 warns us “..Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues”.
Jesus said “..except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3,5).
Finally, many of you may have listened to Pastor Rabbi Jonathan Cahn’s keynote address at the Presidential Inauguration Prayer Breakfast in Wash. D.C. or looked at the links on his book, The Harbinger. As a prophet and watchman to the church Cahn calls us to repent and return to God, as individuals and a nation that was founded on Godly principles. The message of 2 Chronicles 7:14 is a message to the church to get our act together! At the end of his speech, Jonathan Cahn implored us to be ‘the salt of the earth’ , and ‘the light of the world’ Mt5:13,14. We can do this by recognizing and fighting with the real enemy of our souls which is Satan!
Posted on January 30, 2013, in Enemy in Our Midst and tagged Church scandals, Church strife, Church woes, Churches in apostasy, False Prophets, False Shepherds, light of the world, Love of Money, Mammon, Money the crux of church problems, salt of the earth, Satan at work in the church. Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.