Today’s mini-sermon is the 5th of a 9-part series that is appearing in the Sunday and Thursday editions of the Answers2Prayer newsletters.
As we look ahead at VERY uncertain times, the Holy Spirit continually brings certain scriptural passages to my attention–passages that I KNOW are for such times as these, and that I KNOW I am to share with each of you. One such passage is found in Rev.:
“Then I heard another voice from heaven say: “Come out of her, my people” (Rev. 18:4).
In the past 4 mini-sermons, we learned that we need to come out of Babylon. We’ve learned that Babylon represents a church, and we’ve learned that to keep ourselves pure so that we don’t commit “spiritual adultery” with “Babylon”, we cannot put anything above God’s Word. Finally, we learned that one characteristic of the “Babylonian” church is “lukewarm”ness, a condition that unfortunately exists in MOST of our churches!
O. K. But I’m still not completely convinced that my church might be Babylon! What are some characteristics of Babylon? Perhaps if we look at the history of ancient Babylon, we will get more clues as to whether or not “Babylon” applies to ALL churches, including our own. Babylon is believed to have come out of the confusion that transpired about the tower of Babel. You remember the story. So soon after the miraculous events that transpired to save Noah and his family from the flood, the people have already lost faith in God. They decide to take things into their own hands, and they build a tower “whose top may reach unto heaven” (Gen. 11:4) in case of another flood. God’s response? To confuse the language of the people so that the work could not be completed. Babel and Babylon mean confusion.
Can we say, then, that being in “Babylon” is like living in confusion? Do we really trust God? Or do we take things into our own hands? Do we truly seek His will? Or do we do our own thing instead? Could it be that we are living in a state where, due to our refusal to trust our Lord, it is difficult to hear Him speak to us? Impossible to hear His will?
COME OUT OF HER MY PEOPLE! Come and re-establish that line of communication with Jesus that was lost at Babel!
If we look at Jesus’ message to the people of His day, we will find more characteristics of the “Babylonian” church: “Ye hypocrites, well did Isaiah prophesy of you, saying, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men . . . Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.” (Matt. 15:7-9, 13,14)
Jesus’ warning to the church of His day? Your leaders are corrupt! You are legalistically following after the church, and you are missing the boat! “I am the way!” ”Come out of her”!
Are our churches any different today? Oh, we claim to preach the gospel, but how many of us are assured of “making it” to heaven? How many of us still think that attending church or paying tithe will somehow help to push us somehow up the road to heaven? How many of us feel somehow “guilty” when we don’t attend church or pay tithe—like somehow we’ve lost a few of the points we need to get to heaven?
COME OUT OF HER MY PEOPLE! I am the way! Accept my gift! Come out of your legalism and follow Me!
In His love,
Lyn Chaffart, Moderator, The Nugget, Scriptural Nuggets ( www.scripturalnuggets.org ), Answers2Prayer Ministries, www.Answers2Prayer.org
(To access the entire “Come out of her, my People” mini-series, please click here.)