LIVING IN THE CHURCHLESS AGE
by Charles (Chuck) Robey
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Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD himself, is the Rock eternal." ( Isaiah 26:4 )
For those of you " Dispensationalist " out there, we are now living in the " age of grace" (age # 6), most commonly referred to as the "church age" dispensation. However, one of my dear Christian Bible professors often gave this quote," we are now living in the churchless age". Can this be true? Especially, as we enter into the new year of 2013.
( The " Dispensation" approach is interpreted as meaning God uses different means of working with people (Israel and the Church) during different periods of history, usually seven chronologically successive periods or ages.)
1. The age of Innocence (Genesis 1:1- 31) to (Genesis 3:1-24 ) - Adam and Eve before sin.
2.The age of Conscience (Genesis 3:1-24) to ( Genesis 8:1-22) - First sin to the flood.
3.The age of Civil Government (Genesis 9:1-29) to ( Genesis 11:1-9) - After the flood, government
4. The age of Promise (Genesis 12:1-20 ) to ( Exodus 19:1-25) - Abraham to Moses, the Law is give.
5. The age of the Law (Exodus 20: 1-26) to ( Acts 2:36) - Moses to the cross.
6. The age of Grace (Ephesians 2:8-9 ) to ( Revelation 20:4-6 ) - Cross to the millennial kingdom.
7.The age of the Millennial Kingdom (Rev. 20:6) – The rule of Christ on earth in the millennial kingdom.
We know, from scripture, that God's church will always be here. ( Matthew 16:18 ) However, I strongly feel that the year 2013, will be a tough time, in the life of the Christian church.
This prediction is based mainly on today's end of time nonchalant Christian state of mind. ( 2 Timothy 3:1-7, 12-13) Furthermore, this prediction is very evident, from the new modern day noninterventionist mind-set of the "minority rules". And it is apparent that Satan need not have a majority to effect his evil deeds, ( Ephesians 6:12 )
So, what must we Christians be on guard against and how may we stand firm for the gospel ? Sadly to say, one of the fasting growing hindrances today is the church its self. We, as Christians claiming the name of Christ, need to get back to the basic fundamentals of the faith. ( 1 Cor 15:1-4 )
Conversely, a very good example of the early church Christian camaraderie is found in ( Acts 2:41-47 ), as they were all of one accord and had all things in common. ( Philippians 2:5 )
You see, often times we Christians are too quick to establish our own little "church clicks" based on such factors as, income status, political or social involvement, race, level of education, wealth status, or even denomination? Why, I have even visited churches, where you could ice state down the aisles.
After all, does not the scriptures teach us that we all members of the body of Christ, from a hyperbole standpoint. ( 1 Cor 12:12-16)
If Jesus were to ask you as a practicing Christian, “Who do you say I am,” the question He famously asked his disciple Peter, ( Matthew 16: 13-16 ) would He be disappointed by your answer?
A new nationwide survey conducted by The Barna Group among a representative sample of adults explored how many have what might be considered a “biblical worldview
--- One-third of all adults (34%) believe that moral truth is absolute and unaffected by the circumstances. Slightly less than half of the born again adults (46%) believe in absolute moral truth.
--- Half of all adults firmly believe that the Bible is accurate in all the principles it teaches. That proportion includes the four-fifths of born again adults (79%) who concur.
--- Just one-quarter of adults (27%) are convinced that Satan is a real force. Even a minority of born again adults (40%) adopt that perspective.
--- Similarly, only one-quarter of adults (28%) believe that it is impossible for someone to earn their way into Heaven through good behavior. Not quite half of all born again Christians (47%) strongly reject the notion of earning salvation through their deeds.
--- A minority of American adults (40%) are persuaded that Jesus Christ lived a sinless life while He was on earth. Slightly less than two-thirds of the born again segment (62%) strongly believes that He was sinless.
--- Seven out of ten adults (70%) say that God is the all-powerful, all-knowing creator of the universe who still rules it today. That includes the 93% of born again adults who hold that conviction.
And one of the main mind-sets that I hear today is that there are many ways to God. And to say that Jesus Christ is the only way to God is strictly narrow minded. I beg to differ, on this all important point. ( John 14:6 )
So, next time you visit a strange church, why not take inventory of those around you. Obviously, some of us will need a major attitude adjustment before living together in heaven. Don't worry, God will handle that. ( 1 Cor 15:51-53) ( Philippians 3:20-21) ( 1 Thess 4:16-18)
Yes beloved, we must all stand for the true fundamentals of the gospel. ( 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 ) And we must bear witness, to the true gospel, in all points of the world. ( Matthew 28:18-20 )
Remember, the church needs you but more important you need the church. ( Hebrews 10:25) ( 1 Cor 15:58)
A parting thought. How will you feel knowing that you're eternally separated from God, while others are enjoying themselves in the splendors of Heaven's riches. You too could have the same eternal fellowship with God, simply by accepting God's free grace by faith. (Ephesians 2:8-9 ) Is that not what you want? Death is right around the corner for all of us. Just count the number of your friends or loved ones, who have left this life prematurely. You see, this life is like a vapor that's here one second and gone the next.( James 4:14)
Please review my other articles, addressing the church, published on the "faith writers" web site. Just click on my name, in red directly under the article title, to open my web site. Then click on the desired article title.
God Bless All.
12/10/12 STAYAWAY SAINTS
12/05/12 WILL THE REAL CHURCH PLEASE STAND UP
12/04/12 THE CHURCH ICE AGE
11/21/12 THE CHURCH TRIUMPHANT
11/15/12 HAVE YOU FOUND YOUR CHURCH
11/14/12 ARE YOU A BRAIN WASHED CHRISTIAN
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