“Tell me what you came in here for! Does anybody love God anymore?!” These words echoed from the speakers of my 2000 Chevy Malibu 5 years ago for the first time. As William Branch, BKA The Ambassador of Cross Movement fame, threw out these lyrics with fervor, my head nodded in approval. Looking at the landscape of the Church today, these same words echo in my memory’s lane once more.
Let us start with the Church itself, the people, not the four-walled frame adorned with crosses and a steeple. The true Church is made up of true Christians, the two are inseparable; one and the same. I have often heard startling statistical data gathered from various polls that declare that between 65-85 percent of Americans are Christians. I find this impossible to digest. If this were the case, America would not have become the breeding ground for immorality that it is today. If 65-85 percent of the American people were truly living their lives according to the Word of God, suffice it to say, our Spiritual climate would be infinitely different than what it is today.
Christianity is not simply a list of beliefs, a belief system, a religious code, or some clandestine organization looking for only a few good men. Christianity is a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, the Head of the Church. Christianity is not a club or cult, it is not a sectarian circuit. It is a personal, daily fellowship, an ever growing relationship with Christ the King. Often, being a Christian is confused with simply following a set of rules outlined in some ancient book. We must understand that the Bible is God’s Word, His written Word to His people. Understanding this fundamental truth, we must also realize that Christ Jesus is the Word of God made flesh (John 1:1). For one to say that they love the Lord and then to blatantly disobey His Word is contradictory at best. For this reason Jesus said, “If you love me, keep my commandments” John 14:15. Trying to separate Christ from the written Word of God is absolutely impossible. God and His Word are One! In John 17 Jesus cries out to the Father that He make us (His people) one, just as He (Christ) and the Father are One. Jesus Christ is the Word made flesh. He is One with the Father. He desires that we be one with Him and with one another. This is the true Church in its manifestation.
We must each ask ourselves the same query that Mr. Branch so deftly proposed. What did you come in here for? What is your motive and purpose behind what you do? If it is for any purpose other than to glorify God and advance His Kingdom, then it is an erroneous one. Our lives must be lived on a daily basis for Him and Him alone. He declared that, “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me” John 12:32. We were made for His purpose and His pleasure, not for another.
Many a church scene consists of the Pastors or Worship leaders trying to pump and prime a people to give God Praise. This should not have to be. Why would we not come into a service with a ready praise and an instant worship? Why would we not be ready to come into the house of God with His praises continually in our mouth? How is it that a people that declare that we are saved, sanctified, filled with the Holy Spirit, and moving in Prophecy can enter into a corporate gathering with one another, approaching the gates of our King and yet be lethargic in our thanksgiving? I am reminded of what our Pastors so often say, “The Church is simply an extension of the home.” Therein lies our answer. If we are not worshipping God in our daily life, we cannot simply flip the switch when Sunday morning rolls around and expect for God to be pleased with such a polluted offering. God is calling His people to a higher place of praise. This does not mean that He wants us to sing louder and shout more often during our local assembly (although these are fine). His emphasis is on our daily fellowship with Him. We are to daily worship and praise in prayer before the Lord. You can do this at work, in your vehicle, in the shower, while using the restroom: The places and times that you can worship and pray to God are limited by you and you alone. It is great to be able to shout and rejoice outwardly, but often times you may be in an office setting or warehouse environment. In these surroundings just talking to God under your breath and within yourself is a wonderful thing. We do God a disservice when we think we can only pray to Him in a closet or in the local assembling of other believers. God wants you and I totally and unequivocally. He wants our worship, our praise, our total and utmost adoration. The earth and the fullness thereof already belong to Him; why withhold what is due Him? This is highway robbery. Will a man rob God? Yes. We rob God everyday and not just in tithes and offering. We rob Him of the praise, honor, and glory that is due to His Name. That is the real shame. So tell me, what did you come in here for?
Amen! Most people are looking for an emotional uplift, something to make them feel better because their daily lives are full of stress and sin. Only repentance and the fellowship of the Father and the Son can give true peace and the refreshing from the Holy Spirit!