The service is going fine and the pastour has ministered to the glory of God. Many people have been set free and delivered from the grip of the enemy. Many others, for the first time, have experienced the salvation of God in His awesome power.
In the same crowd there are those who agree quickly with the pastour in everything he says. They wave their hands and shout at the right time. Their words of wisdom are endless concerning the newly saved. However, an essential quality is lacking.
Before that quality is discussed there is another group that lacks the same quality with but one difference. This group finds no need to attend church because, you see, "God knows the heart". They seem quite spiritual and know God better than anyone. To engage in an intellectual Biblical discussion will only cause an argument because this group has all the answers.
This is yet another group in this twisted web that can be counted as regular church goers. This group includes the organist and/or the choir director, the homosexual. Found also will be the head trustee, the thief. Let's not forget the faithful youth worker, the pedophile.
There is but one common strand among these three groups and that is that they have a form of godliness but they deny the power thereof (II Timothy 3:5).
The casual observer would see nothing wrong because there people at least have a consciousness of God but mere consciousness is not the key to Heaven (James 2:19). Let's examine the Scripture (II Timothy 2:15) to determine what God has to say concerning the matter.
The people in group one do well to lift hands in worship to God. God requires sincere praise and adoration (I Chronicles 16:29). His blessings will fall on those that worship Him but there is a condition. The condition is that they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth (John 4:22-24). Anything other than this is a mere form of godliness denying and Godly power.
The power of God in worship will bring about a relationship with God (Genesis 3:8). Praise and worship will strengthen the spirit man and enable the Christian to live a victorious life (Zechariah 10:7-12) This victory will not only apply to the spiritual realm regarding authority over Satan but also applies in the natural (I Corinthians 10:13). It is the same power, through praise and worship, that gives the power to get wealth (Deuteronomy 8:18-19). Further, the power of praise and worship makes our enemies to be out footstool (Psalm 110:1).
Because this group is so open in its display, the novice to Christianity will approach this group yearning to learn more of this lifestyle. The new convert will open his heart in hope of spiritual guidance. Unfortunately, because this group has only a form of godliness, it can only offer ungodly council (Psalm 1:1, Proverbs 4:14).
Now, this second group finds no reason to attend services on a regular basis. Accordingly, worship at home is sufficient but the Scripture says otherwise (Hebrews 10:25). There is no need to put on a show because "the church is a rip off" is the argument of this misguided group. Through its illogical though processes this group fails to see that church attendance is vital to a keen knowledge of God but the power is denied because there is no real dedication to the service of God (Matthew 6:24).
Further, this second group is eternally trying to give Godly council but has no power to administer such council. The council is usually based on secular ideals and, thus, have no power. You see, this group has a form of godliness in their council in that they council but deny the power of the written Word.
In the third group the organist and the choir director do well in that music is a vital part of the ministry. This ministry is so important that Lucifer was chief musician but Lucifer failed to give God praise (Isaiah 14:12-14). The fact of the matter is that Lucifer go so lifted in his own beauty that he forgot who he was and Who made him.
The same is true with this third group in that they have forgotten that God has given them the ability to understand music. They have also forgotten that they are men. You see, homosexuality is forbidden by God and has no place in the Kingdom of God (II Timothy 3:1-9). Thus, we find a form of Godliness in that they sing the songs of Zion but lack the power of the spoken word because the homosexual has no God and so cannot have His power.
In this group we also find the church-house thief. This person is considered a trustee because he handles the church moneys and is accountable to no one. This leaves him at liberty to count what money the church needs and the rest he keeps for himself. The church will never miss it because it was never known how much money was there. God knows and is counting the cost. (Romans 1:26-32)
Completing this group is the ever faithful youth worker. This person not only heads the youth ministries but is involved in every aspect of the youth ministries. The problem is that this person has a very special interest in the youth. That interest in the young people is sexual in nature.
This interest does not involve a mere desire to teach moral standards concerning sexuality but rather encourages the young people to engage in sexual activity with him. This is done by trickery or pure force. In either case this person has a spirit of perversion and is such that God cannot ignore (Matthew 18:6).
This third group has a form of godliness in that they do what seems right in the eyes of God. They seem to be good upstanding pillars of the community but they have no power. The facade is that they trust the Word of God but they really have no intention of applying it to their lives (Jeremiah 12:2, Matthew 15:7-9).
The fact of the matter is that all the people in these groups need do is apply the Scripture the way it was intended to be and determine to live as Paul described in Philipians 1:20 by saying "According to my earnest expectation and hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death".