THE REBRANDING DEBACLE OF CHRISTIANITY
1 Corinthians 2:4-5
My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power..
“WHERE’S THE BEEF”…WHERE’S THE POWER IN WHICH FAITH STANDS?
Not quite a half century after Jesus left the work to us that God began in him to reconcile the world, that work took on a rather weird form in the new brand of Christianity. The word would be preached and none to the miracles of Jesus’ brand of ministry would be seen as they were seen with Jesus and the disciples. The debacle that has been playing out for so long in the new brand of Christianity has actually come to be seen as the norm rather than a failure. Recent examples of the great rebranding debacles of our times should set us on notice about the fragile nature of the relationship between brand loyalty and brand identity. Arguably the world’s most recognized marketed brand, Cocoa Cola encountered overwhelming negative national reaction simply because it changed it’s trademark brand ever so slightly. The other day one of Wall Street’s darlings Netflix, changed it marketing strategy and found it’s stock value drop from $300 to $85 per share and lost 810,000 subscribers almost overnight. Based on the fragile nature of the relationship between brand loyalty and brand identity there is no earthly business model that could sustain the overwhelming assault from outside, and the wholesale breach of purpose or otherwise outright organization-wide scuttling from inside by the new brand of Christianity, that the church has had to endure across the last two millennia.
All throughout the old testament you hear references made to individuals as sons of men that are born of women; like David the son of Jessie, son of Obed: all of whom were generally referred to as children of Israel. When you come to the New Testament there is a change more glaring than the difference between night and day, yet it is strangely overlooked by all of Christendom and the new brand of Christianity. Christians are referred to as sons/daughters of God, or children of God. In Old Testament era that designation would have gotten you a death sentence. Not even Moses was designated; that’s why Jesus said the least in his kingdom is greater than Moses. Jesus told them he was the son of God, and immediately found himself on death row: they gathered stones to stone him because they knew that to be God’s son made him what God is, as well it should for we who claim the faith of the sons of God. We are humans because we are sons and daughters of human parents; so we don’t have any problem saying we are human. God says the same way it works in the natural relationship is the same way it works in the spiritual relationship with him and his children; end of story. Whatever else we may say, God contends that until we are reconciled with that fact we are walking in darkness by the new brand of Christianity that makes void the power of God, and all the foundations of the whole earth remains out of alignment, waiting for the sons of God showing up in men to care for his creation as Adam was given the responsibility to do.
CHRISTENDOM JUST CANNOT HANDLE THE TRUTH
FAITH COMES BY THE WORD, BUT IS TO STAND IN JESUS, THE POWER OF GOD DEMONSTRATED FOR DELIVERANCE AND DOMINION…
Church leaders seem to think having preached the word of God the job is accomplished in the new brand of Christianity. If we fail to demonstrate the power of God following the preaching of word, we cause men’s faith to stand in word whereof God testifies that his kingdom in not seen word where church leaders limit themselves to, but instead is seen in Jesus, the power of God that is the demonstration by Jesus showing up in men to deliver when the word is preached.
A little more than a decade ago the line “YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH” was made famous in a blockbuster movie. Instead of getting you the death sentence, in the new brand of Christianity, being called the sons/daughters of God is seen merely as a harmless euphemism or a more mild and indirect way of saying bluntly in a direct way that we are gods because we are born to heavenly parentage. This is a dramatic instance where Christianity’s re-branding has gone grotesquely wrong but we still embrace it as the norm; and it show just how we cannot handle this truth that we are gods and are to prove that by doing God’s work as Jesus did it. Though we are children of God, the new brand of Christianity won’t allow us to think of ourselves as what our heavenly parentage makes us, as would be true in every other sane instance throughout creation. God can’t get anyone to acknowledge who we are, so he can’t get anyone to do his work. Instead of courageously struggling to handle the truth, we do men’s work and call it God’s work as if no one knows the difference between what we do today, and what Jesus did in his three years of ministry.
Few words were written on the cross of Jesus, but all of him in body and person was crucified and died there for you and I; therefore is the kingdom of God not in word as in the new brand of Christianity, but in Christ the power of God present at the preaching of the gospel, where even so few as two or three are gathered to deliver them. To preach the word of God without the power of God showing up as promised and demonstrated in Jesus’s three years of ministry is to deny Jesus his place in the ministry of reconciliation and fundamentally change the brand of his ministry to the new brand of Christianity where the power in not seen, but is only form of godliness.
It reminds me of the account where Israel would no longer fight, so the Ark of The Covenant was captured by the Philistines who brought the ark into their temple, and posed the Ark next to their god Dagon. The next morning they found their god Dagon prostrated before the ark worshiping God. They didn’t quite get the message, so they rearranged him beside the ark as before, but the next morning they found Dagon in the same prostrated position, but only this time he was beheaded and both his arms decapitated leaving only his body remaining. God then proceeded to bear down with a such a heavy hand of affliction on the Philistines that the took counsel and agreed to let the ark return back to Israel.
Even Paul who said follow me as I follow Christ had his dead that were raised up, and though Peter was born to earthly parents as we all, yet by the faith of God he also walked on water as did Jesus; where are our dead that are raised up, and other mighty works of Jesus in the new brand of Christianity. No faith is required to look backwards. We’ve staked all our marbles on what the fathers of the new brand of faith without the power of God said; as if man were inerrant. Instead of emulating Jesus, we aim for their achievements as our goals. Of all these luminaries of the faith who were contemporaries of Jesus, none approaches the stature of Paul, and he spelled it out for us saying: (I have not gotten to the place to which I was called, but I continue to persevere toward perfection). Paul clearly said: though I be not perfect, do what I do, try to be like Christ who is perfect. Instead of trying to be like Christ who is perfect, we try to be like Paul who admittedly didn’t quite get there till the day he died. Any question about healing, we simply point to Paul’s thorn in the flesh for our excuse for not being healed in the new brand of Christianity. God told us our afflictions would be many, but he promised to deliver us from them all. Paul told us to follow Christ but we find it’s easier to do Paul because Christ, who is perfect had his thorns removed and told us that there would be many afflictions for us, but he has delivered us from them all. God says he is where the rubber meets the road, not a religious theory. His kingdom is not in word, but in the power of God to deliver.
SOWING THE MEASURE OF GOD
LIES IN THE FACE OF THE TRUTH
THE FAITH OF GOD
WANTED: Dead But Alive
THE HEAVENS DECLARE
THE PLANS I HAVE FOR YOU
THE POWER OF GOD: Jesus
CONFLAGRATION: Starting To Believe…Transformation cont’d
AGE OF INCREDULITY
GOD’S OFFSPRING: A New Creature
THE GIFT OF GOD: Just Say’N Sow It