In my last post I talked about those who minister without the Word of God. We are experiencing an epidemic of this in our American Christian experience. Jude wrote about this problem almost 2000 years ago.
These men are blemishes at your love feasts, eating with you without the slightest qualm – shepherds who feed only themselves. They are clouds without rain, blown along by the wind; autumn trees, without fruit and uprooted– twice dead.
This rebuke describes a growing segment of the church. What an appropriate editorial on many of the “ministers” we see on Christian cable and radio.
Jude describes them as shepherds who feed only themselves. They preach messages that excite people in order to keep their cash flow going strong. They’re clouds and wind with no rain – autumn trees with no fruit.
If there’s no fruit, then there are no seed to plant. But that doesn’t matter. With no rain they couldn’t water them either.
It’s a sign of the times that we live in. There’s an abundance of the Bible being preached in America these days. How much of it is a Word from God? How much of it speaks what God wants said to this generation for this time in history? How much planting and watering is being accomplished?
For the amount of Scripture being sent through the airways and over the internet, there is very little fruit to harvest.
“The days are coming,” declares the Sovereign LORD, “when I will send a famine through the land – not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the LORD. Men will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the LORD, but they will not find it.”
The prophet Amos predicted the days when there would be a famine of the Word of God. What is a famine? It’s usually a dry weather pattern. As a result there’s no rain, no crops, and no new seed. This must go on for years to qualify as a famine.
During the time of spiritual famine that Amos wrote about, Israel had many synagogues. These were places where the Scripture was taught. There were people teaching the Scripture all over Israel. Scripture reading abounded – but not the Word of God.
It grieves me to look at the United States in light of this Scripture. We are in that exact same place. An abundance of the Bible is being preached and taught from every possible media outlet. Yet for all of this, the church of Jesus Christ is, for the most part, marginalized.
We need to hunger and thirst for a revival of the Word of God in us. Of course we need Scripture as our foundation – to keep us on track. But we must seek God Himself so that we can receive the Living Word to burn within us.
Questions: What could America look like with an abundance of the Word of God going forth? What could your life be like?
© Nick Zaccardi 2013