"And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him." Colossians 3:17, KJV

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Welcome to In His Name, a devotional site where the Word of God is posted and explored. This site embraces the love of Jesus Christ, encouraging Bible study.

Monday, September 28, 2009

House of Prayer or Den of Thieves?

“Come get your supernatural blessing!” Have you ever heard that phrase before? Or, “give your five hundred dollar sacrificial seed offering for your breakthrough?” Of course the amount varies, usually more than five hundred dollars, but the concept is the same. And what is this about chicken dinners and bake sales to keep the church doors open? What is this? What ever happened to just plain obedience? To obey is better than sacrifice. If people paid their tithes and made offerings, nobody would have to put a crowbar in their palms to get it out. Now, I am not saying that it is wrong to have events or programs to raise money for specific outreach projects. Nor am I saying that charging for the production of sermons and radio broadcasting is wrong because I don't believe that it is. But what I am saying is that the house of God should focus on Him and not our personal agendas.

It seems as if we’re in an era of “right now” deliverance—the “gimme” syndrome. Now, it is true that God does deliver instantly and has full capabilities to bless those whom He chooses when He chooses for He is sovereign. But what are we doing for Him? We want Him to do all of these things for us, but nothing for Him. God is not a prostitute where we can pimp Him. He is not on some street corner holding His hand out for money. He does not need our money (which by the way is His anyway). He desires our faith and trust...our love.

Look at the expression of love He poured out for us, His only begotten Son... to be beaten, ridiculed, lied on, talked about, and disgraced. All of this and some still reject Him. I didn't understand how so many people wanted to go to heaven, but rarely wanted to go to church. Then a friend of mine enlightened me. She said that they don't want to go to heaven; they just don't want to go to hell. Hmm, hell, now there's a thought. Are we serving God just because of danger of hell or is it because He is God? He is good, He is awesome, He is a deliverer, He is “I AM”. Do we think about it only when we see a hearse backing up with someone in it we many know, or on a daily basis to wake up in the morning and say, “Lord, make this day what you would have it to be, letting your will be done, not my own”?

What are we asking God for that He hasn't given us already? He said that He'll provide all of our needs. Needs, not wants, well I've already talked about that in the Grace and Mercy blog post. Are we seeking money, things, fame, or are we after God's heart? Check out Psalm 37:4. That's what it means to delight yourself in the Lord, and He'll give you the desires of your heart. What do you desire? I desire more of God, more of His presence; I just want to be next to Him because He is everything to me.

Romans 8:27, KJV, states, “And He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because He maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.” So, whatever we ask for must line up with God’s will. It does not matter what supernatural anything that you may give, if you're not living right, the Holy Spirit isn’t going to even take that to God. It says it right there in His word, according to His will.

But Jesus summed it up best in this passage of scripture: "And they come to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves; And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple. And He taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the House of Prayer? But ye have made it a Den of Thieves. And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy Him: for they feared Him, because all the people was astonished at His doctrine." Mark 11:15-17, KJV

Does His doctrine astonish you?


Anonymous said...

This was a reason (one of many) we left the mainstream churches. A good chunk was always about money. For growth, for whatever ministries, so on. All the while, we saw the shepherds of the church driving lavish cars.

No I won't rant. Sometimes I get going on things.

For some reason this verse came to mind as I read this:
I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. Psalm 37:25 (Just a little further than the reference you gave)
It was written by David, when I do not know. Was he hiding from Saul or was he comfortable on his throne?
But I ponder this, thinking of all those who were persecuted for their faith. Even those today in Muslim countries and China. I wonder if they and possibly their families are hungry. But I also remember Jesus telling his disciples that his meat is to do the will of the Father. I wonder if David's verse is talking about God being their strength and sufficiency in the midst of trial. That He will be their meat and drink when their needs are not being met.

I may not post every one of your entries, but I do read them. Thank you!

Gervase said...

I agree our churches have some serious issues. We need to stop treating Jesus like a magic show or an ATM. God has given us a way to reach Him that is through prayer it does not come from special handkerchiefs, potions, or emails. We need to read His word so we can understand how He operates. God is the same yesterday today and forever. If it is not in His word then we need to leave it alone. Anything that is not of God is of the devil. Saying that we can obtain things through means other than the word of God is witchcraft. People do not be deceived and hear what I am saying. Remember I love you and God does too. So we have to be careful not to be deceived by the tricks of the devil. Realize I tell you this out of love. God Bless you all and stay in His word.

Renee said...

Hi Kim, thanks so much. Just as Gervase said, I think that what you posted is true. What are the motives in many of the churches today???? We don't have to beg for anything! It will come to us, God does provide.

Tereza Allen-Duncan said...

Churches should not place it's primary focus on money. Although it takes money for churches to function i.e. light bill, toilet paper, you get the point:), folks should not be made to feel pressured or stressed about paying ridiculous amounts to attain a blessing from God. We are required and it is reasonable for us to pay a tenth of our earnings and an offering whenever we receive an increase. This alone renders us blessings from God. Not doing so will bring cursings...it just will -its scripture. There is such a thing as seed offerings...this is where God speaks to you about a specific dollar amount or other offering or sacrifice to meet a need that you may have been praying about...it could be corporate as in the whole church at times may be asked to participate...not required so much but asked at their own free-will after stating reasoning...or it may be a personal venture. To do so would show your obedience as well as sometimes sacrifice to get what you want from God...this shows God that you mean business and you are willing to give something to get something. But those scenarios you gave in the post...those people need to go back to God and repent...tellin' people they can buy blessings...how foolish.

Renee said...

You are so right. I examine myself like this, "What is your motive for doing what you're doing?" If it does not line up with pushing God's mission forward, I need not do it. Is it going to help bring people to Christ? If not, I need not dot. Is it going to help bring understanding to those who need it? If not, I need not do it. Because only what we do for Christ will stand.

You have a point about the curses. It comes from disobedience. Check out my bookshelf to the right, the book by Derek Prince is very deep and very informative "Blessing or Curse: You can Choose". The choice is ultimately ours.

Thanks so much for sharing! I really appreciate it. I hope this helps others.