Rebels Without A Clue
Dr. Jay Worth Allen
What happens when Hip meets Holy?
Let’s say you’re a teen-ager looking for something to do on a Saturday night. After you’ve tired of cruising the McDonald’s parking lot, you decide to check-out a new venue in town. You park your parents’ four-door Impala and saunter into a non-descript, warehouse-like auditorium. Inside it’s filled with fledgling Hipsters sporting the latest Couture the New York garment industry can offer. There’s sultry mood lighting, Fog Machines, and bass-throbbing music being shocked-waved through a sound system, which is just loud enough for the Throngs to carry-on scream-level conversations. Off to one side is a bar operated by a couple of twenty-something’s serving a motley collection of libations. At the far end of the building is an over-sized bandstand crammed full of mics, drums, amps, and an assortment of electric keyboards and guitars. Above the stage are jumbo screens flashing what appears to be the latest music videos. iPhones are everywhere.
As you make your way through the trendsetting, à la mode gaggle of spectators, two nose-ringed, tattooed Hipsters approach you. They make small talk. One comments about the cool surroundings. The other asks if you’ve heard the new Fire Brand album. Something is said about the environment and the need to control Global Warming. Eventually they ask if you’d like to exchange contact information.
Now the question: Are you in a Bar or a Church? Hard to say . . . in today’s Christianity.
Welcome to the world of the Rebel Church: A world where the Bible, heart-felt evangelism and holiness are relevant only as a source of paradox or wistful nostalgia. A world where Biblical discipline and accuracy are anathema. A world where adolescent evangelicals have grown-up on Contemporary Christian Music, Adventures in Odyssey, vacation Bible School and novel fictitious prose of the Left Behind pulp.
The widespread appeal of the Rebel Church is worth pondering. With little or no benchmark, axiom or Rules of Engagement, they are driven by emotion and governed by defiance. Their desire is to see the world saved by using the world as the means. And this is where they show what incorrigible Rebels Without a Clue they really are. As they “kick against the goads” of true evangelism, it is just at this point that God manifests His sovereign and wondrous Grace. He not only planned and provided salvation, but he actually bestows it upon those whom He has chosen - with or with out a state-of-the-art presentation. The Lord will save His Church.
Salvation may be viewed from many angles and contemplated under various aspects, but from whatever side you look, you must ever remember that “Salvation is of the Lord” (Jonah 2:9). Salvation was planned by the Father for His Elect before the foundation of the world. It was purchased for them by the Holy Life and Vicarious Death of His Incarnate Son. It is applied to and completed in them by His Holy Spirit. It is known and enjoyed through the study of the Scriptures, though the exercise of faith, and though communion with the triune Jehovah.
I fear that there are multitudes in Rebellious Hipster Christendom, who fervently imagine and sincerely believe that they are among the saved, yet who are total strangers to a work of Divine Grace in their hearts. It is one thing to have clear intellectual conceptions of God’s Truth, but it is quite another matter to have a personal, Real Heart acquaintance with it. It is one thing to believe that Sin is the awful thing the Bible says it is, but it is quite another matter to have a Holy Horror and Hatred of it in the soul. It is one thing to know that God requires repentance, it is quite another matter to radically mourn and groan over our vileness. It is one thing to believe that Christ is the only Savior for sinners, it is quite another matter to really trust Him from the heart. It is one thing to believe that Christ is the Sum of all Excellency, it is quite another matter to love Him above all others. It is one thing to believe that God is the Great and Holy One, it is quite another matter to truly Reverence and Fear Him. It is one thing to believe that “Salvation is of the Lord,” it is quite another matter to become an attested partaker of it through His gracious workings.
There is a “believing” in Christ by the natural man, which is not a believing unto Salvation. Just as the Buddhist believes in Buddha, so in today’s Christendom there are multitudes who believe in Christ. And this “believing” is more than an intellectual one. Often times there is much feeling connected with it, because fleshly emotions may be deeply stirred. The Lord taught in the Parable of the Sower that there is a class of people who hear the Word and with joy receive it, yet they have no root in themselves (Matthew 13:20, 21). Sadly, this is occurring daily in our New Rebel Church. Scriptures tell us that Herod heard John “gladly.” Thus, the mere fact that someone basks in the pneuma of Contemporary Christian Music or gets a kick out of flamboyant gospel preaching is no proof at all that they are a regenerated soul. The Lord Jesus said to the Pharisees concerning John the Baptist, “You were willing for a season to rejoice in his light,” yet the sequel of events following, proves clearly that no real work of Grace had been created in them. And all these things are recorded as solemn warnings for today’s Church!
Unfortunately, to the subculture of today’s Rebellious Evangelicals, all of this is laughable. As they try their best to torch away the truth of Historical Christianity, there is no escaping the echo of Mistah Kurtz’ final words from The Heart of Darkness: “The horror! The horror! . . . Exterminate all the brutes!”
Lord, in Your wrath, remember mercy (Habakkuk 3:2).
Rebels Without A Clue
Published: 23 November 2010 on Freed In Christ! blogsite.
Published: 2 December 2010 in the Faith Column of The County Journal.
(Part Four of the author's END-TIMES APOSTATE CHURCH Series)
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