Every generation is defined by its own uniqueness. This uniqueness is expressed by each generation's preferences in the various aspects that define its existence and living. These things are the basic expression of culture: music, food, clothing, housing, and even religion. Some eras can even define on the surface by what the people wear. There are some clothes and wears that are prevalent in the 60s and 70s. When I look through some of the photo albums my parent has kept over the years I can't but laugh at their supposed culture and way of living back then. And I won't be surprised if twenty years from now if the Lord tarries his coming if the generation of that time laughs at our so-called present-day technological advancements.
These are the mundane things, but there are also matters of spirituality and when I speak of spirituality I speak specifically to mean the church. The Church of the 60s and 70s are much different from the church of the 90s and of the millennium. Even spiritually every generation is defined by a particular revelation.
Isaiah 9:8 tells us,
"The Lord sent a word into Jacob, and it hath lighted upon Israel"
For every generation, God has always raised up men and women who by reason of the light and revelations God place in their heart helped to shape their generation's beliefs and spiritual values! There is no spiritual era that is not defined by a particular rhema! At one time it was the 'just shall live by His faith' and this rhema as expounded and propounded by Martin Luther King brought the church out from the slavery to the works of men into liberty through absolute faith in the finished works of Christ on the cross.
We have had the healing era, the word of faith movement, the word of prosperity movement, and as far back as the early church, we had the move of the Spirit starting in Acts 2. Any casual observer of church history would see clearly how each generation has a defining revelation that it was built upon. And when we look at the gospel of Mark we see the nature of spiritual truths.
Mark 4:26-29 tells us,
"And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth the fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest comes"
This is a kingdom of growth and progression, spiritual truths are unfolded a little here and a little there, line upon line, precept upon precept until the church comes into full maturity in Christ and that fullness will never be achieved until the perfect one comes. Hence the reason why our path will continually shine brighter until the day! It's the reason why like Paul that we will always desire to know more of God, for no matter how much of his power and glory we experience there is always room for more. So in this parable we see how things grows in the kingdom, first the blade, the ear and then the full corn, it is a kingdom of progression!
Progressively through the revelation of the truth, God brings His church into maturity and perfection! And this is why the fivefold ministry was given to the church, to bring her progress by the revelation of truths through the ages to a position where the church is mature, ready and unto the fullness of the stature of Christ(Ephesians 4:11-13)
Every spiritual movement has always been guarded and guided by a prevailing spiritual paradigm and perspective. This has become very important to know as we move into the last days. What spiritual truth(s) define this present church movement all over the world? Where are we on the agenda of God as his church on the earth?
Before we delve into that it's also important to know that even as each spiritual era is defined by a prevailing revelation or spiritual leaning or ideology, it's in the same breadth that every spiritual generation is bedeviled by a particular temptation! And ultimately as we have seen from church history and from scriptures it is the temptation that bedeviled each spiritual movement that ultimately threatens to destroy the revelation that has been given to her!
The revelation that defines any spiritual movement is it's strength while the temptation that bedevils it is her weakness and ultimately it is the weakness of every spiritual movement that aborts the full potential of what God wants to do with it! Every spiritual movement has what is going on for it and what is on against it. The scripture provides a picture of how every church movement has its strength and its weakness, it's a revelation and it's temptation.
The prophetic message that John the beloved gave to the seven churches is indicative of this spiritual truth. In Revelations chapter 2-3 we have the prophetic messages to the various churches from Ephesus to Philadelphia and we will just look at the first one given in Revelations 2:1-7
"Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks; I know thy works, and thy labor, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast bore, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast labored, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless, I have somewhat against thee because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent. But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God"(Revelations 2:1-7)
The first part of the message highlighted the strength and the revelation that this church movement was built upon, but from the moment the Spirit said "nevertheless" it begins to highlight the temptation and the weakness that bedevils this church movement. And the Spirit of God concluded powerfully that it is the church that overcomes it's temptations that will enter into the full manifestation of her glory!
The victorious and glorious church is the one that overcomes her temptation! The church that overcomes temptation is the one that experiences the full manifestation of the glory of God on the earth! The church that overcomes it's' temptation is the one that is unusually anointed to fulfill its purpose and agenda on the earth! For when Jesus returned from been tempted by the devil in Luke 4 the Bible says he returned in the power of the Spirit and his fame went abroad. Through the church, the Lord will yet shake the world! Amen!
Defining the state of the church at this present moment has become crucial in light of the plandemic that has befallen the world. It was the world's darkest hour and according to scriptures ought to be the church finest hour, for when darkness shall cover the earth and gross darkness the people then the Lord will arise upon us and his glory will be seen on us! But before the Lord will arise we are told to first "ARISE" in the preceding verses. Please read this in Isaiah 60:1-3. The church has done every other thing but ARISE at this hour! Yes, we have given food to those in lockdown and done all that the 'politically correct' and 'socially alligned' church is expected to do, but still, ll, that is far from what the God has commissioned to do which is to shine the light and stand strong! The church at it's spiritual core ought to be the pillar of truth and light! No other function well performed can detract from it's spiritual failings, it is in this that our value is measured or lost!
It's been four months since our churches have closed down due to the supposed virus that has invaded the world. God didn't create it but he allowed the situation and in that period has had a chance to look at his church and examined its character and its stand vis-a-vis his agenda for the world. A man's character is defined during the period of tribulation. Under pressure your real person comes to light! In four months of pressure we are beginning to see our real character and spiritual content as the Church of Christ.
In the past four months we have seen a church that is more ready to be conformed to the world than to be transformed by the word! And this conformity to the world has brought spiritual deformity to the church! Yes I will say that again, conformity to the world brings spiritual deformity to the church! Anything that is deformed losses it's identity, it can not be identified in the midst of many like it. This has been our picture or story the past few months, deformed unto the point that we have lost our spiritual identity! It's a church groping in the dark when It ought to be shining the light!
And that is why here in Nigeria fellow ministers of the gospels are going about on Sunday as part of a monitoring team to check if churches are covid 19 compliant? And not only that they are locking down these churches and harassing their fellow ministers! You think that is doing God service? No you are on the agenda of the one world globalist and the devil, not God! Wish we had a spiritual monitoring team from the same body to check if churches are compliant with the word of God! But we have none of such, God hasn't even committed such into our hands now imagine fellow ministers monitoring on each other? Some reporting their fellow ministers on whether they are covid compliant or not? It's a new low for the church of Jesus Christ! May we be deliver from this spiritual quagmire we have created for ourselves. I mean is their a monitoring team to see if churches preach the true word? If all churches are moving in the power of the Spirit? No! And even God won't enforce such, so why are we a play thing in the hands of the devil to promote the fear of a virus over the power of God?
And really this has been a long time coming, once the church and its ministers begin to devote more time to motivations of the world rater than the revelation of the word, she began to build on a slippery ground, gradually but surely weakening the strength of her foundation!
For the Apostles in Acts, it was clear what they would do, they will rather obey God than obey men. No government injunction that subtly repudiates the substance of their faith will be accepted or obeyed. These men love not their lives unto death. Accepting the injunctions of government to be a covid 19 compliant church is a silent repudiation of the revelations of our faith!