I have selected the name for this blog very purposefully. It is my judgment that the evangelical church of our present day has a bad eye and that therefore our Lord’s words apply directly:
Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is full of light, but when it is bad, your body is full of darkness. (Luke 11:34)
Many professing Christians will disagree with my assessment. They will accuse me of overstatement and exaggeration. “It’s not that bad” they will insist. But I insist as well. The lights are very dim in the land of Goshen when that is the very place Christ’s light of truth should be shining most brightly.
So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and there was pitch darkness in all the land of Egypt three days. They did not see one another, nor did anyone rise from his place for three days, but all the people of Israel had light where they lived. (Exodus 10:22-23)
By Goshen, of course, I mean the visible, local church. This is the darkness of which I speak. Spiritual blindness to the truth of God’s Word, varying from pitch black in some cases to a partial eclipse at noonday in others, all designed by the Prince of Darkness to obscure the glory of Jesus Christ.
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. (2 Corinthians 4:3-4)
The Apostle Paul of course was speaking of unbelievers and yet because of creeps creeping in among us, the false teachers Jude warns us about, the light of the glory of Christ has grown very, very dim in the church as well.
For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. (Jude 1:4)
The articles I plan to publish here are primarily written then for people who claim to be Christians. No, I will be more specific than that. They are written for people who are real, genuine Christians, for people who are Christ’s sheep and who hear His voice and yet they are in bondage to wicked ones who put themselves forward as pastors or elders or “eminent saints” and yet whose greed and lust for self-glory leads them to savage the flock of Christ, driving that flock further and further from Jesus the Good Shepherd. If some unsaved folks happen to come along and the Lord uses the articles here to open their eyes to Christ, that will be wonderful as well.
Who I am not writing for are the creeps themselves (I take that name from Jude 1:4 above). That is to say, I am not writing to correct them. These kind never receive correction. I write in respect to them only to expose them, and thus my title, Light for Dark Times.
How do I know? Where is my evidence that the darkness in the church today is really this prevalent? My evidence has been gathered these past 34 years in which I have served Christ’s church as a pastor. In addition, I have spent the last six years, as some of you know, dealing with a specific kind of evil that is hiding in the spiritual darkness of local churches – domestic abusers. I have written two books on this subject. I have spoken to and corresponded with scores (if not hundreds) of Christians who were the targets of these kind of abusers and I have heard their stories of how their pastors and church leaders and fellow Christians treated them. The level of blindness in churches to such evil is remarkable.
Therefore, it is now my purpose to broaden the subject of my writing. While I will still refer to domestic abusers on occasion in order to illustrate evil and the blinding darkness it casts over churches, I want to address this subject of evil more broadly. I want to shed light, the Light of Jesus Christ, on it and thereby dispel the darkness and help Christ’s people see clearly once again. The portrait painted by the sentimental old hymn is a facade behind which evil is lurking and darkness prevailing:
There’s a church in the valley by the wildwood
No lovelier spot in the dale
No place is so dear to my childhood
As the little brown church in the vale.
Light for Dark Times. For dark times in the church. May the Lord bless His truth and use our labors to bring such a blazing of His glory among us that evil will simply not be able to remain, the eyes of our minds and hearts will be enlightened, and we might once again be taught by the Spirit of Jesus to discern His perfect will. Here is our prayer:
And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. (Colossians 1:9-10)
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