What would things look like if Satan really took control of a city?   1 comment

What would things look like if Satan really took controlof a city? Over a half century ago, Presbyterian minister Donald Grey Barnhouse offered his own scenarioin his weekly sermon that was also broadcast nationwide on CBS radio. Barnhouse speculated that if Satan took over Philadelphia, all of the bars would be closed, pornography banished, and pristine streets would be filled with tidy pedestrians who smiled at each other. There would be no swearing. The children would say, “Yes, sir” and “No, ma’am,” and the churches would be full every Sunday . . . where Christ is not preached.

Now why would this scenario be? Barnhouse might have thought a bit differently if he were alive in 2010, but I think not much. We are good at moralising because we have a notion of God’s law presented to us, in Creation, in the witness of the Spirit and through the Incarnate Word, Christ. We know that there is a right way and a wrong way to do things. But the most stubborn fellow you will ever find resides within your very soul. Luther ( Whom I seem to be quoting much lately) said so eloquently” I have met the enemy an it is I!”

There it is, we will justify our scruples and our prejudices just as our fore fathers did even now we criticize them, we are no better. My first introduction to Christianity was a “performance based” Christianity” If you try really hard you can make yourself holy, and if you try really hard, you can please God with your offering of praise or prayer or whatever. Maybe if you navel gaze long enough and meditate until you levitate,.. God will be pleased?? Looking at the contemporary church swing back to introspective contemplative spirituality which makes paupers of the best of men, and heretics of the worst of men. Are we to clamour back after Rome and her false gods? You have’nt heard? Its now fashionable to use your prayer beads and sit in circles holding hands and chating a verse or a prhase until your brain goes moggy.

Or maybe you like the way some Charismatics do it, lest I be unkind. Seriously you have to be physically fit to just keep the pace in most worship services of this kind…I acknowldege they do have a point, God should be praised and Glorified, for He is forever blessed, Amen. But singing until “you get a real good spiritual feeling” is just another way of altering your consciousness which the Bible actually forbids. We are not to disengage our minds when we pray, sing or worship. God must have our all , the mind does not suddenly leave when the emotions get heady.

To come back to our initial quote. We are good moralists, everyone has an opinion of what the other should or should not be doing. The Bible is your rule for faith and life, and that is the beginning and the end of it. The devil has no need to harass those bent on religious piety and no repentance of sin, they choose hell one would say, almost by the scenic route. Religion is for them an antidote to the cares of the world.

Christ however did not come to us this way, He demands allegiance to the cross. Hypocrisy is the most devious tool in the devils arsenal and we must be so careful not to think ourselves more than we ought. Rebellion can be just as deep in a soul embedded in its “journey” to self-salvation . It is Christ we must look to , it is written “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” were the words John the Baptist used to point to Jesus. Dont look for good feelings to own this truth, don’t despair except for your own sin, then don’t despair anymore.

He who promised to take you in as you rest in Him, He will not fail you. Don’t be a goody two shoes, there is simply no such thing. Be a repenting sinner, starting now till the end of your days.


Posted May 12, 2010 by Reformed and renewed in Absolute Thinking

One response to “What would things look like if Satan really took control of a city?

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  1. Your last paragraph is quotable :).

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