The Gospel without Exposing Darkness

        Christians know the light of God overpowers darkness, but today many pastors and Christians will only speak what they believe is the edifying and enlightening Gospel devoid of confronting the darkness of humanity. They redefine categories of darkness and identify them as negative placing them outside the influence of their church. This nice Gospel mainly contains positive self-benefiting words to console and gain approval of the hearer. This enables them not to speak light, they define as conflict, into certain types of cultural darkness that dominate many civil ideologies in America.   

        This nice gospel has progressed to the point where some Christians feel positive biblical terms that do not confront are the only words or phrases Christians should speak regarding Christianity inside or outside the church. Words like grace, hope, love, truth, saved, and eternal life. Phrases like the healing power of prayer, love conquers all, comfort of the Holy Spirit, and God’s promise of grace and forgiveness. All of these are wonderful biblical words and phrases that feel good to hear and are easy to speak. The problem is these words ignore Satan’s role by not defining and exposing the secular darkness we live in today. Their reason for not exposing darkness is they believe these truths could bring offense and keep the lost from coming to Christ, even though these evils are what many in society suffer from and God condemns. They are defined broadly in Romans 1:22-32: the Sodom and Gomorrah lifestyle, public and political corruption, and/or anti-Christ ideologies that fully support the sins of abortion, denounce Christ’s truth and “…approve of those who practice them.” The Christian ‘nice’ crowd believes by placing these dark issues beyond the authority of the Church will keep disagreements or conflicts out of the Church.

        In Matthew 10:33 Christ said, “…whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven.” Is placing dark issues beyond the purview of the Church denying Him before men? Disciples of Christ know they are duty bound not to restrict or dilute the power of the spoken word of God. In James 1:6-8, “he who doubts are double minded and unstable in his ways.” In Proverbs 12:17, “He who speaks truth declares righteousness, but a false witness, deceit.” Ephesians 4:25 says, “let each speak truth, and speak boldly.” Jude 22 – 23 tells us to “save some with compassion, and save others with fear.” This is also confirmed in John 7:26, Acts 14:3, & 18:26, and in Ephesians 6:20. Nowhere in the Gospel of Truth is there an avenue to hold back the truth of God. As a matter of fact in Acts 1:8 Christ commands “you shall be witnesses of me.”

Is it possible these nice Christians are assuming they have ownership over God’s truth? Someone who believes they own God’s truth can customize it to fit their own purpose. This is a sail boat someone named truth that has no rudder or anchor. It is blown to-and-fro by the whims of the mind.  

         Disciples as ministers of reconciliation are commanded to take Truth and shine the light of His truth into darkness, [2 Corinthians 5:18 & 2 Peter 1:19]. We are to boldly give “…light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death” [Luke 1:79]. Speaking words like the watchmen used when he was yelling, “The sword is coming.” John the Baptist’s words warning the Roman government’s appointee, King Herod, that he was sinning by sleeping with his brother’s wife. Challenging words that Christ used in Matthew 23: 1-3, when He exposed darkness to the multitudes saying, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do.” Then in Matthew 23:13 Christ warned the Israel theocracy: “…woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.”

           If Christ was standing in our church today, knowing Christians are hiding God’s light, and not exposing the darkness inside and outside the Church, what would we say? Something like: “…I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground” [Matthew 25:25]? Would Christ then say as He did in Luke 19:22 …“Out of your own mouth I will judge you, you wicked servant?”

           Then how should clergy speak about the biblical hard truths in our culture that may cause conflict within the Church or possibly offend a person who is lost? First pray then put on courage, and do as God commanded. Leave the results to the Holy Spirit of God who is really in control. Shrewdly witness Christ’s biblical worldview and accomplish this by teaching the body of Christ how to deal with these dark topics. Astutely school the body on what Christ stands for and what He stands against. Know this, in James 3:1 it says, “My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment.”

        Then, with this knowledge put on the truth of Christ by revealing what He publicly stands against, which is selfish ambition, sexual immorality, jealousy, dissension, discord, envy, hatred, fits of rage, drunkenness, impurity, witchcraft, idolatry, orgies, factions, and debauchery [Galatians 5:19 – 21]. He also stands against, disunity of the faith, trickery, cunning craftiness, deceitful plotting, and all liars. He stands against the sins of abortion, murder, the homosexual lifestyle, being a false witness, and supporting anti-Christ ideologies like Socialism, Communism, and Fascism. Then boast that Christ stands for forgiveness and salvation. He stands for the powerless, abused, and exploited. Then sound the trumpet and yell from the house tops that only through Christ can we receive eternal life.  Then claim through Christ we can live a life of “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control,” [Galatians 5:22 – 23] Tell them this is only possible because Christ, the Son of God, is everything righteous and moral that God has defined in the book of absolute truth, the Bible.

        Never forget, “The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge” [Proverbs 18:15]. When Christians and Clergy are wise they are speaking and teaching the biblical knowledge of how to be Christ’s representative in the world; how to deal with the threat of unchecked immorally that is sponsored by today’s evil principalities: dogmatic organizations like the ACLU, the LGBT radical agenda, ‘Planned Infanticide’, and the Southern Poverty Law Center, to name a few. They encourage Christians to be overt Ambassadors of Christ and responsible citizens that know if they sponsor and vote for people and programs that are against what Christ stands for, on the day of judgement there will be an accounting. Additionally, they warn and educate the body of Christ about the tsunami of cultural debauchery that is attacking the body of Christ and leading our country to suicide. As God commands, tell them: “…have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them” [Ephesians 5:11].

       Clergy and Christians expose darkness by putting on the ‘Full Armor of God’, [Ephesians 6:10-18]. Then, as Christ’s ambassador, boldly speaking Truth into the world [Ephesians 6:20]. Understanding when Christ was exposing evil in Matthew 23, His warnings were bold, edifying, truthful, and compassionate. The people listening, especially the leaders of the religious theocracy may have been offended and thought Christ was rude and arrogant, but He spoke it nonetheless.

        Reading the scriptures we learn it is more important to speak the truth of God than to not speak Gods truth. Therefore, we cannot let someone who may be offended keep the truth from being spoken.

There is no such thing as the gospel of nice. There is just “false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light” [2 Corinthians 11:13-14]. Jesus confirmed this in Matthew 6:23, “…if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!” Christ’s truth trumps darkness in everything in this world. He came in Truth, died to give us the Truth, and His Truth is certified and sealed by God. “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” [Hebrews 4:12].

      Once we are able to speak the Truth boldly in a loving, understanding, compassionate, and/or pointed way, depending on the circumstances, we are Christ’s ambassadors to the world. We should never forget God has chosen Christians to bravely witness the power of the Holy Spirit into the darkness of this world “to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me’” [Acts 26:18]. Amen!

It is time for all Christians and clergy to boldly witness all of Christ’s Truth!

David Howard, Foxhole Ministry Billings, MT