There was a time in America when the Bible and God’s statutes were the sole source of absolute truth and authority. The Founding Fathers quoted from the Bible more than four times more than any other source in their personal and political writings. The foundational aspects of the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution were based upon biblical principles.
Over the past sixty or so years, the Christian church in America has been turning away from their biblical foundations and scriptural authority. They’ve succumbed to the pressures of a worldly culture. They forgot Paul’s warning to the Romans:
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)
Yet that’s exactly what the church has failed to do. They have chosen to conform to this world even from the pulpits on Sunday mornings. In far too many churches, ministers no longer teach what the Bible says; rather they have turned to tickling the ears of sinners and making them feel good about themselves and entertaining them.
They have replaced ‘Sola Scriptura’ for ‘sola homine’ or solely by man. The Cambridge Declaration of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals describes the current condition of the Church in general and what the church should be doing in their section titled Sola Scriptura: The Erosion Of Authority:
“Scripture alone is the inerrant rule of the church’s life, but the evangelical church today has separated Scripture from its authoritative function. In practice, the church is guided, far too often, by the culture. Therapeutic technique, marketing strategies, and the beat of the entertainment world often have far more to say about what the church wants, how it functions and what it offers, than does the Word of God. Pastors have neglected their rightful oversight of worship, including the doctrinal content of the music. As biblical authority has been abandoned in practice, as its truths have faded from Christian consciousness, and as its doctrines have lost their saliency, the church has been increasingly emptied of its integrity, moral authority and direction.
Rather than adapting Christian faith to satisfy the felt needs of consumers, we must proclaim the law as the only measure of true righteousness and the gospel as the only announcement of saving truth. Biblical truth is indispensable to the church’s understanding, nurture and discipline.
Scripture must take us beyond our perceived needs to our real needs and liberate us from seeing ourselves through the seductive images, cliche’s, promises. and priorities of mass culture. It is only in the light of God’s truth that we understand ourselves aright and see God’s provision for our need. The Bible, therefore, must be taught and preached in the church. Sermons must be expositions of the Bible and its teachings, not expressions of the preachers’ opinions or the ideas of the age. We must settle for nothing less than what God has given.
The work of the Holy Spirit in personal experience cannot be disengaged from Scripture. The Spirit does not speak in ways that are independent of Scripture. Apart from Scripture we would never have known of God’s grace in Christ. The biblical Word, rather than spiritual experience, is the test of truth.”
Had pastors and the church adhered to Scripture alone as the only source of absolute truth, wisdom and authority and preached that from the pulpit every Sunday, then perhaps America would not have fallen so far into sin and debauchery. Pastors need to stop worrying about filling the pews and their coffers and worry more about being faithful to God’s Word and teaching the Bible. They need to be ministers of the Word of God and stop being ministers of the world of sin.
I’m thankful my pastor is a true man of God and tickler of ears.