Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
Neither salvation or redemption is obtained by attending church of any flavor. Going to church building ensures the believer nothing eternal before the Father; nor does belonging to any denomination ensure anything on the last day. In fact demons attend church and are quite happy in that environment. For they are predestined to be eternally separated from the love of the Father and Son, so can only greedily flirt with the Godhead in this age alone; vicariously through believers as seen by demons comfortably visiting the synagogue. Then again when satan subversively stole a kiss from our Lord in the garden; ever so mockingly through the possessed body of Judas. All present knew Him, so Judas' identification was not needed; thus Jesus' sincere question, "My friend, why are you here?". Therefore, the first surprise strike of the 'passion', came from a common garden serpent.
So loved of Father, the question will not be how many services did you attend? For it is not by works. Rather it will be, 'Do I know you and have you loved the Father with every fiber of your being, your thoughts, daydreams and have you ravished the Father of Lights with more passion ever given to a human of dust?'
Jesus would be cast out of 90% of organized religion today. Because He spent a large part of His ministry denouncing and debunking the clergy of the day. His credo was; Religion kills, intimacy with God nourishes. The same is true today of churches that are glorified and inflamed beyond their relevance, normally based on the mechanics of tradition.
After experiencing both on many occasions; I would rather worship the Godhead defecating on a toilet, than to waste on a pew.
Below is an appropriate definition for our use.
church / chərch / noun / Middle English chirche, from Old English circuit.
1. the 'Church' a cumulative body of Christian believers. 2. a 'church' is a building made with human hands, that is often blasphemously referred to as a 'sanctuary', often with an impressive table which is claimed to be an altar where required weekly dues are asked, memberships are then bestowed and revoked at the will of the 'man of God' who is abysmally pretending to be a levitical priest, in a temple in which God is accused of living in. 3. a 'Country Club' used for political or social acceptance, indirectly taught and often believed to give an individual some assurance of salvation. 4. a place to satisfy that 'God thing' and free up the remaining week (167 hours) for my things. 5. adj a tool used to inflict profound guilt upon the intended recipient. Normally used by a spouse, relative or self-appointed 'roll call' logging busybody church member. This outward denunciation can be exhibited by a mild to severe verbal or mental abuse; and in extreme situations, excommunication from the Clubhouse. In such a case, the perpetrator gains a sense of pride, self-exultation and an overall feeling of justification for their monotonous, yet relentless addiction to works; for decades of inconvenient primping and driving to gain some sort of 'God-Miles' to their heavenly account. These well meaning work mongers, feel a need to recruit others into their co-dependent slavery; under the false pretense that 'helping' others to worship God in public, with their prayer closet door wide open is required. To these, anything other than group attendance to the collective, is a sin unto death. To such, simply smile peaceably and return home; with thy door shut giggle secretly, where thy Father will giggle with you openly. This mirage of 'attendance sin', will be discussed latter in this missive.
An explanation of the 2nd definition;
"There are those who believe you can have a personal, direct and immediate relationship with Jesus Christ outside the communion and mediation of the church. These temptations are dangerous and harmful. They are, in the words of the great Pope Paul VI, 'absurd dichotomies'.” - Pope Francis XVII, June 2014
This is the exact same 'church slavery' lie, that the evangelical clergy are pumping into the hearts and minds of the subservient masses.
The 11th Commandment
The 'man of God' has trained all of us through time, that, "If you do not go to 'building', you are out of the will of God Almighty!" In fact, that is a complete pile of dung based on the 'man of God' wanting a bigger steeple. There is no condemnation to those in Christ Jesus.
A sad sickening example of this demonic brainwashing, was vomited forth by clergy babbler - Pope Francis, who said:
"Our Christian identity is belonging to a people: the Church. Without this, we are not Christians."
May 15, 2014
"You cannot be a Christian outside the Church, you cannot follow Jesus Christ without the Church, because the Church is mother, and makes us grow in love for Jesus Christ."
January 11, 2015
Woe and judgement be poured upon all so-called shepherds.
Child of the Creator did you realize, that there is not a single scripture in the new testament that requires you to attend church? However, there are three scriptures that command us not to.
In the 11th commandment, Jesus commands us "Thou Shalt Not Pray" in a church or the street, like the hypocrites to be seen, but rather to enter our closet, close the door and pray in secret and then God will reward you openly. Hard, unchangeable and non-negotiable words (in red) from the Son of God, for those who enjoy such activities. I can assure you this scripture has not see the light of day in the average church. This infrequently read or understood verse, is pivotal to answered prayer, stepping into the overwhelming presence of God and being blessed openly. Some say, well Jesus was only saying, keep your mind on Me. This is a weak and shady interpretation. Notice Jesus did not say;
'When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites who pray in church and in the street to be seen of men; but when you do go to church, simply keep your mind totally on me and just ignore every distraction.'
Why even issue a warning about not going, if you were required to go?
He did not say it would be ok to go, if you just keep 100% focused on me. Nor would it be ok to go, if you stopped pridefully considering how others may be viewing your choreographed performance.
His warning to stay at home is not conditional. Sorry, I will not tread on your 'thin ice' illogical pastor'ized interpretation. I would rather take Christ at His crystal clear word and stay home, so intimacy can be achieved with the Bridegroom. If not, this would be the equivalent of going to the shopping mall or hanging with other married folk for intimacy with your spouse. A logical conclusion is, to stay at home and avoid such problems to begin with. Jesus knew most have some amount pride regarding people's opinions and worship. Thus Jesus said, it is perfectly fine with Him, if you stay at home with Me. This is far better than any note from a doctor to stay home. Jesus built us at creation and knows how ALL our minds stray, thus the mandate. Remember we are to dwell in the secret (not public) place.
There is a verse that describes God's opinion of church assemblies is found in Isaiah. God says, Who has told you must walk in my house to see me? I am tired of your Sabbaths, assemblies and I cannot put away the sin of it, even the solemn meetings. God is telling us; I want a personal relationship with you and you alone.
This disdain of 'solemn assemblies' is also eschewed by God in Amos. "I hate and despise your feasts and solemn assemblies...Let judgment and righteousness flow down. The LORD God is not impressed with your weekly token of attention, or the similitude of obligation to the law of logos. His passion is not to see you in an assembly, but to passionately embrace you in the ecstasy of His rapturesque presence within the law of faith. Let righteousness fall not upon a church but the Church.
How would you feel if you only saw your spouse once a week and then only in a public setting? Not a very healthy or intimate relationship to say the least. 'I am not concerned with the forced mechanics of tradition. You do not need pomp and circumstance, temples or the company of others to talk with me.' Moreover these meetings and assemblies are sinful, if not for the SOLE purpose of seeking Me with 100% of your attention; not distracted by the baby crying, the person kicking your chair behind you, the man coughing in your direction, you sustaining dignity when you should be on your knees weeping, or falsely attempting to stop your hungry eyes from spouse shopping. Beloved, it is no wonder you are unable to get into His presence at 'country club'. Jesus knew we were easily distracted creatures. That is why He said, 'Please, just stay home with me today'.
One of the best lines from "Oh God" 1977 movie with George Burns playing God;
Jerry Landers: I don't even go to any church !
God: Neither do I.
Does God hate that you casually go to a building, hilltop or home where other Christians are, for various reasons? No. But God does hate when His sheep are intimidated, coerced, told or implied that their salvation is dependent on attendance. Especially when one does not feel like going, then works are being forced. Having Church at home is what the early Church did. Numbers are irrelevant to have Church as well. Only mega churches of over 3000 and above really count, the 20 member church does not get God's attention. On the contrary wherever two or three are, Jesus said I am in the midst or middle. If you only have church with one person yourself; due to health circumstances or choice, then Jesus is still in the middle of you via the Spirit. Fellowship is very important for those who are new in the faith and by those who need human support or those who are weak in faith. However if you are strong in the gift of faith, fellowship can be talking on the phone, email, texting or dinner over a glass of 'grape juice' or wine if you have the faith. Many mature Christians do not even require fellowship. If I lived shipwrecked on a deserted island, my faith would be stronger than ever; without all the man made doctrines of distraction and cares of our man made lifestyles, fervently praying for the next coconut to fall.
Church is like the child's toy 'Jack in the box', after a number of cranks, "Pop Goes the Weasel" is heard; and then God is supposed to jump out and impress you, according to the appointment slot you granted Him. The majority see church as the local 'God in the box'. I did the work getting here, we all sang "Pop Goes the Worship"; now it's your time to perform God, here I am, impress me.
One day before a dental appointment, the conversation swayed towards 'church' with the receptionist. I was asked by this very proud church attending sister in the faith, with continual badgering, what church I attended. After my explanation, She asked if I thought going to church was a sin? I asked her, is intentionally and weekly violating a commandment spoken by Jesus a sin? You know, the one that starts off with "Thou Shall Not pray in the synagogue, but in thy closet". She looked very concerned and then angry. I then told her, yes I believe violating Christ's words is a sin. We know God hates if you gather in a building for the mechanics of tradition. Seen in the manifestation to fulfill your 'God errand' of the week or satisfy the guilt wave from others, namely the 'man of God'. The LORD of the universe is a jealous God and seeks your deep passionate attention daily. You are His Bride. Have you been an attentive spouse to Him that sits on the throne? Perhaps instead have you played the sunday morning actress role, of a mistress instead?
Many Christians are slaves to the lie that going to church is paramount to keeping one's salvation. This is a false burden heavily bound by false teachers; of which should not be, or ever be inferred. The only thing that should ever be mechanical, is your giving to the unlovable who beg. You should not give this a second thought, it should be muscle memory and your left hand should not even be aware of this cultivated and learned discipline of the righteous.
Let No Man
Despite what any 'man of God' says, or your family and friends, the Bible explicitly states in black and white;
"Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days."
This ends all discussion on the subject of Eating any kind of meat, drinking whatever you want, not having to attend church because of any holiday, observing any Jewish calendar or any past covenant sabbaths, from any 'man of God'.
I believe mature Christians are called to be part of the five fold ministry mentioned in Ephesians 4:11; He gave some apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. Good heavens, how many times have you and I heard "We are all called to be Evangelists, so get out there and win souls!" from pulpits innumerable. I giggle because these pastors are unwittingly opening a can of worms. We are also called to be the other four offices as well. Of course, there are babes in Christ that will discover their calling if they grow. We are not called just to be one office but flow as needed. Just like the gifts of the Spirit. We may have a forte or leading towards one more than the other; yet all can be functional in each believer. Consider it on a scale with varying degrees; from 0 to 10, as God sees fit, proportional to His purpose and our faith. Since all are from one Spirit, it is impossible in practice or function, to totally eliminate the attributes from overlapping.
Loved of God, it is important to remember, there were no cathedrals for the early Church, and they met in houses. Some Jews (like Jesus) met in the temple, this was multi-purposed. They were to reach out to the Jew first and that is where you could find them. In addition, many of the disciples kept various Old Testament laws from birth. An important law was to reverence the Temple. So from their birth we can see why a lifetime of ‘law practice’ was turned into a lifestyle. One example of improper law practice taught by the early Church, was when Paul rebuked Peter to his face, for still teaching circumcision and meeting with observant Jews. Yet another improper practice of the Church was baptism for the dead. Widely practiced at first and then with the correction of God, it was stopped. Another non-essential law practice observed, but not mandated; was Peter's refusal to eat or preach to anything unclean. That is until taught by God in a dream of his full freedom in Christ. There are many more examples of such things. Nevertheless, this brings us to our main topic of going to church. There is not a mandate given by Christ or anyone else, anywhere in the New Testament. Point made is, just because the Church practices something, does not mean it was or is still correct.
The five fold ministry is very much active and currently valid. However, if you are a babe in Christ these offices have more real need, than they do if you are more mature in Christ. Be not fooled by time beloved, it is not a measure of your maturity. Just because you sat in that pew your whole life, or donated the organ; gives you zero seniority in the kingdom of God. It saddens my heart that many life long, church going Christians are still babes and only ankle deep in the things of God. It is very interesting that one young fellow I prayed with for salvation, stayed away from church and started reading the New Testament. Within six months he had a far better working knowledge of God, than I have seen in most lifelong Christians. Unfortunately, some stay babes in Christ their whole life, nibbling on short over grazed grass. One should get to a point where you are the living embodiment of Christ; not perfect by any means, however called to be so. Not needing to run to a pastor for prayer every other day. Not unlike the role of the Evangelist which is no longer needed for those that are saved, yet his job is, "be fruitful and multiply". Nor is a teacher needed, if you are tuned into the Holy Spirit (you have no need that any man teach you, only the Holy Spirit). These statements are conditional, if you continually seek truth and His mysteries; or not so prideful that you will not consider new information, if it contradicts your current theology or denomination. God is far more complex than how we have neatly packaged Him.
There is no verse that says the pastor is the best or most important out of the five fold. Nor is there any verse that says we should build empires across the globe building cathedrals of stone or crystal, with daycares to enshrine the 'pastor' therein. With that logic we need to build separate shrines, one for each office. Should we have five types of churches, one set for each denomination in each city? I do not believe we should be spending our dollars, building stone empires here on earth during the great commission age. Once again the 'men of God' have built up high places upon the land, which the Lord God has not commanded.
The five fold ministry is given to each man according to his faith and fruitfulness for the body’s growth and perfection. Nowhere does it say we need to visit a pastor once a week for a one sided speech. Nor does it say we are to visit apostles, prophets, evangelists or teachers each week. All are for the building up of the saints. It is interesting to note, that the pastor is second from the end of the list. These all were in the houses at gatherings, pending attendance. These houses were never shrines to one office or the other. In other words, each office has a purpose and never to be exalted. Therefore the hand should not be exalted above the foot, leg, arm or reproductive organ. Christ was supposed to be the head, unfortunately the pastor has assumed that role. pastor interviews the other four (or anyone for that matter), before they can share their heart on the ‘stage’. One will often see pastor white knuckling and pulling the microphone from other individuals from holding it themselves. Not only is this rude and immature, but clearly visible to all in the congregation and painfully embarrassing. This nervous habit is not from the pastor being afraid the sheep hear something more horrific than that heard daily on television; but afraid they will say something contrary to his teachings. Fear and pride manifested through dictatorship. Relax pastor they will not steal your little microphone. If you are confident in your beliefs, why not let them share? If they make an ass out of themselves, take the opportunity to do your job as a pastor and correct their error. God may want you to do an improvised teaching on the subject. Sometimes we can learn from misguided teachings and it will actually make us go back and look up why we believe certain things. A good measure of heresy is like unto manure, it causes growth. Sounds like something Martin Luther would have undoubtedly agreed with. No, if the pastor deems the message to be something he does not like; guess what, the other four offices cannot share in his over relevant stone or tin shrine. Quick call the Usher Mafia !
Paul said let all prophesy and speak in order. All doctrine and revelations should be talked about and proven in the scriptures. This clearly two way dialogue shows a group interactive setting. Certainly not some staged solo performance from his w'holiness. This puffed up ‘ruler-ship’ has resulted in setting up a dictatorship with the pastor, pope or like entity; as being in a role equal in authority and reverence to that of the head (Christ). Most pastors are out of their designed purpose. A pastor's true calling is to babes in Christ, those who need daily nurturing, told where to feed and normally not encouraged to think for themselves. he also should lead the sheep into deeper grass and daily dethrone himself. Instead the sheep are encouraged to keep their eyes on pastor, instead walking towards the sun on the horizon. pastor, does not nature itself teach you, that all sheep need not be domesticated. Of what synagogue or church did the greatest of all the Prophets 'John the Baptist' attend? Selah.
Beloved I thank God daily that I am not enslaved to the poisonous 'god of membership' and able to graze freely as the Holy Spirit leads. Without such freedom, deep growth into the hidden things of Father are simply not allowed; even your eyes and ears become incapable of perceiving such things.
Unfortunately, pastor has set up a dictatorship and assumed all authority over the entire body of Christ. Any revelation that is contrary to the pastor's brainwashing he got at seminary, takes precedence. Many a'pastor has said to the left foot oft, I have no need of you and furthermore you are no longer allowed on property.
An unspoken advantage to Home Churching is that it is far easier to invite someone over for a drink or to your 'bible study' than it is to get him or her into a building with a denominational placard nailed to it’s facade. Often I simply start sharing my love and related life experiences with a visitor. Then they start sharing their heart and suddenly you and the other person are having Church without either of you realizing it. Those people may have never considered going to a church or purposed in their heart never to go. With a few more believers you may end up with all of the five fold present and sharing? This will never happen at a stone shrine production. Moreover, churches tend to stagnate and grow obese. The same group over and over who get comfortable and actually get offended when new folk show up and rock the boat. Thus adding to the church daily, is not sought after. Get out into peoples homes and invite them over to your house. This is why Bishops are to be given to hospitality. My life observation has shown, that many are "joined hard" to denominations. This is a malignant cancer to the law of faith, freedom from the law and reaching deeper spirituality in Christ.
Location, Location, Location
This external worshiping outside of a particular place or location is triple reinforced by Jesus talking to the woman at the well. He said, 'the hour is here, that you will no longer need to worship on any particular mountain or in Jerusalem' (the temple's location). How clear would you like Jesus to be? He has spoken directly to the issue of location. If location was important, we all need to move to Jerusalem today. Location is irrelevant if you worship God in Spirit and Truth. In fact, Jesus goes on to say, 'this is what the Father seeks'. pastor, please stop with your man made, extremely burdensome, vomitous enslavement to a location.
I discovered something wondrous about the word Jerusalem. If you make the "r" an "s" (1 letter to the right), amazingly it sounds like Jesus-a-lamb or Jesusalem.
When was the last time you gave God the gift of your entire day? You will gleefully dedicate entire days to man made holidays, shopping and worshiping men (gods) at the stadium or on the sports channel. You know God is a jealous God, so why not give him a FULL day of your passion? Beloved, on certain days, I will play hooky from the world and love on my Bridegroom privately in my prayer closet (bedroom) all day (5-10 hours), eat, then maybe some more as I feel lead. This may seem extreme and it is, nevertheless it tells God clearly you are sacrificing what you or your flesh would want to do, for time with Him. It says; I miss you Daddy, I want that old relationship that we once had together before I was cast into the womb, I am sorry for directing my passions elsewhere, I am here now for your enjoyment and praise, I am ultra serious about seeking your presence again Father. Dear child of the Creator, the closer we draw to Him, the closer He draws to us. I boldly proclaim once that happens, you will not want to do anything else that the world has to offer. You will find yourself craving His presence. You will ponder Him and His words at work and yearn to get home to seek Him passionately again. You know you are where you should be, when your passion towards Him, is greater than when you first meet your spouse or beloved hoped to be. Jesus said, love the Father with every element of your being. During these unique dedicated days to God; I read, I pray, I sing as He dictates the lyrics with seemingly random pitches, I take communion, get on my knees, quote deep from my being verses out loud, worship the Trinity and if you run out of things to offer Him, start over. You will not want to leave, once you break free from your cares and His glory touches your heart. Let the cares fall away and fall to your knees weeping in the glory of Him. God showed me an amazing thing during this spiritual union, I was so enthralled with His presence, I forgot make my prayers of what I needed or wanted. I simply praised him and prayed for others. It was not till a few weeks later, did I notice all my unspoken major needs had been met. Stunned, I pondered this anomaly. He then showed me the verse, Before they call, I will answer. He does not want our mechanical weekly worship, all He wants is your heart and childlike attention. This was our reason for being created. When you fast from the world and ALL the cares thereof, you will make hell quake, demons run and Daddy's heart swell with pride for His good and faithful servant. We know what happens when our earthly fathers are proud and want to love on us, they spoil us rotten. How much more will your Heavenly Father spoil them who draw nigh and walk with Him?
God walked with Adam daily alone, until She showed up. I want my rib back.
I thought we make the building holy when we enter it, because He is in us?
This is not true. It is impossible to make any object holy. We cannot impart the divinity of God to anything. If so, that would mean our underwear and clothes become holy since we are in them. Although, I think I have a few pair that have become hole'ly relics. No beloved, our clothes, our houses or temples cannot become divine. In fact, Paul writes that even our bodies are corrupt and must yet put on incorruption. Our bodies are still sinful flesh and not holy, until He appears and we are like Him. Yes, we are the temple (or home) of the Holy Spirit, only because He chooses to abide in that which is corrupt, like the old covenant earthen temple. He decides to reside inside, helping us through life as our comforter, imparting the peace of Christ. The same happens at the rapture, that happened at the temple at Jesus' death. He will tear open our fleshly veil from top to bottom and leave this mortal shell behind. If our bodies were holy they would never get sick, die, or have the capacity to defile itself by our speakings. No, we cannot walk into a shrine and rub a door knob and leave a little Holy Spirit thereon. Nor can we impart God's Holiness into an abortion center by visiting or working there. The only thing we can 'do' is let our light shine unto men not stone walls.
All the earth gets burned up when Jesus returns including our bodies which painlessly vaporize into radiation (see shroud). Remember flesh and blood cannot enter a holy Heaven. If an object was holy it would not get burned, but we know all elements melt at His appearing. Even the mountains melt, of which many of us are on these mountains when He returns. By some folks definition, the mountains would be holy since we on them but no, they too melt. Our presence on them does nothing to save the mountain. For that matter, we are on this earth and it is still not holy. Proven by we are supposed to hate the things of the earth and the ruler thereof.
The Catholics made this very bad error with all their holy relics. They started thinking 'things' could be holy and these became a stumbling block to praising God directly. All these things diverted our attention towards reverencing things or dead rotting saints (gods); who still await six feet under for the seventh trumpet, to meet him first in the air.
Nothing on this planet is holy, not even the symbolic communion wafers or the dunking pool of water. Sorry, if you do not have scripture for 'things' being holy in the New Testament, we must not teach that they are. The teaching that a 'thing' can be holy is very dangerous. Many of us do not have spiritual understanding, thus history repeatedly shows man easily becoming entwined in the reverence for 'things' (which can be seen) more than the sleepless invisible God. This is why the ten commandments and Noah's ark are still missing, because God knew we would worship them as a calf. Thus becoming a stumbling block to praising them more than He.
Beloved, if we really believed that entering a building made it Holy or ushered in the presence of God, then we would not only fall on our face weeping, but have the decency to at least remove our shoes. Did not Moses do such at the burning bush? Do not even the heathen remove their shoes in temples all around the world? You are hypocrites at very best; walking in pridefully arrayed like the world, day dreamers, talking during service, texting, time watchers, eating, gum chewers, irreverent to the glory of Him and His word that the 'man of God' hopefully worked so hard on all week for your edification, repeatedly walking in and out according to your desires as if you were at the mall or a pub. Based on your actions, it is obvious God's presence is being ignored, else you would never do such things. Remember our God is a jealous God and will not tolerate our attention or worship being diverted to an object or building.
Houses that men build are no longer holy, but absent of His glory. Why do ye stand here? He is not here, for He is risen. Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
The Spirit says to the Church; There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
But did not Jesus go to the temple on Saturdays?
Yes, to read and teach. There were no bible salesmen back then, only one copy in town was located in the temple. The only record we have that Jesus ever got angry, was in a church. I think that statement sums up this entire missive. In addition, Jesus' main mission was to reach the House of Israel, the Jews. To reach the Jewish clergy that needed a physician, He needed to go where they could be found. Not unlike going to a pub or keeping company with prostitutes, to reach the Gentiles. It was also because He was required to uphold and fulfill the law, to remain sinless to revere the temple, in the actual presence of God, who was located in the back room (Holy of Holies). Therefore In the New Testament, wherever you are on the Sabbath, He is there with you. This is seen when Paul bitterly rebuked Peter to his face saying, "If you are a Jew and act like a Gentile, why do you try to make Gentiles act like Jews?" You are not confined nor condemned to meet him in a building on a certain day. Jesus got a kick out of openly breaking the Sabbath weekly, by doing all manner of Godly pranks to miff off the law licking clergy. The Sabbath is for man to use at will, it is not for Sabbath to use man; Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath, as are we if we are His, under the law of faith. Paul goes on to say that days, months and years are of bondage and to be free as I am. In fact, Jesus said if you see your sheep in a pit you should help it, and to do good work on the sabbath was fine. If your profession requires you to work on 'holy' days, this can be seen as doing good, since God answered your prayers and made a way for you to sustain your life from a pit. Jesus had Church under a tree, on a hill among sinners. The early Church met in living rooms. How many are required for having 'church', just you and Jesus. Sometimes we forget that wherever you go, He is in the midst of you alone. He will never leave you or forsake you. Beloved, we no longer have to go to a place to meet God, He is with you always. Yes, He is also there in the midst of two or three, showing us the minimum needed for long term fellowship or support. He also said, they could be located anywhere on earth (not just in a building). However, keeping Sabbath Holy, communing and worshiping God can, and according to Jesus should be done alone by yourself in your closet, with the door shut and the cellular phone off, with NO condemnation from the 'man of God' who is competing with his buddies, on who has the bigger steeple.
What about praying with other Christians?
We are told to pray with others and including the laying of hands on each other. This fellowship with others is important but not required to be done in a building. 99.9% of the time this will not happen in a church. You learn more about a person in one hour at the buffet, than you ever could at years of church attendance. That is why fellowship or Christian friends are not to be forsaken.
What about 'forsake not the assembling'?
Also known as, the great "Attendance Sin" mirage. The lazy clergy often quote partial verses to support their ulterior motives. This time they only quote 1/3 of the verse. If asked, most cannot tell you what the other 2/3rds says. In context it tells us to do this for the provoking the brethren to good works, also to strengthen them. It also says to do this more frequently as the day of the Lord grows near. This is obviously not talking about a weekly Sabbath meeting, since we are to do it more frequently as He approaches, not just once a week. We currently know nothing about persecution. Please keep in mind the time period this verse was written. This was happening at a time in which Christians were being used as lion food. Without a Bible, fellowship was the only avenue for support back then. There was no Internet or television, with 24 hour a day sermons and teachings thereon. There were no telephones for you to call up or text a buddy to pray with at 4am in the morning. This exhortation had far more relevance to the most persecuted group of Christians this planet has seen to date. Beloved we are spoiled rotten air-conditioning sucking, seat-cushion complaining, puffed up pampered brats. As the birth pangs of tribulation hasten; you will not be able to gather together in your glass towers, listening to a stone casting 'man of God'. In fact, where do you think the antichrist will gather his first truck load of Christians from? The first time a church is raided, all the flocks will scatter. You need to learn the lost art of 'home churching' See [Example 1, Example 2] for you and your families sake, just like the early church did. Purchase a large supply of communion wafers and wine, learn to praise Him in your closet secretly, because you will be killed for public worship. Millions will fold under these times of "falling away". Learn to seek and hear God on your own, your very life will depend on it. This scripture is simply saying, do not give up fellowshipping with the brethren and do it more as the day approaches. This scripture certainly is not a mandate to meet in a building to listen to a one sided dialogue. Be not deceived, fellowship is a two sided dialogue. It can be done over dinner, the phone, emails and etcetera. I have far more fellowship one on one, than I ever experienced in decades at multifarious denominations that I have attended. The most dramatic and spiritual moments I have had, were in my prayer closet, living rooms or around a campfire with a few believers.
I heard a pastor open his sermon with a prayer that stated, "Lord bless these believers who came out today to honor the commandment 'not to forsake the gathering together' amen." Sons and daughters of Father, this exhortation by Paul is neither a salvation nor sin issue. If it were, it would be sending many God loving Christians into the lake of fire. Imagine the horror if this was a 'commandment unto sin'; the bed fast, homebound, hospitalized, institutionalized, handicapped, solo dwelling, life threatened persecuted believer in hiding or simply the home churched which were told by Jesus; not come out of hiding, no matter what we hear. No children, this is not a commandment unto sin. Prayers and statements from the likes of these pastors are only guilt tools, fashioned for the seat and bill counting clergy. Take a deep breath, calm your soul and rest in the knowledge that if you love the Given Son called the Everlasting Father, and all men as our Prince of Peace did; seek Him and His Word you are clean and guilt free. Look up and smile, then go down to your house justified. Paul's exhortation was not intended to be an invention for methodical slavery; but was simply to share our faith, support one another other and do it more frequently as we see the signs of His return unfolding.
Pride and Prejudice
Ever notice the pride and feeling of judgment in the voice from some church folk? You can easily locate those who love to parade their buildings about very easily. These are those who hiss out the curt but cunning words with an odd smile, "So, what church do you go to?" I call them denominationalists - those who are welded to their church and teachings. Do you proclaim to others your denomination with even the slightest inward sense of elevated worth? Are you going there because it is beautiful or the fashionable place to be? Are you convinced that your church is correct? Will you overlook errors, regardless if you disagree or what you may learn? Is your family lineage the reason you belong there? If any of these are true, beloved you must take care. For these are all based on pride and eat away the core of pure worship, no neither spirit nor truth. Purge this denominational cancer from your heart, vanity ripped from the center of your being. Abstain and repent from this habitual rehearsed performance; desperately run to your closet and purge your soul before the glory of Him that allows you to breathe. There is no righteousness in being a denominationalist.
I was having a meeting with a prominent pastor. Whilst in the waiting room, the secretary very busy typing on her computer, curtly asked me, "So, what church do you go to?" with uninterrupted typing. I paused a moment and said, "Oh, I home church." I will not lie when I say, she stopped typing and did a triple take, her eyes went from the computer to me three times within two seconds. She then began to stutter in a breathy panic and said, "Ww- ,Wwel, Well what about forsaking the assembling together?" I told her I have many Christian friends I share with. She had what could only be described as, a look of terror combined with disbelief and spiced with a pinch of anger. It was if the antichrist himself, was sitting in her vestibule. She quickly composed her visible firestorm and turned to continue her typing. You see, her fear and judgment was instilled by that prominent pastor. I knew what he taught from watching him on television from time to time. Approximately six months from that meeting, I heard that pastor screaming on the television about "this whole movement of people staying at home to church, is the work of the devil! How can you expect God to bless you, if you don't submit yourself to authority and plug yourself into a body of believers !" I was saddened when I heard the rant and therefore understood her learned response of horror. I find it hard not to giggle at immature claims that "staying at home to seek God is of the devil". That was one of the main reason God sent His Son to relieve us of the burdensome 613 laws and needing to reverence the temple. Thus allowing Jesus and the Holy Spirit to live inside us. That pastor is the one who is of the devil, telling millions to ignore Christ's mandate to stay at home in their closet and pray. I wonder what this fox would say to the greatest prophet ever who lived, John the Baptist? Which synagogue or church did John attend? Perhaps our fox would scream just as loudly at the man with the greatest faith in all of Israel, the Roman centurion? Notwithstanding the Syrophenician woman with great faith? Which synagogue or church did they attend? And so goes the infinite of examples.
Foxes prey on innocent long eared carrot eaters.
Thus it is right what Paul writes, he that is weak in faith eats vegetables - and attends church. Therefore there is no condemnation to Jew or Gentile, circumcised or not, he that regards the day and he that regards not the day, the churched nor the unchurched; yet let everyone be fully persuaded and exercise their liberty and freedom from 'the building' according to their proportion of faith.
In addition, hearing the infinitely fallible 'man of God' rant on about submitting yourself unto his authority is equally sickening. I submit to none other than Jesus the Christ. These same foxes condemn those who do not attend church as: sinful, out of God's will and backslidden, by default including the glorious mandated home churched. It is actually these accusations that are out of God's will, and fall only into the lap of pastor's greedy will for larger numbers and offerings. Woe unto you 'men of God' who heap condemnation upon those who have far greater faith than you ! Your righteousness and evaluation is even now and will be before you.
Today many 'men of God' suffer from megalomania (a psychological condition characterized by delusions of grandeur - a.k.a. Hollywood Syndrome), often from the over indulgent reverence they get from their 'members' and terrified staff. I have meetings all the time with church staff. I am deeply saddened when I see them looking around feverishly, before telling me something. There is such an atmosphere of fear and trembling in some of these places, not towards God but the pastor. In these desolate 'country clubs', I see the staff laying fresh palm branches down for the 'man of God'. It pains my soul to see this obtuse reverence.
"Oh, never say that to pastor", "if pastor ever found that out", "pastor can't be disturbed right now", "please be quiet when outside pastor's study", "pastor wouldn't like that", "Look, here he comes now, stand at attention and smile oddly".
These gross rantings from the terrified staff, loop endlessly with unlimited permutations with the holy word "pastor". I hear it spoken far more than I hear Father's name evoked, both on and off pastor's stage.
I see the exact same pastor worship in protestant denominations, as I have seen in Papal Rome's layers of legions. These empires of buildings that we have allowed to culture over time, has fermented the 'man of God' firmly within his intoxicating tower of Babel.
If the Church had spent half the money it has over the millennia on missions or stopped hiding in their cozy buildings, the entire world would have heard the good news centuries ago. Behold, humanity slipping into the winepress, quick build a daycare!
The belligerent clergy has forgotten their position of a servant. Thus promoting the 'fear of clergy' or the passive sin of pastor worship. If you want to see what giving authority and reverence to men will avail, simply look at the structural layers within the Catholic church. Whose 'ring' will you bend over to kiss?
Go ye into all the world and fabricate buildings.
I take great issue with these denominationalists who come forward with pride leading the question, "So, what church do you go to?" I would ask them "What is the intent of your question?" As they sit there batting their eyelids in disbelief, ask them; 'If it was to seek out the status of my salvation, why not ask me such?' You see, most of the time church people have the pride to proselytize members into the 'country club' they helped pay for, but are cowards to lead someone to Christ and prefer to put that obligation on the pastor. The person they just asked, may never show up on Sunday and be killed that afternoon in an accident. Now what good is your fearful and flaccid question?
Rule Over You
Some self-inflamed ego riddled clergy, attempt to use the scripture; "Obey them that rule over you" to prove that the clergy should rule over the body. Fortunately for us, the bible tells us that Christ is the head and we are the body. Also that no other body part reins above another, yet each has their function. In addition, God is not a respecter of persons. This verse says nothing about church folk ruling over believers. This verse is vague in its empirical meaning by itself, thus open for interpretation. Context and other like verses need to be consulted prior to making a new doctrine for dictatorship. Especially with the following verse that tells us to live honestly. So that their jobs are easier with joy nor grief (e.g. be cooperative with the police and other authorities). It is more properly pared with the scripture that restates; Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme and to your employer. Submit yourselves therefore to God. The only ones who rule over us, are governmental offices, Kings like Herod, police, law makers, etc. To rule and control people, you need an incentive or a threat for not submitting, such as exile, imprisonment or the like for breaking a law. The clergy has no law or incentive, mandate or power to enforce anything. Unfortunately for the clergy 'selfish free will' still prevails, making their ruler-ship impotent by definition and practice. The bible makes no claims that a man should rule over my spirituality, only Jesus my groom. If you think it is hard now to make your attendance at your club increase, try advertising in the local media outlets, that 'our church' has the best staff in the area capable to rule over you. You will be out of 'business' in a month, much less see a spurt in growth. Humans are pre-wired to shun those who would try to rule over us. Many see police and law makers as the enemy. No one looks to be told what to do by another human, nor should they. Why? because all humans, are sinful and flawed, especially those in power. Remember, "Absolute power, corrupts absolutely - There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it." - 1st Baron Acton. Humans, if given the opportunity always abuse power. One only needs to look at Papal Rome with their killings, tortures, burning many Christians at the stake for translating the bible into the common language and on and on and on. Shall we go down that road again? God forbid, Christ made a show of the clergy's power and freed us from their wormwood doctrines of legalism. Sorry thou puffed up inflamed 'man of God', you can barely do the job of your calling, much less RULE over any of us. You have justly lost the ability to ever achieve such abuse. Never again, never again.
To What End
What then is the purpose of going to a building?
These are the intended goals but unfortunately are not normally achieved publically. Let us examine each of these for clarity;
Experiencing God's Presence
Getting into the presence of God is near to impossible with the flood of distractions that assault us. Of course, outside of the rare occasion when the Holy Ghost is listened to, and everyone in the place is flooded with the Glory of God. This can happen but is rare. I would encourage you to fast from church and seek God secretly, He will then reward you openly. You will experience the Glory the majority of the time and it will be a rare thing for it not to happen.
Child of God, we have the concept of the Glory falling down 180 degrees backwards. We have all repeatedly heard, "Wow last Sunday the spirit of God fell on this place !" This is bad teaching and the reason for enslavement to a 'building' or methodology. The Glory of God that many of us have felt at certain services over the years, is not due to the Glory of God falling upon us. We are simply feeling the Glory of God that is already present. God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit do not visit us on certain occasions to give us a special or unique moments of blessing. They have never left us, we have left them. Your Bible says that God is omnipresent, meaning everywhere at all times. We are also told that if we accept Jesus as savior, His Holy Spirit will come in and never leave. The Bible says He comes inside to become our comforter. So, what is happening on those 'special' occasions when we have those wonderful moments of the presence of God that are overwhelming? We are simply tuning into the presence of God, which is always there. This is the living water that is freely available to him that thirsts. John writes, "I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day"; meaning, John had to purpose in his heart to meet the presence of God. We do not feel the Glory of God come and go, we fade in and out of it. Not unlike some who claim the sun rises in the east and sets in the west; no, the sun is stationary, we simply turn our face from the sun. This unique presence is only achieved through deep praise and giving our undivided attention to Him. In my prayer closet with the door shut and all phones off, I feel this 'rare' Glory every time I give Him my undivided passion and love. He is not coming down from Heaven, we are turning off the tangible world and entering into the spirit for communion with the Godhead. If you are missing the presence of God or His Glory in your prayer life; turn everything off, shut the door, and passionately pursue Him. Worship Him that sits on the throne, Tell Him all the things that He amazes you with, Make passionate heart love to Him, Make it undignified, Make it real, Proclaim His unspeakable riches, Thank Him for sacrificing His only Son, Thank Him for the dirt that sustains you from the fire below, Thank Him for gravity that keeps you on the surface, Tell Him what a Glorious creator He is, Praise Him for His endless artwork in the heavens, Let Him know you are serious, Fall on your knees and weep for sheer joy of His majesty, Throw your crown of pride before Him, Beg for forgiveness of apathy and your lukewarm passion, The Father of the universe is listening you my child and He has missed your attention and seeks to bless you beyond your belief, He loves you beyond your wildest expectations, For He is Lord of lords and King of kings and He would have you know that nothing is more important to Him than your private intimacy, My Glory is here for you, to partake of whenever you want it, For I am in My holy temple O child, that temple is you, Seek and you shall find Me.
God is a wonderful thing both together and privately. However, if I had my choice I would do it solo and prepare for the future storm. True worship is in Spirit and truth, music can be a vehicle to enter into this presence, certainly not required. Music is helpful for those that want to commune with Him, but are overwhelmed with cares, preventing them from entering into His presence. Nevertheless, you can get to a place in your walk, that you can instantly be in His Glory without the extra tool kit of music, "take away from me the noise of thy songs". Personally I get too distracted with; what are the words to this song, I cannot sing this high or this low, the man to the left of me is singing flat and the woman to the right is singing sharp (oh my), how many times are they going to repeat this same chorus, how many times can they get away with changing keys on this chorus (to take your mind off the fact they are still repeating it). Or, I wish that musician would play a lot softer, what is wrong with that soundman. Oh my, another soloist is going to force feed you with another karaoke song. Or, the 'man of God' is way off base on this topic and I cannot turn the channel or interrupt his false teaching, for fear of being thrown out by the usher mafia. I am not kidding, one of the largest churches in our city has fitted all their ushers, with in-ear radios and matching black suits. They all hover around this pastor after service like the Presidential Secret Service. On various dates, I have gone up to several of them and smiled and made a few cordial comments. They just look at me, then force out a 10% silent smile and look away. The pastor has proudly told me, half the choir is armed; nevertheless, these ushers are some scary guys.
Child of God, depending on your musical appreciation and skill, public worship can be daunting and a element of pride for many. I would encourage you to sing, or raise your hands to God in the Spirit privately at home. This makes your praise ultra personal between you and God alone. Pride or shame are instantly culled. I enjoy making up lyrics as I go. I love to sing in an unknown key or scale. God says to play a new song to him, not to irritate Him with an old song. He also says to play skillfully before Him, you are only skillful when you are putting your heart and soul behind it. This is often hard to do if you are a non-musical person, or fear bothering someone. Skillfulness is also relative to your ability. Playing a few notes for the beginner takes far more skill, than the seasoned professional that can play a thousand notes with unskillful muscle memory. Therefore for the trained musician, they are rarely challenged to play skillfully or above their normal skill level at 'Club'. If you are singing next to Pavarotti, most good singers will be under a great deal of humbleness and very conscious of their own bellering. However non-singers will not give it a second thought and sing blissfully aloud in that unknown key. Singing from your heart and loudly 'out of key' is more important than singing out of pride or fear. That is why singing in the shower is fun, no judges or fans. Again, Jesus gets it right, shut the door and do it in secret. This way, no man pride or fear of skill level, can stunt or exalt your heart voice.
Speaking of worship, I was fellow-shipping with a certain pastor. The subject arose of attending church and having to get dressed up in uncomfortable clothing. Just another added distraction to keep you from getting into His presence (these clothes are; too loose tight, hot or cold). he told me that many believe, that what they wear to church is a form of worship. These folk truly feel that they should dress their best on Sunday to show God how they honor Him. I told him that was a terrible supposition. Not only is their not scripture to support this silliness, but puts them in a position of judge towards those who choose to dress casual, or to those that may want to wear bib-overalls. If they really believe this to be true, then they cannot avoid the element of passive pride. he agreed after a long conversation. This simply goes back to Jesus' mandate about staying at home to pray and not parading oneself about. God does not even see your clothes. He only looks at the Spirit and Truth. You are naked in His sight. This belief of fanciful dressing is a very dangerous one, in that it indirectly puts burdens on everyone else to conform to their man made worship benchmark. I have heard many times, pastors telling their congregation to dress your best for God. You will never impress God with your church costume. Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed as impressive as a simple flower. So stop trying to out shine a flower. Many will say, "Oh you should attend our church, no one there cares what you wear." This is a non-provable statement. To test this allegation, simply show up in sweatpants and see if you get odd looks. I freely worship Him in my prayer room in my pre-fall season Adam suit. Better yet; stay home, wake up when you want, wear what you want, stay as long as you want. God does not care what you wear. To attempt to worship Him with your apparel is works, to do such things is not in Spirit and Truth, therefore vanity.
Do we need to attend church for teaching?
In the past maybe, but now we have: 24 hour media outlets TV, Internet, DVDs, CDs, a personal Bible in every room and the Holy Spirit inside us. Jesus said, you have no need that any man teach you, but the Holy Ghost will show you all things. In addition, the clergy is speaking to so broad of an audience, that it is not possible to get a message that is more than knee deep in milk. Beloved, once salvation and Godly principles are understood, we are to be eating the meat not served in church. Moreover, we are to earnestly seek the "deep things of God". This deep growth cannot be imparted outside of private lessons from Father. The goal of the clergy should always be, to point you towards becoming a hunter, reliant upon God alone. Do you run to the 'man of God' for prayer? Nevertheless, as you mature the answer to this question should be a resounding NO.
This means many things to many people. To pray in mass with many reciting a written prayer is different than making it up as you go. God prefers the make it up as you go technique. This is shown in His word to not repeat over and over the same thing, not unlike singing the same thing over and over, but a new song. Group prayer is not required nor supported in scripture. Moreover, Jesus says shut your door and pray in secret. Personal prayer from a brother or sister is encouraged in scripture and rarely happens in a building. When the bell rings; everyone tries to beat everyone else out the door to get the buffet, beat the parking lot rush hour, or run home to scream and raise their hands and voices, with cult like passion to the god of sports, fanatically worshiping grown men (gods) who run around in pajamas chasing a little ball in a child's game. No, public prayer is expressly discouraged 'in red' by the Lamb.
This was discussed earlier in this missive. But to summarize, it is to be kept and done with more frequency as the day of the Lord draws near. A building is not required in the new testament. For the simple reason; our persecution is going to grow stronger and stronger as the end approaches. Learn to have church around a campfire or in your living room. This foreign and lost skill needs to be relearned for the day when you will not be able to attend 'country club'.
"So often the contemporary church is a weak, ineffectual voice with an uncertain sound. So often it is an archdefender of the status quo - But the judgment of God is upon the church as never before. If today's church does not recapture the sacrificial spirit of the early church, it will lose its authenticity, forfeit the loyalty of millions, and be dismissed as an irrelevant social club - Every day I meet young people whose disappointment with the church has turned into outright disgust." ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
What is the purpose of attending 'Country Club'?
I cannot see a scriptural mandate for attending. I do see scriptural reasons not to go. There is enough scriptural evidence to easily support going to church is actually a sin. You violate the words of Christ about public prayer, God says in Isaiah I tire of your sinful solemn meetings, in Amos I hate and despise your solemn assemblies. Besides, most go on Sunday vs. Saturday, violating the mandate in the ten suggestions given to Moses when we were bound by all the law. If your faith is weak and your time is as precious drops of blood, then go to your shrine. Beware, look only at your efforts as an optional seminar, event or hobby, without any pride or condemnation from the chronically religious.
Seeds of Father, rather give Him your full attention in your prayer room with the sacrifice of daily time. For the Great 'I Am' lives outside of time and seeks those who would worship outside of time and only in spirit and truth. Put aside childish things and pursue not the LORD your GOD with: seasons, days or hours. Yet seek Him with all that is within you. Praying always with all kinds of prayer. Do not splash your feet about once a week; yet daily immerse thy whole being and freely drink of the glorious living waters.
The Spirit of the bride says come, let he who hears seek not shrines, grow strong in the fullness of Father and His Christ, cling passionately to the words of your immortal Groom.
Close the door and let us make love all the day long.