The intimacy with God message first began in the late 1970’s with John Wimber’s teachings and the introduction of a new music genre.
Wimber’s teachings about how God desired times alone with us believers, not because we earned them, but because He genuinely loved us, were needed messages for us believers who had been chained to works based mentalities. The accompanying music, now called contemporary worship music, helped us express our intimate love to the Father.
But as with most revelations from heaven, this important love message has been polluted over the years. So that today, many Christians believe that because God loves us and desires to spend time with us, He will then overlook our iniquities.
[Love] does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth (1 Corinthians 13:6)
How could we end up straying so far away from the truth?
Seldom does error blow into the Church like a hurricane, uprooting all truth standing in its way. But instead, deceitful winds of doctrine erode the biblical foundations, a few grains of truth at a time. Then, after a period of time, the foundations of the Church no longer sit on a solid rock of revelation from God, but on the shifting sands of men’s thinking.
And this is exactly what has happened to the American Church.
At approximately the same time Wimber founded his Anaheim Vineyard Church in the late 1970’s, the American Church opened its eyes and realized our nation was heading down the wrong path. Legalized abortions slaughtered babies at the rate of 1.5 million per year. What to do?
Rather than looking at its own bloody hands first and then repenting, the Church pointed its fingers at politicians. They were the evil culprits. Thus, Jerry Falwell’s Moral Majority was birthed in 1979 with a noble agenda to overturn abortion and other issues by mobilizing Christians to elect moral politicians. On the surface, it seemed like a good idea, but was it?
There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death. (Proverbs 14:12)
At times, God has anointed men and the Church to take on political systems to change a nation’s directions. William Wilberforce with the abolition of slavery in England (1807) and Martin Luther King with the civil rights movement are two such examples. Yet these are the exceptions, not the norms.
The Church’s Great Commission is to disciple, baptize, teach, and preach the gospel, changing nations one person at a time. The Church is the bride of Christ, whose head is the Lord, and we are called to be a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, that we may proclaim the praises of Him who called us out of darkiness into His marvelous light.
When the Church lowered itself from its lofty calling and tossed away its holy mantle for prayer and fasting, and then clothed itself with earthly rags, placing its hope in political candidates, the Church stepped onto a slippery slope, greased with compromises. No longer were we friends of God, but instead, we became friends of the world.
So, here we are again, just months away from the 2012 elections. Will we the Church continue on our errant ways, hoping for change to come in our nation through our political system? Or will we repent? And then once again, pick up our mantles for fasting and prayer before the Most High God, the One who holds the destiny for our nation in His hands.