“Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter.’” Matthew 7:21 (NLT)
Not all who call themselves Christian are! And neither is a church His true church just because they have church in their name! There are many churches where the lamp stand has been removed (Revelation 2:5), and the sad thing about it, they don’t even know it. Jesus said of the church of Sardis that though they had a reputation of being alive, they were actually dead (Revelation 3:1). From the outside a church can look healthy and vibrant but in reality, there is no real spiritual life. Many of these churches (and individuals) are just like Samson when he got up to fight off the Philistines, and did not know that the Holy Spirit had left him (Judges 16:20). We are told not to grieve the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30), but isn’t that exactly what happens when we ignore and/or deny Him His place in our lives?! The Apostle Paul warned that a day was coming when there would be a form of godliness but denying its power (2 Timothy 3:5). We are in that day! The Christian life, both individually and corporately is supposed to be characterized by the presence and fruit of the Holy Spirit, but as Jesus said, not all who say “Lord Lord” are truly His followers. If you are in a church that denies the Holy Spirit, or merely gives Him a nod, but no space in the services, you need to seriously seek the Lord about you staying. Of course, the Lord may have you there intentionally to bring His presence, but if that is not the case, you are missing out on what He is doing and about to increase in our city and nation.
Being baptized, filled and empowered daily is not an option, it is a necessity in this hour of battle. Without the Holy Spirit and we are battling with our eyes closed and hands tied behind us! The Holy Spirit is not simply a token. He is a full member of the Trinity, the Godhead – the Father, Son and Holy Spirit! Without the Holy Spirit we can’t even pray effectively (Romans 8:26). Ask Him to fill you today, to release wisdom and grace over you and your family. Ask Him to lead you, to grant you boldness and to speak to you! Ask Him for revelation and the power to do the greater works that Jesus spoke about (John 14:12). Pray all this for your pastor and church. Thank the Lord that He has not left us alone, or powerless, but has given us the Holy Spirit as a comforter, a guide, and an empowerer.