Apostasy and Apostates
by Bill Burkett
Loud music has become a means of working up the emotions of God’s people rather than His presence coming down upon a church of praying godly people. We continue to mistake the true work of the Holy Spirit for a humanly produced pseudo Holy Spirit visitation. This keeps the church from experiencing the genuine supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit. When people are emotionally caught up in a loud pounding beat of the drums the genuine presence of the Holy Spirit is pushed out of the church service and the meeting falls into the hands of the leaders of that meeting.
Could it be that we are having less and less of the gifts and miracles of the Holy Spirit in our meetings because we have lost the pure worship of a broken and pure heart for the cheap and empty sound of drums, running and shouting losing all sense of decency and order as human emotions go berserk?
I read in the Word that the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus in the form of a dove. In many Pentecostal churches where the loudness of the drums is equated with “the Holy Spirit falling,” doesn’t sound at all like the Spirit of the Dove – a rock concert maybe, but no semblance to the dove nature of the Holy Spirit.
When the human spirit takes over a service the Holy Spirit cannot operate as He would like. To return to the broken spirit of an obedient servant revering the presence of God as we come to rejoice in His great salvation could bring Church of Acts power back to your church.
The piano (a stringed instrument) should be the lead instrument in a church orchestra and especially in a worship service. When the Holy Spirit is in charge of a meeting He produces results that loud drums and a few accompanying instruments could never produce! Praying down God’s presence until the house of God is filled with His glory is what can bring down the Holy Spirit to do wonderful things for God’s people.
In today’s holiness camp meetings people come from all over to get a blessing. It used to be that camp was a place where we brought the unsaved and altars were filled with saints weeping with conviction for their sins. I stopped preaching camp meetings because I got so tired of having people say to me, “Preach us happy tonight, brother.”
Loud drums and instruments produce emotionalism and out of that emotionalism we are moved to praise God in various ways. But when the Holy Spirit is in charge He needs no drums and may often perform miracles and move with gifts on the church and THEN afterward out of that manifestation of the Holy Spirit there is an emotional response that is sweet and full of glory!
The Holy Spirit draws men to waiting on the Lord and brokenness of heart. He causes us to reflect on our walk and our carnality and calls us to repent and be cleansed. 1 John 1:9-10.
Many holiness churches are copying everything the pop culture does. just recently a song leader in an Assembly of God church was replaced for a “worship team.” The hymn books disappeared. The piano and organ were removed from the platform and standing keyboard player with a worship team led choruses and sang from an overhead projector throwing one new chorus after another onto the giant screen. Christian worship was replaced with a Pop culture style of worship. Many families left the church. THIS IS HAPPENING ALL ACROSS AMERICA!
I told one pastor where I ministered that there had been big changes in his church since I was last there under the previous pastor and that I didn’t see many of the people in the church that were there the last time I came. He told me that they left and started a prayer group in their homes. And then he said, “The world is changing and the church must change with it.” Oh, so these people think that the church must follow the world in it’s ways? I always thought we were bring the world into the ways of the church to learn the ways of God. I have always been under the impression from Scripture that we were to COME OUT OF THE WORLD, not to imitate it.
I have been preaching conformity to the image of Christ and not the world!
I have been preaching to the nations that if they come to Christ that He will lift them UP into heavenly places with Him and deliver them from the evils of a degenerating world. These people are trying to bring God down to make Him conform to the world’s ways. It will never work!
I have come to the conclusion that Matthew 7:21-24 and Revelation 3:17 explain this weird behavior of some “Christians” in these last days. It seems they would be struck by the Scriptures that tell them they are apostates by their behavior but apparently they do not have the Spirit of truth in their lives that makes them aware of what Jesus and the apostle’s have written. They have no sensitivity to the plain language of the supreme truth of Scripture. It is apparent these men have no commitment to follow God’s Word unless it fits their agenda. If it does not then they twist it by interpreting it to say what they want it to say.
Visitors felt very out of place in the church mentioned above and the only element in the church that preferred the pop culture atmosphere was the young people. That church went from 800 to 150 in a few months and nobody including the pastor cares. The church is now in a financial crisis. The song leaders wife played the piano and she was forced to resign her ministry because the pastor had electronic key boards put on the platform that drowned out the piano. When she saw what they were doing she resigned. They moved the piano to the basement.
I have had families come to me in several churches I ministered in who complained that the drums were so loud they could not hear the words of the song. Just recently a family came to my church from a large church because they said the drums were so loud they had headaches after leaving church. Drums are fine in the background with the piano or the organ or a keyboard being the leading instrument. I have always said that music in the church is the handmaiden of the gospel message in the church. But, unfortunately many churches do not have anyone giving proper instruction to the musicians and they have grieved the Holy Spirit and kept the church from being what the Holy Spirit wants it to be.