God's Harshest Criticism of The Church.
Neglect in matters of spiritual and scriptural importance is what results in God's harshest criticism of the Church (Revelation 2:4). Neglect is worse than ignoring something; it is purposefully disregarding one's responsibility. The residual effect of such neglect is bareness (inability to produce) which often becomes a valley of endless and increasing sorrow. A woman's bareness knows few words that express her agony and sense of emptiness (1 Samuel 1:15).
A greater misfortune however, is the spiritual bareness of individual believers and churches due to neglect. Spiritual bareness is indicative of neglect in the matter of the greatest importance: the worship of God and the salvation of sinners. This kind of bareness is born from an entrenched complicity with the world that griefs the Holy Spirit to the point of God's harshest criticism of the Church (Revelation 3:15,17).
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This Matters To The Holy Spirit.
Jesus Christ never gives the luxury of expressing our complicity with the world without regard for damages. The classic hallmark of complicity with the world is a preoccupation for survival. God is not interested in encouraging the illusion that a world under our control would be safer than a world under His control. God knows that our persistent neglect and bareness is a state of constant injury to self and others.
Christians cannot afford to live in a constant state of bareness. It results in reckless pursuits that undermines spiritual growth. Discerning Believers understand that bareness is a perpetual state of counterfeiting God's will for selfish inclinations. There is nothing more essential to the Holy Spirit that a Believer becomes consistently fruitful. Why? The alternative is a constancy of masquerade and bareness. Thank God we have the indwelling Holy Spirit who will never tolerate a believer's complicity with the world; but is ever instigating a pursuit of worshiping the Lord Jesus Christ and the salvation of sinners.
Sincerely, Dr. Arthur Belanger
COLLEGE OF THE OPEN BIBLE