THE SECULAR CHURCH
by W. G. Guy
The above title is actually an oxymoron which is composed of two words to describe something but the words mean the opposite of each other. The definition of the word “secular” is worldly; not religious or connected with church. Of course the word church is assumed to refer to a place of religious worship.
Let’s focus on the meaning of “worldy, not religious”, which more specifically means being of the carnal world’s behavior and NOT SPIRITUAL or led by the Holy Spirit. Instead, being led by carnal fleshly nature and controlled by man and man’s governing bodies as opposed to conformity to God’s Word, Will and Ways. The secular church is an imposter and presumes to be doing God’s work. However look at what Jesus says about those who work in the secular false church:
Matthew 7:21-23 – Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied (preached) in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity, (doing your own thing).
What is really described above is the false church of man as opposed to the true church that Jesus said He would build.
Matthew 16:18 – And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock (Peter’s acknowledgment of who Jesus is) I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
When man controls a church through his various means of denominations, boards, committees and councils it means that Jesus is not the head of the church. Thus we can clearly see the difference between the true church of the Lord Jesus Christ and the false church built by man and deceived by Satan.
2 Corinthians 11:14-15 – For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
The true church reflects the character, nature and personality of Jesus while the false church reflects the character, nature and personalities of the men who lead and control it. The character and nature of Jesus is seen in His church and that character and nature is known as the Fruit of the Spirit.
Galatians 5:22-24 – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
Those who minister in His church should demonstrate the Fruit of the Spirit as Jesus taught since they are being His representatives and servants and have denied self of its fleshly lusts, such as fame, money, position and power.
Matthew 7:15-16, 20 – Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. ….Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
The church that man builds is fractured and divided into denominations and other identity groups due to conflicts of doctrines, rituals, beliefs and practices. The true church of Jesus Christ is united and one with Him and has no schism:
1 Corinthians 12:25 – that there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. (See also John 17 about unity).
First of all, the word church, as used by Jesus refers to a gathering of His followers being assembled in His name, not a building or place, or organization.
Matthew 18:20 – For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
1 Corinthians 3:16-17 – Know ye not that ye are the temple (dwelling place) of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
However, any reference to a church makes people automatically think of a particular building at a certain location, with a specific name, headed by a certain person designated as pastor or priest. The manner of church commonly recognized today has no similarity with the church as it existed in the first two centuries under the early church leadership.
The apostle John was told by Jesus to write warnings to seven early churches because they would stray – Revelation
2 & 3. The apostle Paul had similar warnings to the Church at Ephesus, one that John wrote to:
Acts 20:28-32 – Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.
Then we have the apostle Paul’s prophetic words about how, in the end times, people in churches will be led astray and live like those in the world.
1 Timothy 4:1-2 – Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
2 Timothy 3:1-5 – This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
Paul’s words are now completely being fulfilled in the man-made secular churches. Where else do you see “a form of godliness” but in such churches, and certainly not in the world. They deny the power of God to change lives through repentance and acknowledging their sins.
Churches today are corporations that are run as businesses with a president and board of directors. What too many people fail to recognize is that a corporation is a franchise of the state in which they are incorporated. This means that the state is the actual head of that incorporated church. The other problem is that most churches today are regulated under the United States Government because they placed themselves under the agreement of the 501.C3 contract of the Internal Revenue Service which controls and dictates what they can and cannot preach; thus muzzling the messages that come from the pulpits.
The freedom to warn against sin and sinners is therefore restricted. The restricted 501.C3 churches can’t preach against the sin of homosexuality, same sex marriage, abortion, trans-genderism or things now called politically correct; nor can they preach on the dangers of godless and corrupt politicians, or against communism, socialism or the dangers of Islam without penalties or imprisonment for “hate speech”.
Most churches today observe celebrations never sanctioned by God or the Lord Jesus Christ such as Christmas, Easter, Lent, Halloween or Fall Festival, St Patrick’s Day, and such. While at the same time they reject God’s ordained holidays which are prophetic representations of what was and is to be fulfilled by Jesus Christ; specifically, Passover & resurrection, Pentecost, Trumpets, Atonement and Tabernacles.
Leviticus 23:2 – Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the Lord, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my (God’s own, not Israel’s) feasts.
Jesus, Himself, warns us to come out of the secular false church, (referred to as mystery or mystical Babylon, the false religious system), and not be partaker of its sinful practices, rituals and observations, including holidays that were established by man and not ordained by God;
Revelation 18:4-5 – And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.
It’s time to wake up, to stop playing church and instead TO BE THE CHURCH OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST for the world to see and recognize Jesus in us as His living testimony!
Consider what the apostle wrote to the church and believers at Rome:
Romans 13:11-14 – And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.