Our current ideas about revival are self-centered. In contrast, Jesus taught service and concern for others—God-centeredness and other-centeredness. We have confused means with end, where the church is the means and the love of God or the kingdom of God is the end. The question, “If you die tonight, do you know for sure that you would go to Heaven?” is self-centered. I understand that regeneration is absolutely essential, but Scripture never puts it like this. God’s purpose is to establish His kingdom on earth, and the church is the means for accomplishing this. Too often we reverse end and means, and act like God’s purpose is get people into the church and revival is the means, which tends to make Christians and churches self-centered. It keeps existing Christians locked in patterns of self-concern, rather than selfless service.
The Second Great Awakening was successful because it tied serious cultural response to those who responded to the revival call. In contrast, those who keep hearing the same call week in and week out are not maturing in the faith. Those who respond and act move forward. And the response to the Second Great Awakening was missions, local and international. But new missions work needed new funding, so it also tied in new business development in order to fund the new missions. Overseas missions exploded, and the parachurch ministries movement was born. Note the other-directed sense of selfless service for missions.
The down side was that those firebrand Christians who had been awakened to the cause of Christ put their best efforts outside of the churches, into new wineskins, in order to engage in new missions and parachurch ministries. That meant that for the next generation or so the best leaders were busy in the new wineskins. The less faithful filled the leadership gap in the established churches.
Today we see the price that has been paid—weak churches and Christians abound in the homeland. The churches are a wreck, and most everyone knows it, though few churches or pastors admit it publicly about themselves. People want to look strong because no one wants to be involved in a weak, broken church. So, they “put on a face” as my mom used to say.
Now before you get all fired up and start pointing fingers and get mad at all “them other” Christians and churches for being so weak, we need to take a serious look at ourselves. Before we blame others, we need to examine ourselves. Even if those other churches do have all kinds of faults, which they do, you can’t do anything to help them because you have no role with them. But you might be of help at your own church, which likely has more problems than you are aware of. Before we start blaming other people—non-Christians, socialists, communists, liberals, etc.—we need to take a good look at ourselves. The old adage, “Physician, heal thyself,” applies.
When churches come to understand that they are weak and broken, and they want to overcome their brokenness, they become inner-directed and self-concerned, which then becomes self-defeating. There is a problem when Christ, the King of Universe, is held captive inside the churches, when Christians fall in love with Jesus in such a way that they fail to actively engage Christ for the world.
Every awakening or revival has happen outside of the established churches. So, we should expect the same today. Too many Christians and churches approach Christianity with a ghetto mentality, thinking that Christ does His work in the church, and lets the world go to hell as an incentive to get into the church. Today, Christians see their job as getting people out of the world and into the church. People today think that the Christian mission is to get people into the church or into heaven, when in fact, Christ’s mission is to get hell out of the world. Jesus sent His people into the world to change it! That’s the mission we’ve abandoned.
If we want to see the fruit of genuine revival, we need to understand that a lot of seed has already been planted in this valley and the fields are laying fallow. We need to do some weeding and pruning and watering. We can’t simply continue throwing a few random seeds into abandoned fields and expect a crop of gospel fruit. We need to help people grow in faithfulness. We need to forge a new round of missions and release people from captivity in the churches and send them out to take down the gates of hell that have been fortified over the past several decades. To do that we need to take the long view and begin preparing for the 25th Century.
You might opine, But surely Jesus will be back by then! Jesus will fix everything. Every generation since Jesus has thought that He’d be back in their generation, but He hasn’t returned yet. Someday some generation will be right. But until then we must take the long view. Yes, Jesus will fix it—and He will fix it through His people! We are His hands and feet, His eyes and ears. We should understand after two thousand years of history that the fix that Jesus is bringing is not instantaneous. Rather, the fix unfolds over time—a long time—in order to set up the conditions for Jesus’ return.
Or when we finally do see Jesus, we can tell Him that we had to give up His dominion mandate because we thought He’d be back sooner. We can tell him that it’s all His fault because He tarried too long.
Wouldn’t it be better to plan for His return in the 25th Century and have him come in the 23rd than to think He’ll return in the 21st and have Him come in the 23rd? If we take the latter option we will have two centuries without a plan, and He wouldn’t like that. We wouldn’t get the “Well done, faithful servant” speech. We’d get the “I gave you everything, and you did nothing” speech.
We also need to better understand the “spiritual house” that Christ is building with “living stones” (1 Peter 2:5). God is not building a ghetto in the corner of the city. He’s building a city that has no ghettos. He has the whole of human culture in mind, but not a super, worldwide denomination. Rather, a gazillion local communities that reflect the goodness and greatness of God-in-Christ-in-His-people. What Christ has in mind for His church is not what passes for church today.
The churches, even mine and yours, are like old stalks of corn in long-neglected fields. We can yell and scream at them all we want, but the old stalks are not going to revive. That’s just not the way it works. Notice that Jesus, the founder of the Christian church, never started any churches Himself. And He trained disciples outside of the existing religious structures. The disciples founded churches, but by the time Revelation was written, those churches were already a wreck (Revelations 2-3). John’s Revelation was essentially a prediction that the churches would simply not recover, and the “end” was at hand. Christ Himself would have to usher in the kingdom. John thought that Jesus would return very soon. In fact, John looked forward to it.
So, what was the “end” that John predicted? The Greek word for end is τέλος and it means “end purpose.” The “end” that John looked forward to was God’s end purpose for the world, not its destruction. God is remodeling the world, and there is always some dust and demolition during remodeling—but the purpose of remodeling is not the destruction of the building. What is God’s end purpose for Christianity? Whatever else it is, it involves caring for His people. So, we need to care for His people—and not just the people in the churches. Jesus was not just concerned about the poor, infirm and disenfranchised. Paul sent out missionaries to reach the poor, of course, but the primary purpose was to call all to follow Christ. Those missionaries needed to have something to reach the poor with. Those missions needed funding, but they also needed to teach people how to become social leaders, how to grow a healthy society. Paul went to Rome to tell Felix, the Emperor, about Jesus. When Constantine legalized Christianity, he brought Christian values into civil government. It wasn’t perfect, it had a load of problems, but it helped considerably.
We need to get local Christians focused on local missions, on making enough money to fund the rebuilding of the MOV for the return of a production economy to the U.S. How? What is holding it back? What is the most serious present danger? It’s not Agenda 21 or Common Core curriculum, though these are real problems. The most serious immediate problem is poverty and the most serious danger is the rising cost of energy. So, we need to be prepared and help others prepare. However, having a “grab and go” bag—as good and helpful as that is—is a very short term solution. We must develop long range plans that can be immediately engaged that will help people get out of poverty by developing alternative food and energy markets locally. And we need to stop hiding the fact that science, technology and free markets are the fruit of Christianity.
We need to focus on local food growth, local alternative power options and local currencies as Christian missions. Why? Because the way we currently handle markets, food, power and currency is the problem. It is unsustainable, and everyone knows it. The “powers that be” are in the process of making “the grid” larger, making it global. However, this is not the solution. Rather, globalism is the problem.Such a grid is too large to succeed, and will go the way of the dinosaurs—for the same reason. When “Ma Bell” got too big (monopoly), the court broke it apart. Who will break apart the global grid monopolies? If we don’t do it, God will. And it will be better to do it ourselves, rather than “waiting until Father comes home.” Globalism is strangling localism.
Big Government will not break it up, nor will Big Business, nor will any court that has enough clout to actually accomplish it. All existing governments, businesses and courts are too heavily invested in the grid. Breaking it up will change the power structures locally and worldwide. And those power structures will want to hold on to power, not give it up. Solutions will not come from the top. But they can come from the bottom, especially in a place like the MOV.
To grow, we need independent, local, affordable sources of food, power and currency. Part of the problem is that the current system has “standards” in place that keep us tied into the grid, because a few powerful people make a lot of money from the current grid system. The fix will not come in terms of regulations, rather regulations will keep the fix from coming. Regulations retard creativity.
But it’s not too late. We can fix the problems. We must fix our problems locally because no one else will fix our problems. But how? Let’s strengthen the local economy by applying the love and principles of Christ in these areas: 1) locally grown food markets; 2) development of local alternative power conversion and generation markets; and 3) the development of local currencies. The trick is not to wait for the grid to crash, but to begin supporting local alternative markets before it crashes. We must become the leaders of alternative power sourcing and develop a local Agenda 25 for Christ. We must get Christ out of the churches and into local communities—schools, governments and businesses—because Christ is the source of all blessings.
I’m not a farmer, but I’m sure that the local farmers will be interested in the development of local food markets. How can we create and support better markets for locally grown food?
The world is on the cusp of new power discoveries. I do not mean fracking, oil or gas. These are not new power sources. I mean what is generally called overunity, HHO fuel, and magnetic power generation sources.
Most people are not aware of this field, and too many current “experts” discount it. Why? They say that such sources of energy are impossible according to current laws of physics and various industry standards. Could it be that the current “experts” are blinded to new ideas by their expertise, just like the church was when Galileo discovered that the planets revolve around the sun? And even if the “experts” are partially right, that means that they are also partially wrong. But whatever else is true, if new ideas and developments threaten the grid, the owners of the grid will not like it, and will do (have done?) all they can to thwart it. So, we need to do it ourselves.
I know just enough to see that there are untapped possibilities in the overunity field, but not enough to develop them. There are crackpots in this field, but there also appear to be serious people. Every idea probably won’t work, but some likely will. So, I propose the serious consideration and development of various overunity power generation ideas by local people as a way to develop the local economy. We cannot depend on local “experts” and we should not because they are all too-tightly tied into the grid.
Can someone develop a local business that converts existing cars to run on electricity and hydrogen (HHO)? Folks in Washington County are not going to buy Teslas! – http://www.teslamotors.com/
Can someone develop a local business that builds or converts existing motors to run on HHO, so they will either run entirely on water, or use the HHO to significantly extend their use of gasoline. If cars can be converted to burn HHO, then so can any gas or diesel engine.
Or how about compressed air cars and motors?
We cannot develop Big Grid solutions, but maybe we can help develop some small, local solutions that help ordinary people use power more efficiently, to generate their own power (maybe not all of it but some) to lower their bills. We need to develop home and local small business solutions that will lower consumer costs and contribute to the local economy.
Bernard Lietaer has an idea to solve the financial problems of the world, and he just may be onto something. We need to research it, and involve others who may be helpful in its implementation.
What will such a “program” do? It will take ownership of sustainable development away from liberal Agenda 21ers by taking local ownership of the cause of sustainable development as a mission of local Christians. We need to become the leaders of this movement, but from a Christian perspective. It will also engage conservatives and liberals with a common concern, which will bring new relationships where we can promote the greater cause of Christ where it is needed the most (where it is lacking the most).
The current Green Movement is owned and run by big business. Those who profit from the current system want to maintain control. But that control is the problem. In the same way that people had to overthrow the divine right of kings, we must overthrow (replace) what can be called grid dominance. We do not need to destroy the grid, we need to change its purpose and use so that it serves life rather than the profit of a few.
And what does all of this have to do with Jesus Christ? I’m glad you asked. Here is a link to a recent interview where I suggest that Christianity, science and technology are intimately related, which is a theme of several of my books:
I have been thinking and working on this problem for three decades,
and have been developing biblical source materials:
Also see: www.paross.com for some ideas about how Christ relates to education and business.
Who else might be involved in this effort? Who has experience and resources that might help? … suggestions?