[SW433] 05/30/2020 message notes by
Pastor Susan J. Wynn
“The Warring Church”
Texts: Isaiah 45:9, 64:8, etc.
A strange thing has happened to the church! O infants (1Corinthians 3:1) in today’s so-called church — from denominational headquarters to the pews! You wage war against the One who made you! Woe to you! Your actions reveal that you do not know the Lord, for if you did, you would never wage war against Him!
Today’s infants in the so-called church are no different than God’s rebellious people in the days of Isaiah. The Lord says —
Isaiah 45:9 “Woe to him who quarrels (wages war) with his Maker — an earthenware vessel among the vessels of earth! Will the clay say to the potter, What are you doing? Or the thing you are making say, He has no hands (with which to make me)?”
I know your heart, by your words and actions. I know your heart, because I was just like you, until I obeyed Jesus Christ’s commandments to stay and wait to be filled with the Holy Spirit (Luke 24:49, Acts 1:4-5). I waged war against the Lord, just as you are waging war against Him!
In what way do you wage war against the Lord? Both infant leaders and the infants who love their words wage war against Him in these ways —
— You brazenly remake your Maker into your image, thus creating the god of self, because you have chosen to reject the truth that you are the clay, and He is the Potter!
— You brazenly fashion Him into your own image, because you have chosen to see yourself as wiser than Him. You say God is love, that is all He is, and so He will not punish you for your rebellion.
— You brazenly judge Him because you have chosen to believe that you have every right to judge Him, accusing Him of being unfair, believing His Word is “not for today,” declaring that His requirements are ludicrous, accusing Him of being weak and of being unresponsive to your demands!
— You brazenly insist that the Word of God simply represents the opinions
of the men who wrote it, and that God the Holy Spirit did not give the writers the words to write (2Timothy 3:16). Therefore, you have chosen to believe that you can change it to reflect your own opinions.
Today’s infant leaders are no different than the Pharisees whom Jesus Christ rebuked —
Matthew 15:6 . . . “And by this you invalidated (disavowed, denied) the word of God for the sake of your tradition. 7 You hypocrites, rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you: 8 ‘This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far away from Me. 9 But in vain (so as to manipulate Him) do they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the precepts (rules, sayings) of men.’”
They disavow and deny the truth of God’s Word, instead following church traditions that have sprung from the imaginations of men. They honor Him with their lips, but their hearts are far from Him. They worship Him only so they can attempt to manipulate Him. With their Bibles opened, they teach their own opinions, not the truth of the Word of God. They teach out of their own imagination —
Jeremiah 23:16 Thus says the LORD of hosts, “Do not listen to the words of the prophets who are prophesying to you. They are leading you into futility; they speak a vision of their own imagination, not from the mouth of the LORD. 17 “They keep saying to those who despise Me, ‘The LORD has said, “You will have peace”’; and as for everyone who walks in the stubbornness of his own heart, they say, ‘Calamity will not come upon you.’”
Because you wage war against Him, O infant leaders and the infants who love their words, He will wage war against you! Because you judge Him, He will judge you, unless you repent!
To wage war against God is completely contrary to the order of His creation. It is a reversal of roles, in which the creature tries to make the Creator a servant to carry out the creature’s plan. The creature even goes so far as to edit or delete those portions of the Word of God that conflict with the creature’s natural wisdom and treasured opinions. NOTE: Credit to John Oswalt, The New International Commentary on the Old Testament.
O infants! By your words and actions, you reveal that you do not believe that you are lowly clay pots that He has made! You say that He could not possibly have made you, because you simply evolved.
You attempt to alter Him into a god who is a powerless bystander, a god who leaves you free to do and believe whatever seems good to you. Thus, you wage war against the Lord, and judge Him.
O infants, you do the same as many of God’s people in the Old Testament! You say you serve God but you do not know Him.
The god you serve is a product of your sin nature— the god of self. You do not serve the God of the Bible. By your words and actions, you reveal that you do not love Him (John 14:24), for instead of obeying Him, you wage war against who He is and what He says!
When Judah rebelled against the Lord by serving strange gods in the land He gave them, He answered by destroying all that they trusted in and relied upon and sending them into exile in Babylon, where they served strangers in a land that was not their own —
Jeremiah 5:19 “It shall come about when they (that is, His people) say, ‘Why has the LORD our God done all these things to us?’ then you shall say to them, ‘As you have forsaken Me and served foreign (strange) gods in your land, so you will serve strangers in a land that is not yours.’”
They served strange gods in the land He gave them, so He sent them into exile in a strange land, where they were enslaved to strangers! According to your sin, He judges!
O infants, you have chosen to reject the Father and the Son and serve a strange god — the god of self. Though you sin and rebel and wage war against the Lord, you think you are destined for the kingdom of God. But unless you repent, you will not enter the kingdom of God (1Corinthians 6:10)! Why?
By waging war against Him by worshiping the strange god called the god of self, you have chosen to separate yourself from the Lord, you have chosen to make yourself a slave to Satan, and you have chosen to be his slave in his strange kingdom.
The Lord permits Satan to have his way with you (Luke 22:31), not wanting you to perish, but for you to come to repentance (2Peter 3:8). But if you do not repent while you are Satan’s captive, you will suffer the same judgment as Satan (Revelation 20:10, 15).
He exhorts infant leaders and infants in the pews who wage war against Him —
Isaiah 29:16 Ye turn things upside down! Shall the Potter be esteemed as clay; that the thing made should say of him that made it, He made me not; or the thing formed say of him that formed it, He hath no understanding (ability to instruct)? (ASV)
Just as the people of Judah turned things upside-down, O infant, you believe an upside-down gospel. The goal of infant leaders in the so-called church is to make Jesus Christ relevant to their infant followers. But you, O infant, are commanded by Him to stay and wait to be filled with the Holy Spirit, so you are relevant to His purpose.
What is His purpose? He tells you, in His prayer to His Father on the night He was to be captured and sentenced to death on a cross —
John 17:20-21 “I do not ask on behalf of these (the Apostles) alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word; 21 that they may all be one (having His divine nature); even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me.”
Through Jeremiah, the Lord exhorted Judah to repent and warned them of the consequences of their sin. But they did not listen.
When the Lord’s words came to pass, and they were on the brink of being overrun by Babylon, they chose to brazenly believe they could deceive the Lord. So they lied about what was in their hearts, saying —
Isaiah 64:8 But now, O LORD, You are our Father, we are the clay, and You our Potter; and all of us are the work of Your hand.
But He knew they were lying. Nothing is hidden from the eyes of Him with whom we have to do (Hebrews 4:13)! Today’s infants will do the same, trying to deceive the Lord!
O infants, when you stand before Jesus Christ on the day of judgment, He will show you that you have chosen to wage war against Him, because you have believed the lies of infant leaders.
You will speak words to Him that you think will keep Him from judging and sentencing you. You will tell Him about all the good deeds you did — natural things that any kind-hearted person would do. You will tell Him you love Him.
But He knows that you do not love Him, for you disobey Him and disbelieve Him! He knows your heart! Because you have waged war against Him, He has exiled you from His presence here and now. And if you do not repent, He will judge you in the day of judgment! Therefore, repent!
In His mercy, He announces a limited-time offer for those who repent —
Isaiah 55:6 Seek the LORD while He may be found; call on Him while He is near. 7 Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and He will have mercy on him, and to our God, for He will freely pardon. 8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, declares the LORD. 8 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.”
Repent and obey His commandments to stay and wait to be filled with the Holy Spirit! Then you will no longer wage war against Him. Instead, you will know Him in a holy, intimate way, so you will believe He is who He says He is. Your sin nature will be crucified, your heart will be purified and your heart will be filled with His love! Therefore, you will obey His Word always, and obey it gladly! (See 1John 1:3, Galatians 5:24, Acts 15:9, Romans 5:5, Romans 6:1-2.)
Then you surely will be equipped to conduct spiritual warfare against Satan and the lies he plants in the hearts of infant leaders and the infants they teach, in the so-called church (2Corinthians 10:5). And you will be one through whom the world will believe that the Father sent the Son!
Lord Jesus, may many infants see that they are waging war against You and the Father, and repent. Make it so, I pray. Amen.