In Today's Progressive Culture, Are You a Thermometer or a Thermostat?

(Unsplash/Jaroslaw Kwoczala)

I read these words from a parishioner. The following kind of thing is happening in "conservative" churches across the country:

The pastor would not answer my question when I asked him privately how he would handle it if a church member were supporting pro-abortion political candidates.

Then he started calling the 2020 riots "protests against injustice."

Then he taught a class on politics and church life, and he said: "If you tell people it is immoral to vote a certain way, you are being improperly divisive within the church."

I decided to leave at that point.

This kind of thing in one form or another is happening everywhere.

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In the last week, I have heard of dozens of people with stories similar to this one. They have outsourced their thinking to Jonathan Leeman, Mark Dever, Russell Moore and Timothy Keller. This is the tragic result.

For some of these effeminate-minded pastors, God may grant repentance once they recognize their error. But until that time comes, God will have a remnant who will rise up and say, "Enough is enough."

Difference Between a Thermometer and a Thermostat

To some people this example may seem small, insignificant or inconsequential, but they couldn't be more wrong. For within it contains the key to saving the nation. If pastors do not stand up in the authority of Scripture and speak boldly in this hour, the church will cease to be the final hurdle and firewall to the radical leftist agenda for the takeover of America. The nation is in need of strong, bold and courageous local pastors or shepherds. You can have apostles, prophets, evangelists and teachers, but without strong local church pastors, the power that comes from gathering together will fade, and the fruit will not be maintained.

Have you ever thought about the difference between a thermometer and a thermostat?

A thermometer takes the temperature outside, in a room or in a human body and so on. In other words, a thermometer blends in with the atmosphere, the culture and the prevailing attitude or progressive perspectives of our day. A thermostat sets the temperature in a room. It changes the atmosphere and dictates the culture. Christians are called to be change agents. We are called not to blend in but to stick out. Let me ask you: Are you a thermometer or a thermostat?

The aforementioned parishioner was compelled to leave his local church because the pastor had become a thermometer. He had stopped being a bold and courageous voice for the pillar and ground of truth, which is the church. Instead he had become a voice for social justice, which is one of the most deceptive misdirection strategies and misinterpretations of the real gospel today. And it is being used to subtly render the church an ineffective witness—lukewarm, compromising and good for nothing as Laodicea. When a church departs from the raw, naked, unfiltered truth of the gospel, it ceases to be salt and light. Local pastors bear much of the responsibility when that happens.

"[I, the apostle Paul, write so that] you might know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth" (1 Tim. 3:15).

Pastor, if social justice has become more important to you than compliance to Scripture, you are a thermometer.

Pastor, as an example, if you have allowed COVID-19 to close down your church, you are a thermometer.

Pastor, if you submit to lawless, illegitimate governmental rule, you have become a thermometer.

You are not required to obey evil, lawless government. Obedience is only required when civil government stays within the boundaries of God's Law. Telling you to be silent or to stop preaching the truth or to close your church is being a "terror to good works" (Rom. 13:3).

"Let every person be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except from God, and those that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. Rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil works. Do you wish to have no fear of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from him, for he is the servant of God for your good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain, for he is the servant of God, an avenger to execute wrath upon him who practices evil. So it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for the sake of conscience" (Rom. 13:1-5, author's emphasis).

When many Christians and pastors read those verses or teach on them, they don't include the third verse, which changes the entire context of what Paul is trying to say to the Romans.

Rulers are not to be a "terror to good works" but to evil. Preaching the gospel, helping the poor and healing the sick are not evil works, and we are not under any obligation to obey such laws or ordinances. Jesus alone is Lord, and lawless government has no authority over the church and its pastors. This is not a trivial issue. Did you know that COVID-19 alone has shut down 90% of American churches?

The times we are coming into right now will require greater strength, boldness and courage than ever before, for the opposition and persecution shall be greater.

Bert Farias' books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and turning away from the truth we are seeing today. The Tumultuous 2020s and Beyond is his latest release to help believers navigate through the new decade and emerge as an authentic remnant. Other materials and resources are available on his website, Holy Fire Ministries. You can follow him personally on Facebook, his Facebook ministry page or Twitter.

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