Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
November 19, 1970
NUMBER 28, PAGE 6-8a

Let Him Be Filthy

Charles Huber

"Rejoice not, 0 Israel, for joy, as other people: for THOU host gone a whoring from thy God...." (Hosea 9:1). How repulsive were the circumstances and living conditions among the chosen people of God. From the context comes a severe warning to us today, that when we, as children of the family of God, leave the ways of the Lord for the ways of the world — as did the Israelites — we too, shall stand condemned before Him. Our destiny will be identical to that which they received: destruction! The Lord warns us today that "those who have plowed wickedness will reap iniquity" (Hosea 10:13). Too often we "sow wild oats" of our own will and the world's all week long, and then on Sunday, we "pray for a crop failure!"

Paul states the reason God preserved the law and history of the Israelites, was "so that we might learn obedience" (Romans 15:4). Sad to say, apparently, His efforts were in vain. While we may read the Old Testament, we, obviously however, too seldom learn from it. We are like the Israelites in many aspects. But only in one major area are we identical: "we do that which is right in OUR eyes" (Deuteronomy 12:8). Simply stated, we, like the Israelites, are willfully and belligerently disobedient to the commands of God.

This was brought home to me in a recent discussion with several Christians. A truth was brought out that ought to cut every devoted Christian, every Gospel evangelist, and especially every elder, to the quick. In an effort to set forth Biblical teachings on Christ-like living, it was explicitly brought out that if such principles of immodest apparel, mixed swimming, drinking, adultery, dancing, gossiping, lying, smoking, covetousness, etc., were to be enforced (Revelation 21:8; Ephesians 5:5), that those who were guilty of such sinful activities would go to a "sister congregation" where they could continue therein and be completely acceptable. As repulsive as this may be, today there is more truth than fiction to the statement. Several of the guilty parties cited specific congregations where not only were these sinful acts tolerated, but that many "righteous" Christians participated in them — including the evangelists and elders.

It appears that a revolutionary new standard of morals and acceptable living has erupted and been accepted by the brotherhood of believers. As inconsistent and ungodly as it may seem, it is, nevertheless, the truth! What is our purpose in professing Christianity? By whose standards are we expecting to reach eternal bliss? God's — or — the sensual, ungodly standards of men? Brethren, we need to realize that just because so-and-so does something, does not mean it is right or acceptable to God: be he elder, evangelist, teacher, angel or apostle! Did any of these die for us? Can they save us from the tumultuous plunge we are taking — into perdition?

It is pathetic indeed, when professing Christians live their lives in such a way that it is impossible to distinguish the Christian from the worldlian. And we piously wonder why more aren't converted to Christ. Little wonder! One reason might be that our denominational friends can SEE NO DIFFERENCE, and thus realize no value in "changing religions." By the manner of living generally accepted by those professing Christianity, we have nothing to offer them — except a watered-down, hypocritical Gospel. For this, they realize no importance to change; and unfortunately, justifiably so. When such is the case, seldom will the power of the Gospel even receive an audience for examination.

Brethren, when are we going to become cognizant of the devastating threat facing the Lord's church? NOT a threat of socialism; NOT a threat of liberalism outside the confines of the church; NOT a threat of communism; or even Catholicism; but the threat WE PRESENT because of our pious, self-righteous mores — rather than acceptance and adherence to those of Jesus Christ! WE ARE THE THREAT! When are we going to stem the backward and downward tide of infidelity to our husband: Christ Jesus? (Jeremiah 6:15). Have our hearts become so calloused to truth by wishy-washy, so called "gospel sermons" that when truth is finally proclaimed, the impact and pain is unbearable? Have we reached — NOT the point of no return — but rather, the POINT OF NO CONCERN? Are we so naive as to believe that by adhering to God's ways of righteousness that He would allow a congregation to go bankrupt by cleaning out the church? Even if it meant having no fellowship with sinful, good-giving brethren? WHEN are we going to stand up and be counted for Christ?

Every recorded instance of discipline in the church resulted in physical and spiritual growth. Growth only surpassed by the initial weeks of the existence of the church. Have times changed so much? Has the Lord changed or lowered His standards of righteousness and acceptability, for the modern, well-educated, 20th century man - so that to lie, to commit adultery, to gossip, to attempt to buy one's salvation is no longer sin? Let me cite an example of contemporary Christian philosophy.

A man who professed Christianity recently approached a congregation in the South to which community he had moved. He came with an outward willingness and enthusiasm to serve the Lord. Experienced and educated in the teaching profession, he appeared to be a definite asset to the church. When informed that Biblical standards in all things — especially Christian living — were to be adhered to by the members of that congregation, enthusiasm instantly turned to indignation. He politely informed that church that he would re-return to his previous congregation where such carnality, to which he was accustomed, was permitted. He further stated that he had previously provided such "wholesome Christian entertainment" as mixed swimming and skiing parties at the lake! Only to be followed shortly thereafter by a dance — in the fellowship hall of the church building! This is Christianity in action? And we wonder why the church doesn't grow! WHY is it that we are so quick to forget such an important commandment as discipline of the ungodly? Is it because WE, too, would have to change our ways?

In many congregations, for the preacher to publically speak out against specific sins, such as immorality and others previously mentioned, is an open invitation to begin job hunting! Preachers joke that such would certainly be a "moving sermon" — not for the congregation, but for them. But, is this a joking matter? There are souls at stake. Is it not the responsibility of the faithful to attempt to clean out such filth (Galatians 6:1; James 5:19-20)? If this was not the Lord's intent, what did He mean when He said to "declare the whole counsel of God" (Acts 20:27)? and then later state that failure to do such was damnable? HOW LONG will it be before we see some modern Josiah's and Ezra's with the intestinal fortitude rise up to stem this tide to perdition?

The Lord said that our wounds of sinfulness ate not incurable - IF we will but go to the Great Physician. His greatest interest is not HOW MUCH we give, but rather, HOW WE GIVE. He wants goodness and mercy, not sacrifices; knowledge and obedience, not our "burnt offerings" of leftover time, left-over talents, and left-over funds (Hosea 6:6). When will we begin to comprehend and apply the admonitions and warnings of the prophets: "Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live. . ." (Amos 5:14)? The wise man Solomon stated our ONLY PURPOSE IN LIFE in this way: "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the sole duty of man" (Ecclesiastes 12:13). When will we begin to sow the righteousness of Jesus, that we might reap His mercy and blessings?

To the Israelites, Jehovah said because of almost identical circumstances, "I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offense, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me earnestly" (Hosea 5:15). When will we begin to break the "fallow ground" to produce fruit for Jesus (Hosea 10:12)? Until such time occurs, we shall not be showered with His righteousness and love; but rather with His wrath and indignation. "Who is wise, that he may understand these things? prudent, that he may obey them; for the ways of Jehovah are right, and the just shall walk in them? but the transgressors shall fall therein and be lost" (Hosea 14:9). HOW LONG will we continue to reap the sad dividends of a rising generation more ungodly and uneducated in the ways of the Messiah than even we? HOW LONG shall we continue to close our ears to the loving commands of the Lord? HOW LONG will we continue to shut our eyes to the magnificent view of Heaven? HOW LONG will we continue to go a whoring after our own lusts and desires? THIS TREND WILL CONTINUE until we are willing to stand up, be counted, and make the glorious acclamation — not by mouth — but by life, that "For me and my house, we will serve the Lord!" (Joshua 24:15).

When Jesus returns, and He will, all opportunity for obedience and service will cease. There will be no second chance. Multitudes will cry out, "Why did not someone teach and show me the ways of the Lord? Why was I so unwilling to give up the things of the world for Jesus?" For multitudes who were "Almost Persuaded" to repent and obey, their epitaph will be: "The summer is over, the harvest is past, and we are not saved" (Jeremiah 8:20). For those who have been born again and have continued in obedience, the Lord shall say, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant. . . enter thou into the joy of the Lord" (Matthew 25:21).

The Apostle John, in Revelation 22:11, epitomized the teachings of Jesus in these words: "He that is filthy, let him be filthy still" and spend eternity with HIS FRIENDS and HIS KING in HELL; but "He that is righteous and holy, let him be righteous and holy still" that he might look forward to and rejoice at the Lord's Coming. What will be your eternal plight? What shall be the future plight of the Lord's Church, as it depends on you — and me? Will we and His church continue in the present filth, or, will we clean ourselves and His Church up to the standards that Jesus Christ DIED FOR? Brethren, let us all fervently search our hearts and our souls, and then OBEY, that we might enter into the eternal, celestial abode with Jesus.

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