I’m asked upon occasion about the decision I led Eastside Baptist through a few years ago as a church to repent and cease from age segregation of the ministries. I’m challenged by some about what this means about churches who don’t do as we have. I’m told that to use the word “repent” means that we think all churches who do not repent too are living in sin. I cannot speak for any other church but the one I am accountable to the Lord for. The one I will have to answer for. This transformation was with a sober reality of how much the world had had a grip on my ministry philosophy.
While preparing to preach through Judges I have been also looking for the warning signs from the New Testament that the modern church seems to ignore. These warnings are not spoken about from the pulpit very often and when it is, it offends the ears.
“…what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God.” (2 Cor 6:15-16 NASB)
I have also come across this warning from a deceased modern day preacher.
“God’s chosen people in the Old Testament were a segregated people and His purchased people int he New Testament were bidden not to integrate with this world. This is not physical separation, for we must live among the souls we are to evangelize. We are to be utterly distinct in spirit. Our approach, our motives and objectives and attitudes toward everything must be totally different, for we have the mind of Christ. This goes deeper than non-participation in dancing, card-playing, social drinking. Paul list the incompatibles that take in everything. Righteousness and unrighteousness: today these have become not merely relative but nonexistent in the modern mind – “the new morality” proves that! Light and darkness: when light comes in, darkness goes out-today a twilight has been created, neither day nor night, and men creep around in conditions of low visibility.
Christ and Belial: no “concord” there – today some thinkers would include the world in the church but the world’s friend is God’s enemy. The temple of God and idols: We have let Jezebel set up her altar to Baal beside the altar of Jehovah, mix the mystery of iniquity with the mystery of godliness. We need a new segregation of the church but the swing is entirely in the other direction of integration with the age. Thereby the church loses her identity and merges into the society she was meant to change. Of course it is part of the program of Antichrist, but God will have His faithful few in Sardis who shall walk with Him in white, for they are worthy.” ~ Vance Havner
Where are watchmen on the wall like this today?
Here is one: National Center for Family Integrated Churches