And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. (John 3:19)
We live in a crisis hour. If it had been told to our ancestors that the day would come that many Christians would no longer be able to tell the difference between darkness and light, they probably would not have believed it. But here we are. In fact, darkness is in vogue. (light is out and darkness is in) It is a sad state of affairs that must be confronted in our times. To lay back and do nothing is to risk a confusion in the churches of God worse than a man not knowing his right hand from his left. What is worse is that many so-called Christian leaders, especially among youth and young adults, actually have a closet-thirst for darkness. You see it in their preferences. They defend and make excuses for dark-things of all sorts. What says the scripture?
From Exposing Darkness to Espousing it
And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. (Ephesians 5:11 ESV)
The passage implies the possibility of Christians actually having 'fellowship' with darkness. What does this mean? Do we even hear this type of thing being taught today?
In Kansas City there used to be a television station owned and operated by Kansas City Youth for Christ (KYFC). A great majority of their programs were dedicated to exposing and reproving darkness in this world. They had programs with men like John Ankerburg and Walter Martin. They showed the evil of backwards masking (back-masking) that was prevalent in Rock and Roll music in the 70's and 80's. Songs that contained subliminal messages intelligible only when played backwards. They exposed demonic board games like Dungeons and Dragons, Ouija boards, Tarot cards, demonic movies and the like. They exposed false religion that tried to slip-in as yoga or meditation. They drew a clear line between what was of God and what was not. You name it, if it was found to be in darkness it was exposed, just as the scriptures say. KYFC used to show the youth of our city the pitfalls of the enemy in all its gross detail and expected the hearers to cease and desist from involvement in those things. But today, KYFC is no more. Darkness is infiltrating the churches of God, especially in youth culture, like a violent sun-stopping dust storm over a scorched city. And almost no one is saying anything. Hell is coming upon many churches and they are drinking it down like water. What is going on here? How did we go from exposing darkness to espousing it? Better yet, why would a person even need to bring this up? It is common sense. But there it is.
From wrestling against to dancing with...
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:12)
There was a time when we were actually willing to tell the difference between what is good and what is evil. Today its all lumped together as if there were no difference. Darkness is the absence of light; that is, the light of Jesus Christ and the light of revelation truth. Many today are not wrestling with darkness, they are dancing with it; they are playing games with evil, flirting with the devil and darkness as if there were no enemy. Have the masses become so drunk on the elixir of this world that they are totally undiscerning? Can we even tell what is of God and what is of the devil anymore? Do we even care? Who would think that in the last 5 years vampires, drinking blood, and an overall fascination and romance with dark things would be in vogue among many Christians. There is something seriously wrong with that. Can you imagine a devil worshipper desiring to feel the presence of God? Would Satan usher light into his dark meetings? Then why is there a generation of professing Christians that desire a tinge of evil in so much that they do? Like a person adding Tobasco sauce to everything; these have to add a little darkness to the things of God to make them palatable. Are they intentionally trying to provoke God? I suspect they are doing a good job of it.
Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: (Colossians 1:13)
Why would a people delivered from darkness take it back up into their bosom as a friend? The enemy makes no bones about his wickedness. If you flirt with the devil he will take-up your invite. All you need to do is give him some signals that you want to entertain his presence. People know when they are flirting and so does the devil. He knows when you are coming-on towards him. He is not stupid no matter how innocent you might act about it. It is shocking to me that many believers do not know that skeletons, skulls and crossbones, pentagrams, all black clothing, black nail polish, gothic wear, etc. are symbolic of evil and of darkness. How is hell a fashion statement? Seriously. This is one of a hundred examples of like things that any of us could give. Some things are clearly of the devil and we need to quit the games. People are getting confused as to what is and is not of God. If you want to damn your own soul thats your business, but don't do it and name the name of Christ. As it is written, And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. (2 Timothy 2:19)
If you see a cross what do you think of? If you see a pentagram what do you think of? Yet the enemie's symbols have been in vogue so long there is a generation that don't even know this stuff is evil. They think its fashionable. Is it OK to wear the devil's garb and then make excuses? Many would ask, "What's wrong with it?" Its like hell itself is fair game these days. Would you dress like a devil and then approach Jesus Christ? I didn't think so.
Making the messenger the enemy
I learned as a young believer that I cannot entertain evil and understand the mind of God and the ways of God at the same time. When leaders don't read their bible and spend all manor of time watching secular television- is there any wonder why the bible based believer cannot relate to them and vis-versa? What is programming your mind? What is building your world view? Is it the bible? An adult recently told my 10 year old son after he ministered on Daniel the prophet and trusting God, that he was not a pastor and needed watch Nicelodeon and Disney Channel to learn how to reach kids his age. He tried to minister respectfully with honor. These are the devils that are influencing our kids. It reminds me of how when I was youth pastor I was told I needed to watch 1 hour of MTV a day to relate to the kids. Why not just let Baalzebub teach me to preach? The staggering backslidden godlessness and devilry seems to have no end.
Mockers of Goodly Things
The youth culture today is prepared to mock and bad-mouth the old hymns and traditions and then turn and take-up the most diabolic things. Its as if we are so drunk on the wine of Lucifer that we actually think we can use evil and darkness to attract youth. The sad thing is, people like myself, that are constantly concerned, have to come up with clever ways of bringing this stuff up without causing too much offense. Then the whole issue gets spun on our heads and we look like the enemy. We look like the ones causing confusion. But no more. We will take this assault head on. The proliferation of darkness is going to stop infiltrating the churches and the people involved need to be set out on front street as the wolves they are. If Baal be God serve him, but if Jehovah be God serve Him. Away with teachers and ministers that can't decide what is good or evil; light or darkness. Away with those that think darkness is 'cool' or 'hip' and a valid means of reaching youth culture.
Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them. For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (Ephesians 5:5-8)
We, as Christians, are called to walk as children of Light. This means we are to identify with LIGHT, not DARKNESS. We are called to use the word of God to train (exercise) our senses to discern good and evil. (Hebrews 5:1ff) If we don't exercise our senses, we will plunge into spiritual darkness and ignorance. The writer to the Hebrews actually warns us that some had once understood spiritual things on a 'strong-food' level, but because they refused to use the word to enable them to discern good from evil they plunged back into the milk of spiritual infancy. Imagine a teenager driving through McDonalds to buy a hamburger and the next time you see them they are in a playpen with a baby bottle. This is what happens when men and women refuse to let God be true and walk in the light that they have. How can we train our senses? Here are a few examples:
* When we see evil, we turn from it. We don't sit there and let demons minister to our or our families spirit. Demonic television, cartoons and movies- that are clearly evil have no place in the life of a believer. How callous are we when we can watch a TV program that is called 'IDOL'? Seriously. That would make a healthy Christian tremble at the thought. But the hearts are hard and the attitudes are bold and brazen. They are like Pharaoh being fitted for destruction. But at the end-of-the day we have the audacity to wonder why there is no fruit in our midst. Is it OK to manufacture idols? I trow not. Is it OK to let kids play evil video games and play with demonic looking figurines? Snap out-of-it man. Snap out-of-it woman. If you entertain evil in your home there is no wonder you can't control your kids or they have mental issues. Many kids don't need pills or a counselor; they need parents that refuse to allow demonic things in their home.
* When we taste evil, we spit it out. That is a natural, God-given response. Why are we arguing about this? Acquiring a taste for a drink means your natural response is probably warning you it is poison you are drinking. You know if you are putting something in your mouth that moveth itself aright in the glass. (Proverbs 23:31) If its not for medicinal purposes and it is altering your behavior you are 'being drunk with wine' as you were told NOT to do (Ephesians 5:18).
* When we hear evil, we turn from it. I recently heard a young man driving early morning blasting 'death-metal' from his car. It was undoubtedly his pick-me-up. It was his morning coffee. It motivated him. The sound was so foul to my spirit that I could feel as if hell itself was coming out of the radio. It has absolutely no place in the life of a believer, not today, not tomorrow, not ever.
* When we smell evil, we turn from it. Common sense. You can smell when someone is smoking something they shouldn't be. You can't take in a deep breath and tell God it was an accidental contact-high. You know as soon as that hits your nostrils to TURN AWAY. Run from the spell-binding smoke (pharmakia). It is darkness. Its evil. Stop putting that stuff up your nose if your doing it. And God forbid to be in a backslidden state and then influence the goings-on in the churches of God.
Lovers of Darkness or Light?
Men love darkness, but Christians are supposed to love light. The truth is, if you love darkness you are not a Christian no matter what you profess. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: (1 John 1:6) We are not just 'not Christians' we are liars besides; because we are lying about our profession. Our actions and words don't match up.
Team Light or Team Night?
Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. (1 Thess. 5:5)
This is as simple and commonsensical as anything. Think about what this is saying. We are not of the night, but are of the day. Why in the world would we try to simulate night conditions when we are children of the day? It goes on all the time these days in so-called Christian concerts and worship services. It has gotten so crazy, that even elderly preachers have to preach on darkened concert looking stages. It is a crying shame. It is sheer madness, really. Many of these so-called leaders are on a power trip to boot and want the 'laity' to follow them as if they are some great thing. How can a person follow those that don't even have the good sense to know light from darkness? Many leaders don't even have the good sense to know what team they are on- the Team Light or Team Night? Can it get any more pathetic than this?
A Chosen Generation
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: (1Peter 2:9)
Imagine this, we have been called out of darkness, but we shew forth our praises in a darkened atmosphere. This is a new thing friend. It is an innovation drawn up among the massive fail of Christian youth culture today. The revolving door keeps a steady number in as the older ones get fed up and quit church and God all together. The statistics prove this. Its epic fail. But how can we expect God to bless churches that can't even tell the difference between darkness and light and good and evil? Seriously. Should we be surprised? If you were God would you bless a people that entertain evil and darkness as a means of 'winning' the youth or identifying with them? We are supposed to be a peculiar people. We are supposed to be a people unlike the world or the latest thing out of Hollywood. We are supposed to be our own peculiar culture running counter to the evil of this age.
If you are angry right now I want to ask some questions; how much TV do you watch a week? What programs? What kind of music do you listen to? What do you entertain? Do you entertain darkness? Are you rebellious at heart and are trying desperately to cover it up? Who are you angry at? Do you know that God is a holy God and has told us specifically not to touch the unclean thing in order for Him to receive us?
You cannot serve darkness and light. If you are into the gothic thing you need to check yourself. If you are into dark music, video games and other types of media you need to seriously check yourself. If you think that looking to this evil world for means to reach young adults and youth is legit- you need to turn in your credentials or repent: plain and simple; because you are not qualified in the Kingdom of God with a mentality like that and you know you're not. If you are a lover of darkness you need to forsake that false god and turn to the Light of Christ.
Stop feeding your spirit evil things, if you are doing so. EXERCISE your senses and see if your mind don't change about these issues.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon