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Discussion Forum : Articles and Sermons : The Lost Art of Godly Discernment by Leslie Ludy

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Joined: 2010/12/7
Posts: 1473
In Christ

 The Lost Art of Godly Discernment by Leslie Ludy

"Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw the disciples after themselves. Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.

Acts 20:30-31

A dusky haze settled over the muggy summer evening as the scent of bug spray and concession food wafted through the air. Busloads of church groups unloaded their giddy passengers while an enormous sound system boomed out pulsating music, setting the tone for the concert that was about to begin. Thousands of people spread blankets and lawn chairs on the ground of the enormous field, anticipating an exciting evening of music from a well-known Christian band.

Eric (my future husband, who was then a young teenager), sat with some of his family members, unsure what to expect. They had come to the event because it had been promoted by many local churches and ministries. His parents, no doubt, thought it would be edifying to gather with so many fellow Christians for a night of worship. They had no way of knowing how wrong that assumption was.

A hush of anticipation settled over the crowd as the pulsating music abruptly stopped and the enormous stage became illuminated with futuristic lights. Four leather-clad musicians swaggered onto the stage amid a haze of smoke, wielding their instruments like weapons. A deafening sound shocked through the atmosphere as they began their first song. The lead singer screeched unintelligible words into the microphone in a high-pitched, maniacal tone, while the other musicians’ bodies contorted crazily as they hammered violently on their drums and electric guitars. The scene was identical to that of any secular hard rock concert, with absolutely nothing to identify it as “Christian” in any way.

Eric’s mom turned to her family in dismay. “We need to leave!” she said firmly, grave concern in her voice. Everyone else quickly agreed. They gathered up their lawn chairs and made their way through the distracted crowd toward the parking lot, confused and disturbed that such behavior was being touted under the banner of a “Christian gathering.”

Later, they learned that a well-known evangelist who’d been at the concert had started running through the audience not long after they had left, trying to warn people of the dangerous activity they were participating in. In a grieved and despairing voice, he’d cried out the words “Ichabod! Ichabod!” to anyone within earshot. (“Ichabod,” from 1 Samuel 4:21, means “The glory of the Lord has departed!”)

Yet, most of the Christians attending the concert didn’t hear him. Those who did hear him dismissed the warning as the words of an extremist “kook.” Nearly every believer at the event was too enamored by the smoke, lights, and noise to recognize that “the glory of the Lord had departed."

Just like that concert, there is a lot of “smoke, lights, and noise” taking place under a Christian banner today. Megachurches, Christian “celebrities,” and trendy Christian messages often dazzle us with impressive bells and whistles that distract the eye and deceive the heart. Like those concert-goers, it’s easy to naively accept anything that is labeled as “Christian,” especially when our fellow believers are enthusiastically participating in it. Add enough glamour and hype to anything “Christian,” and we can quickly become blind to the fact that the glory of the Lord has departed. . . "

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 2021/8/21 13:20Profile

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