Hacking the Church :: By Daniel Payne

Spiritual Compromise
When a hacker succeeds in breaching the defenses surrounding large amounts of user data—assumed to be protected by a powerful firewall—the data is said to be “compromised.” There is now a considerable concern that the attack may have been malicious and that many people will be affected in a negative way.

As most of you have noticed for quite a few years now, many old-fashioned, traditional, conservative churches have changed many things in order to conform to a changing world. You might say that they’ve been hacked by demonic programmers.

Of course, not all change is bad and some changes are obviously necessary—such as updating aging infrastructure like repaving parking lots, renewing restrooms, kitchens, furniture, flooring, church vehicles, etc.

A “host” of other changes are necessary as well—like establishing an online presence—to keep a church functioning properly. Changes like these are as necessary to a church as to any other organization that needs to maintain maximum effectiveness—like a home or a business.

None of the aforementioned changes should ever require a Spiritual compromise however, especially for a church. Tragically too many of the changes performed by formerly principled churches began with spiritual compromise, which in turn produced visible biblical and moral decay.

Jesus condemned the Pharisees for appearing clean and moral on the outside while being filled with immorality and decay on the inside (Matthew 23:27).

Spiritual compromise or spiritually dishonorable changes have included everything from changing church names, music, dress-codes, service times, types of services, doing away with prayer meetings, and adding events that appeal to the flesh and ignore the spirit, etc.

No doubt when asked why the need for such drastic changes in their ministry—most if not all of these churches would say that they have to change in order to reach out and better connect to a changing world. It’s called “progress” they might say…

Has God changed?

Has the Bible changed?

Has the human voice changed?

Have human faces changed?

Have virtuous hymns and musical instruments changed?

God hasn’t changed. His Word hasn’t changed. His Way of salvation hasn’t changed. So why have you changed?

You may say, “But people have changed.” Do you think God has to change because people are becoming less moral and more high-tech? His strength is still there.

Christ Jesus was of no strong or noteworthy appearance during His previous earthly ministry:

“For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root out of dry ground. He has no form or comeliness; And when we see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him. He is despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him” (Isaiah 53:2-3).

The Lord Jesus may not have looked strong to the eye but He projected a very strong message:

“And so it was, when Jesus had ended these sayings, that the people were astonished at His teaching, for He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.”

He ascended into heaven without displaying His current heavenly power and glory. How else could He have walked alongside the disciples on the road after His resurrection without being recognized by them?

We, the true believers, are currently representative of His last appearance. Our current form is not yet recognizable as it will be—when we along with Him—will be revealed to the nations of the earth in His great power and glory.

“Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure” (1 John 3:2-3).

So if you’re worried about or concerned that you will continue to look weaker and weaker to the world while you hold to the righteously humble traditions of the time-honored conservative church—then you’re taking your eyes off of the strength of Jesus in order to gaze upon the wolves of Satan hacking into your ministry.

“So He said, ‘Come.’ And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, ‘Lord, save me!’

“And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, ‘O you of little faith, why did you doubt?’ And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. Then those who were in the boat came and worshiped Him, saying, ‘Truly You are the Son of God’” (Matthew 14:29-33).

The rapid increase of moral decay and depravity should strengthen your faith, not weaken it. That is the “spirit of fear” that the oft misquoted and misused verse in Paul’s second letter to Timothy is referring to. Notice that the context of the “spirit of fear” is contained within the very next verse:

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God” (2 Timothy 1:7-8).

The eyes and ears of those with a Spiritually attuned heart are able to perceive the deception and pitfall of compromising with Satan.

God did not compromise with Adam and Eve about the first human sin; Abraham and Sarah about having a son at their advanced age; Moses about freeing the Hebrew slaves; King David about his sin with Bathsheba; etc., so why should anyone think that He will compromise with an automation nation?

“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:15-17).

Don’t let Satan’s brigade of deal-making hackers infiltrate your church… if it’s not already too late.

“I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name” (Revelation 3:8).