Jesus said, “If I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men unto me.” John 12:32 KJV He was lifted up from the earth on the Cross of Calvary, yes, and He is available to all people. But, how will they know this truth if we, who are His servants and followers, don’t lift Him up in all that we say and do?
I have been listening to Christian radio recently, and I have noticed something about the music. A lot (not all, but a significant amount) of it has left out the central part of the Gospel…the name and work of Jesus Christ! I was driving to church the other night, and switched on the radio for some “warm-up” music. Three songs, and not one mentioned the name of Jesus! The first song was a slow, lilting tune. Comforting words of peace and rest. The next was an up-beat, toe-tapper calling us to come to the river and lay down our burdens, find rest for our weariness. That heaven would heal us! Sounds great! I want to go where they are and chill from this crazy life…but…I found myself waiting for them to sing the important part. Come on! Sing it! Say that it is JESUS! I could even fill in His name and make it rhyme! But, it just didn’t happen! No mention of Jesus, or the cross, or what that burden is that wearies us so…sin.
I wanted to shout, well, maybe I did shout a little at the radio! “Tell them what that burden is they are carrying! Tell them why they are so weary! Tell them about their sin, and the remedy for it! Tell them Jesus is the River!” Heaven isn’t the healer! Jesus is!! Heaven is our destination and home, but Jesus takes our burdens and makes a way for us to be able to go to heaven. The Cross of Calvary is where our burdens can be lifted and our hearts cleansed from the burden of sin. After one is saved and cleansed, one has a better understanding of the “river.” And where to go with our burdens. But a “seeker” doesn’t know that. They might liken it to a meditative state or use the music itself to soothe them and make them “feel” better, if they aren’t taught the gospel truth.
It is one thing for Christian entertainment (radio & concert music) to be lax in ministering the heart (the bare truth) of the gospel, but soon churches will be using this same music in their worship services because it is popular, and, after all, it is written by and for Christians, right? And, while I have always felt that music in the song service should be directed to God in worship, we can’t deny the fact that “seekers” learn a lot of their theology from the music in church.
I am afraid that we have allowed the religious version of political correctness to infect the church. We are afraid to offend “seekers” by telling them they are sinners, and that they need a Saviour. We speak comfortably to them about laying down their guilt…but we don’t tell them that they need to recognize and repent from their sin. We feel embarrassed to speak (or sing) about the purpose of the Cross, His broken body, or the Blood of Jesus in salvation.
You can’t come to heaven to get released…you can’t come to some resting place to lay down your burden and find peace…you must come to Jesus Christ and His death on the Cross to gain entrance to that place! If we tell them there is rest for their souls, and healing for their bodies, but we don’t tell them exactly how to attain those things through Jesus, we are not adding “such as should be saved.” (Acts 2:47) We are really stealing their salvation! For there is no other door. We are ministering “another gospel.” (Gal. 1:8)
God help us if we don’t “rightly divide the word of Truth” in all of our music and ministry. (2Tim.2:15)
Let’s pray: Heavenly Father, How we need your Holy Spirit to help us to wait on our ministry. To make sure that we see the need to minister the whole truth, and not just the part that feels good to the “seeker.” Help us not to be ashamed of the Gospel, the Cross, and the Blood of Jesus. Help us to minister all of these liberally whenever and wherever we can so that all can come to the grace and knowledge of Your great salvation. In Jesus name,