When I Was Single, Jesus Wasn’t My Husband

when-i-was-single-jesus-wasnt-my-husband

The other day, a girlfriend and I were hanging out and conversing about life, and the subject of relationships came up.

We spoke about some of the challenges that women face in singleness and marriage and how the cliche “Jesus is my husband” romanticizes the Lord and can be an unhealthy coping mechanism and a form of denial for single women who desire marriage.

I shared with my girlfriend that when I was single, I never claimed that I didn’t want a husband, referred to Jesus as my “husband,” or pretended that being complete and content in Christ meant that I always felt fulfilled and satisfied as a woman.

Yes, Jesus was (and is) my everything. He is my God, my righteousness, my Savior, my Redeemer, my King, my High Priest, my Good Shepherd, my Rock, my Mediator — but no, He wasn’t my husband when I was single.

There was a loneliness and a longing within my heart and body that only a husband could satisfy. There were desires and endeavors that could only be fulfilled through the companionship, affection, and support of a husband. Just as it wasn’t good for Adam to be alone. It wasn’t good for me to be alone either.

Some people are ordained by God to be eunuchs and given the spiritual gift of lifelong singleness and celibacy. This is a beautiful and honorable calling, and it is worthy of just as much encouragement and support as marriage. But I knew that God didn’t call me to lifelong singleness and celibacy.

I desired a righteous man who was suitable for me, to protect, provide, produce, problem-solve, and hold my hand as we followed Christ together, built a family legacy together, laughed together, went through hardships together, and got on each other’s nerves together.

Of course, in regards to salvation, I knew that I didn’t need anyone except Jesus. But in regards to marriage and family, I knew that I needed a husband.

Is It Biblical To Say “Jesus Is My Husband”?

89042_original

I see nothing in Scripture which directly states or implies that Jesus is the spiritual husband of single women.

What I do see is that in the Old Testament, God is analogized as the husband of the nation of Israel, and the nation of Israel is analogized as a wife or virgin who is betrothed to God. See Isaiah 54:5, Ezekiel 16, Jeremiah 31:32, and Hosea 2:16-20.

In the New Testament, Jesus is analogized as the husband or bridegroom of the Church, and the Church is analogized as a wife, bride, or betrothed virgin who belongs to Christ. See John 3:29, Mark 2:19, Matthew 25:1-13, Romans 7:4, 2 Corinthians 11:2-4, Revelation 19:7, Revelation 21:2, and Revelation 21:9-10.

God often used analogies in Scripture to demonstrate a higher spiritual truth. The purpose of the husband-wife/bridegroom-bride analogy was to demonstrate God’s love for and faithfulness to His covenant people, the unfaithfulness or harlotry of God’s covenant people, the union or oneness between Christ and the Church, the believer’s relationship to the law of Moses and sin, to give us a glimpse into the future of the marriage of the Lamb and His bride, etc. But nowhere in Scripture is the husband-wife/bridegroom-bride analogy used to demonstrate that Jesus is the spiritual husband of individual single women. This idea is foreign to Scripture.

Scripture makes a distinction between Jesus as the husband or bridegroom of the Church collectively, and a literal husband. It does not intertwine the two. But some women are tangling the two together because of false religious ideas floating around the church.

Husbands are being placed in the position of Christ which turns them into an idol, and Christ is being placed in the position of a husband which turns Him into a romanticized “Heavenly Mr. Right” which is wrong, unhealthy, and frankly, kind of creepy. Some of us need to untangle who Jesus is from what a husband is, and sanctify Jesus as Lord in our hearts instead of attributing a role to Him that Scripture does not.

If Jesus Is The Husband Of Single Women, Is The Church The Wife Of Single Men?

My friend and I found it interesting that we have never seen a single man say, “the Church is my wife.” There might be a few men out there who have said such a thing, but I have never run into them.

I have never seen any memes or books that romanticize the Church as the “spiritual wife” of individual single men in order to make them feel fulfilled and content in their singleness.

The idea of the Church being the “spiritual wife” of single men would not be trendy or lucrative, because it is not attractive or appealing to most single men. It would come across as just as weird and unbiblical as the idea that Jesus is the “spiritual husband” of single women.

Single men who are serious about getting married prepare for it and look for a wife. They do not romanticize the Church as their “spiritual wife” while they are still single and pretend that the Church can fulfill the role of a literal wife and satisfy their desires until they meet that special woman.

Just as the Church is not the “spiritual wife” of single men, Jesus is not the “spiritual husband” of single women. If we are not going to promote romanticized analogies to single men in place of a literal wife, then we need to stop promoting romanticized analogies to single women in place of a literal husband.

“Jesus Is My Husband” Can Be A Coping Mechanism

A coping mechanism is a method or strategy that a person uses to manage stress or deal with difficult situations and circumstances. People adopt different kinds of coping mechanisms to deal with life experiences that cause stress, pain, or trauma.

I know from experience that it can be emotionally challenging to be single when you want nothing more than to walk down the aisle in your wedding gown and say “I do,” yet year after year, your desires are deferred while everyone else around you gets married and tells you to “wait on God” while you slowly transform into “the cat lady.”

You try to be strong and optimistic, but there are times when you feel lonely, depressed, dissatisfied, disappointed, frustrated, bitter, unfulfilled, upset, apathetic, and jaded.

There are times when you are burning with passion and your body is telling you that your biological clock is ticking. For women, the older we get, our fertility rate decreases and the probability of infertility increases.

You wonder if you will ever get married considering the world that we live in and the fact that marriage does not happen for everyone. These feelings and thoughts linger in the minds of many single women.

My friend and I agreed that some single women are trying to cope with these unpleasant feelings and thoughts by calling Jesus their husband.

Some women dive deeper into ministry and busy themselves with church work. Some use food to comfort themselves. Some shop til they drop and accumulate material things. Others immerse themselves in their career or keep going back to school. Some romanticize Jesus as their husband, boyfriend, or lover, or say that they are having a “date night with Jesus” in order to mask their true feelings of loneliness and unhappiness.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that there is something wrong with leaning on Christ in order to cope with the struggle of being single and desiring marriage. Jesus can and does comfort our heart. He said that He would not leave us as orphans, that He would come to us (via the Holy Spirit, the Comforter), and be with us until the end of the age. But we do not need to place Jesus in a role that Scripture does not (a personal “spiritual husband”) in order to be comforted by Him.

The Lord was my consolation when I was single, and I knew that in Him, I had a High Priest who could sympathize with my weaknesses and I could draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that I might receive mercy and find grace to help me in my time of need (Hebrews 4:14-16). There were emotionally “cloudy days” when I was single and there was nothing that anyone could say or do to brighten my mood. It was during these times, when man couldn’t comfort me, that Jesus did. And during these times, Jesus wasn’t “being my husband.” He was being my High Priest as Scripture teaches.

Even now that I am married, I still have days where I struggle emotionally, and the Lord is present as He promised to provide mercy and grace. Sure, my husband can pray for me and pray with me, but only God can comfort my soul.

Just as there are things that my husband cannot do for me because he isn’t my Lord and Savior, there are things that Jesus doesn’t do for me because He isn’t my husband. Christ’s role is unique, and my husband’s role is unique. And it is important that women (including myself) don’t blur the lines of distinction and tangle them together.

It Is Unhealthy To Suppress Normal Desires & Feelings

It is normal to desire marriage and desire a husband. If this has not happened for you yet, it is normal to feel emotional pain, and you don’t have to hide that pain behind platitudes like “Jesus is my husband” and pretend that the Lord is satisfying your desire for a husband.

The Lord never intended to satisfy our desire for a spouse or provide the companionship of a husband or wife. This is why after He created Adam, He said that it was not good for man to be alone and created a woman for Adam. Adam already had close fellowship with God, but the Lord saw that he needed intimacy with a woman.

If you desire a husband, don’t deny it. Don’t cover it up. Don’t pretend that the Lord can compensate for a husband. Don’t pretend that you are strong, happy, and “content in your singleness” all of the time. Take the mask off!

You aren’t less of a woman, less spiritual, desperate, needy, or weak for acknowledging your desire for a husband, and you aren’t guilty of sin for feeling down about being single.

It is okay to express grief, dissatisfaction, and unhappiness — just don’t wallow in it forever and let your emotions lead you and dictate your decisions. Acknowledge how you feel, pray about it, confide in trustworthy friends about it, and be led by the word of God.

In the mean time. . . single ladies, until you say “I do,” Jesus isn’t your husband, your boyfriend, your boo, or your bae. He is King of kings and Lord of lords, and may we all reverence Him as such.

I’m on TuneIn Radio!

tunein-radio-pro

The Exit Churchianity podcast is now on TuneIn Radio = ) Just download the free TuneIn Radio app on your cellphone and search for the key terms “Exit Churchianity” and viola! Previous podcast episodes are now at your fingertips. Click here to visit the Exit Churchianity TuneIn Radio page.

4 Reasons Why I’m Tired of “Women’s Ministry”

Stepford-Wives-The-DI-3

Bear with me as I attempt to organize and express my thoughts.

First let me say what I’m not tired of. . .

I’m not tired of cultivating genuine friendships with sisters in Christ.

I’m not tired of gleaning godly wisdom from older women in The Faith.

I’m not tired of learning how to have a stronger marriage and love my husband and our son more deeply.

I’m not tired of those precious Spirit-led “Titus 2 moments” that can only be shared by sisters in Christ.

I believe that it is important for Believing women to connect with and be discipled by other women in The Faith – women who model the character of Christ, hold to sound doctrine, and graciously help other women grapple with life’s issues according to Christ and His word.

I appreciate those women who effectively influence other women for Christ and encourage us in the Refiner’s fire as the Father conforms us into the image of His Son.

In saying that, I want you to know that my list isn’t a judgment, a condemnation, or a criticism of every. single. solitary. women’s ministry on earth.

So let’s all relax, take a deep breath, and “goosfraba.”

There are some amazing women out there pouring Gospel-packed wisdom into the lives of other women in the public eye, in local congregations, and in intimate settings.

So please know that I’m not sharing this list as if to say that all women’s ministries are guilty of these things or somehow ungodly.

Neither am I sharing this list as if to say, “I’m a flawless perfect woman who ministers to everyone perfectly and everything that I have ever said and done has been godly and pleasing to the Father.”

I didn’t write this article with my nose in the air looking down on others as if I’m a “super saint.” I’m just a woman who is saved by grace and I’m honestly tired of some of the things that I have seen and experienced under the banner of “women’s ministry.”

This isn’t a “95 Theses.” These are just my thoughts about why I’m tired of “women’s ministries.”

tired

1.Jesus is a footnote.

Sure, Jesus is mentioned. But He’s typically mentioned as someone who boosts the self-esteem of women, makes us feel valuable and beautiful, sends single women husbands, and manifests our desires.

He is presented as someone who is in the periphery of our life, waiting on us hand and foot to do our will, make us feel better, and make our lives better.

He is Lord “by statement of faith only” but not in practice and consistent teaching.

This is diametrically-opposed to Scripture which emphasizes the preeminence of Christ (Colossians 1:15-20, Hebrews 1).

Jesus isn’t merely some genie in a bottle who affirms us as women, makes our lives better, makes us feel better, and grants our desires.

He is eternal life (1 John 1:1-4). He is the Word of God through whom all things were created (John 1:1-4). He is the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End (Revelations 22:13). He is worshiped by the heavenly host (Revelations 5:1-14).

This might sound odd to some of you, but “Biblical womanhood” and “femininity” shouldn’t have the preeminence in women’s ministry — Jesus should.

There are too many teachings about how to be a godly woman, and not enough teachings about the one who makes us godly: Jesus.

Many women’s ministries have it backwards. They think that if they emphasize “Biblical womanhood,” women will become more godly.

True godliness, however, does not come from emphasizing Biblical womanhood. True godliness comes from teaching women about Christ so that we can behold Him and be transformed by the Holy Spirit into His image and reflect His glory.

“So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.” (2 Corinthians 3:18)

Many women have a form of godliness because they are being taught about “Biblical womanhood” more than Christ Himself.

If you look at the attributes that Scripture says holy women are to have, you will see that Jesus exemplified these attributes in the Gospels. So it’s being conformed to His image that makes us godly women, not conforming to someone’s ideal of “Biblical womanhood.”

Jesus created women in His image, so we need to learn of Him if we are to exemplify true godliness as women. It’s not about being a “better woman” or being “more feminine,” often times according to subjective cultural religious standards. It’s about being more like Christ which means denying ourselves and taking up our cross daily.

“He must increase, but I must decrease.” (John 3:30)

Jesus should not be a footnote in a women’s ministry. He should be the object of our worship, and conforming to His image should be the first and foremost purpose of anything that is said and done under the banner of “women’s ministry.”

2. The Gospel is rarely proclaimed or it’s watered down.

This probably concerns me the most, because many women who follow women’s ministries aren’t saved – many are lost, religious, and still in need of the Gospel.

The most important message that any women’s ministry can teach is the Gospel, because the Gospel is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes (Romans 1:16).

There is a place for teaching women about femininity, courting and marriage, sexual discipline, parenting, how to succeed God’s way in our careers, academics, and finances, having a positive attitude, and how to live morally upright in an immoral generation.

None of these teachings, however, are the Gospel message. None of these teachings can redeem a woman, regenerate her heart, reconcile her back to God, give her eternal life, and save her soul from sin and the second death.

I’m concerned that many women are being taught how to be outwardly moral, have a positive mindset, feel good about themselves, be successful, be physically fit, look nice, be good wives and mothers, how to groom for marriage, how to be feminine, and be a “good person,” but they haven’t heard the Gospel. What is the point in learning all of these things only to die and perish in sin?

The ultimate purpose of women’s ministry isn’t to teach women how to feel better, look better, think positive, and improve themselves. Otherwise, there is no difference between “women’s ministry” and secular self-improvement or secular women’s empowerment, except for a thin outer “Christian” layer.

The ultimate purpose of women’s ministry should be to glorify God through the mutual edification of Believing women and the preaching of the Gospel.

Here in America, we are living in a society where most people who profess faith in Christ don’t know Him and have very little idea of what the Gospel is. This includes those in the pews. Considering this, we should proclaim the Gospel in any sphere of influence that God gives us.

It’s a travesty to mentor and “empower” women who are headed towards an eternity without God because they have never heard the Gospel.

Many “women’s ministries” are omitting the most important and essential life-saving message that women can ever hear — that by repenting and believing in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus  Christ, they can be saved and have eternal life.

Other “women’s ministries” have edited the Gospel and promote false gospels based on Word-Faith/prosperity heresy, the American dream, “purpose-driven-church-growth” nonsense, political philosophies, New Age philosophy, and works-based teachings that if you believe in Jesus and “do your best to be a good person” you will go to heaven when you die.

There are women out there who have extremely popular “women’s ministries,” but promote a distorted false “gospel” and do not proclaim the truth of the Gospel to their supporters (Galatians 1:6-9).

There is a danger in promoting false gospels, because false gospels indoctrinate people against the true Gospel of Christ and deceive them into thinking that they are right with God when they are not.

Believing a false gospel can lead to a false conversion and a false “salvation.” This places the souls of women who believe a false gospel in grave danger and can harden their heart against the true Gospel.

3. It’s too “tiptoe through the tulips” for me.

As many of you know, I’m passionate about helping people navigate through the messy and painful side of “church.” The spiritual abuse, sexual abuse, financial exploitation, and other forms of severe mistreatment. I discuss it all here.

My vision for Exit Churchianity was to provide an oasis where Believers feel comfortable sharing about these things free from unrighteous judgments, know that they aren’t alone, and find encouragement to “fight the good fight” and “keep the faith.”

I also have a heart for engaging individuals within the Black Consciousness Movement and addressing cultural issues that are unique to the Black community from a Biblical perspective.

As you can imagine, this has made me a bit of a firebrand and an outspoken person.

I tend not to shy away from serious issues in the professing Christian community, especially if people are being misled and subjugated and lives are being destroyed.

Many women’s ministries on the other hand tend to encourage women to be passive, docile, politically correct, spiritually obtuse and oblivious, and avoid bringing up serious issues in the professing Christian community and society at large.

It’s as if some women’s ministries have this unspoken rule not to discuss the dysfunctional and damaging things going on in the name of Christ. And to just go along with whatever the activity, program, or topical teaching is in a “baby shower” “tea party-like” environment.

Everything has to be “nicey nicey,” sweet and sugary, neat, smooth and seamless, pink and fluffy, overly sentimental, prim and proper, warm cookies and flowers, care bears and rainbows, and “dancing through the daffodils” to the Sound of Music soundtrack.

Okay. Maybe I over-exaggerated a bit. But hopefully you get the point.

I’m ready to “grab the bull by the horns” and tackle real life issues – not sit around twiddling my thumbs in a politically-correct environment listening to endless topical messages about “Biblical womanhood” and gushy emotional stuff.

Tip toe through the tulips? No thanks. I’d much rather be in the trenches going to war in the Spirit.

woman knight_zpsqm6iblq6

4. I can’t relate.

There are a few reasons why.

A. Most women’s ministries (that I have seen) don’t address the cultural issues that I deal with as a Christian woman who has African ancestry and lives in a low-income predominantly Black neighborhood.

I find that many women simply don’t want to talk about these things, because it makes them feel uncomfortable, they were taught that Believers shouldn’t discuss cultural issues, they don’t care, or they just aren’t aware of what is going on.

The general message that I get is to stay within the parameters of middle upper class white picket fence American Churchianity and just focus on being prosperous, nice, and having a positive mental attitude with Bible Scriptures sprinkled in. But don’t talk about cultural issues, because that’s “worldly.”

B. I can’t relate to women’s ministries where the Scriptures are skimmed over in a surface-level way, eisegeted on a regular basis, and quoted to support man-centered teachings.

I’m more into sound expositional verse-by-verse preaching and teaching of the Scriptures. Not cliche messages, endless topical messages that use Scripture as a proof text, and unbiblical teachings based on secular self-empowerment, pop psychology, New Age philosophy, Word-Faith heresy, or borderline “Full Quiver” hyper-patriarchy right-wing “family values” ideology that idolizes a man-made construct of “femininity” and takes “Biblical womanhood” to an extreme.

C. I can’t relate because quite frankly, I can be a mess at times.

There are days when I’m overwhelmed and I just want to isolate in my bedroom and play the Wii all day.

I roll my eyes. I get irritated. Sometimes I honk at bad drivers in traffic (or tell them off to myself).

But in many women’s ministries, some women act like they have it all together and everything is perfect.

82271c43dd5e7c310d643c7ee2b93f09

I’m not saying that we have to show our flaws to everyone in order to be “authentic.” There is such a thing as oversharing and we have to use wisdom when it comes to who we divulge things to because not everyone is trustworthy.

But there is an opposite extreme to that, where many women feel like they have to conceal who they really are and project a flawless image to other women or pretend to be stronger or more spiritual than they really are.

Some women who lead women’s ministries brag and boast (either overtly or subtly) about their material possessions and make sure that they flaunt something expensive in their selfies to let others know that they’re “walking in the blessings of God.”

Meanwhile their supporters are struggling financially and barely making ends meet, yet they are the ones sending donations so that the women (and couples) over these ‘ministries’ can live comfortably, fly first class, and afford expensive things.

Then, from their throne of worldly comfort and opulence, they lecture other women in a “stuck up cheerleader” way about prosperity, success, and how God will bless you (materially) if you “sow a seed” (send them donations).

At any rate, the plastic Barbie doll-like women’s ministries are a huge turn-off for me.

D. I can’t relate to all of the messages about marriage and child-rearing.

I’m not sure why “Biblical womanhood” and women’s ministry have been reduced to the subjects of marriage and child-rearing.

I mean, sure, women get married and have children. But getting married and having children aren’t the end-all-be-all of womanhood and salvation. The Scriptures sure don’t paint that picture.

Jesus didn’t save us so that we can get married and have children. He saved us so that we would know Him and be with Him forever. For some reason, the message and purpose of salvation has been obscured by mountains of messages on marriage and parenting.

When you get married and have children, you don’t cease to exist as an individual and absorb into your husband and children like “the blob.”

What about women who aren’t married and don’t have children? How many messages do they have to hear about waiting on their Boaz and grooming for marriage? What if a sister in Christ isn’t called to marriage and parenting, and she just wants to devote her life solely to Christ without distraction?

And while we’re at it, how many messages must we endure about modesty? I’m all for modesty, but sometimes I think that we are beating a dead horse and running that subject into the ground.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t talk about marriage, child-rearing, and modesty. But surely there’s more to being a Believing woman than that. Yet in some circles, serving Christ has been eclipsed by teachings about marriage, child-rearing, and modesty which brings me back to point #1.

In closing, the main reason why women’s ministry isn’t working is because in many cases, Christ isn’t the focus.

When Christ isn’t the focus, women don’t find rest for their souls.

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

When Christ isn’t the focus, women hunger and thirst spiritually.

I tell you the truth, anyone who believes has eternal life. Yes, I am the bread of life! Your ancestors ate manna in the wilderness, but they all died. Anyone who eats the bread from heaven, however, will never die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will live forever; and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is my flesh.” (John 6:17-51)

Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living waterJesus replied, “Anyone who drinks this water will soon become thirsty again. But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.” (John 4:10, 13-14)

When Christ isn’t the focus, women remain in bondage to sin and lies. They are tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine, and “ever learning,” but never come into the knowledge of the truth which can set them free.

Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31-32)

Many women are walking around wounded, tired, confused, and trying to find something to heal them, strengthen them, give them clarity, and make them whole and complete.

So they look to women’s ministries for the answer, only to be taught about everything except Christ. They twist, turn, bend and contort themselves to conform to some concept of “Biblical womanhood” which diverts them from conforming to Christ.

Meanwhile the Lord is diminished as some figure in the background who makes things better, and not our very life and the one in whom we move, breathe, exist, and have our being.

For in Christ lives all the fullness of God in a human body. So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority.” (Colossians 2:9-10)

There are many good things about women’s ministry, but I think that when Christ isn’t the focus and other things are, women’s ministry becomes a “wilderness” where women travel in circles and go through the motions of dead religion.

We need to go back to our first love.

Christ is the nucleus of our faith, and when He is our focus, women find abundant life, truth, grace, healing, strength, rest, comfort, and spiritual liberty.

“As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home.

Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught.

But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.”

But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details!

There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42)

Surprise — Free Booklet Coming Soon!

Over the years, I’ve lost track of the number of people who have either requested or suggested that I compile my writings and video commentaries into a book.

So why haven’t I written a book yet? What’s the hold up?

I haven’t had the time, space, energy, nor the resources to tackle a writing project–until NOW   🙂

The support, the demand, and the passion to write for God’s glory has always been there, but I wanted to make sure that it was God’s will for me to write a book and that the timing was right. I wanted to make sure that I could focus on a writing project and finish the task before I “put my hand to the plow.”

Well, this past year, things have fallen into place and I finally have all of the right ingredients to write a book.

I’m super excited to announce to you that I have embarked on my first writing project, a FREE booklet titled, “Touch Not God’s Anointed: Debunking Lies that Religious Leaders Teach to Silence Believers and Evade Accountability” 

There are quite a few articles and videos online that do an excellent job of untwisting the misuse and abuse of “Touch not Mine anointed and do My prophets no harm.” But what makes this free booklet different is that not only will it cover that passage of Scripture–it will also expose the most common excuses, arguments, and out-of-context Scriptures used by false prophets and false teachers in the church.

In this short easy-to-understand booklet–“Touch Not God’s Anointed: Debunking Lies that Religious Leaders Teach to Silence Believers and Evade Accountability,” I will compile and debunk some of the most popular errors that false teachers and false prophets use to censor God’s people and avoid answering to anyone.

Please note: This booklet was not birthed out of hatred, contempt, or disrespect for spiritual leaders. It was birthed out of a great respect for spiritual leaders and a desire to see the ministry of spiritual leaders handled with integrity, seriousness, and reverence for God and the Holy Scriptures.

It was birthed out of a commitment to uphold the truth of Scripture in a religious climate where deception is widespread and false teachings often go unchecked.

It was birthed out of a godly jealousy for God’s people and a strong sense of duty to protect them from, and warn them of, false teachers and false prophets who seek to hold them captive and suppress the truth through false teachings.

My desire is to see those who have been led astray and harmed by false shepherds, delivered from religious bondage so that they might follow the Good Shepherd Jesus Christ and enjoy their blood-bought freedom and abundant life.

Above all, this booklet was birthed from a passionate love for Jesus Christ, His Holy Word, and a desire to see Him glorified.

As of now (unless something changes), this booklet will be available in three formats: PDF, EPUB, and print (a small booklet).

The only costs will be the shipping for the print format, the cost of the paper, and the cost of the printing services. If I can cover these expenses out of pocket, I will do so. But if there are times when I am not able to cover these expenses alone, I may set up a crowdfunding site online for others to contribute.

Any potential donations raised on a crowdfunding site will not go in my pocket. I have no desire to make a financial profit from this booklet (making a living off of God’s word goes against my spiritual convictions).

Any potential donations will go towards the costs of shipping for the print format, the cost of the paper, and the cost of printing services. I want as many people as possible to receive this booklet and that may require financial help from time to time.

Any potential donations will be handled with financial transparency and accountability. All costs/expenses and receipts will be posted here for everyone to see.

Did I mention that I already finished the cover design? What do you think? I love it.

Book Cover

I’m currently writing the manuscript and trying to finish this project as soon as possible. If you follow this blog, you will be the first to know when the booklet is available for order.

After the manuscript is finished, it will be sent off for professional editing. Then after it’s edited, the booklet format will be sent off for printing!

Thank you for stopping by, and please share this link with your friends and family. Don’t forget to click “like” on the Exit Churchianity Facebook page. I’ll keep you guys posted. Talk to you soon   🙂

Saved, Sanctified, & Battling Depression [Podcast]

I apologize for the slight delay, but the awaited episode “Saved, Sanctified, & Battling Depression” is FINALLY here!

The Holy Spirit truly moved in power. We hope that this episode blesses you. Share it on social media and with your local fellowship  🙂

http://www.spreaker.com/user/exitchurchianity/saved-sanctified-battling-depression

I’m Not Looking For “An Exciting Worship Experience” — I already have Jesus

bigstock_silhouettes_of_concert_crowd_i_1565261621

A while back, I received a glossy flyer in the mail from a newly planted ‘church’ in a city near us.

Being the vigilant and inquisitive person that I am, I wanted to know a little more about this new “church plant,” so I looked them up online.

Their official website says that you can expect an exciting worship experience.

What’s wrong with that you ask?

Well, nothing. . . if that’s the only thing you look at.

But if you look at this statement about an “exciting worship experience” along with other ingredients, you will see a bigger picture develop.

Their official website reveals that this organization was planted by a larger association which endorses Rick Warren and is a part of the purpose-driven, culturally relevant, seeker sensitive, emergent, “church growth” movement.

Now, when I look at the phrase “an exciting worship experience” in this context, it seems like more of a selling point to attract customers.

The purpose-driven “church growth” movement is a big business, and those who are involved in marketing its institutions understand something very simple: if you want to attract customers, grow the customer base and increase profits — you have to lure people in with excitement and entertainment.

In many cases, this type of religious marketing is very effective at attracting crowds, because many many people are absolutely obsessed with excitement and entertainment.

Indeed, the adrenaline rush and the “religious high” of “an exciting worship experience” can be addictive, even more addictive than drugs, alcohol, and sex.

needle126219645-621x351

For many of us, it is challenging to just sit still and quiet our minds or read a book in silence. How could we?

With our smart phones ringing, buzzing and beeping all times of the day and night, hours upon hours of background noise from the TV, music and videos streaming online, and almost constant notifications from social networks — we are overstimulated.

Sometimes when we are praying or reading the Bible, things that we saw and heard on TV or online pop into our mind and distract us from focusing on the Lord.

Our minds are overloaded with sounds and images of frivolous entertainment and our carnal senses are overindulged by earthly amusements.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that entertainment and excitement are ‘sinful’ or that once you become a Christian your life should be boring.

Entertainment and excitement have their place. But not as a selling point or a gimmick to attract ‘customers’ to a business that calls itself a ‘Christian church.’

When we experience an exciting moment in worship, let it be orchestrated it by the Spirit of God, and not manufactured by the flesh.

If the aim of providing “an exciting worship experience” is to attract and retain members and increase financial profits — then we’re not really worshiping God, but ourselves and the institutions we have built.

When an institution attracts people with “an exciting worship experience,” they have to keep inventing new gimmicks with higher levels of excitement to hold the interest of supporters. Just like a crack addict, they have to smoke more and more crack in an attempt to recreate the first high that they experienced.

What happens when these people don’t find the “worship experience” exciting anymore? Do they drift off into the New Age Movement or the signs and wonders movement to find a more exciting “worship experience”? Do they become bored and head for the nearest exit?

For many people (like myself), advertising “an exciting worship experience” accomplishes the exact opposite — rather than attracting me, it is a deterrent which discourages me from attending.

I’m not interested in attending institutions that view me as a potential customer and try to lure me in with “an exciting worship experience.” I honestly find that type of soliciting an insult to my intelligence, a degradation of true worship, and a gimmicky substitute for Biblical fellowship.

True worship is about denying ourselves, taking up our cross daily and following Jesus. It’s about walking in the Spirit and abiding in the truth of Jesus Christ. It is about assembling with other Christians to hear the teaching of God’s word and do the “one anothers” listed in the New Testament. It can be exciting at times for sure. But other times, it is not so exciting.

Jesus worshiped the Father in Spirit and truth 24/7. Would you characterize His life as “an exciting worship experience”? Jesus worshiped the Father as He wept in John 11:33-35. Was He excited then? No. He was expressing grief and empathy.

Jesus worshiped the Father while He prayed for strength in the Garden of Gethsemane. Do you think He was having “an exciting worship experience” in that moment? I don’t think so. I think that He was under an immense amount of physical and emotional stress.

Was Jesus having “an exciting worship experience” when He suffered and died on the Cross? I don’t think so. Yet He worshiped the Father by submitting to His will to the point of death on the Cross.

I could bring up countless other examples from Scripture demonstrating that worship has nothing to do with excitement, thrills, chills, and goosebumps. Yet we seek after “an exciting worship experience” based on emotionalism and our own happiness, not the will of the Father.

The Lord was not focused on giving people “an exciting worship experience.” He was focused on preaching the Good News of salvation, inviting sinners into the Kingdom of God, and making disciples.

He rolled up His sleeves and did the dirty work that the scribes and Pharisees didn’t want to do.

Jesus said “if I be lifted up, I will draw all men unto Me. Are we lifting up Christ to draw men unto Him, or are we lifting up “an exciting worship experience” to draw men unto our own organizations?

Some professing Christians have replaced Jesus with “an exciting worship experience.”

We have replaced the Lord of glory with contemporary worship music, professional lighting, dry ice smoke machines, hip and trendy stuff, and slick marketing. And then we wonder why the number of “dones” and “nones” are on the rise and Western ‘Christianity’ is losing the youth.

Who do we think we’re fooling?

We claim to be seeking Christ, but the truth is that many of us are seeking a fix or a “hit” like a religious junkie. And it seems that we have overdosed, and it’s time for us to go into rehab and detox.

We know how to entertain, we know how to dance, we know how to rap theology, we know how to sing, we know how to play instruments, we know how to look and sound trendy, we know how to attract crowds with trinkets, we know how to give people goosebumps and have “an exciting worship experience”, but we don’t know how to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ and make disciples who follow HIM and bear good fruit that remains.

Many Believers are not falling for it anymore because we are DONE with this superficial presentation and religious performance calling itself “church” “Christianity” “faith” “worship” or whatever.

Nothing and no one can compare to the reality of Jesus Christ and walking with Him in simplicity and freedom. Not rock bands. Not Christian rap. Not the best vocalists in town. Not slick projector presentations. Not huge flat screen monitors at the front. Not stage lighting. Not a high-tech sound system. Not a cafe in the foyer. Not the best musicians on this side of heaven. Not a dance team. Not a ‘Christianese’ self-help sermon. Not a skinny-jeans-wearing ‘pastor.’

Jesus doesn’t need anything or anyone added onto Him to make Him ‘more appealing’ or ‘more attractive’ to anyone — not even an “exciting worship experience.”

If people don’t want Jesus for who He is, then let them be. God isn’t desperate. Mankind is in desperate need of a Savior, and those who recognize their desperate need for Him will trust in Him and worship Him for who He is without any additives.

Jesus+Nothing=EVERYTHING.

If you know this, then an “exciting worship experience” is no comparison!

I end this article with a passage about the Supremacy of Christ.

“15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.

17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.

19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him,

20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” (Colossians 1:15-20)

Stop trying to excite people and preach Christ!~