I was thinking about the church where I was saved in 1953. We had Sunday School (Bible teaching) and a preaching service on Sunday morning. On Sunday night we had Training Union (Christian training) and a preaching service. On Wednesday night prayer meeting and preaching. Most everyone, children included, brought their own Bible. We could even have what they called "Responsive Reading" (a person would read a verse of scripture and the congregation would read the next verse in response.) Wouldn't that be something today? It would sound like Babylon with everyone having a different Bible! Our singing was from a hymnal and the lyrics were understandable. We managed to get through all these services without a meal or refreshments. In fact, the church didn't even have a kitchen.
"My son, fear thou the LORD and the king: and meddle not with them that are given to change." Proverbs 24:21
Dr. McLain used to say that the dirtiest word in the English language was "compromise." Look at the changes in churches since 1953 for the sake of compromise. Compromise is always explained and defended by articulate speakers and smooth snake-oil salesmen. It is always for the good of the majority and the change will always be small. (Be reminded that the missing of one tile cost the lives of seven astronauts.)
Let's take a little survey and see how successful the changes have been.
We changed the music to reach the young people. How are we doing? Did the change result in a great influx of young people into our churches? You would think that those churches who were not progressive, once they changed, would see great success with their "Christian Rock" (which is an oxymoron; it is like saying a "Christian liquor store" or a "Christian porno film.") After a half century of this "junk," our kids are biblically illiterate. They think Sodom and Gomorrah are man and wife!
The reason for changing or "upgrading" (???) our Bible was to better understand it. The truth of the matter is that you won't understand today's paper if you don't read it. Another interesting point is, how could you better understand a verse if it is omitted? Let me give you a sample of an "easier to read" version:
The old Bible says "pennyworth"…the new bible says "denarii." John 6:7
The old Bible says "quick sand"…the new bible says "Syrtis Sands" Acts 27:17
The old Bible says "little rivers"…the new bible says "rivulets." Ezekiel 31:4
The old Bible says "judgment hall"…the new bible says "Praetorium." John 18:28
The old Bible says "pictures"…the new bible says "sloops" Isaiah 2:16
The above is a comparison of the King James version with the New King James.
Any honest student of scripture will tell you that the use of "thee," "thou," "thine" and "thy" are interpretation aids. Those words are always singular, never plural, while "you" is often plural. Again, with all of these "improvements (?)" did the number of Bible readers increase? Are church members reading their "easier to read" versions more today than they read the old Bible fifty years ago? What about thirty years? Twenty years?
As Bible study goes, so goes Bible doctrine. Bible doctrine has become so watered down in the past one-half century that it is hard to distinguish between a Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Church of Christ or Mormon. Catholicism used to be listed a "cult" among Bible believers, now it is considered mainstream Christendom. Since Catholicism claims to never change, who changed? Our Christian book stores are more noted for the so called "Christian Psychology" books (that oxymoron term again) than Bible study books. The popular cliché is "We just preach Christ." Do they now? Do they preach a virgin born Christ or does it make any difference? Do they preach Christ as God in the flesh or just a good man? Do they preach Christ Who shed His blood for the redemption of sin or must one "live it?" You cannot preach Christ without His doctrine. No wonder that Jesus said:
"Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." Matthew 7:13-14
Let's look and see how much better mankind has become with their new changes. Our nation has murdered innumerable children and called it "women's rights." We are rapidly approaching the time when we decide on when to end someone's life; they are too old; they are a liability; they are too feeble; they can no longer contribute; they are just in the way. If our culture can decide that it is perfectly alright to take one's life in the womb, they will decide to take their life in the nursing home.
With the new bibles and new church agendas you would think the prison population would dwindle. It would be reasonable to assume our morals would soar. America is turning upside down one of God's main truths; man and woman bring forth children. There is no plainer truth in the world. Even the animal world knows this. We have human beings living worse than dogs or hogs. God called this an "abomination" (Leviticus 18:22, 20:13) and it carried the death penalty! Paul called homosexuality "vile affections" that were "against nature." (Romans 1:26) Our world is rushing to the brink of disaster while we are playing fantasy football!
This would be so discouraging if God had not told us 2000 years ago exactly what would happen.
"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." 2 Timothy 3:1-5
Keep Looking Up!