The Children of A Lesser God, Part 1 – By Thomas Koester

You cannot build a healthy Church by feeding the flock from your personal intimacies with God. They’ll end up living their faith vicariously through your faith without actually living by faith.

God’s people must encounter God as who he is in their lives, families, neighborhoods, and jobs, more than what they hear in a Sunday sermon. They need to encounter the weightiness of God in their lives rather than a theological supposition that tickles their intellect but does not move them to worship.

In other words, people need to encounter the Lordship of Jesus and not just the flannel board Jesus in Sunday School.

If we fail to present God as God, people will settle for a lesser god, full of winks, giggles, and thumbs-up to their sins.

David wrote:

“Fear the Lord, you holy people who belong to him. Those who fear him are never in need. Young lions go hungry and may starve, but those who seek the Lord’s help have all the good things they need.” Psalm 34:9-10

Our fear of the Lord should lead us into a healthy worship of Him so that being His children becomes our most meaningful identity.

Sometimes, even in America, we live as though there are many gods, even though we profess the Truth of Scripture. Our actions dictate our true beliefs and not simply what we profess. We cannot escape it. We belong to what we fear and to whom we obey.

Belief in the One True and only Living God requires obedience and not just belief. Demons believe yet shudder in fear. Even the Name of God’s Holy Son, Jesus of Nazareth, invokes fear and dispels demonic tactics and oppression. Darkness always is dispelled by light, and no shadow can hide from God’s brightness.

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression, “don’t be afraid of your own shadow.” This means to be extremely timid, nervous, fearful, and easily frightened. This is to live a life of fear worship rather than God worship.

So, we have become what we worship. We worship what we fear, and when we only believe and remain passive to God’s will, we cease to worship God.

The God of Creation and Author of our Eternal Redemption must be obeyed, or we’ll become quiet rebels, worshiping lesser gods. The proof of our false belief is in the quality, or lack thereof, of our true obedience. We become what we worship and a slave to what we fear.

Do you want and desire the Fruits of Heaven?

Start listening to the One who occupies the Throne of Heaven and obey His Word, even if it leads to your death; death of reputation, death of comfort, death of self, and yes, even the death of your body. For “obedience is better than sacrifice,” as it is written in 1 Samuel 15:22:

“But Samuel replied,

“What is more pleasing to the Lord…

…your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to his voice?

Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.”

When you act as though the Evil One has equal power to The Eternal One, you have ceased in both belief and obedience to God and have become a slave to your fears and false beliefs. Sickness, disease, divorce, betrayals, these suddenly have more power than God. The fear of these things eclipses the Fear of the Lord, and therefore these “things” become the center of your life, thought, and action.

There is NO contest between the Eternal One and the Evil One. God always was, is, and will be. The Devil, well, he has a beginning and an ending. Not even his puny acts will outlast the earth. And even the Devil’s original coup d’etat against the throne of God was a failure, and his kingdom is built on lies and falsehood. Yet, more believers are motivated by fear of man and evil than they are the Fear of the Lord and His righteous judgments.

Matthew 10:28

“Don’t be afraid of people. They can kill the body, but they cannot kill the soul. The only one you should fear is God, the one who can send the body and the soul to be destroyed in hell.”

We become controlled by what and by whom we fear; the clearest evidence is in our actions and responses to all diseases, betrayals, etc. You know it, God said it, and the devil, if you fear him rather than God, well, he delights in it.

Act like Children of God Almighty, the God of the Angel Armies, rather than children of a lesser god, who is the god of fallen angels and the Father of Lies.

Your actions tell the world who your true Father is. No matter how many Church services you attend, you cannot escape it.

Read I Samuel 15 again, but from the Message:

22-23 Then Samuel said,

“Do you think all God wants are sacrifices—
empty rituals just for show? He wants you to listen to him! Plain listening is the thing, not staging a lavish religious production. Not doing what God tells you is far worse than fooling around in the occult.

Getting self-important around God is far worse than making deals with your dead ancestors. Because you said No to God’s command, he says No to your kingship.”

Maybe the consent “No” from God is because of your consent disobedience to Him. After all, He is not called the Everlasting Father for nothing; if you call him Father, does he not have the right to treat you as a true son or daughter?

Whenever God disciplines you or brings hardship into your life, sometimes you blame the Devil, chalking it up to evil. When you doubt God’s goodness and wisdom during hardship, you become a victim and fall prey to the lies of the Devil. This false belief thwarts God’s hand in your life, and you reject your son-ship. You need to STOP DOING THAT!

Do you think God is impressed by your lavish religious productions — your empty rituals of a weekly 90-minute Church Service compared to a 10,000-minute week of worldly influence? A 90-minute Church creates Christians that can only last for 90 minutes in the world!

To the many pastors that occupy America’s pulpits. Your constant grandstanding and oratorical solos have robbed the Church of prophets, apostles, pastors, teachers, and evangelists. Your job is to disciple and Sheppard people into ministry, not become the ministry. Many rather preach to attract and keep people, rather than preach to equip and send people.

Many pastors end up becoming the sole arbiter of the Word of God. This has created a Nation of dependent-class Christians whose only requirement is to tithe in support of career-focused pastors and church-centered budgets. God’s Church has become a den of weak vessels. There is more power when the People of God discover firsthand revelation from the mouth of God through their reading of Scripture than a thousand of your feel-good sermons!

You cannot build a healthy Church by feeding the flock from your personal intimacies with God. They’ll end up living their faith vicariously through your faith without actually living by faith.

Christ Jesus is the only True Manna from heaven, not your recycled sermons.

Start teaching the people to read God’s Word and hear and obey His voice!

I dare you to become lesser, so they may become greater.

This is why God says No to your “church business” and Yes to the power of the Kingdom Gospel and the people who obey it! This is why so many para-church ministries are taking up the cause of Christ, and so many so-called “religious leaders” are taking up the cause of church.

You are not raising Children of God but creating children of a lesser god, with no greater expectation than donations and attendance!

Start saying “yes” to God and obey His voice so that you may become children of God, The God of the Angel Armies, rather than children of a lesser god. After all, we can only access God the Father through Jesus Christ the Son. He has proven Himself obedient through all His actions, even death on the cross.

The church shouldn’t orbit around pulpits but around King Jesus and Jesus as King to all Nations! His command to go into all the world, “..teaching them to obey all things that I have commanded you…” It was not mere rhetoric but a divine command by the King of Kings, Lord of Lords of the Gathered Ones! We are to make disciples of peoples and nations and expand God’s Kingdom, not churches.

Repent of your religiosity, and people worship. Break off your fear of man, or go the way of King Saul.

Teach us to become Children of God Almighty, dependent on Him for identity, purpose, and calling.

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