We have recently returned from the funeral of my younger brother. He died, after a lingering illness, from cancer. Two weeks before he died the doctor told him he had about two weeks to live but added that he could prescribe medication that would prolong his life a few more weeks. “No thank you,” Ken replied, “I know where I am going.” He then proceeded to explain to the doctor the way of salvation. The church was full for the funeral as Ken was popular in the town having worked on the Post Office counter for many years. The minister led a dignified service, spoke warmly of Ken’s spiritual influence and, at Ken’s request, urged the congregation to turn to the Lord. The two hymns were “Blessed Assurance” and “Amazing Grace.”
In preaching in various evangelical churches across the country I have noticed a distinct difference among them. There are some which, although theoretically sound, sound in their constitution, doctrinal statement, etc., but who take the Word for granted. They do not seem to appreciate exposition. One is just another preacher. There are many others that soak up the word like blotting paper. They love and appreciate the exposition of Scripture. They hang on every word because they love the Word of God.
It makes me wonder what they have been feeding on. Churches can be sound in theory but dead in practice. They can be worldly and lacking in prayer. Some of them put more effort into their music (contemporary) than they do into their prayer. I wonder how many of their music group attend the prayer meeting? In our last church we had a small orchestra, but the instrumentalists were expected to attend the pre-service prayer meeting, and if they did not they were not allowed to play that day. “O Lord, send revival.”