Interesting, how today's church parallels the church in the days of Isaiah and Jeremiah, prophets of God. In both instances, the people were worshiping the Virgin (Is. 47:1), called the Queen of Heaven (Jer. 44:17-19); Madonna (Is. 47:5), and Easter (Ishtar), the goddess of Babylon. They were also worshiping Tammuz, the sun god of Babylon (Eze. 8:14), who is born on December 24-25 (the winter solstice) and whose signs are green trees cut out of the forest, stood upright in houses and decorated with silver and gold ornaments. Jer. 10:1-5. God destroyed both the Northern Kingdom of Israel and 120 years later, the kingdom of Judah for rebellion.
God was so angry at the refusal of the people to seek truth and return to Him, that He sent a spirit of delusion so that the people would not be able to see their own sins and impending judgment and could not repent. Jer. 4:10. "And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie." 2 Th. 2:11.
I earnestly pray that God will open the eyes of those that read this article. In Matthew 13:10-15,
And the disciples came, and said unto Him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see and shall not perceive.
For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing; and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. Mt. 13:15-16.
The Amplified Bible puts it this way: "For this nation's heart has grown gross - fat and dull; . . . ."
God's people in the days of Isaiah, and later Jeremiah, were prosperous. The temples were full and rich. The prophets and priests were covetous, competing against one another for fame and wealth. God utterly destroyed the North Kingdom of Israel and then Judah, except for a tiny remnant of true believers in the case of Judah.
Jesus said to the priests of His day, "That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee." Mt. 11:24. The church and nation today is much worse than the church or temple when the Lord Jesus walked the earth in the flesh. God's people have rejected God's plan, His sacrifice on the cross, the blood of Jesus, the Holy Spirit and truth.
WE HAVE REJECTED GOD'S NEW COVENANT that did away with temples. He made our body the temple of God and put His Holy Spirit on the throne in our heart. 1 Co. 3:16; 6:19. Jesus sent His Holy Spirit to dwell in our body and to baptize us with fire. He put His commandments and statutes in our heart. After 312 AD, the church went from worshipping in houses back to worshipping in buildings and cathedrals.
WE REINSTATED THE ELITE PRIESTHOOD that Jesus eliminated. The Lord not only made our body the temple of God, He made every saint a king and priest unto Him. Rev. 1:6; Rev. 5:10. If you qualified under 1 Timothy 3:1-16, you could be a church leader. You don't need a college or seminary degree, much less a doctorate degree. You didn't have to even read or write. Even some of the five-fold ministry (Eph. 4:11) of the first three centuries were uneducated fishermen and laborers.
WE REJECTED THE GOSPEL OF SALVATION AND CREATED OUR OWN. The Lord Jesus suffered, shed His precious blood and died on the cross on Calvary to bring forgiveness and salvation to those that believe on and receive Him and their God and Savior, accept His blood sacrifice and repent of their sins. The apostle Paul stated that there was only one gospel of salvation - Jesus Christ and Him crucified. 1 Co. 1:23; 1 Co. 2:1-5. Instead, the church has created a new gospel of salvation based on blessings, prosperity, family atmosphere, loving fellowship and financial help. According to The Barna Group report of 1997, 34% of born-again Christians, 53% of all Christians and 73% of mainline Protestants believe that if a person is good, he will go to heaven. Sins, repentance, Jesus' sacrifice on the cross and His resurrection are now irrelevant to many Christians. They believe that you don’t need Jesus to go to heaven.
WE KICKED THE HOLY SPIRIT OUT OF HIS CHURCH. Most churches do not acknowledge the leadership of the Holy Spirit, no longer believe in speaking in new tongues or the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Signs and wonders and the demonstration of power by the Holy Spirit are no longer sought after or even found in our churches, including so-called Pentecostal churches. I have traveled to many countries and constantly surprised that Pentecostal churches no longer emphasize the leading of the Holy Spirit and His power. Few can speak in new tongues. Yet, the Bible says, "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God." Ro. 8:14.
If the wrath of God fell on Israel and Judah under the Old Covenant, how much more will it fall upon America and the rest of the world today? After all, the people of God under the Old Covenant, did not have the blood of Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Repent! Repent! Repent! before it is too late!