_______ July 27 ______
WEAK MINISTERS PREACH SMOOTH THINGS
They will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. __2 Timothy 4:4__
I saw that since the second angel proclaimed the fall of the churches, they been growing more and more corrupt. They bear the name of being Christ’s followers; yet it is impossible to distinguish them from the world. Minister take their texts from the Word of God, but preach smooth things.
To this the natural heart feels no objection. It is only the spirit and power of the truth and the salvation of Christ that are hateful to the carnal heart. There is nothing in the popular ministry that stirs the wrath of Satan, makes the sinner tremble, or applies to the heart and conscience the fearful realities of a judgment soon to come. Wicked men are generally pleased with a form of piety without true godliness, and they will aid and support such a religion.
Said the angel, “Nothing less than the whole armor of righteousness can enable man to overcome the powers of darkness and retain the victory over them. Satan has taken full possession of the churches as a body. The sayings and doings of men are dwelt upon instead of the plain, cutting truths of the Word of God. The spirit and friendship of the world are at enmity with God. When the truth in its simplicity and strength, as it is in Jesus, is brought to bear against the spirit of the world, it at once awakens the spirit of persecution. Very many who profess to be Christians have not known God. The natural heart has not been changed, and the carnal mind remains at enmity with God. They are Satan’s faithful servants, notwithstanding they have assumed another name,” (Early Writings, 273-274)
In this fearful time, just before Christ is to come the second time, God’s faithful preachers will have to bear a still more pointed testimony than was borne by John the Baptist. A responsible, important work is before them; and those who speak smooth things, God will not acknowledge as His shepherds. A fearful woe is upon them. (Testimonies for the Church, vol. 1, 321)