Monday, February 8, 2010

TIME TO CHOOSE - Cowboy UP or Complacency

By Ray Gano

Ever have one of those nights where you wake up and then you can’t get back to sleep because all of a sudden your brain has gone into overdrive? Seems that at times like these I am able to solve the world’s problems, write novels in my head, design and draw our dream house, etc. Well this time it was kind of different and no matter what I thought to change the direction I kept coming back.

It is kind of hard to put a finger on it and my thoughts kept coming to me from a zillion different directions. Funny thing is that they all corresponded with each other.

There is a saying here in Texas, when the going gets tough, “Cowboy Up.” The term means to dig down deep within yourself and muster up what you need to muster in order to get the task at hand completed. Other versions of this is.. Buck Up, Suck it up, Get it together, Get with the program, ect.

Before we go any further, let me make this clear. I am not a prophet, son of a prophet and I did eat Mexican food yesterday. But these thoughts were going through my mind while I was awake, not asleep and no matter how hard I tried I could not tune the thoughts out.

One of the thoughts that kept coming back was a pretty deep discussion I had with Bill Koenig about a year ago. We were talking about the separation of the church, or what we are both seeing as a separation of the wheat from the tares. No matter where I look I am seeing two types of Christians. One type who have maintained the traditions of our fore fathers and the fundamental principals of Christianity found in God’s Word and then there are the rest who are just “Christian lolly gagging” through life with a “fa la la” attitude. And yes those are official Ray Gano technical terms and I hope you understood there complexity.

Bill estimated that there are about one million, if that many, so called solid hard core, know the Word, live the Word, Jesus is my rock Christians. You see, Bill lives on the road 3 out of four weeks per month speaking and sharing the Gospel. So I believe his estimate. Not only that, but I have heard this also from my friend Walid Shoebat as well as several others who are out on the road also. Interesting thing is that not only are we seeing this, many of you out there are seeing it too.

George Barna came out with a report that shown that only 6% of Americans hold to a biblical world view, that means that 94% do not. Kind of a scary thought.

A little while ago my Pastor taught from these verses and they resonated with my spirit as I ponder these things.

Proverbs 22:28 says, "Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set."

Deuteronomy 6:4 – 9 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

Folks I am deeply concerned.

1. I am concerned that we as Christians have stepped completely away from the solid teachings, the solid Word of God, and the solid songs, hymns, and psalms of the Lord. We have forgotten the “ancient landmarks” of our forefathers.

2. We no longer love the LORD thy God with all our heart, soul and might. We do not meditate on Him or on His Word. We no longer teach it to our children and we do not meditate on it day and night 24/7. We have forgotten the LORD our God and have put Him away and in His place we have accepted a sugar coated humanistic social gospel.

3. We have not separated ourselves. We are Christians no longer holy and acceptable unto God. We have watered down the gospel, watered down our churches, watered down the very word of God and watered down our praise and worship. The authority of God’s Word no longer matters. It is group thought and our own subjective thought that counts, who cares that the Bible is only the infallible Word of God.

4. We are in love with the world and to justify it, we slap the word Christian on all our actions. Our actions give us that warm fuzzy feeling. This is a lie and we know it. We have become friends of the world and we willingly have done so. The warm fuzzy is the trappings of the world and we have willingly partaken of those trappings much like Adam and Eve took to the apple.

5. We no longer have men of God and in its place we have created feminized men who are now leading the church with a touchy feely sugar coated, don’t offend anyone attitude. Women, due to the vacuum men have created; have stepped up to the plate. This is not their calling, nor their place.

1Timothy 2:12 - 13 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve.

This is nothing new but is horribly wrong. Here is a short story that was told by our Pastor; who by the way is a man completely committed to the Word of God and makes no bones about it.

“Theodore Roosevelt taught Sunday School at Christ Church, but he was so muscular a Christian that the decorous vestrymen thought him an unwise guide in piety. For one day a boy came to class with a black eye which he had got in fighting a larger boy for pinching his sister. Theodore told him that he did perfectly right--that every boy ought to defend any girl from insult--and he gave him a dollar as a reward. The vestrymen decided that this was too flagrant approval of fisticuffs; so the young teacher soon found a welcome in the Sunday School of a different denomination.”

- Theodore Roosevelt: An Intimate Biography By William Roscoe Thayer

You see, what Teddy Roosevelt did was correct, but where the church erred is turning the other cheek… a soft response. Teddy was in between two commands from the bible.

1. Turn the other cheek

2. Defend the weak.

Teddy rewarded the boy for defending the weak. The church fired him for his approval of the boy’s actions. What Teddy was doing was instilling the values of being a Godly man where the “men” of the church chose a more feminized solution.

Fast forward to today and look at what kind of church the men of God lead today. Many of them are unwilling to take a firm stand for the Word of God, unwilling to defend and to stand up to be counted as true men of God. We as men of God have forgotten how to be the true leaders in our family. We have delegated the position of spiritual leader to the wife, a role, responsibility and burden that she was not meant to have nor created to have. Because we are unwilling to lead in the family, we are unable to truly lead in the Lord’s Church today.

I am concerned… deeply concerned.

By this time I have probably ticked off every single one of you off in one way or another. See that is another area we have forgotten; accountability. We are no longer accountable to God, accountability to our church, nor to each other. We all walk around with 400 pound gorillas called “LOVE FOR THIS WORLD” strapped to our backs and no one has the guts to neither mention them nor even expose them.

Here is what God’s word says…

Psalm 119:128 -- "Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way."

Romans 16:17 -- "Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them."

Galatians 2:11 -- "But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed."

1 Timothy 1:19-20 -- "Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme."

2 Timothy 2:16-18 -- "But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some."

I have said all of that to state this.

I see a battle coming and tough times ahead. We as the church have two options.

  1. Cowboy UP and get right with God so that when that day comes we are able to stand and be counted.


  1. Maintain our status quo of complacency, refusing to occupy till He returns because we are spineless jellyfish.

You see, we serve the Great I AM. We forget that “all things are possible through Christ Jesus.”

We as God’s people must separate ourselves from this world. The battle coming brings great opportunity. The opportunity we have is to once again be the true church of God of our fore fathers. We have the chance to grow great leaders the likes of Charles Spurgen, DL Moody, Clarence Larken, Billie Sunday, etc.

The rapture can take place this very moment. But if it does not we are commanded to occupy till He returns. We have come up seriously lacking to the duty given us. We have neglected our stewardship in exchange for the world.

We have the chance to impact the world like never before. We have the chance to once more have the church be the salt and light to this world and not the ineffective lukewarm Laodicean church we are today.

Here is the answer.

2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Joshua 24:15 b - But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

I leave you with these words from Paul to meditate upon…

Philippians 3:13 -14 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:
but this ONE thing I do,

forgetting those things which are behind,

and REACHING FORTH unto those things which are before,



(emphasis mine)

A special thanks to David Beatty Sr. A pastor I am honored to follow as well as a valued counselor for Prophezine.

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