She's a FLIRT
You're married. You're in love. You're totally committed to your wife. You found her alone and lost. You found her neglected, hungry, scared and contentious. You went to great lengths to gain her trust and devotion. You've sacrificed for her. You've spent hours, days, months, years understanding her, listening to her, talking to her. You've always made sure you were there by her side whenever she was was going through any difficult situation. You've always made sure to provide for her whenever she was in need. Your love for her has prompted you to give of yourself in ways which can only be explained as inexplicable love. Others around you ponder in amazement and cannot comprehend your devotion to her.
Your love is so great for her you've given her your all.
There's just one problem...she loves to FLIRT.
She just loves the attention from the other men in the neighborhood. It reminds her of how it used to be. She starts to wear provocative clothing–the ones that the guys like to see her in. You've noticed she is wearing perfume, putting on jewelry, adding make up whenever she goes out in public when you've told her many times that you prefer she not do those things.
You notice when she's around others at social events her body language is a bit different. She acts different when other men come near. Sometimes you've noticed her bat her eyes at certain men as they complimented her on how pretty she looks. She doesn't exactly try to avoid the attention either. It seems like she actually seeks it out and SHE LIKES IT. She loves to hear those compliments, especially from those more respected men in society. She thinks they're smart. She thinks they're funny. She giggles...they make her laugh. She loves hanging around them even to the point of neglecting her husband.
One day you found some letters of hers from some of the other men in town. The letters read of plans of how they may be able to do things together, help each other with some of the things going on in their neighborhoods, plans of organizing large get togethers and how much good it will do the whole community. Some of these letters even gave her advice, tips and instructions on how to improve her relationship with you, her husband. These were from the same men with whom she had been flirting. You can not understand why she would be corresponding with these men in this way. When confronted about the letters she claims that they are no big deal and that these men are just friends of hers and they are nice, they compliment her they make her feel good. You know these men very well. You know who they are and what they want. They do not have her best interest at heart. You try to WARN HER but she continues to pull away from you and gradually draws closer to them. Sometimes she trusts them more than she trusts you. They say nice things to her. She enjoys the fact that they make her feel good and flatter her.
You've written many letters to her and have done so for a very long time. Detailed, specific letters reassuring her of your commitment and sacrifice for her. Letters explaining to her of her security, safety, and future. You've reminded her again and again if she were only to spend her time STUDYING your letters to her and talk to you, the relationship would not be SUFFERING as it now is. She WOULD NOT have the desire to pursue other men's affections. The relationship would be based on trust.
How sad it is. How sad it is especially when one considers what great lengths you went through to RESCUE her out of her hopeless and lonely condition.
I realize that this little story does not even come close to illustrating how the church, the bride of Christ is engaged in a flirtatious adulterous rendezvous LOVE AFFAIR WITH THE WORLD.
Having said that, below I will attempt to take the main points from the above story and point out how it parallels the modern church:
• "She starts to wear provocative clothing".–––Every time the church ADJUSTS HER METHODS to look more appealing in order to gain acceptance of the world she is hoping the world will look upon her desirously and pay her a compliment and keep coming back to her as she continues to GO BACK TO THE WORLD.
• "She thinks they're smart".–––Every time the church exalts intellegencia in order to gain the intellectual approval of her worldly neighbors she is falling for the LIE of earthly secular wisdom above the misunderstood superior wisdom of God.
• "She thinks they're funny. She giggles..."–––Every time christians run after worldly entertainment which cloaks immoral lifestyle behavior like homosexuality, in humor so as to make it more acceptable, they're turning their attention to another lover as the Holy Spirit GRIEVES. She is ignoring his warning to AVOID ALL APPEARANCES OF EVIL.
• "One day you found some letters of hers."–––Some of the books and authors many christians read, especially pastors have diluted the loyalty and perspective of the church to the point to where pastors and church leaders are allowing the introduction of mysticism, CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER and NEW SPIRITUALITY in the church. Many churches recommend books on their websites which are alarming when one discovers and understands what some of these authors stand for, endorse and believe. Many of these theologies and doctrines are contrary to the bible. It is possible that these church leaders are unaware of some the the teachings of these authors. Whether they are or not makes no difference since many people in their congregation may purchase and read these books simply out of trust in their leaders.
Why would a church recommend a book by someone involved in the New Age like KEN BLANCHARD who claims that "Buddha points to the path and invites us to begin our journey to enlightenment. I ... invite you to begin your journey to enlightened work." ? Or a pastor such as DAN KIMBALL who engages in the ancient mystical practice of labyrinth prayer walks ? Some churches promote books by BRIAN MCLAREN who has a non-biblical view on the doctrines of HELL, HOMOSEXUALITY, and the CROSS OF CHRIST. And then there are others like LEONARD SWEET with his deconstructionistic new age DOUBLE RING postmodern non-sense.
(time does not permit to point out some of the heretical authors some of these men just mentioned have endorsed. That may be dealt with in the future).
• "You've written many letters to her".––2 Tim. 3:16-17: "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work".
Seeking instruction and direction from books which are contrary to biblical doctrine or which suggest spiritual insight not found rooted in scripture opens one up to becoming vulnerable to false teachings and "OTHER" GOSPELS.
We are the church, the bride of Christ. If we are to present ourselves SPOTLESS and undefiled before Christ, we must pursue holiness.
Holiness is not compatible with flirting. How close do we really think we are to God if we can so easily FLIRT WITH THE WORLD ?
I hope the church does not forget these verses–Ephesians 5:25-27:
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
This line from the hymn "THE CHURCH'S ONE FOUNDATION" plays over again and again in my head...it is such a good reminder of an eternal truth–It's all from Him, by Him, to Him, for Him.
"From heaven he came and SOUGHT HER
to be his holy bride;
with his own blood he BOUGHT HER,
and FOR HER life HE DIED."