I have certainly served up my share of outgoing fire at what might be called “pathetic preachers” who are feeding their flocks anything from non-fat milk to poisoned water; however, I’d like to pause and give thanks for The Remnant.
This particular remnant is the courageous cadre of pastors in every city in America who ARE standing and ARE preaching the word of God and ARE leading their flocks to be salt and light in and to their communities. These pastors are usually not the “big boys” in size but rather are mighty men of valor who may be leading a church of 100, 200, 500 or 1,000.
The good news is that they are far more numerous than you might think, and I’m treading on dangerous ground by naming any because there are so many I cannot. I’m going to anyway.
These patriot pastors include:
- Jerry Martin in Humble, Texas, of Light of the World Christian Fellowship, a small, predominantly black church, who exemplifies both courage and servant leadership.
- Hernan Castano of Iglesia Rios de Aceite in Houston, Texas, a Hispanic pastor and congregation who has always been on the front lines and an unifier among his peers.
- Howard Cameron in Beaumont, Texas, who as an Anglo pastor is uniting pastors in a majority Black city.
- O’Neal Dozier of Worldwide Christian Center in Pompano Beach, Fla., is constantly preaching the “word of God to the issues of the day” to his congregation – and standing fearlessly in Jesus’ name for life, family and freedom.
- Glen Cole of Trinity Life Center in Sacramento, Calif., who has for decades stepped forward to hold up biblical values in the communities where he has pastored and always willing to “fight city hall.”
- Bishop George McKinney of St. Stephen’s Church of God in Christ in San Diego and national leader in that major black denomination, as he led them to stand for the definition of marriage, is another champion.
- Pastor B.G. Stumberg III of Canyon Ferry Baptist Church in Helena, Mont., who refused to be silenced in standing for family by threats of radical anti-marriage activists and (with Alliance Defense Fund’s dynamic legal team) won a major court victory.
I could go city by city, state by state from sea to shining sea with stories of our own “300″ who have been willing to lay down their pulpits – and some have paid that price – to be faithful to their calling. For all of the many believers I hear from who are frustrated with the condition of many if not most evangelical pastors, I can assure you that God always has a remnant. He told Elijah very clearly that even after punishing Israel for having “torn down Your altars and killed Your prophets with the sword …”
“… ‘Yet I will leave 7,000 in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal and every mouth that has not kissed him.’” (1 Kings 19:18, NASB)
We can also be grateful for the leadership of major church pastors like Dr. Jim Garlow of Skyline Weslyan in San Diego, Dr. Erwin Lutzer of Moody Church in Chicago, Dr. Steve Riggle of Grace Community Church in Houston, Pastor Steve Smothermon of Legacy Church in Albuquerque and others who do have “mega churches” and are also among the bold and brave.
They and thousands of other pastors have not bowed to the Baal of the “Three B’s” (buildings, budgets and bodies) or other trends in the church that have made many of their peers the spiritual equivalent of the pasty prince, son of King Edward “Longshanks” portrayed in the epic movie “Braveheart.” Those who have seen it know exactly of which I speak.
It is the local church, being The Church, that is the hope for America.
Conferences, seminars and rallies are all helpful tools if grounded in right principles; however, the source of our reformation is the same as it has been since Rev. Robert Hunt first planted the cross in the sand at Cape Henry, Va., in 1607.
Our hope for change is the power of almighty God brought alive through the transforming work of Jesus Christ in turning my heart from stone to flesh, freeing me from the chains of my sin and my past and making me a new creation just as surely as He did on that very first day He spoke the heavens and the earth into existence. He saves nations through the rebirth of men, women and children to walk in His light, which dispels all darkness.
As the fear of radical Islam rises, the anger against tyranny by our own government festers, the frustration over betrayal by leaders we have entrusted with authority escalates – be of good cheer. He has not changed and has promised us in Psalm 37:7-9:
Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him;
Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes.
Cease from anger and forsake wrath;
Do not fret; it leads only to evildoing. For evildoers will be cut off,
But those who wait for the LORD, they will inherit the land.
If every Christian in America would bring Jesus Christ to our nation through our lives, our words, our decisions – and yes, our votes – the sea change expected in the elections this fall will not be as temporary as the 1994 “Republican Revolution.”
With the strong remnant of patriot pastors leading well-grounded congregations onto the field of battle through prayer, through service and through uncompromising action, we truly can “Take America Back!”