Have we reached the End of the Church Age?
I’ve been observing the in/activity in the church for some years.
If God wants people to follow church, they will. But the decline in traditional church has been steady, even though there has been an increase in the number of new believers for decades.
What’s going on?
It is the end of the Church Age, I believe. The Age where Christendom dominates the setting of universal values has ended. We see this across Western culture. That which is abhorrent to God as evidenced in scripture has become the celebrated norm in many societies. Wrong has become right and right certainly has been labelled as wrong. Where Abortion on demand and LGTB rights have been declared as key to freedom, those with opposing values are labeled intolerant. The division, as demonstrated perhaps most clearly in US politics, has become so wide that there have been clashes, protests and even violence between the two sides.
A dear Messianic acquaintance said to me recently that the Church Age finished when Jerusalem was liberated from Gentile control in 1967. That could concur with the demise of values that began in the ’60’s and is ongoing. The morality of Judeo-Christian values has been in decline since the Sixties and in Britain and the US there is downright hostility toward anything that smacks of Biblical truth.
I believe the power and authority of the Church in our society has gone. Moving forward, God knew this time would come, and I don’t believe God’s strategy is to regain its influence, but rather to allow his God-ordained transformation to occur, so that the principles of God can again protect the people.
Do we ignore what is going on in our world and allow the decline? Certainly not. But I believe we must allow God to move differently from how He moved through the established church in the past.
What we need to do is to turn from our traditional concept of the practices of Christianity that are based on Constantine Christianity – aka Roman Catholicism and the spill over into Protestantism – and return to the 1st Century church that embraced its Judeo roots. Jesus was Jewish; as he was steeped in the culture God favoured, so must we learn to celebrate the festivals – not as Law but because it is what delights the LORD.
The Church Age has ended, with our false dates and festivals. We need to return to the Sabbath and the Festivals ordained by God. That’s what I think will bring us in to God’s blessing and freedom, and what will draw those whom He is calling to take notice.