Aug 15, 2006

Pimpin' Jesus?

NOTE: If you are easily offended or do not like having your toes stepped on, stop reading now.

I was noticing recently the change in our youth. Their words and their actions did not bring the thoughts to my mind I would have expected from Christians, let alone Apostolics. I am troubled but I want to preface what I am saying by letting the reader know I am not racist, hateful, self righteous, or otherwise meaning to judge. However, someone has to step up and change things before it is too late. I may not be the person you want to hear from, but it has to be said.

I have heard preaching, talked with people, and even read articles proclaiming the way to reach our youth today. Some of it makes sense, some things might work, but some leaves me shaking my head in disbelief. A few years back, everyone was running around with the WWJD stickers, bracelets, and shirts. I can assure you, Jesus wouldn't be doing some of the things I have heard.

I'll make it simple. Our kids are going to hell believing what they are doing is ok.

I am sure you have heard the comments. 'Yo dog, wassup? Dat gurl be fly! Pimpin' ain't ez. Aight! Fo' shizzle.' These are comments I heard from Apostolic Youth in the past couple of years. I realize it sounds like I am picking. 'Don't be a hata, yo!' It has gotten worse. We banned comments like these from our chatrooms a couple years back, and were told we just didn't understand the youth.

It was a new thing. Loud rock music, christian punk, emo christianity, smoke and lights, but it was the way to reach the youth, on their level.

Just recently, walking into the church doors, someone flashed me the crossed peace sign, or whatever they call it. I see photos of our youth thinking they are pimpin.' Many of them, who as young children were raise in Sunday School, and some even got the holy ghost really young, are now wanting 'bling' and thinking it is cool to act and look like a pimp. Bright shiny suits, unshaven scruff on their chins, makeup on girls, (You know I am right!) cell phones, hooking up with each other from really young ages in the back of the church, or ok maybe they go outside in the dark after church to tell their flavor of the month how hot she looked tonight.

Do I sound angry? I am. Maybe I am not angry enough. A young man in my church recently called my house to talk to my son, and tried to get him to 'hook up' with a new girl, because ' she thinks you are so cool, and hot, you should go out with her.' This may not mean much to you reading this, but my son is 14 the girl is 12, they ain't going nowhere alone, or in a group. I have been told I am too hard, but I don't care. The bible says train up a child in the way he should go, and he will not depart from it. The thing is this young man who called my son, is the same age. He also has a girfriend who is 12, and I have been told there are photos of them 'getting busy.' I don't want to see them, I do not even want to know. But someone took those photos. Unless a miracle happens, what's next? Oh, they were just kissing, holding hands. Yeah? Maybe this time.

But back to this pimpin fingers thing. Can someone please explain to me how that is of God? How does acting like someone who sells other people for sex for a price to be determined by him, cool, let alone Godly?

Yeah, ok I hear the rage in your voice. 'My son isn't like that! Really? My daughter would never...' Are you sure?

We send them off to band camps, church camps, youth conventions, where they meet up with their friends, and many times unchaperoned they go off alone. Can you be sure what is happening? 'Train up a child.' I talked to someone recently, a minister, and last youth convention, two of their girls came home with a sexually transmitted disease. Oh I know not all youth are like that. But the life we let them lead at home, is the life they will lead when they are away from us.

Imagine if you will!

It's Sunday night service, the pastor comes sauntering out of the study long pimp robe on, gold flashing from his chest, smiles and you can see the diamond implant in his teeth, and hear a wooshhing sound as he places his dusty old bible covered in cobwebs down on the pew, and says 'Yo, my peeps, wats up playas 'n hos? Come down to this here altar deal, and shake it for Jesus! We gunna make some noise in dis house! MMmmmmmMMM! Sister Susie ya lookin fineeee tonite! Come ova hea n gimme sum of dat!' And he crosses his arms across his chest flashes the double peace sign, and smiles while we run to the altar with our money and fill up a bucket for him.

Sound ridiculous? Would you laugh? Cry? Run? Die of a heart attack?

But it is happening! Oh maybe not in fine robes, bling, or language, but we have begun to pimp out Jesus.

NOTE: Dictionary Reference

pimp: One who finds customers for a prostitute; a procurer. intr.v. pimped , pimp·ing , pimps
To serve as a procurer of prostitutes.

I know you are thinking what am I talking about.

It used to be people came hungry to the altar for God. Saints labored with them, prayed, fasted, desired God for people to be saved. There were standards of holiness. We didn't bicker about what was God and what was man. We followed what we were taught. We led others to Christ by the example we showed everyone. Were we popular? No! We still believed in truth. And we lived it.

When they new convert came to Christ we mentored them. Gave them bible studies, took them out to dinner, slowly made sure they were making it ok. Now, we get them in, get them speaking in tongues, slam em down in the tank, and send them on their way. 'They got the holy ghost, been baptized, we done our part.' Really? I have seen it time and again, where they do speak in tongues, and get baptized but then we never see them again? WHY?

Because we are pimpin' Jesus to them. We make it easy as possible for them to get what they want, and then we send them on their way. 'Oh, if they only had a deeper consecration with God.' Get off your pew and go after them. If you can honestly be excited that you are going to heaven, when someone you know is going to hell, and you don't feel the need to witness, comfort, or lead, you do not have the same Jesus I do.

Jesus doesn't want to just bring them to Him. He wants us to keep them for Him. The Holy Ghost is supposed to lead, but the bible does say by the foolishness of preaching we are saved.

If the young people in your church are not bringing their friends to church, something is not right. And it is not just the young people. If they act like the world, talk like the world, they are part of the world. That is hard. But it is simple, and it is scriptural.

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 1 John 2:15

If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. John 15:19 (Jesus's words, not mine.)

It is not just the youth though. I belong to a forum that shall remain nameless, but it is for the ministry. Someone brought up the question on whether or not it was ok to drink real wine for communion. There were many comments for and against, but the tone of the comments changed, and then the topic changed. It then became whether or not it was ok for someone to have wine with their dinner when they were with business associates, after all that is what is accepted. Again more comments. Then someone said he didn't see anything wrong with the wine, in fact he thinks the bible is not against drinking, as long as it isn't gluttony. He commented that when he comes home from his job, he has a beer or two before dinner. He doesn't get drunk, so he believes it is ok to drink. I found myself wondering and shocked. This is supposed to be a forum for minsters, apostolic ministers, and they are discussing whether or not it was ok for this man to drink beer.

Pimpin' Jesus! "Oh, it won't hurt if we allow our kids to listen to that music at home. One movie won't hurt. Well I know they are young, but they are just kissing. TV isn't wrong. He is just a teenager, let him be that way til he grows up." Will he though?

Sex is supposed to be for the marriage bed, not to satisfy a desire. Serving God is supposed to be for a committment, not for a moment. We are pimpin' Jesus. Get them tithes and offerings in here, we have a church building to build. We are helping support a missions work. Doing something we cannot seem to do here. Pimpin' Jesus. Selling him out to the highest bidder. We apologize if we hurt someones feelings in church while we strive to empty out their wallet. It seems lately we come to church to be seen, to be cool, to show off our new 'threads.' We have forgotten, even though we sing the songs. "Here I am to worship, here I am to bow down..."

Pride cometh before destruction. What's next?

Pimpin Jesus? Jesus has been turned into a prostitue for us to be able to build bigger churches, and have a 'greater impact' in our world. Really?

It has to change before we hear a trumpet and look up and notice everyone else is gone. Even the church down the street, who we thought didn't have the truth.

Pimpin' Jesus.