Revelation 2:18 And unto the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things saith the Son of God" ........ 19 I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works" ........20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols. 21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. 22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.
This passage of scripture describes for us the sad changes which began to appear in the fabric of true Christianity, where pagan practices and beliefs were blended in with the sacred truths and principles of God's word. Unconverted persons were allowed to become members of the church, and as they multiplied in number, their withering influence was seen and felt in the many sins enumerated by The Lord in the above verses. One of the prominent sins mentioned in the passage is fornication or sexual immorality, ranging from pagan customs and practices within the marriage, to intimate relationships with those of the same sex.
These practices had previously been condemned by God in the clearest language possible, yet church leaders were permitting these grave offenses to go un-rebuked, thus causing a lowering of the pure principles of righteousness that were to govern the lives of all professed Christians. Let's read:
Leviticus 18:20 Moreover thou shalt not lie carnally with thy neighbour's wife, to defile thyself with her. 22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination. 23 Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion. 24 Defile not ye yourselves in any of these things: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you: 25 And the land is defiled: therefore I do visit the iniquity thereof upon it, and the land itself vomiteth out her inhabitants.
God has plainly stated in His word that any attempt to blend His perfect righteousness with paganism or idolatry will meet with stiff retribution if confession of sin and urgent, genuine repentance does not take place. This fact was revealed in real time when the Philistines tried to fuse God and paganism in the house of their god Dagon, after capturing the ark from the children of Israel in battle. The ark contained the Shekinah glory of God's presence, and also the ten commandments which are given as the rule and guide of life, so when they put the sacred chest next to their graven image Dagon, God manifested His utter displeasure in shaking down Dagon in the most humiliating manner. Let's read:
1st Samuel 5:2 When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon. 3 And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the Lord. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again. 4 And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him.
However, it seems as if the Philistines did not fully get the message, so the Lord had to confirm it in ways that they would understand. It was perceived by them that what had taken place in the temple with the destruction of Dagon represented an omen of impending doom, and so they removed the ark of God to a place where they thought it would not cause such damage, but they were sadly mistaken and experienced a very rude awakening the following morning and in the ensuing days. Let's read:
1st Samuel 5:6 But the hand of the Lord was heavy upon them of Ashdod, and he destroyed them, and smote them with emerods" ..... 8 They sent therefore and gathered all the lords of the Philistines unto them, and said, What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel? And they answered, Let the ark of the God of Israel be carried about unto Gath. 9 And it was so, that, after they had carried it about, the hand of the Lord was against the city with a very great destruction: and he smote the men of the city, both small and great, and they had emerods in their secret parts. 10 Therefore they sent the ark of God to Ekron. 11 So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines, and said, Send away the ark of the God of Israel, and let it go again to his own place, that it slay us not, and our people: for there was a deadly destruction throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there. 12 And the men that died not were smitten with the emerods: and the cry of the city went up to heaven.
This experience of the manifestation of God's displeasure at efforts made to blend paganism with Christianity was chronicled for the benefit of all succeeding generations, with the intent that we may know for certain that God will not be trifled with in any way, and even though He may bear long with the perversity of man, yet there is a limit to His forbearance, and when it has reached its limits, then the days of retribution will begin. That's why He has given the following warning, not in parables, but in the clearest language possible. Let's read:
Isaiah 42:8 I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.
In our day it seems as if we have not learned the lessons of the past, for pagan practices have again entered the church, and the vilest sins are are being countenanced under the cloak of Christianity. Not only do we now tolerate bowing down to graven images in some professedly Christian churches, but we also have pedophile clergymen masquerading as saints, and also religious leaders who are now living in flagrant violation of the marriage institution, which stipulates that marriage is defined by God to be between one man and one woman.
When such are put in positions of sacred trust, then those who are instructed by them will not be taught to put a difference between right and wrong, good and evil, and as a result we are now hastening with lightening speed to the very edge of a dangerous moral cliff that will plunge our nation and the entire world into an eternal abyss, if very radical changes for the better are not implemented soon.
We therefore end with a passage of scripture which issues a stern warning to those who are in positions of political and spiritual authority, not to abuse the power invested in their office to condone or confirm sinners in a wrong course of action, for the same God who once decapitated Dagon, will again manifest His displeasure, in ways that will cause us to shudder. Let's read:
Isaiah 13:6 Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. 7 Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man's heart shall melt: 8 And they shall be afraid: pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them; they shall be in pain as a woman that travaileth: they shall be amazed one at another; their faces shall be as flames. 9 Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it. 11 And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.
He that has ears to hear, let him hear what The Lord says to the Churches of modern Christendom. God Bless!