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The Gospel Is About Bringing People to God, Not About Having High Statistics of Attendants

I remembered lost people tend to say that a pastor's success or failure depends on how much that pastor has so many followers.  They tell me that any pastor who is not having a huge number of followers is unpopular, cursed of God and that to be a pastor who sticks by the Bible with a conviction of Jesus is the only Way to the Father, a pastor who preaches against the popular evils will always be that "poor Protestant pastor who needs your tithes and offerings."  This of course may come from the mouths of people who are following the Pope or any religious leader so blindly, giving their contributions without second thought while hypocritically and falsely accusing the man of God of monetizing his pulpit.  What they do not realize is that the pastor may be a failure in the worldly sense but he is successful in the godly sense.

When one is called to be a prophet in the Old Testament - it was a job that nobody wanted to take.  As I read through the Old Testament, I really remember the dreadful sufferings of the prophets.  Moses and Aaron the true prophets of God had to endure all those millions of complaining Jews day in and day out like Korah, Dathan and Abiram convinced a lot of people to rebel against Moses.  Whenever a prophet warned the people of God's wrath to come, they usually lived lives as outcasts and misfits even if they only did what was right.  It was easy for such a hypocritical society to spit at the man of God as if he were a thief and a robber.  Reading through Jeremiah's life, he was not popular and he would be a loser by God's standards.  Most people might say Jeremiah should have just quit his job as a prophet and do something else.  Jeremiah did not care about good statistics or publicity because all he cared about was the Word of God.

The man of God is not popular because people do not care about the real God of the Bible - they want to distort God to their own image hence they have created a vain idol of their own imagination.  In Jeremiah's day, people preferred false prophets over the real ones (Jeremiah 5:31).  His predecessors were not so lucky either as Elijah was always a man in danger.  Ahab and Jezebel had ordered the execution of the prophets of God and replaced them with the pagan prophets.  When Micaiah warned Ahab of judgment, the latter had the former locked up for speaking the warning that could have prevented disaster.  Elijah was referred to by Ahab as his enemy.  In the New Testament, John the Baptist soon lost publicity the moment he rebuked the Pharisees and Herod Antipas.  The Lord Jesus Christ during His ministry became popular due to His miracles but the moment He preached the Gospel then He was soon antagonized for following the will of His Father.  When you start preaching like Jesus does, expect to lose the crowd like Jesus did when He did not compromise His message.

Jesus warned in John 15:18-19 when He said that the Christians are not of the world, that if they were of the world then they would be accepted of the world, but because they are not of the world then they are rejected by the world.  James 4:4 warns that friendship with the world means to be an enemy of God.  When one becomes a Christian then one expects to live godly as a result of getting saved.  The Bible warns in 1 Timothy 3:12 that the godly will suffer wrongful persecution.  When it comes to persecution - the Christian must expect it and accept it because they are not of the world.  Matthew 5:11-13 declares the timeless truth that Christians are blessed whenever men shall revile them and wrongfully persecute them for the sake of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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