Allegheny Valley Church Of God
Judging and Throwing
It is April 23, 2016. In the past week one of the most popular and iconic performers of recent years, the artist known as Prince, died at the age of 57. An autopsy has been performed and toxicology results will be coming in a few days or weeks. It has been determined that the death was not a suicide. Prince had been suffering from some respiratory issues of late. He was found lifeless in an elevator in his home. Prince was a gifted musician and songwriter. He played 20 instruments and had written who knows how many songs. Whenever a cultural icon dies it is normal for there to be a public reaction. For Prince, however, it seems there is more than what I would have expected. All over the nation landmarks are being lit with purple lights, seeing as that was his favorite color. Mourners are having “dance ins” to remember him. Some "churches" are even using his music in their "worship" service. You can see one here. It’s almost as if a great religious leader had passed. It is another indication as to how far our society has fallen into a moral and spiritual black hole.
In reality, to many he was/is a religious figure. He had opinions about God and the Bible, mostly wrong ones. He was a Jehovah’s Witness, which means he denied the deity of Jesus Christ. He saw the second coming of Jesus as “blue and purple, beautiful and electric.” He said the Bible was a “study guide for social interaction.” He said, “God told us he made us in his image to create. Everything I do is inspired by God.” Even the sexually explicit rock and roll videos and suggestive album covers? I’m not so sure the God of the Bible inspired that.
I made a post on Facebook the other day. Oh silly me. It seems so many people, even Christian folks, just assume he went to heaven because they liked his music. I asked, “Did anyone consider he is probably burning in hell now?” I guess it’s ok to put him in heaven, but not ok to suggest the other alternative. Why should we think he is with the Lord? Does his volume of work reflect a godly character? If he had repented and turned to Christ isn’t it strange he never said so? He did have a religion, and spoke about it, but everything I’ve read really doesn’t resemble Biblical Christianity at all. Or maybe Jesus was wrong when he said the only way to the Father was through him.
My post and this article is not about Prince. He may have been introduced to Christ at some time in his life. He was raised as a Seventh Day Adventist and later converted to the Watchtower. I understand that one of his singers from an early time got saved and perhaps witnessed to him and certainly prayed for him. He may have called on the name of the Lord in sincerity in the last moments of his life. I hope he did for his sake. This article is not about his eternal condition, that is already settled and there's nothing we can do about it. This article is about peoples' reactions when someone talks about sin.
My post started a bit of a firestorm. Whenever you suggest that God hates sin and the only way anyone can be saved is to repent and seek forgiveness, some of those who want to justify their sin and their refusal to bow to a holy God pull out two cards. One is the “judge not lest ye be judged” card. Of course, they don’t realize that right after that portion of scripture we’re admonished against casting our pearls before swine and giving that which is holy to the dogs. Seems like we have to make some judgment there. How about who you let your kids hang out with, or who you hang out with? Any judgment needed? When it comes to spiritual things (and music is a very spiritual thing) we are admonished to test the spirits (1 John 4:1) so I guess that means I should make a judgment call about what and who I listen to. Here’s a site where you can view all Prince's album covers. Prince naked, Prince in black bikini underwear. Wholesome stuff, eh Christian?
The other card people usually pull out who want to justify sinful behavior is the “Throwing stones” card, referring to Jesus’ statement, “Let him without sin cast the first stone.” When I made the suggestion that Prince might be burning in hell I was accused of throwing stones. I didn't have to throw any stones, he was already dead. I was not condemning him. When he died his fate was sealed. If he had placed his trust in Christ in the last few moments of his life then Jesus took his judgment, like the thief on the cross. If he failed to do so he is awaiting the great white throne judgment, where he’ll be forced to confess Jesus as Lord, only to be cast into an eternal lake of fire. We can’t condemn anyone. Without Christ we’re all condemned. Only faith in Him can save us.
I preached a message recently asking the question, “Why is our nation so messed up.” Just observe the choices we have this year for president. Just like the ancient Jews, when they continually refused to turn from their idolatry God gave them wicked rulers. We’re no different. Every four years it gets more difficult to go and vote, the choices are so bad. Like the ancient Jews we have fallen in love with the gods of this world. They appeal to the flesh and we love to feed our flesh and put Jesus’ name on it. That makes it ok.
Judgment is coming on this nation. We are sinking fast and the speed of our demise is growing exponentially. Are you ready for what is coming? I believe there will be a great outpouring before the return of Jesus Christ. I also believe there will be tremendous persecution, even here in the good old Christian USA, the same nation that is debating whether we should allow men in the girl’s room. We are living in a modern Sodom. Wake up and smell the brimstone.
That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.