“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.” Malachi 4:5.
We need the prophetic voice of the Elijah Message to be revived once again in the church today. God’s ancient prophecies predict that there will be a voice that will usher in the coming of the Lord. That voice is represented by a world-wide movement that will be proclaiming a prophetic message (Revelation 14:6-12), and this work will prepare a people for the great day of God.
“And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” Like 1:17.
Many are wondering what should be the next step for God’s people. What should the church do today in this time of great division, rebellion, perplexity and confusion? The answer is clear – resurrect the prophetic voice in the church with all of its counsels and admonitions as found in the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy.
Let the same voice and message that stirred the hearts of men and women and that brought the church into existence be preached in every Seventh-day Adventist pulpit and in every church:
“Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.” Acts 3:19.
Many in this generation are either spiritually dead or dying, and change will never come until the same message of repentance is revived again. Peter’s message “pricked” the hearts (Acts 2:37) of his listeners and they were compelled to say, “What shall we do?” Any true message of encouragement will always include calls to repentance. Instead of ignoring the prevailing sins and disobedience of the times, we must confront them. Only as the prophetic voice that calls us to repent is revived and accepted can the times of refreshing (Latter Rain) come.
This means we must preach both the cross of Christ and the new life of purity and freedom from sin. We must tell people that there is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun. We must talk about salvation and warn against perdition. We must preach about grace and sin; faith and obedience; judgment and mercy; a God who is love and just; and we must preach about a God who forgives but who also compels us to declare all His truth.
There must be a revival, reformation, repentance and a willingness to stand on truth if we are ever going to finish the work; because the work can only be finished as it is accompanied by divine power (Latter Rain). We can no longer remain silent while a floodgate of wickedness goes unchecked. Deep calls for repentance needs to take place in every institution established by God.
There must be a revival both in the pews and in the pulpits. Every pastor and watchmen has a solemn, sacred burden that they must fulfill. They must understand their enormous responsibility of preaching the difficult truths that are deemed unpopular by today’s culture.
“God has a church on earth who are lifting up the downtrodden law, and presenting to the world the Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world. The church is the depositary of the wealth of the riches of the grace of Christ, and through the church eventually will be made manifest the final and full display of the love of God to the world that is to be lightened with its glory” (Testimonies to Ministers, 50).
Sadly today we have puppets in the pulpit who are repeating every silly, trendy, new fad that is found in the world. Instead of staying true to the prophetic word of God many are siding with every foolish activist cause that comes along – global warming, ecumenism, wealth redistribution, LGBT+ inclusion, feminism and others social causes.
Staying faithful to God means rejecting the worldly, secular standards and rules. Man has set up his own standard of truth and righteousness. This world has its own way of living that is incompatible with the word of God. Whenever God’s people start embracing and proclaiming these same unbiblical, popular theories, we cannot continue deceiving ourselves that somehow this is all part of God’s calling and this is how the work will end.
“Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away theirears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” 1 Timothy 4:2-4.
Preach the word; not your fishing’s trips. Preach the word; not a bunch of motivational quotes. Preach the word; not the social gospel – which is a mixture of half truths with Marxist error.
Today too many pastors are worrying about how the truth might offend some special interest group. It seems that this generation of preachers would rather remain silent and offend God than to preach all of his counsels. Not until the prophetic preaching of truth and righteousness is restored in our pulpits can there ever be revival and reformation.
Only God’s prophetic word can bring the experience that He so longs for us to have:
“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.” Ephesians 5:25-27.
Only Christ can wash us and make us clean, and what will He use to clean His church so that it can be without spot or wrinkle? His word. His word alone can revive us and give us life:
“It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” John 6:63.
When the writings of Moses, the prophets, the words of Christ, the apostles and the Spirit of Prophecy are revived again in our homes and churches, this alone will bring spiritual life to God’s people. Then the Holy Spirit will help us to (1) understand His word, (2) apply them into our lives, (3) keep the things that are written and (4) proclaim them with power to the world:
“The greatest want of the world is the want of men,—men who will not be bought or sold; men who in their inmost souls are true and honest; men who do not fear to call sin by its right name; men whose conscience is as true to duty as the needle to the pole; men who will stand for the right though the heavens fall” (Colporteur Ministry, 54).
In the final, closing work it won’t just be one voice that will be sounding. Thousands of men, women and children will participate in giving the Elijah Message to the world. God is depending upon His faithful people to fulfill the role of the ancient prophets, and not to do the work of puppets.
“Servants of God, with their faces lighted up and shining with holy consecration, will hasten from place to place to proclaim the message from heaven. By thousands of voices, all over the earth, the warning will be given. Miracles will be wrought, the sick will be healed, and signs and wonders will follow the believers” (Great Controversy, 612).