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PENTECOST

SAYING TO THE CHURCH TODAY?

four church of god pastors speak from their hearts and spirits

WHAT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT

BY ANTHONY VELASCO

T

I

MONEY IS NOT THE CHURCH’S POWER SOURCE

HREE DOLLARS in a month! This was the first collection of our tithes and offerings in August 1990. The church was very poor—poorly located, poorly ventilat- ed, poor sound system, and I believe I preached the gospel very poorly. Every aspect of our ministry could have been graded as very poor except for one—faith in God. This faith taught us to be patient while we were in the dark valley of our ministry. Faith gave us the strength to weather the storms in our church and, above all, faith allowed us to dream on. We were

A CALL TO SELF-

“certain of what we [did] not see,” as Hebrews 11:1 (NIV) defines faith. Today, I hear so many excuses why churches do not grow. The top two excuses based on my personal survey are no workers and no money. I would like to expound on the latter. We make deci- sions depending on the availability of money. Money becomes the motivating factor to mobilize our workers (if there are any). The majority will say if there is no money, there will be no progress in the ministry. This is not entirely true. Some time ago, I had a conversation with God regarding Matthew 6:24: “No one can serve two masters. . . . You cannot serve both God and Money” (NIV). I asked, “Lord Jesus, why did You underrate Your- self by making money Your greatest rival?” Jesus replied, “Anthony, you’ve got it all wrong. I didn’t underrate Myself, but peo- ple overrated money as if it is My equal.” This is the message of the Holy Spirit

BY FLORIN T. CIMPEAN

EVALUATION

N THESE TIMES of confusion, there are many voices offering advice on the state of the Church. A cacophony of sounds, a tsunami of rushing winds, and a show of spiritual fireworks yield the false impression of a new Pentecost. So often the sounds are just human, the rushing winds are only storms in a buck- et, and the flames of fire are artificially produced. The Church needs to hear from

10 EVANGEL • MAY 2010

the true Counselor, the divine church expert, the source of godly empower- ment—the Holy Spirit.

Before there can be a new revival, the Holy Spirit is calling the Church to self- evaluation and repentance. What are the sins the Spirit is pointing to?

• Ignorance—experience without knowledge

• Apathy—information without experience

• Populism—charisma without character

• Legalism—zeal without love

today. It is not money that makes the Church function, it is God. Ministry runs because it is fueled by the Holy Spirit and it doesn’t stall even if we run out of money. Let us not allow money to have the last word in our ministry because this power is reserved only for Jesus, who is the Head of the Church. Money can be a good and use- ful tool in our ministry, but let us not make it our god, for it is a very evil and controlling master.

The Church is a “God thing.” The Lord dwells in the midst of the praises of His people. It is where the super- natural occurs. I believe that as faith in Jesus Christ abounds in the Church, no mountain is too high to conquer.

Anthony Velasco is

senior pastor of the Das- marinas Church of God in Cavite, Philippines.

• Immorality—ministry without

holiness

• Imitation—religion without relationship

• Immaturity—activities without vision

“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 3:22 NKJV).

Florin T. Cimpean is senior

pastor of the Philadelphia Romanian Church of God in Chicago, Illinois. Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33
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