9 Then another angel, a third one, followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand, 10 and he also will drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is mixed in full strength in the cup of His rage, and he will be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. 11 And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; they have no rest day and night, those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name. ”Revelation 14:9-11 (LSB)
I have been rereading and studying a book by John MacArthur titled The Vanishing Conscience. Along with this, I have been listening to a series of teachings by the late R.C. Sproul on the human conscience, all men’s guilt before God because of their sin, and the utter uselessness of man-made religiosity or human psychology teachings about self-esteem in maintaining a healthy conscience that leads the believer into growing in humility and Christlikeness….
As part of my study, I have also been praying for guidance in how I should or even if I should address this. The direction I have received is that we must address this since the apostate forms of the visible church have recently shown their true colors of adherence to liberal theology. Also, the missional focus of so many of those who call themselves the “New” Evangelism or “New” Calvinism or “New” ‘put your favorite religious flavor here’ are redefining the true “Mission” of the Church into a works-righteousness with a nebulous concept of sin, repentance, justification, et cetera.
All of this is an abandonment of what the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ should be about and, without exception, one of the first things that goes in their “New” form of Christianity is the biblical concept of sin and what the true mission of our Lord Jesus was in His incarnation, earthly ministry, crucifixion, death, resurrection, and ascension. In other words, in their ‘redefinition’ of Christianity, they do away with the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Man’s very nature is fallen. Man is wrong at the center of his being, and therefore everything is wrong. He cannot be improved, for, finally, nothing will suffice but a radical change, a new nature. Man loves the darkness and hates the light. What can be done for him? Can he change himself? Can he renew his nature? “Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots?” Can man change the whole bias of his life? Give him new clothing, provide him with a new house I new surroundings, entertain him with all that is best and most elevating, educate him and train his mind, enrich his soul with frequent doses of the finest culture ever known, do all and more, but still he will remain the same essential man, and his desires and innermost life will be unchanged.1
Therefore, any form of religiosity that calls itself Christian, but neglects this truth or attempts to redefine it in terms that do not offend anyone, while offering only the worthless balm of man-made religiosity in an attempt to assuage the conscience is apostate. It has abandoned the true mission of the Church and become something else.