Blog Archives

Free Prayer: Urgent Prayer Request


This prayer request just came into the NotForItchingEars Free Prayer line.   If you pray, please take a moment and pray for Roesans situation.
Name: Rosean
Date:  September 24, 2011

Prayer Request:
There is a file at work that it missing. We now have a subpoena from the police department to locate it. Please pray that the Holy Spirit will direct, lead and guide us to locate this file. If it is not found I will be fired because I do the filing. If I lose this job I will lose everything, the company will be sanctioned and the ramifications will be so severe I could land up in jail or worse. Please pray in earnest for me that the Lord will have mercy on me and that His wrath will not fall upon me and we locate that missing file. Thank you. Isaiah 54:17

“Father, we humbly ask that you would help Rosean find this missing file.  Give her and her co-workers to wisdom to know where and where not to look.  In Jesus name we pray, Amen!”

What is The Most Important Part of Corporate Worship for YOU personally


Let’s face it, every church-goer has an opinion about this topic:  What they like the most about attending a corporate church service.  Over here at NotForItchingEars.com we are VERY interested in what you think.  It is part of our ongoing study of worship and Christianity.  We need your help here, so please take 45 seconds or less and answer the poll.

Now, about the poll:  We understand that we are asking you to make a choice that Read the rest of this entry

Why I Read the Early Church Fathers and You Should Too!


“Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it.”

Or so the saying goes.  In essence it means that those who don’t consider the past, when making choices in the present, will likely arrive at similarly bad conclusions.   This phrase strikes a chord with many.  Perhaps it is because we tend to always look forward, seldom pausing to consider the past.  Part of our DNA seems to include the belief that the next best thing is just up on the horizon.  Who can blame us?  Isn’t it often true?  At least with technology it is.  The next generation computer, or Iphone or IPad is going to be better than the previous one.  Things we build seem to improve over time, as we discover new ways of making them faster, smaller, bigger, cheaper, and more reliable.

Many within the evangelical Christian community seem to adopt this same belief when it comes to understanding Christianity and how that applies to our corporate lives.  We are often looking for the next thing, God’s next move, a “new and improved, better than the old” way of Read the rest of this entry

“Evangelical Christianity Can BEST be described as…………” Take our Poll and tell the World


How would you best describe Evangelical Christianity?  We have assembled some of the most common descriptions of EC in our poll.   Taking the poll is easy.  You can choose more than one answer, so feel free to combine answers.  You can not add your own description to the poll, but you can leave comments. We intend to Read the rest of this entry

“Evangelical Christianity Can BEST be described as…………” Take our Poll and tell the World


How would you best describe Evangelical Christianity?  We have assembled some of the most common descriptions of EC in our poll.   Taking the poll is easy.  You can choose more than one answer, so feel free to combine answers.  You can not add your own description to the poll, but you can leave comments. We intend to Read the rest of this entry

Saturday Morning Funnies: A Child’s Take on the Problem of Good and Evil


Blasphemy! If You Want the Congregation to Worship More, Try Singing Less


Worship is fast becoming a topic we avoid at all costs.  Much like discussing politics, discussing worship preferences and style, the should and should nots, the rights and wrongs, is not polite conversation.  It can and has led to all out war.  Challenge the status quo and you may have the same charges leveled against you that they leveled against Jesus: “Blasphemy…He is worthy of death!” Read the rest of this entry

You Can Reach More People In Your City if You Will Only Do What They are Doing


A local church in my city recently ran this “Pure Sex” advertising campaign to attract the non-churched to come to their services. They drove around the city with this banner on a trailer. First, I thought it was an advertisement for a porn shop. I was stopped dead in my tracks when I realized it was an advertisement to Read the rest of this entry

What is Your Favorite Part of the Sunday Morning Church Service? Take the Poll


Over the past few days, hundreds of people have read and commented on our post “Does God Care How We Worship?” As a follow-up to that post, we have created an online poll asking the question: “What is the Most Important Element of Corporate Worship for you Personally?” We hope you will take the time to vote. About the poll: We understand that we are asking you to make a choice that Read the rest of this entry

Does God Give Us Freedom To Worship Him Anyway WE Want to?


“If it feels good, do it!”

This has been one of the mottos of our culture since the 1960’s. Now it seems that the American church has adopted a similar pragmatic motto: “If it makes people feel good, we should use it.” Today we see church leaders of every persuasion trying all kinds of new things.   Even in corporate worship.  If it works in drawing more people into services then it “works” and must be stamped with the very approval of God Himself.  It appears that many church leaders are acting under the premise that we can worship God anyway we want to, as long as it is in spirit and truth. This is often just a code word for “Our way of worshipping God is acceptable to Him.  It must be, we love it and so do all the unbelievers who come and enjoy it.” But are they right?  Can we worship God anyway that WE want to?  Is there any possibility, at all,  that the way we worship Him could be unacceptable to HIM?

One of the things we should remind ourselves… Read the rest of this entry

Whatever Happened to the Message of Christianity?


The sign said, “Now serving Starbucks coffee!”

It was the late 90’s and the premium coffee craze was taking the country by storm. Everyone who liked coffee LOVED Starbucks or soon would. So it wasn’t surprising that some business would be utilizing the brand name to promote what they were doing. It made pretty good sense. It would not have fazed me a single bit if any other company was doing it. However, this massive sign was hung in front of a local evangelical Christian church. The message was crystal clear: “Come to our service on Sunday, we have free Starbucks coffee!”

With the arrival of the church growth movement and the seeker-sensitive ministry focus it birthed.. Read the rest of this entry

Rethinking the Contemporary Worship Service


“It’s Sunday once again and we haven’t even pulled into the parking lot of the church but already the frustration is building. With a glance skyward I whisper a now familiar but heartfelt prayer: ‘Lord, let this be a meeting of the saints. Please let there be something real in the House of God today. No ridiculous nonsense, no overt heresy, no deceptive ploys cast in Your Name, no silly sales tactics. Let us hear some of Your everlasting and immutable truth; anointed and unfiltered. Challenge me through the singular preaching of Biblical doctrine. Dare me to strive for Holiness, to love more freely, and believe absolutely. Let this be the very church service where I die! Where my fleshly passions and desires are nailed on an ancient splintered Cross to be wholly absorbed into a pool of Regal Blood. Never to rise again.’

The words leave my heart but I hold out little hope. Not that I doubt my Lord but because I know the modern church all too well….”

My friend Jim over at LivingElect penned those words, but it could just as easily been written by myself or countless other Christians who have grown so VERY tired of the modern American church.  A quick glance at those assembled on any Sunday leaves one thinking that everything is fine.   People are smiling, sermons are preached, songs are sung, offerings are collected.  But if we take Rafiki’s advice (Lion King) and “Looked Harder!” we see a different picture: believers who are spiritually mal-nourished, longing for just a sip of cold water and a stale piece of bread that never come.  Week after week after week, the spiritual food never arrives, and the body becomes weak.  This is where many of the Contemporary churches have led God’s people.

In an earlier post, I asked the question “Can We Bring Him More than a Song?”  It was a question that Read the rest of this entry

Would They Have Killed Jesus if HE Preached the Same Message the Church Preaches Today?


“If Jesus had preached the same message that ministers preach today, He would never have been crucified.” Leonard Ravenhill

I actually think Ravenhill’s  very pointed  observation is accurate.  What do you think?  If Jesus had taught how to be wealthy, how to be succesful, how to have your best life NOW or any number of things that we are taught today, instead of what he did teach, would they have crucified Him?

As we think about this question it is important to remember that The Cross was God’s idea.  It was His plan.  The truth is that no one took Jesus life, he laid it down.  Still, would they have wanted to crucify him had he preached the same message we hear today? Read the rest of this entry

Back to the Future: Sunday Morning Church Service circa 150 AD


In the movie “Back To The Future”,  17 year old, Marty Mcfly, lives a lousy life. His dad, George, a nerdy scaredy cat, and his mom, Larraine, is an alcoholic, who met George through pity, when her dad hit George with a car.   All he has ever known is this reality.  The only thing that he can do for fun, is hang out with the local scientist, Dr. Emmit Brown (Doc) who has created a time machine.  You know the story.  Marty goes back in time and changes how his parents meet.  In the process everything that was wrong with his life and family  is dramatically changed for the good.

When I contemplate the current state of the American Evangelical church, I wish we could get into that DeLorean and head back in time.  If we could, perhaps we would be able to intervene at just the right moment so that today’s church reflected God’s design rather than our own.  We can not time travel back to the first century, but we can read their documents to see how they understood “Church.”   It is good to look at history to observe how things “were”.  We often look at how things “are” and assume that’s this is the way things  are supposed to “be”… Read the rest of this entry

Jeremiah’s Message to Today’s Church Leadership


“If it feels good, do it!” 

 This has been one of the mottos of our culture since the 1960’s.  Now it seems that the American church has adopted a similar pragmatic motto:  “If it makes people feel good, we should use it.”  Today we see church leaders of every persuasion trying all kinds of new things.  If it works in drawing more people into services then it “works” and it must be good, right, and stamped with the very approval of God Himself.  But is it?

One of the things we should remind ourselves… Read the rest of this entry

Whatever Happened to the Message of The Cross?


The sign said, “Now serving Starbucks coffee!” It was the late 90’s and the premium coffee craze was taking the country by storm. Everyone who liked coffee LOVED Starbucks or soon would. So it wasn’t surprising that some business would be utilizing the brand name to promote what they were doing. It made pretty good sense. It wouldn’t have fazed me at all if any other company was doing it. But this massive sign was hung in front of a local evangelical Christian church. The message was crystal clear: “Come to our service on Sunday, we have free Starbucks coffee!”

Read the rest of this entry