One of the reasons that makes witnessing to churchgoers both difficult and unpleasant is because they have not yet heard from the Lord in a revelatory way. Most of religious believe that if your argument is not bible based, then it is not worth listening to. So, a way to get through to them is using the scriptures in red. In other words, “What did the Lord Jesus say?” Use the Lord’s own words to reveal the truth to them.
The Lord Jesus presented a group of kingdom of heaven parables, most of which He did not explain, but he left some clues. One of the clues as depicted in Matthew 13, is the birds. Therefore, when you’re keeping things very general, your focus is to rely on what the Lord said, what the Lord shared. And you ask your religious churchgoer,” what do they think that parable means?” Listen to what they say. You also ask questions. First of all Ask them, “what do the birds represent?” They won’t know. So remaining focused and patient, you highlight to the verse which most people know by taking him, her to the parable of the mustard seed, that grew into a large tree.
The trunk of that tree is the Catholic church, and the branches of that tree that come out of that trunk are the plethora of Protestant denominations and non-denominations. They are the branches of that tree. there should be no argument that the tree is the system of the Institutional Church. in this context you can also clarify that the Body of Christ is not the Institutional Church where believers gather together for Sunday morning worship. So it will be relatively easy to distinguish the difference between the body of Christ and the Institutional Church. you should be able to get agreement the body of Christ consists of every born again person who ever lived, who’s living now, and who ever will live. Clearly, the body of Christ and the institution of church and religion are not the same.
Once these matters are clarified, then continue to interpret this parable. Next consider the birds, nestling in the branches. Now you can make that the non-Catholic denominations have the devil as well as the Catholics. The trunk is the Catholic church! The people that started the Protestant church were Catholics, former Catholics who left Catholicism who started a whole new branch of religion. So, that’s another simple piece. the Catholics are the trunk of the tree and Protestants are the branches. . In the Protestants we have the denominations and the non-denominations. Simple. Keep it simple.
Now, some believe that the Catholic church is of God , but it’s the branches that spoiled things. Others believe that God set up the branches , but it’s the Catholic church that is demonic. “Oh, forget about the Catholics, they’re all witchcraft, with their worshipping the saints and all that, they got the devil, they bigtime got the devil. But the denominations, I mean, these are the ones, this is the true church.” No. Make it plain that one comes out of the other.
Then ask the question, ” who are the birds?” THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT!!!!
Once Jesus used a symbol, it makes sense that the symbol will have a similar meaning once He uses it again. In Matthew 13, known as the parable of the sower, the Lord is metaphorically discussing the reasons why some hearers of the word do not become born again. Jesus shared that the one who hears the word by the wayside do not become born again because the birds come and eat the seed. Later on in that chapter, the Lord interprets His own parable to the apostles, revealing that the birds are demons. They are evil spirits: fallen angels and demons.
So, go back and look at the mustard seed parable concerning the birds in the branches of the institutional church system. Keeping things simple, if the birds were demons in the parable of the sower, than Jesus is probably giving us a clue that the birds up in the branches of the mustard seed parable are demons too. So if the birds up in the branches are demons, believe me, the Catholic church is also run by fallen angels. Fallen angels and demons are in the Institutional Church.
Perhaps you will be asked if you believe if God has ever been involved with Institutional Church? To answer this question” refer to the the first two or three chapters of the book of Revelation, where a message is sent from the Lord , not to the church, but to the angel of the church. Clearly, God’s angels played an important role in the operation of the Institutional Church, and seeing as it was a Roman emperor who started the Institutional Church, it doesn’t take too much common sense to realize that the angesl who are in control of the Institutional Church today are fallen, they’re not God’s angels.
From the book of Revelation, God’s angels have been involved. For example, point out that the Church at Thytira reads a lot like the Catholic Church. So there’s time that can be spent with those seven letters. There’s a video that Pam did on it. You should use the tools that Pam has prepared. Review the messages Jesus gave to every church, to every angel of every church. Apparently, those angels didn’t do their job. I don’t know for sure. That’s another thing, you’ve got to be prepared to say sometimes, “I don’t know.” But you’ve got to stay focused.
Churchgoers, both traditional and charismatic tend to leap from topic to topic. In this case, you must stay focused. The major point you should make is God’s relationship to the institutional church according to the words of Jesus in His parables and in the book of revelation. we’re talking about dealing with the institution. the average committed churchgoer is going to defend THEIR church and their pastor. with defenses like “oh, well my church doesn’t do what these charismatic churches do, they don’t ask for tithes, they don’t teach this, they don’t teach that.”
You have to point out that certainly there are righteous, sincere people in some of the churches, both pastors and laity. The question is “Do you want to be in a church that regardless of how committed and faithful the people seem, their organization is run by fallen angels and demons?” The birds in the branches is the bottom-line to consider! Until a religious, deceived person comes to the realization that Satan, the god of this world, is in control, is it really safe to worship there? The next question to address is “what about the plagues that the Lord mentions in Rev 18:4 when He warns “Come out of Her My People, less you partake of Her sins and receive of Her plagues.”
Where are God’s people for the most part? Let the churchgoer answer that question. The very first place even an atheist will think of is “the Institutional Churches. ”
This is all very simple. The enemy keeps the confusion complicated so that churchgoers will protest with all kinds of explanations and excuses for continuing to do what the Lord has warned them not to do.
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