By Patrick Hawthorne
A passage that has always troubled me is Ephesians 5:27 which reads, “…that He (Jesus) might present her (the Church) to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.” While the “what” of the verse is self-explanatory, the “how,” of the verse is not. How will the Church – the Body of Christ Jesus – be without spot or blemish? It’s obvious that the Church has some serious issues that need dealing with, but how will the Lord deal with these issues prior to His return?
Lately, the Lord has been revealing things to me about the Church so that I might pray more effectively. One way was through a vision while in prayer, A Body Out of Alignment. Another way was through the Word, Storm On the Horizon . This latest has come through a conversation with my mom. As a side note, never discount nor limit the way in which the Holy Spirit may speak to you.
As I was speaking with my mother about this burden to pray and write concerning the Church she said to me, and I paraphrase, “Did you know that the spots and blemishes of the Church are people?” Of course I asked her to explain. “Yes,” she said, “Look at 2 Peter 2:13 and you will see that the spots and blemishes are those within the Church who appear to be part of the Body but practice wickedness and deception.” Naturally, my curiosity was peaked.
At the first opportune moment I went to those verses. Sure enough 2 Peter 2:12-13 read, “But these, like natural brute beasts made to be caught and destroyed, speak evil of the things they do not understand, and will utterly perish in their own corruption, 13 and will receive the wages of unrighteousness, as those who count it pleasure to carouse in the daytime. They are spots and blemishes, carousing in their own deceptions while they feast with you, (2 Peter 2:12-13 NKJV bold/underline mine).
The spots and blemishes written of are church members. These are they who live two lives; one life is in the church and the other is in the world. Suddenly things were making sense.
As I previously wrote, I believe we are in the season of the last of the last days. I don’t know how much longer till Jesus returns but all indications reveal that we are close. Could it be that the prophecy of Malachi 3:16-18 may occur prior to His return? Could it be that the separation of the wheat from the tares within the Church has already begun? Maybe… Be blessed.
Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord listened and heard them; so a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who meditate on His name.17 “They shall be Mine,” says the Lord of hosts, “On the day that I make them My jewels. And I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him.”18 Then you shall again discern between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him. (Malachi 3:16-18 NKJV bold/underline mine)