IS THERE JUSTICE IN THE CHURCH OF GOD IN CHRIST?

TURN FROM DARKNESS TO LIGHT

To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.”  (Acts 26:18, AV)

 

BY BRENDA STIDHAM

An overwhelming majority of COGIC leaders (particularly bishops) systematically covenant to embrace esteem and exalt the government of the Church of God in Christ, above the written Word of God.  During the consecration ceremony bishops covenant to uphold, obey and defend the Constitution, (COGIC governmental system), even though the Constitution (Church Of God In Christ, Official Manual. 1973 edition, pgs. 1-39) is completely void of the written Word of God.  The Constitution these men covenant to uphold, obey and defend contains provisions that are diametrically opposed to the written Word of God and enshrines the biblical evil respecter of persons, only bishops and pastors have constitutional rights (see Internet website, http://www.reportcogicabuse.com, Constitutional Rights Expose/Critique, pgs. 2-3, 6-7 & 12). The Word of God furnishes light in darkness, yet the Church of God in Christ Constitution lacks light.

“The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes” (Psalm 19:8).

“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path(Psalm 119:105).

“The entrance of thy words giveth light…” Psalm  119:130

 

Darkness is the absence of light.  The absence of light in church government authorizes men to conduct, perform, and execute ecclesiastical matters in darkness.  Government is ‘the continuous exercise of authority over and the performance of functions … laws and customs through which the function of government is carried out” (Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 10th ed.  Merriam Webster, Incorporated, Springfield, Mass.  1993, pg. 504).  Under the current government, church affairs are often conducted in a selfish, prideful manner.  Some men conduct the affairs of the church, as if the church particularly at the jurisdictional level is their own personal, private, regime.  The Word of God gives light, no Word, no light.

Where does guidance come from, that directs and guides men to establish and enact church government that completely leaves out the written Word of God?

The Bible states:

“…Thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name”.  Psalm 138:2

“If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself”.  II Timothy 2:13.

God exalts His Word above His name.  He cannot deny Himself.  The Church of God in Christ, carries His name, yet completely leaves His written Word out of its Constitution, government.  No Word, no light.  Those who defend the Constitution, defend that which is void of light and when the Word of God (light) confronts that which is void of light, those who defend the Constitution choose to fight against light.

“…God is light, and in him is no darkness at all”.  I John 1:5.

Church government void of the Word of God (light), enslaves and takes captives, Jesus tells us that:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,  because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor, he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised”.  Luke 4:18  (bold emphasis added)

Colossians 2:8 tells us:

“Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ”.

This same verse in the NIV reads:

“See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ”.

Where there is an absence of light (darkness), leaders are license to coerce, goad, and intimidate parishioners into obedience or silence.  Members are taught to obey leadership, not to fight or question their leader(s).  Members are taught that all wrongs will be made right in heaven and not to speak out against wrongs.  Parishioners spend the majority of their Christian lives uncertain if heaven is their ultimate home, even though what Christ has done for us is sure.  They are repeatedly told to obey leadership, not to fight or question leadership, even Jesus questioned church leaders of His day, Luke 2:46.  Many do not want to risk increasing the perceived difficulty to making heaven their home, by disobeying or questioning their leader.

Unfortunately, when COGIC leaders act contrary to the written Word of God, far too often members are expected and required to support their leader(s) with a loyalty that defies the written Word of God.  It is not difficult for leaders, particularly bishops who uphold and defend the Constitution to demand and extract such loyalty from members, particularly those who serve under them.  Bishops know that in the church, those (except pastors) who serve under them are without constitutional/governmental rights.  Some of these men demand and extract loyalty in the name of the church, they esteem the covenant to defend that which is completely void of the written Word of God.

There are a few bishops who dare to exalt the Word of God above the Constitution.  Unfortunately these courageous men can be and are often singled out as defectors from the brotherhood of bishops.  This system of church government takes captive all who exalt that which is void of the Word, light and seeks to destroy or silence those who refuse to do so.  It attempts to take captive bishops who refuse to exalt that which is void of light.  Bishops, are expected under penalty of disciplinary proceedings to kneel at the altar of the Constitution, church government, even though the Word of God is completely left out; brethren this should not be.  Members must be free to exalt the Word of God within the church, all institutional customs, laws, and provisions that leave out, shut out, or contravene the written Word of God, must bow in the name of Jesus.  Philippians 2:10.

Each of us must renew our mind with the Word and study to show ourselves approved unto God.  Romans 12:2 & II Timothy 2:15.  Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, helps to renew the mind and exalt the Word.  Thoughts that come to attack the promise(s) of God and the high thing that attempts to lift itself above the Word of God must be cast down.  The Bible tells us to cast down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God.  II Corinthians 10:5.  This scripture addresses our thought life, as Christians we must take captive every thought and make the thought obey Christ.  Christians must not be ruled by that which is void of the Word of God, particularly within the church.  The Constitution has no Word. No Word, no light.  When an imagination, thought, or high thing comes from a place absent of light, we are instructed to take the thought captive, put it in jail by speaking what God says about it.  Boldly cast down that which exalts itself against the knowledge of God.  God and His Word are one,

Proverbs 3:6 instructs us:

“In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths”

Again, where does guidance come from that directs and guides men to establish and enact church government that completely leaves out the written Word of God?  Who and what is the church imitating?  Those who choose to embrace, esteem and exalt the Word of God (light), must establish and enact church government that refuses to leave out or depart from the written Word of God.  An awakening to God, is what changes men and government, His written Word cannot be left out

“The entrance of thy words giveth light…”  Psalms 119:130

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