Now That’s the Christianity I’m Talking About

This is what REAL Christianity looks like:

OK, so I am getting old. And that means I am getting rather tired of all the anaemic, gutless, and wishy-washy Christianity that I see all around me. I want the real deal, or I want nothing at all. So much of Western Christianity has become so compromised and carnalised that it offers nothing at all to a needy and broken world.

Only an on-fire, Spirit-filled, and courageous church can rattle the gates of hell and make a lasting difference. Thankfully there are some pockets of resistance in this ever-darkening world. There are some Christians who are willing to go to the gates of hell and proclaim biblical truth.

I am always reminded of the amazing Christian missionary C. T. Studd who said this: “Some wish to live within the sound of a chapel bell; I wish to run a rescue mission within a yard of hell.” Yep, that’s it: so sold out for Jesus that you will go where the gospel is so desperately needed.

A new article just appeared on my social media timeline and I am just quite enamoured with what it has to say. The title sure got my attention: “Pastor Starts Church on Steps of Planned Parenthood.”  It is so cool that I will simply offer much of the article. Here is the first half of it:

Pastor Ken Peters was faithfully leading his small church in Spokane, Washington, when a guest preacher’s Sunday sermon grabbed his heart and prompted an unexpected response. That providential moment led to the creation of “The Church at Planned Parenthood” (TCAPP), a monthly gathering of Christians from various churches to worship God, boldly preach the gospel message and spend time in corporate prayer repenting for our nation and for the church’s silence on abortion—while standing together outside of a Planned Parenthood clinic.

We spoke with Pastor Ken to learn more about TCAPP and to understand the impact that this church plant is having nationwide. Below is an edited transcript of our conversation.

Tell me about the pivotal moment that started TCAPP.

Ken Peters: Reverend Rusty Thomas of Operation Save America came to our church to stir us up about the murder of the unborn in our nation. He was preaching on when Jesus said, “I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” He said, “If you have any worship leaders, have them go out to Planned Parenthood with a guitar and start worshipping. If you have any intercessors, get them out there praying. If you have any preachers, get them out there preaching.”

I thought, That sounds like church: preaching, worship, and prayer. I felt like the Lord spoke to me and said, “Don’t you dare plant another regular church until your next church campus is the church at Planned Parenthood, an outdoor church.” I got up after the sermon and announced to the congregation that our next church was going to be a church at Planned Parenthood!

My guess is there was surprise and even concern after your passionate proclamation. Describe the reaction.

Ken Peters: My wife looked at me like I was crazy! And Reverend Thomas literally bent over. He said he had never heard of such an idea. It was so simple, yet so profound because he had just proclaimed that the church will win against the gates of hell. Quite frankly, after I made the announcement, I began to doubt. I was afraid. My church was supportive but they waited to see if I would follow through on my promise.

Two months later, in October 2018, you held the first service of the new church plant. What happened?

Ken Peters: I was expecting my wife and maybe 20 people to show up—maybe a couple of elders and deacons from the church because they felt obligated. But 175 people came for the first service! The church was so gracious—they followed their crazy leader and responded.

Describe the atmosphere at a TCAPP service.

Ken Peters: You can literally feel the spiritual warfare. When it’s almost time to start, people are coming in from everywhere because they have to park in the surrounding neighborhoods and walk because Planned Parenthood won’t let us use their parking lot. The police are there with five to eight police cars with their lights flashing. They have to put up barricades on both sides of the street because we’ve attracted a number of protesters.

Some might wonder if you are there protesting Planned Parenthood. Is your worship service directed toward Planned Parenthood?

Ken Peters: We are not a protest. We do not engage with the protesters. We are there to call upon the Lord. It’s spiritual warfare, not warfare of the flesh. We are having church, believing that the gates of hell will not prevail.

You are following the model of worship, prayer and preaching, but is your preaching geared towards pro-life issues?

Ken Peters: It’s naturally going to be more focused on the life issue because we’re right next to Planned Parenthood. If the preachers want to preach the gospel, that’s what they do. A picture is worth a thousand words when you have Christians out there worshipping God. You don’t have to say anything about life, but everyone knows why you are there.

TCAPP is growing across the country and there are other locations replicating what you started. Talk about your vision as this church is gaining attention and more people are learning about it.

Ken Peters: My vision is that the “bushel” is taken off the church. Jesus said, “You are the light of the world, a city on a hill.” Either keep your light under a bushel or “let your light shine before men that they might see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” My ultimate goal is to see revival and to see the church activate.

Why do you think the church has been largely silent on abortion?

Ken Peters: I think it’s become a political issue. Churches want to reach everyone. But they’ve stayed away from issues that might chase people away, instead of realizing that Christ Himself is the Truth and we don’t need to be afraid of the Truth. I think we can speak truth boldly and not hatefully.

Wow. Now that’s what I am talking about. That is biblical Christianity at its best. Let me conclude with two other radical Christians who shook up their world for Jesus. I refer to William and Catherine Booth, founders of the Salvation Army.

William famously said this: “The chief danger that confronts the coming century will be religion without the Holy Ghost, Christianity without Christ, forgiveness without repentance, salvation without regeneration, politics without God, heaven without hell.”

And let me offer just a few quotes from Catherine from her book Aggressive Christianity. She said this about why we have so many weak and unstable believers:

“Here is the reason why we have such a host of stillborn, sinewless, ricketty, powerless spiritual children. They are born of half-dead parents, a sort of sentimental religion which does not take hold of the soul, which has no depth of earth, no grasp, no power in it, and the result is a sickly crop of sentimental converts. Oh! the Lord give us a real, robust, living, hardy, Christianity, full of zeal and faith, which shall bring into the kingdom of God lively, well-developed children, full of life and energy, instead of these poor sentimental ghosts that are hopping around us.”

And here are a few more quotes:

“If we are to better the future we must disturb the present.”

“Opposition! It is a bad sign for the Christianity of this day that it provokes so little opposition. If there were no other evidence of it being wrong, I should know it from that. When the Church and the world can jog along comfortably together, you may be sure there is something wrong. The world has not altered. Its spirit is exactly the same as it ever was, and if Christians were equally faithful and devoted to the Lord, and separated from the world, living so that their lives were a reproof to all ungodliness, the world would hate them as much as it ever did. It is the Church that has altered, not the world.”

“Faithful witnesses must speak out, not mince the matter – not ‘mumble,’ as they say in court. The judge makes the witness speak up so that everybody may hear him. He must be heard. Speak out – why should not the Lord’s witnesses speak out? I wonder when we shall be done with this sneaking, hole-and-corner, shame-faced religion. I wonder when Christian England will cease to be ashamed of its God!! The only nation under Heaven ashamed of its religion and its God is the one that has got the true God to worship and to love. What an anomaly! Speak out!”

“This was the kind of witnessing the martyrs did. I often wonder whether there would be any martyrs now. Sometimes I think that the greatest boon to the Church of Christ would be a time of persecution. I believe it would. I believe it would drive us up to God and each other. We should find out, then, whether we were willing to forsake all to follow Him. You know that if the martyrs had taken the standard of religious life that exists now, they would never have been martyrs. They would have looked after their own skins, and left the Lord to look after the Gospel.”

“Real Christianity is, in its very nature and essence, aggressive.”

“What can we do without the Spirit? This is the reason of the effeteness of so much professed Christianity – there is no Holy Ghost in it. It is rotten. It is like a very pretty corpse.”

Hey, I am with Catherine Booth. I am with Ken Peters. Are you?

[1656 words]

15 Replies to “Now That’s the Christianity I’m Talking About”

  1. Yeah me too!
    Getting sick and tired of spineless Christianity. Let’s get back to fire and brimstone preaching so people won’t have an excuse for sin.

  2. I too, am tired of what I call, “Fairy Floss” Christianity. Interestingly, I have just glanced at my Bible, which is lying open beside me, and there highlighted, is Matthew 10:34, the Words of CHRIST: “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the Earth, but a Sword.”

  3. Local councils in England are legislating buffer zones round abortion clinics. An individual was arrested for praying outside an abortion clinic. Having a whole church outside one sounds interesting!

  4. What courage in Jesus, Bill…

    Maybe we should revisit or re-read ” What is God’s Wrath ” and find out what happens to the “saints” who came to the judgment and Jesus said in Matthew 25:31-36
    “The Judgment of the Nations”
    When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. Then the king will say to those at his right hand,’‘ Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.”

    Maybe that is not preached and therefore “BOLDNESS” has departed from the vocabulary
    of the body of Christ?

    We pray for these BOLD brothers and sisters at “The Church at Planned Parenthood” (TCAPP), they will be used for the glory of our Heavenly Father, stem the baby-killing tide around the world…

    Thank you Bill for your encouraging daily articles, much appreciated(:

    Cheers & blessings

    Eric Hansen

  5. British mission leader CT Studd wrote a booklet about 100 years ago, in which he explored the idea of weak inactive Christians, “the Chocolate Soldier”. He found biblical characters who were unwilling to enter the fight and sort of ridiculed them for not standing strong. And he commends the bold. “Go where you will through the Scriptures or history, you find that men who really knew God, and didn’t merely say they did, were invariably Paragons of Pluck; Dare-Devil Desperadoes for Jesus; Gamblers for God.” Read it here.

  6. Just after Ash Wednesday in 1983, i was chasing a spot fire with two bull dozers in a steep remote part of Gippsland. With both machines nearly out of diesel, i radioed for an urgent 44 gal of fuel to be dropped at the base of a 4wd track.
    When i got there the “44” was there and I pondered the solo task of loading the big drum on my ute. I was hungry, thirsty, tired and generally “over it”. Whilst contemplating my hurculean task ahead i heard a vehicle approach. I observed two cheerful “civilians” exit their sedan and engaged. These two Salvation Army men had hot coffee, fresh food and encouragement in this remote spot. The three of us loaded the 44 gallon drum and said our goodbyes. Beyond words.

  7. Great article Bill. Thank you. Praise GOD for Pastor Ken Peters in Spokane in the USA. What better place to shine the light of CHRIST than right next to the darkness (of Planned Parenthood’s abortion clinic). What a great witness. I love the ‘real (fearless) Christianity’ of heroes of the faith like the Booth’s and the others you mentioned. One of my favourites is John G Lake, also from Spokane. Reading of the accounts of his ministry was very faith-building when I was first saved. It was a mystery to me as a new Christian as to why the Church wasn’t doing what he did!! Alas … it is still a mystery!! Blessings in abundance. Cheryl Ciccotosto

  8. We need more William & Catherine Booths in our Salvation Army today.

  9. What a fantastic example of a church that is more interested in souls than what people will think.
    I have heard the stats (possibly unplanned the movie or some preaching by Priscilla Shirer) that when Christians stand outside a clinic where abortions are performed and pray silently. Their no show rate goes up to 70% definitely reinforces the power or prayer in this unseen battle.

  10. Inspirational and encouraging!
    Yes, yes, and yes to taking bold stands and following the promptings of Holy Spirit, as we become the example of faith, fire, purity, love, speech, conduct, public reading of scriptures, preaching and teaching, so that we can see people’s lives impacted and changed.

  11. Yes, excellent article, I loved Catherine’s description of “a sickly crop of sentimental converts” and “sentimental ghosts”. What will it take for us to wake up from our comfortable Western slumber and be the church Christ died for? We are becoming so much like the world that no-one can tell the difference therefore we are no threat to the darkness because our light’s are so dim. No one wants to “offend” we are manipulated by the lies of the evil one that “loving” people means compromising the gospel to make it palatable and comfortable. A far cry from the radical nature of Jesus and His message He never watered down to soften the Truth.

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