Some of you will remember the jingle, “A little Dab’ll do ya.” Others will need to thumb through your yellowed, dog-eared history notes or check the Internet for this advertising commercial jingle that originated from the manufacturer of a men’s hair product called Brylcreem.
The alternative to Brylcreem was “greasy kid’s stuff,” illustrated best by Humphrey Bogart or Ronald Reagan in early movies. Al Pacino in The Godfather and Robert De Niro in The Untouchables re-popularized greasy kid’s stuff in their gangster movies. Pick one or more.
These gents looked like somebody had dipped their heads in a vat of bacon grease! That was the style in the 50s. So much for trends. Now it’s no hair, some hair, lots of hair, kinky hair, ugly comb-overs, or hair that Little Orphan Annie would have been proud of. Whatever somebody thinks makes them look better. Okay.
For the 50s guys Brylcreem admonished that “A little dab’ll do ya,” very much like the church has believed for the past 50-60 years: “Just a little dab of Jesus will do ya.” Let me say, unequivocally, “a little dab of Jesus will save ya,” but “it won’t do ya.” Let me explain. Saving one’s soul for heaven is one thing, but total transformation of spirit, soul and body is quite another (I Thess. 5:23).
In my church in the 50s, “being a good Christian” meant go to church on Sunday (the “really committed” went to prayer meeting on Wednesdays, which consisted of two prayers: one to introduce the service and one to go home, and in some cases, prayers for Aunt Susie’s ingrown toenail) pay your tithe, read “The Upper Room” or “Open Windows,” and, of course, watch Billy Graham in Japan. This should take care of any evil that might be lurching at our doors. Or so we thought.
The truth was, the kids I knew, including me, were doing all the same stuff people always had done; you either hid it or bragged about it, or if you were goody two-shoes, you acted like it didn’t exist. Still, a little dab’ll do ya, we thought.
And it worked in some cases until about 1960 when hell came to town in the form of rebellion, lawlessness, drugs, the sexual revolution, Eastern gurus, “If it feels good, do it, New Age religion, the feminist revolt, “two+two doesn’t equal four: it’s how you feel about it that matters;” “Heather Has Two Mommies,” a non-win war in Southeast Asia and liberalism on steroids. You couldn’t tell a Democrat from a Republican when I was growing up. My how things have changed! Somebody forgot that the devil loves a vacuum.
The Mayberry Church
The “Mayberry Church” wasn’t the least bit ready for this onslaught of insanity, and quietly hoped and sometimes prayed that this was just a bad American dream that wouldn’t last. Hmmm… maybe two coats of Brylcreme were needed?
The people who knew “the Holy Ghost” were in most cases seemingly crazy and jumping too many pews for my taste, so I steered clear of all that, preferring instead secret dalliances with sin, thinking nothing would come of it.
But, lo, and behold, there is something that I and this whole generation and the one prior to it had forgotten or didn’t care to think about. It’s called the “law of sewing and reaping.” The King James puts it this way: “Whatsoever a man seweth that shall he also reap.” The NIV translates it:
7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8 Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.
The sewing of evil or good is an inexorable principle of God. It doesn’t matter if you believe it or not, ignore, or call it evangelical nonsense. It works. Something’s coming up from what you planted. It works in blessing and in cursing, and it keeps on working for years until the people or God say enough! Either sin becomes too much to deal with, or blessing is taken for granted. Both happened to Israel.
America has been blessed for more than 200 years because we sewed well. We essentially obeyed the Word of God in that respect, whether Americans were believers or not, they respected it enough to allow it to work.
We have been the home for the oppressed, the poor, the weak; we have lost countless lives liberating countries throughout the globe from the tyranny of evil. Did we do everything in a godly fashion? No. Were our principles and motivations always right? No. Did our big business philosophy result in getting what was ours at any cost? Yes. However, we’ve stayed the course for the majority of this time, still sending more missionaries than any other country in the history of the world. But now the sin of sewing more evil than good has caught up with us.
Mental Illness in America
And it shows up in any number of ways, but particularly in the explosion of mental sickness in our society. In a recent article David Kupelian summarizes our current fate:
WND ^ | Arpil 21, 2013 | David Kupelian
Posted on April 21, 2013 4:04:54 PM CDT by Perseverando
Terrorism. Chaos. Fear of the future. In the age of Obama, America is undergoing a “fundamental transformation” – that much everyone knows.
But what few seem to realize about this transformation is that the sheer stress of living in today’s America is driving tens of millions to the point of illness, depression and self-destruction. Consider the following trends:
Suicide has surpassed car crashes as the leading cause of injury death for Americans. Even more disturbing, in the world’s greatest military, more U.S. soldiers died last year by suicide than in combat;
Fully one-third of the nation’s employees suffer chronic debilitating stress, and more than half of all “millennials” (18 to 33 year olds) experience a level of stress that keeps them awake at night, including large numbers diagnosed with depression or anxiety disorder.
Shocking new research from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that one in five of all high-school-aged children in the United States has been diagnosed with ADHD, and likewise a large new study of New York City residents shows, sadly, that one in five preteens – children aged six to 12 – have been medically diagnosed with either ADHD, anxiety, depression or bipolar disorder;
New research concludes that stress renders people susceptible to serious illness, and a growing number of studies now confirm that chronic stress plays a major role in the progression of cancer, the nation’s second-biggest killer. The biggest killer of all, heart disease, which causes one in four deaths in the U.S., is also known to have a huge stress component;
Incredibly, 11 percent of all Americans aged 12 and older are currently taking SSRI antidepressants – those highly controversial, mood-altering psychiatric drugs with the FDA’s “suicidality” warning label and alarming correlation with school shooters.
Kupelian is not a lone wolf crying out into the darkness. He joins many others in psychiatry, the ministry, social work and other professions pinpointing the difficulties that must come to a dramatic end, one way or the other. We simply can’t go on this way. Either we get God’s power into this society in every possible way, or we’re toast. Frankly, the intellectual gospel will not save America. Just as power was needed in that oppressed first century church, so we who call ourselves evangelical MUST have power to deal with the evil that battering in our doors!
When all the chaos was shaking the foundations in the 60s, so was THE answer: the Spirit of the living God. Let’s be honest. In Mayberry Churches across the country, most congregations were trying their best to grapple with the horrific turn of events that were sweeping the country.
But most were still playing politics as usual, focusing on programs, committees for this or that, a better choir, a preacher who came from the “right seminary,” the annual revival, better witnessing and an upgraded marketing program. Some of it worked, most of it didn’t.
Much of this remains unchanged today because of spiritual blindness. Is there any other answer for a so-called Christian nation that could twice elect a man whose policies are dictatorial and socialist-communist? David Barton, a brilliant historian on the Founding Fathers and presidents, said, “Barack Obama is the most biblically hostile president in history.” http://www.wallbuilders.com/libissuesarticles.asp?id=106938. It took a lot of deluded or at best naive Christians to vote this man back into the White House.
The Charismatic Renewal: the Modern Day Beginning
That 60s was characterized by visitations of the Holy Spirit called “the Charismatic Renewal.”
It started as a relatively small, disorganized unrelated worldwide group of Christians who were hungry for change and to experience “the living water” of the Holy Spirit. Like Azusa Street in the 1920s, these Christians had to seek this experience primarily outside the walls of conventional churches, which, except for Pentecostal churches, knew little of the power of God or the moving of the Holy Spirit. In most cases, it scared them or it threatened them or both. Either that or they felt their intellectual understanding of the Bible was superior, and there was no need to seek “the power from on high.” After all, the “crazy Charismatics” would be proven wrong, they thought.
As this power of God began to spread throughout the land, Catholics and evangelicals of every stripe were baptized in the Holy Spirit. At first rejected but later accepted as somewhat “normal” by denominations, the Charismatic renewal took on a life of its own, promoted by TV programs and bookstores and popular teachers such as Pat Roberson, TD Jakes and Joyce Meyer. And the rest is history.
What has changed – really? Indeed we have more people today who have experienced a genuine move of the presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives. There is a greater knowledge of how God operates. The gifts of the Spirit are being sought now more than ever, even though there is a great misunderstanding of how they are applied.
With all this, we still think a little “A dab’ll do ya.”
What we do know is the stirring of the Holy Spirit in believers throughout America has uncovered darkness as never before. Jesus made it clear that darkness in us hides until it is forced to the surface by His light (Luke 11:34-35).
Satan’s hordes are on the move, building new legions on the basis on the foolish habits of people who had unknowingly and knowingly hitched their lives to the occult, New Age, Wiccan and Eastern mysticism that invite demons to invade themselves, their families and their communities. In Christians who hunger for more, darkness kept under the wraps of self-righteousness and performance is now rising up and calling for deliverance and inner healing.
In essence, a little prayer, trying harder, reading a Christian book or watching or listening to their favorite TV won’t cure most of these folks. They need power!
Reaping the Truncated Gospel
People by the millions are waking up to the fact that the truncated gospel that was preached for decades left a horrible void in people’s lives. The truncated gospel, which often fails to mention that a Christ follower is one who must first deny himself, and then take up his cross to follow the Lord (Luke 9:23), has resulted in many in the Body of Christ being ill-equipped for the day in which we live. They didn’t realize the deal was emptying themselves of themselves until Christ is all in all. Face it, if churches preached this, they would lose their members like people sliding off the Titanic. “A little dab’ll do ya” is the preferred message.
Therefore, there is an explosion of bad news coming from families across America. Drugs, illicit affairs, betrayal and mental breakdown are spreading uncontrollably across the landscape. We are reaping what we have sewn.
Many can’t get a grip on what has happened in families wracked by the most ungodly and horrendous circumstances of “playing church.” Or even in situations where there was concentrated prayer and Bible reading, the forgotten and overlooked power of the Holy Spirit took its toll.
These are usually good people, who misunderstood the law of sewing and reaping, thinking the truncated gospel was enough to handle all this. This thinking in a nutshell: “A little dab’ll do ya.”
Transformation was not an option for the “spiritually” few
Somehow in most people’s thinking, Romans 12:1-2 was an option:
“With eyes wide open to the mercies of God, I beg you, my brothers, as an act of intelligent worship, to give him your bodies, as a living sacrifice, consecrated to him and acceptable by him. Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould, but let God re-mould your minds from within, so that you may prove in practice that the plan of God for you is good, meets all his demands and moves towards the goal of true maturity” (Romans 12:1-2, JB Phillips Translation).
How many years are left?
It would seem that The End, based on all the terrible things that are happening across the world, would be soon, although no one knows for sure. Many prophets, or at least those claiming the title, say, “Christ is coming soon,” and that the signs are here. New books spring up declaring, yes, this is it.
The Overcoming Church: A little Dab Won’t do ya!
Nowhere in the Bible does it imply that the church will go out of this a defeated, impotent body that was simply too overwhelmed by evil to continue. We may end up as “Gideon’s Army,” a relatively small band of believers so in love with Jesus that the light and the power of the Gospel will be just too much for evil to have the final sway.
Remember: One can put 1,000 to flight and two 10,000. We wonder how. I recall one story in the Bible in Isaiah 37:36 in which the Angel of the Lord alone killed 185,000 soldiers in one night! Could that be a clue to victory?
I believe in the church triumphant, soaked in prayer and power and filled with the God-ordained task of doing the impossible, but only through the King who is able. I believe in the days to come that this gospel will fill the earth, and in milliseconds some in the Body will be transformed so abruptly that no one will dare call it anything but a miracle. All it takes is Pentecostal fire from heaven to embolden the ordinary with power to do the extraordinary.
Before this time, as millions gather to pray and seek the power of heaven, HE will appear in our midst with fire in His eyes and a burning love in His heart for the Body He bought and paid for. And with great power and glory, He, through this slow reacting Body of believers, will arise to begin to establish a Throne sent down from heaven to reign and rule among the people of earth.
Yes, the radicals, hate mongers, Christ haters and anti-Christ one-worlders may have their day for a while, but not for long because this Church of Jesus Christ will begin to throw off the shackles of fear and intimidation that has held it in check for so long and will emerge with a victorious heart. Political game-playing, denominational favoritism, division and other foolish barriers that have stood against unity will fade in the light of His love and glory! Jesus’ high priestly prayer of John 17 that we all may become one in love will be fulfilled, and the world will know that God’s people are the true rulers of this planet!