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Pastor’s Paraklesis: A Time of Confusion

 

Now the whole earth had one language and one speech. And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar, and they dwelt there.

Then they said to one another, “Come let us make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They had bricks for stone, and they had asphalt for mortar. And they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the earth.”

But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. And the Lord said, “Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them. Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.”

So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of the all the earth, and they ceased building the city. Therefore its name is called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of the earth.

Genesis 11:1-9 NKJV

 

The building of the Tower was an unparalleled time of communication and technology. A time when not doing God’s will, filling the earth with God’s glory, was popular. The majority chose to do things the it wanted to. Even those with a godly heritage embracing anything other than what God wanted.

Unparalleled? Perhaps that time so many generations ago is similar to what is happening right now in America. I have been thinking about all the confusion that is going on in our nation. How foolish we must be appearing in the eyes of other nations around the world.

When God came down and looked at what was going on at Babel, He confused the language of the people. I have a feeling in my heart that God is looking down on America and all her sin and is sending a spirit of confusion on our nation. What does this mean for us as Christians? What does it for us as pastors? I believe we need to be in prayer, not only for our nation, but also for the Church. All the events that are happening are pointing to the soon return of our Lord. It seems as His coming gets closer there is more pressure on the True Church. Our people need to deeply know the Lord so that regardless of what may happen before the Lord calls us to Himself, we are ready always to give a reason for the hope that is in us. We need to fearlessly stand up against the adversary, for the worst he can do is kill the body. This is a time for great trust in our God and reliance upon Him.

I pray that we as spiritual leaders will search our hearts so that nothing stands between God and us. In this day of confused leadership, we must stand as “examples to the flock” (1 Peter 5:3). As the people we minister to see us sensitive before God, so they will follow us and they will search their hearts and draw closer to God.

 

PR

The word paraklesis has some rich meaning in the New Testament (see “parakaleo,” Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (Abridged in One Volume), G. Bromiley, ed. (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1985), especially p. 781). When it relates to the proclamation of salvation, exhorting men to be saved, it implies speaking in the name of God and in the power of the Spirit. In the sense that it is used here, paraklesis is exhortation and admonition. Paraklesis is an urgent entreaty that is neither critical nor polemical, but serious and has been infused with the power of the Spirit. With this in mind, this column is intended to bring a word of encouragement to pastors, ministers and all those in Christian leadership.

 

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Category: Ministry, Spring 2001

About the Author: Carl J. Halquist retired in 2014, most recently serving as the Senior and Visitation Pastor at Trinity Assembly of God in Mt. Morris, Michigan. In full-time ministry since 1964, Pastor Carl has served Assemblies of God churches in California, Indiana, and Michigan and served as a Sectional Presbyter for the Assemblies of God, Michigan District for 5 years. Carl and his wife, Sandy, live in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area and he continues to provide pulpit supply for the Michigan District of the Assemblies of God.

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