Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Only Hope/Fidelity for First Presbyterian Church's Survival/Salvation and...

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)



I said, "Islamofascists and other imperialists are terrorizing the world."

She said, "Only a very small minority of Muslims actually participate in or support terrorism."

I asked, "What percentage of Muslims do you think 'participate in or support terrorism'?"

She said, "Only 10% or less."

I said, "I feel much better. That means only about one hundred million. Please, give me one of your "Co-Exist" bumper stickers."

She said, "You think everything in our world and country and even denomination is falling apart, unraveling, and, I guess, going to hell."

I said, "Uh, yes, I do."

She said, "You are sooooooo pessimistic."

I said, "The word 'realistic' comes to my mind."

She said, "Then why do you even bother anymore?"

I said, "Because Jesus commanded me and still compels me to make Jesus known as the only true Lord and Savior who delivers beyond the meanness, madness, and misery of life in this world."

She said, "You're fatalistic."

I said, "You're naive if you trust in anyone or anything other than Him to buoy you in time and guarantee heaven after it."

She said, "I know your church. Lots of people are not on the same page with you on this. I've heard you even argue about..."

I said, "You're right! But that doesn't keep me from praying and trying and..."

She interrupted, "Your church is as bad as every other one and you're no better than the people you criticize."

I said, "You're right on the latter; but on the former, God told me how to distinguish the faithful from those seduced by others in the church entrusted to me and in your church and other ones. I was really upset after mountaintop experiences in Joplin, with Billy, and with brothers a few weeks ago riding across America to find folks fighting over the most spiritually inane stuff since the squabble over the so-called 'modesty rail.' You can read about that in a recent edition of that you and most folks in our family of faith never read. I was restless for days. I wept. I prayed about it for days. Then He spoke to me and provided the path to the cure for what's ailing our world, country, denomination, churches, and the corner of Lincoln and Main in Belvidere, Illinois."

Then I reiterated the path/plan/vision/whatever (see the next section for a letter to First Presbyterian Church).

She said, "Good luck."

I said, "I don't believe in it. I trust Jesus."

She rolled her eyes at me and the conversation concluded.



We can no longer assume everyone is on the same page in our world, nation, denomination, or even on the corner of Lincoln and Main.

We can no longer assume formers, inquirers, church members, officers, or even staff members focus on Jesus in all things at all times in all places with all people and filter all deliberations and decisions through Jesus.

Hence, I will ask session [the ruling body in a "Presbyterian" governed particular church despite occasional/peculiar attempts to run 'em by hearsay, hierarchy, petition, mobocracy, or "People are saying..."] at its next stated meeting to adopt the following question as the first question asked at the beginning of any decision-making opportunity in any board, committee, group, or whatever in our family of faith at First Presbyterian Church; and it will serve as a continuing governor of our life and ministry together:

What does this/that
have to do with

Attempting to answer this question will get us on the same page - His!

Attempting to answer this question will honor Him which always helps His.

Attempting to answer this question will distinguish authentics from posers.

Blessings and Love!


We're like most churches.

We're not immune to the economic pressures of our time; and I have told our staff that none of us will receive compensatory increases for the third straight year and that additional income will have to be generated by taking on side jobs. As pour moi, the Lord keeps His Psalm 91 promises to me as I keep mine to Him. Same goes for everybody else.

We're not immune to the crankiness generated by the meanness, madness, and misery of our modern world; as folks transfer their frustrations about stuff beyond their control to what they think they can control in the church sometimes scarcely coincidental to anything related to Jesus as attested in Holy Scripture. We've had people leave along with some who've blackmailed us with attendance and $ if we don't, uh, whatever it is that they want. Yes, new folks are trickling in; but $'s increasingly tight. Yet as I trust His Psalm 91 promises to me as I keep mine to Him, we are trusting His Psalm 91 promises to us as we keep ours to Him; and our officers along with the growing remnant of truly faithful folks who really focus on Jesus and filter life and ministry through Jesus are really starting to look up, stand up, speak up, and act up for Jesus no matter who, what, when, or where.

Many local/national/worldwide prophetic voices have told me that we're "this close" to the greatest revival that has ever hit the corner of Lincoln and Main; which is their way of telling us to keep keepin' on despite what I've mentioned in the three preceding paragraphs.

Though it does not matter eternally despite my existential charge with eternal implications as undershepherd, my energies and excitement for knowing Jesus and making Him known in our neck of the woods seems to be expanding exponentially; or as I've been saying, "I feel like I've grabbed onto the coattails of the Holy Spirit for the greatest ride of my life!" In other words, even if I have to find a job as a night watchman to make ends meet (Help me find one!), I'm commanded as called and compelled to praying/making the corner of Lincoln and Main into a safe haven for all as an uncompromisingly Christ-centered and Biblically based ministry and unconditionally loving beacon for Jesus.

And in my greatest hours of disappointment after seven years of trying really hard not to get in the way of His best intentions for our family of faith, He gave one simple sentence-question to guide us to honoring Him and establishing a taste of heaven on the part of the earth entrusted to us: What does this/that have to do with Jesus?

That question will cut through the "golden calf bull" of former idolatries and bigotries and selfishness that have been killing the church for decades.

It doesn't mean we're always gonna get Him right; but it does mean we'll have a better opportunity at being faithful.


I don't think I'm that much different from you.

I don't think our family of faith is that much different from yours.

But I do think that it's time to stop playing ecclesiastical games and take being the Body of Christ much more seriously than ever before; and the reason I think that is because I don't think there's much time left to be faithful if you know what I mean.

That's why I thought I'd share this revolutionary kairos moment at First with you.


Dial 815-544-3535 for a kerygmatic version of this KD.



Blessings and Love!


Lydia said...

unfortunately too many people (especially in my generation) have this "every religion is right" attitude. Also, unfortunately the woman you spoke to is right... we arent immune to those who use the "christian" mask to believe all sorts of radical things. Not necessarily even intentionally (maybe just poor self study or lack thereof of who God is).I sincerely hope there is none in our church with ideas so radical as terrorism but, with that said, thank you for being brutally honest. Its very much needed in these times.

Jim said...

Excellent! "What does this have to do with Jesus?"

About 6-7 years ago I decided that it would be a good idea to inject into every conversation the words, "Well, it's all about Jesus." These to statements seem to me to be something of a corollary of each other. My answer to your question is, "Well, it's ALL about Jesus." It's either about acknowledging and honoring him, or it's about denying and dissing him. We cant think/say/do anything and claim neutrality.

If his reign over ALL things is absolute, and you and I know it is,then there isn't anything that does not have to do with him and his kingdom. Again, we either acknowledge/honor, or deny/disrespect.

Shamefacedly, there's been a lot more denying/dissing than acknowledging/honoring him in my life. I think that's why he died on the cross for me.

Keep on keepin' on up that at Lincoln and Main!

Anonymous said...

Hallelujah! It sounds like a Holy Ghost revival to me Bob.
I pray for your church, that its borders be opened, that the hearts of your oldest staid members fine new grace in their hearts and forget religion, that they come to believe and understand that everything in the Bible is True- not just some of it......that Jesus died for them the same as everyone else and LORD GET READY.....OUR NUMBERS ARE RISING!

I looked up kergymatics (good one) and thats what Jesus is calling for- not new carpet, or signs or doctrine.....Love! That They Shall Know Us By Our Love!

Go for it Dr Kopp......your Sister in Jesus in Tennessee

Crystal said...

Dr. K.,
The only real hope for any of us is...Jesus. If we get Him right, then everything else will be right.
Bless you for reminding us,

Dr. Robert R. Kopp said...


I praise the Lord for you, sister!