In the last of the last days, we live in the context of the outpouring of His glory as well as a lukewarm backslidden church . We need to fully understand and fully discern both of these aspects to please God and to keep away from satan's snares in the last hour.
Some only emphasise the outpouring of His glory. Others only see the lukewarm backslidden church. Scripturally, both have their place at this time. We need to be careful of ministries which only emphasise one aspect of the truth as they are probably blind to the complete picture and could well be in error.
Remember Malachi's words. He was the last prophet sent by God before a 400 year prophetic silence until John the Baptist and Jesus came on to the scene. Malachi pointed out that the problem was a lack of reverence toward God. The religious people were blind to this. They were so backslidden and cold toward God that they could not discern it. They asked Malachi, In what way are we irreverent toward God? He replied, impure worship. In other words, a mixture.
At the end of the church age, the people of God have also backslidden. They too have a mixture. It is not all of God, none of self. Rather it is some of God, some of self. It is a mixture of doing and saying things in the Spirit and in the flesh. Often, churches are mostly in the flesh. They have a name that they are alive. However, they are really dead.
That is why the rock-solid classical Christian foundation is so important. It emphasises the cross and dying to the self-life. It shows the way to purity where there is no mixture.
When Jesus cleansed the temple, He was seeking pure worship in the temple, even under the Old Covenant. It was His prophetic declaration of war which led to the religious leaders seeking to destroy and murder Him on Calvary.
Consider Jesus at the beginning of His ministry. After 40 days in the wilderness, He was tempted by satan. He did nothing in the flesh. He did not speak of Himself to satisfy His needs. He only spoke in God. He would not speak to a stone - let alone a mountain - in the flesh. The self-life had no part in Jesus at all. In the second temptation, He would not do nor act in the flesh. This covers the religious realm. There was no self-life in His walk with God at all. This is dealt extensively in the middle stage of the classical Christian foundation.
The third temptation was to do with idols. We are also not to have any idols in our lives.
A backslider or a backslidden church has these characteristics. They say and do things in the flesh. There is a mixture. They usually have idols in their lives too.
Notice too that the abuse of the people of God with respect to finances is also a common trait of a backslidden church. Jesus exposed the religious leaders' doctrine concerning finances time and time again. They said it was acceptable to give all their wealth to the church and then be exonerated from taking care of their parents in old age breaking one of the 10 commandments. It is also true in the closing hour of the church. Preachers promise the blessings and miracles of God if the saints sow financially into their ministry.
(This should not be confused with financial miracles in the realm of His glory and that which is genuinely of God)
We need to ensure that we truly understand what it means to do things in the flesh. We also need to look at the chapter concerning worship in Living Laodicea (downloadable by clicking on image of book). It shows how through wrong teaching in Bible schools and seminaries, much of what comes forth in the Charismatic movement today is in the flesh. Although much truth comes from the Charismatic Movement such as the Baptism in the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Holy Spirit, there is much blindness today. Some who say they are in revival are actually backslidden! It is significant that one who was caught up into heaven was shown the same thing. God showed him that a typical Charismatic church was backslidden. This is very different from what they are telling us. This backslidden condition is very broad - it affects denominations, the Charismatic Movement and even the Catholic church.