by Sid Roth


For thirty years I have gone to church twice a week minimum and loved it. But lately I have been bored. It's the same-o, same-o patterns of service every Sunday. I love the worship. I love the messages. I love the people of God. So why am I restless?

Because I know there is so much more of God's Spirit available to us today. Even a quick read over of the New Testament reveals a level of power and miracles among the early believers that bears little resemblance to what we now call "church."

Since God doesn't change, it doesn't take a mental giant to know who is responsible. In Judaism we have a favorite word--"tradition." Jesus said to the humanistic synagogue of His day: "Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition?" (Matthew 15:3).

Tradition robbed the majority of Jewish people of God's power and salvation at the first coming of the Messiah. The Jewish people had added so much tradition to the laws of Moses it was impossible to obey (Matthew 23:4). Will tradition rob the majority of Christians of God's power and salvation just before His return?

Where Did We Go Wrong?

Let's examine the first church and perhaps we can find what traditions have short-circuited the 21st century church of the power of God. They met in homes, not buildings. The leaders were laymen, not professionals. The concept of sermons every week had not been established.

The service was not a one man show. In fact the Greco-Roman form of entertainment Christianity had not started. The people did not sit in theater-style seats. Most likely they were in a circle because the attention was not on one man or woman. Everyone participated. First Corinthians 14:26 states: "Each of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation." Everyone was equipped for ministry. Everyone was a worker.

Where were the children? Sunday school or children's church had not yet evolved, so the children were with the adults. Today if the children are forced to sit through the service most will hate church. But back then church was exciting for the children and the adults.

Nothing was predictable in these early congregations. The power of God was free to flow. People were instantly healed and delivered before their eyes. Even the children participated in the supernatural. They would prophesy or have a tongue or tell about a dream that came true. No two services were the same because the real leader of the meeting was the Holy Spirit.

The offerings were not for mortgages because they did not have buildings. And since it was a laymen's movement, they had no salaries to pay. The offerings were for the poor, the widows, and orphans.

The early believers left these house meetings so full of the Holy Spirit and faith they had to pray for every sick person they saw on the way home and to tell everyone about Jesus.

The Best Wine is for Now!

There is coming a fresh new wind of the Holy Spirit. God is looking for people who are more passionate for Him than for their comfort zone of tradition. Repackaging the church will not work. Jesus said we need new wineskins. The old wineskins will not be able to contain this glory. And Jesus has "kept the good wine until now"! (John 2:10).

Most pastors are unwilling to let go of their traditions to embrace change. Or they are dependent on the current system for their salaries and pensions and don't want to rock the boat and lose tithers.

I don't have all the answers, but I know that what we have called the 21st century church will not contain the glory. Better than 90% of what we call "church" or the office of "pastor" is based on tradition. I am willing to scrap anything that stops the flow of the Holy Spirit. I am willing to experiment and find out what pleases God. I am hungry and thirsty and desperate for a fresh move of God's Spirit.

Let me be your Holy Spirit cheerleader. Let's join hands together and run into the greatest revival in history. I call this next move the "One New Man." The old one man show will be replaced by the One New Man!