At First Free Wichita Josh Black started a sermon series based off the Book of Amos on August 12. He talked about the themes of Amos and one of them being injustice. The question that comes from Amos is will people stop their idolatry and hear the roar of the lion? Josh Black has enabled a lot of injustice at First Free. Chief among them is when Dan Curnett was allegedly fired for his theology. Dan wasn’t a Neo-Calvinist like Josh. Does the senior pastor hear the roar of the lion? And will he own his mistakes and pain he has caused others?
“I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion.”
Alexander the Great
“An injured lion still wants to roar.”
Instead, I want to see a mighty flood of justice, an endless river of righteous living.
Amos 5:24 NLT
First Free Wichita
In writing about First Free Wichita I am especially intrigued about the books the church preaches and what is taught especially in the context to what can happen behind the scenes of a church. The way some congregations will preach about obeying the elders (Hebrews 13:17) before announcing a major building campaign. Or preach about not gossiping (2 Corinthians 2:20) especially when the church will do an unjust act of church discipline. Yes, there is a lot out there and this applies to First Free Wichita. Its days like today that previous Bible studies help in a different way. I will be a little rusty but I spent some time refreshing up on Amos. Josh Black preaching about Amos in light of the issues at First Free is something I find rich. But lets briefly look at Amos and then discuss this sermon given by Josh Black in the context of greater injustice that takes place behind the scenes at First Free Wichita.
Brief Look at Amos
On August 12, 2018 First Free Wichita began a series on the Book of Amos. Josh starts out by talking about the survival of evil. Injustice reigns wherever you look. From ethnic cleaning, to racism, to slavery and war. All of these problems are an affront to God. The Lord after all detests this as he is committed to justice. The Lion roars after all Amos 1:2 says the Lord will roar from Zion. God will deal with injustice one day. But in the metaphor of a courtroom God announces his charges against seven nations – Damascus, Tyre, Judah, Garza, Edom, Moab, and Ammon. Amos raises the issue of injustice and then goes after Israel the most. The fact that the wealthy have ignored the poor. That they have been sold in debt slavery and then denied legal representation. Israel was called to be the blessing and God will punish Israel for all its sins. Religious hypocrisy is exposed and God detests their worship. After all their worship is false as people are being neglected or hurt. The book calls people to worship God and reject idolatry. Amos is rejected and the prophecy of Amos is fulfilled by the rise of the Assyrians. I tried to do a brief synopsis form the video up above but also you can read more about Amos here. According to Josh Black, Jordan Green wrote the following blog post.
How do you know if you’re going the wrong way? What would it take to get your attention? To wake you up to the needs of the vulnerable, the outcast, and the oppressed?
Grieved by their idolatry and the injustice it perpetuates, the Lord comes like the roaring of a lion, warning of imminent judgment. A judgment no offering or song can turn away. For a God who desires renewed lives will not settle for stale ritual.
The Lord is roaring. Will we listen?
On August 12 we will begin a six-week series listening to the book of Amos, a shepherd and a farmer called by God. Amos announces God’s warning of judgment to the people of Israel. That those who have broken covenant might hear with their ears, see with their eyes, and know that godly worship leads to a life of justice and righteousness.
Before beginning this series, we’d encourage you to do two things. 1) Read the book of Amos and familiarize yourself with it’s message. 2) Watch The Bible Project video below to get an overview of the book. It’s our hope that these two things will help you prepare to listen.
What About the Injustice at First Free? What About When Dan Curnett was Fired? Will First Free Listen to the Roar of the Lion?
It honestly amazes me that churches like First Free can preach Amos especially in light of the injustice that takes place in such congregations and what they also enable as well. In his August 12, sermon Josh talks about the injustice and the warning the Amos poses. My question to Josh is the following, what about the injustice that has occurred at First Free Wichita? What about how a church was theologically flipped? What about the way people were made spiritually homeless and the way that many were driven away dispirited and crushed by your action and scheming behind the scenes? Yes I know how Mark Dever works, I wrote about another church where 135 staff members were purged in a theological coup and today some of them are dealing with health and mental health issues. Is that justice? But what about people like Dan Curnett? What about what you subjected him to? What about his family? What about his pain? What about the hell you put him through?
The Irony of Josh Black Teaching Amos
This blog would like to know how can you preach Amos in light of the injustice you have done? You call for other people to take heed, well what about yourself? You are a 9 Marks church, 9 Marks has been a supporter of Sovereign Grace Ministries even as stories of child sex abuse has poured out. What about how First Free has enabled injustice by supporting 9 Marks? Often times in churches like these men in men’s ministries are reminded that when they purchase pornography then enable to the problem and facilitate it. Well when you engage in Neo-Calvinist idolatry worship and stand fast amid the 9 Marks bastion and tow the line, you are doing a similar aspect to purchasing pornography? You participate in injustice. You enable pain, and you ignore the cries of those who were hurt. But let’s go back to how the senior pastor of First Free behaves. When will he own the sin that he caused the church in flipping it? When will he repent of his pain and the way he has treated others? If he can speak forcefully as a warning to others will he heed that warning and make things right? Or will he be like many other Christians and churches that ignore their pain and let injustice remain. I hope that Josh Black thinks long and hard about what transpired and the pain that he has caused. If anyone needs to hear the roar of the lion its the senior pastor of First Free Wichita. This is a very abrupt post I understand, but as I write about the issues at First Free Wichita this needs to be addressed. And with that Josh the ball is in your court, how will you respond?