No other reason.

March 8, 2007 at 9:14 am 6 comments

When you spend most of your life as a church dude and then you aren’t a church dude any more it gives you an opportunity to think about and write about the church from an “outsiders” perspective.  I don’t have to run it so I can comment on it.

C.S. Lewis (was there ever a better thinker?) wrote: It is so easy to think that the Church has a lot of different objects-education, building, missions, holding services…  The church exists for no other purpose but to draw men to Christ. to make them little Christs.  If they are not doing that, all the cathedrals, clergy, missions, sermons, even the Bible itself, are simply a waste of time.  God became man for no other purpose.  It is doubtful, you know, whether the whole universe was created for any other reason.

Mostly the church offers programs and teaching.  That is what most churches do.  The church is about church.  The church is really not about converting people to the Kingdom but converting them to church.  Get people to come to church, to give money to church, to attend meetings at church.  It doesn’t matter whether you are in a mainline church, a house church, charismatic church, babdist church or any other church if your goal is getting people to just “do church” you are just, as the old saying goes, rearranging the chairs on the deck of the Titantic”.

The mainstrean church in America is near death because going to church has little or nothing to do with authentic spirituality and does not model Kingdom living (life as Jesus taught it).

We do not baptize people into the church, we baptize people into Jesus.  We are offering people a daily relationship with the living, risen Jesus.  Jesus is alive, Jesus is powerful, Jesus delivers, Jesus brings freedom, Jesus gives hope, Jesus heals.

Do you see that in your church?  Does your church invite you into a community of people living out the powerful, explosive life of Jesus or do they invite you to meetings?

“Leadership in a church should be about creating an atmosphere, an environment where people can fall in love with Jesus.”  We don’t need directors who can run a program, the church isn’t a YMCA or a public school.  Leaders in churches are to be agents of the love of Jesus who spread the life of the Spirit throughout the Family and out into the community.

Church is not about organization it is about life (organism).  What do the leaders in your church spend their time on?  Organizing or lovingly spreading the life of the Spirit?

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Entry filed under: Christianity, Church, Faith, Jesus, Thoughts.

Thoughts that make me go “hmmm”. Why do you think they call them elders?

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. renversgirl  |  March 10, 2007 at 9:14 am

    you put a lot out there in this one. i agree with what you say to a point. i think the church needs to teach, but teach about the bible and how we should live in a dying world. Lately i don’t get that they are doing that, it seems to be about surveys and studies and other silliness. We are meant to be a body caring for each other, teaching each other and loving one another (warts and all). i don’t feel that, but on the other hand there are some studies that are actually teaching these things. i want to find a church that can do both, unfortunately it seems to becoming more of a business, where there is an employee mindset, and not the genuine loving and caring one would normally expect to see. There is hope, and i still say it is easier to be inside of it than outside treading water trying to point out all the holes. Sooner or later you are gonna get tired of treading water… and then what?

  • 2. BS  |  March 9, 2007 at 1:57 pm

    last night i fell asleep listening to a sermon given by ROB BELL, DON GOLDEN, and DENISE VANECK titled ‘the X, Y, Z’s.
    in this sermon they were talking about what kind of church Mars Hill Bible Church was/is going to be known for/as?
    DON told a story of being in africa to check out the crazy famine that was going on there and how he might best serve the local pastors there.
    the particular local church DON was talking to began to share how the church was running out of food and resources to help the people they ministered to and the pastor asked DON this amazing question…
    ‘when the church ceases to be able to take care of the people OUTSIDE of their doors are they still considered a church?’
    wow, what a question.
    ROB BELL then went on to talk about how the church needs to be a eucharist for the people OUTSIDE of their doors just as JESUS was a eucharist for us.
    basically, we need break our bodies open and let our blood flow for others just as JESUS did for us.
    church is not FOR us or ABOUT us.
    it’s for GOD and for OTHERS.
    anyway, i’m sure i didn’t do the sermon justice so go to http://www.marshill.org or iTUNES to download the sermon and listen it yourself [it’s from 2.17.07]…
    you’ll be better for having done so!
    plus, i think what mars hill bible church is about AND what they are doing is
    SO MONEY!

  • 3. Heretic  |  March 9, 2007 at 8:39 am

    Well put. It’s nice to see that God is stirring His people. When you’re involved in a local body, you can start to think that you may truly be a heretic! But seeing some of your posts, lets me know that God is moving.

    Church leaders constantly want to berate the sheep with the fact that they have authority (over them – from God.) As I look at scripture, I know they’re right. So I asked the question – authority for what? What is the purpose of the authority that they have received. Is it not to glorify the Father?

    We need to understand what roles we are to play in the lives of each other. We’ve allowed the world to define what a pastor is – and sadly he looks a lot more like a CEO (lord) than a shepherd.

    We need to teach for obedience – not for knowledge.

    I go into this in greater depth on my blog – the difference between power and authority, and it’s purpose in our lives.

    Why do we always want to claim the authority of God while His power is strangely absent from our midst? Isn’t the backbone of authority – power?

  • 4. Brooks  |  March 9, 2007 at 6:56 am

    Matt 6:33 “Seek first the Kingdom”. That little verse says a lot. If you want to learn more on the Kingdom, read or listen to anything by Jack Taylor.

  • 5. Doug Wright  |  March 8, 2007 at 7:48 pm

    Brandon,
    I’d like to commend you on your comments. It was obvious you spent time and effort orchestrating a well thought out response. It was equally nice to see what Traci wrote.
    I appologize it took me a day to make this note.
    Doug

  • 6. A son  |  March 8, 2007 at 10:18 am

    Well put. We have become like the Pharisees….fallen into religion instead of a relationship, but we don’t know it, just as they didn’t. We have become the Mishnah in skin instead of brokers of the Kingdom.

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