The church has shifted its priorities away from seeking the Lord and teaching His word to something else.
Much of the church’s emphasis today is in trying to reach the kids. Trying to do things and say things that are “relevant” to the young adults. So that, when they are old enough to be on their own, they won’t leave the church.
What is Real?
But the question really should be, Why would the young adults stay?
The answer has to do with what is really tangible and true in the modern Evangelical church. The music isn’t. The Bible translations they use aren’t — at least what most churches use.
The message today that the church is teaching is not engaging the young. It is more about HOW to do something. Such as, practical tips on how to live the Christian life.
We have style-based ministries trying to be self-help centers.
Even the sanctuary doesn’t look like a sanctuary. It looks like a business conference center. Some of them are little more than a glorified warehouse — a huge area that doesn’t even have a cross anymore. We’ve removed most everything that might offend the sensibilities of the “seekers” that visit our churches.
So, we have to ask ourselves, exactly what is it we are hoping to pass on to our children? Is this a club that desperately needs to maintain active membership? Or is there something more at stake here?
The emphasis has shifted from knowing the Lord and knowing His word to participating in some form of service. It’s about joining a religious group so we can become servants?
But what does that even mean?
The Servant Factory
Yes, I want to be the Lord’s servant. And, Yes, I want to please Him. And, Yes, I want to love others. And, Yes, I want to be a servant to others.
But where is all this dreary, exhausting service-speak coming from? All of these buzz-words used in teaching and sermons that attempt to put everyone to work?
I saw a church sign the other day that said, “Worship, Serve, Grow”. OK. But what does that mean?
What it means is, that you show up for the Sunday morning service. Then you join a smaller group that will do some kind of work for the church or the community. Then you will “grow”.
Again, what does “grow” mean?
Right now, you come to church and maybe you get saved. Hopefully. Then you get some Christian teaching under your belt. Then you get baptized. Maybe you take the church’s doctrinal (whoops, sorry, can’t use that word anymore) training. Then you join the church.
Then you get to work. You get “involved”. You serve others.
But if you are someone that really loves the word of God. You will want to be in classes that will teach you about the Lord.
Well, maybe the church will provide that; maybe it won’t. Because a lot of churches figure you get what you need from the pastor’s sermons.
Anything else you will probably have to get on your own. Because Sunday School is going out of style. Because what the church really wants is to get you off your buttocks and out into service for others. To help the other workers in the church manage all the programs the church is trying to offer to get people to come to church.
Reminds me of the incident with Jesus teaching Mary (the sister of Lazarus). And the attempt by Martha (the other sister) to get Mary up off her behind to help her with the “serving”.
Read that and see which side the Lord took over that work-project disagreement. (Luke 10:38-42)
To Be Continued . . .