I wonder how much of what “the church” does, actually harms the church.
It seems we get so focused on doing weird stuff, and then call it “success” when we get the results we were looking for.
“If termites could talk, they would call what they do ‘progress.'”
I like that quote!
Just because you’re doing what you think you should do, doesn’t mean what you are doing is helpful.
What is the end goal for what a church does?
If a church does things to “fill the seats,” all manner of ungodly things can be done to fulfill that mission. Do any of them actually help, though?
Sure, your rock concert with door prizes in your church drew a crowd, but is that really helping the church?
I suppose some would argue it is. If it gets them in they might hear the Gospel, and if nothing else, it keeps them out of where they might have been otherwise.
To me it just seems to confuse the issue. The church is just one more place marketing for your money and attention. Just one more bit of noise in our cacophonous world.
This is where the “but if it saves one soul, isn’t it worth it?” argument appears.
My answer to that question is, “Not necessarily.”
OK, someone may have been saved through your worldly attempt at marketing the Gospel. They may have been able to cut through the smoke and mirrors and seek out the truth and get saved. It’s possible.
But how many other souls did you destroy in the process? How many souls did you fake into thinking they were saved because they did your thing you wanted them to do?
There are things called Pyrrhic Victories, where, yeah, ok, you win. But in the process you end up being devastated.
I think that’s where the church is today. We keep telling ourselves we’re winning because we are getting the result we hoped to get. In the end, we’re shooting for the wrong result.
Our job is to teach people everywhere to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and obey His commands. That’s the result the church and the individuals will be judged on.
Whether you think you’re winning isn’t the point. What Jesus Christ thinks is the main point. Find out what He wants and how He wants it done, and do that.
Oh, and don’t expect it to “work.” If it “worked,” we wouldn’t so quickly adopt the world’s means.