Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Church Growth Hormone: A Biblically Banned Substance

By Pastor Ray Baumann

"The ingredients are as follows: man-centered theology, relevant messages that solve people’s problems by meeting their needs, events and programs that reach out to the community, and music that is contemporary and entertaining. For best results, remove pews, dress casual, and install a 5000 lumen projector.

If taken weekly and if you follow a regimented marketing strategy, you are guaranteed growth. The side effects may include unbelievers in leadership, false converts, uncommitted members, and shallow minds..."

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7 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent. Perfectly put. So true to what's going on. The church as a whole in America and the UK does NOT believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ alone as having to power of God unto salvation to all cultures and generations. The proof is in the pudding. They say they believe but their actions are thr true fruit. They do not really believe that the Gospel is sufficient.

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent. Perfectly put. So true to what's going on. The church as a whole in America and the UK does NOT believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ alone as having to power of God unto salvation to all cultures and generations. The proof is in the pudding. They say they believe but their actions are thr true fruit. They do not really believe that the Gospel is sufficient.

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

What's wrong with being relevant? Or with reaching out to the community? Or contemporary music? Those things aren't man-centered theology. You can do all those things with Christ-centered theology. In fact, it seems that being relevant and reaching out to the community are things that the body of Christ should be doing.

11:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's Simple Dan,
Do you believe the Gospel IS relevant as simply stated in scripture? Or do you believe you have to "make" it relevant? If the former, then okay. If the latter, then you likely do not believe in the power of the Gospel.

3:09 PM  
Anonymous dan said...

I'm not saying you should "make" anything. I fully believe in the power of the Gospel to change lives. However, what about meeting people's needs and reaching out to the community? Why are doing those things bad?

11:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dan,

Nothing's wrong with those things.

But sometimes it's like pushing your car uphill (man's methods, see below) instead of turning on the engine and putting it into drive (God's methods, see below).

Man's methods: meeting felt needs, being relevant, seeker sensitive, avoiding messages of the cross, hell, self-denial, holiness, etc.

God's methods: preaching the whole Gospel, teaching, praying & waiting for the Holy Spirit to do the work, etc.

11:26 AM  
Anonymous dan said...

Here's my problem. Being relevant does not mean you are avoiding the cross, hell, self-denial, holiness. Why is "relevance" such a scary word? Being relevant and preaching the whole Gospel (teaching, praying, waiting on the Holy Spirit) are in no way mutually exclusive.

I work for a church in a lower income community. Meeting peoples felt needs is a powerful way to show them Jesus Christ. Yet we don't shy away from the basics of sin, hell, holiness, etc.

I am concerned that we see the negatives of a seeker sensitive movement (which has its negatives) and swing the pendalum to the complete other extreme where relevance and felt needs are seen as negative things because they can't be done while teaching the whole Gospel message. That is not true.

1:37 AM  

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