[This article was first posted in August 2012] When I came across this church “marketing advert” I was reminded of something that Alistair Begg once said:
A good church is a Bible-centered church. Nothing is as important as this–not a large congregation, a witty pastor, or tangible experiences of “the holy Spirit”. – Alistair Begg
It seems these days church services are geared to be social entertainment events created to provide a euphoric buzz but the least emphasised aspect seems to be Biblical teaching and discipleship. No wonder some so called pastors have very little or even no reverence for God.
Harry Emerson Fosdick (May 24, 1878-October 5, 1969) was an American clergyman. As a liberal and modernist Baptist minister, Harry rose to prominence as the weekly preacher at New York City’s First Presbyterian Church (1918-1924). Fundamentalist Christians nationwide attacked his view that ‘modern Christians’ could doubt doctrines such as the literal truth of the Bible and the virgin birth of Jesus and still remain faithful. The modernists denied the authority and inerrancy of Scripture. Fosdick ultimately would not acknowledge the literal reality of God’s wrath toward impenitent sinners. To him, ‘the wrath of God’ was nothing more than a metaphor for the natural consequences of wrongdoing. His theology would not tolerate a personal God whose righteous anger burns against sin. To Fosdick, the threat of hell fire was only a relic of a barbaric age.
His sermons were often creative, inventive and topical …Read More!
“Ultra-organised churches give too great opportunity to men who are inferior in everything but ambition. They climb to the position of prestige to the detriment of abler men. On the score of being ‘administrators’, and ‘good business men’, they rule the Church.” – Dinsdale Young. …Read More!
My first contention is that providing amusement for the people is nowhere spoken of in the Scriptures as a function of the Church. If it is a Christian work why did not Christ speak of it? ‘Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.’ That is clear enough. So it would have been if He has added, ‘and provide amusement for those who do not relish the gospel’ No such words, however, are to be found. It did not seem to occur to Him. Then again, ‘He gave some apostles, some prophets, some pastors and teachers, for the work of the ministry.’ Where do entertainers come in? The Holy Spirit is silent concerning them. Were the prophets persecuted because they amused the people or because they refused? The concert has no martyr roll. …Read More!
If the latest Church growth updates are anything to go by then Africa is surely having surplus of growth. The growth has been described by many colourful words like “explosive”, “spectacular” and of recent “fast food-ish”. There seems to be an easy believism called prosperity gospel that is spawning a multiplex of believers. In this form of Christianity, a believer is supposed to be successful; if not, something is very wrong. This emphasis can be seen in the names of the flourishing churches: Winners Chapel, Victory Bible Church, Jesus Breakthrough Assembly, Triumphant Christian Centre. The titles and themes of conventions, crusades and conferences repeat this emphasis: “Gathering of Champions” “Living a Life of Abundance,” “Taking Your Territories,” “Stepping into Greatness.” For all these churches, size and expansion are tangible signs of success—which is why the terms Global, World or International appear in so many of their titles.
South Africa recently hosted the World cup. From this land that gave football fans the much loved and equally hated “vuvuzela” has emerged Rhema Church. Rhema has established itself as one of Africa’s Best Churches. A place where the big shots, celebrities and politicians come to embrace at the table of a “rock and roll” religion. Even the President, Jacob Zuma comes regularly to Rhema to tuck into two of South Africa’s said pastimes, conspicuous consumption and Christianity. But There’s More
In recent years a new movement within the evangelical church has come into vogue, commonly referred to as “seeker sensitive.” Generally, this movement has seen a great deal of growth. Many “seeker” churches are now mega-churches with well-known pastors who are riding a wave of popularity in the evangelical world.
So, what is this movement all about? Where does it come from? And, most importantly, is it biblical? Basically, the seeker-sensitive church tries to reach out to the unsaved person by making the church experience as comfortable, inviting, and non-threatening to him as possible. The hope is that the person will believe in the gospel. …Read More!
I don’t usually go by surveys and opinion polls but a few usually catch your eye. Especially in this day and age of (seeker sensitive) mega churches one’s got to take church and televangelist funded surveys with an extra pinch of salt. However, a recent interesting church survey will cause shock waves as it shows that …
There is a declining depth of commitment among born-again Christians to their faith over the last 20 years, according to a “State of the Church” study by the Barna Research Group released this week.
In interpreting the study, which shows a drop in church attendance, Bible reading, and priority in faith, research group founder George Barna warned that American Christians have become complacent. …Read More!