Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The End of the Evangelical Church?

This is a topic I have thought about for some time. Yesterday, I read a commentary titled “The Coming Evangelical Collapse.” While I don’t necessarily agree with everything in the article, there is a lot to chew on. The author points out several factors that will lead to the demise of a number of different types of congregations and denominations. I hope you’ll take just a few minutes to read and reflect upon what he has written.

It’s a good time, perhaps, to think about what Jesus, Himself, has to say on the matter. In John 12:32, the Lord is quoted as saying, “But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself."

I’m not one to put a lot of stock in arguments from silence. In this case, however, it is instructive to note that Jesus did not say men would be drawn to him by church programs; by slick preaching; by wonderful outreach literature; by funky music; by “facilitators” in sharp Hawaiian shirts (or shark-skin suits); by technology; by good (fair trade) coffee in the church cafe; or by any other man-made device. Jesus said that He would draw men to Himself.

What churches will survive, albeit through much struggle? Those that preach the Gospel and attempt to live as instructed in God’s Word. It’s that simple.

I know that people are resistant and they want the glitz and glamor and the music. Maybe we have reached the time in American history when they’ll start listening again.