Here’s a Post About What’s Wrong with Modern Churches
I never knew that Bear Grylls was a man of faith. But it seems like he is not only a man of faith, but a wise man, as well. Myself, I have seen this same thing, for a very long time.
I attended Bible College in the early 1980’s, thinking that I might become a Baptist Pastor. Due to family circumstances, I was only able to attend for a year, but I learned much in that year. Not only knowledge about the Bible, but about Christians and the direction of the Church itself.
I could see even back then that there was a movement, not hidden, to try and move the conservative churches to become more liberal, and to turn to what I call a Social Gospel, instead of the Gospel of Truth. They were teaching Pastoral Candidates to question everything, to seek new and different interpretations of the Bible. To not believe the men like Spurgeon or Tozer, but to question them and to seek to find the places where they were wrong.
I always felt like a Church was supposed to be more of a hospital, for wounded Christians, than a Museum where so called ” Good Christians” came every Sunday to show how spiritual they are. And to listen to their pastors preach smooth words that put them at ease, words of comfort that they were just fine, and God loved them.
Well, God does indeed love them, especially if they are believers. Their sins are forgiven, but that doesn’t mean that they are walking in the light.
I found myself saved at an early age, perhaps 9 or 10. But I never knew that there was anything else required of me. Fortunately there was a real change in my heart and my life, and it was apparent that I had something different in my life. And it stayed with me all of my life. But at the age of 20, God showed me that there was more expected of me. I was in a serious car accident where it was like He shook me and said ” wake up, it is time for you to get to work.” So I got involved in the Church, and it was obvious that I was a Bible scholar, in that I understood how it was meant to be understood, and was able to see it as a whole, when so many failed to “get it.”
The problem I found was that Baptists failed to understand a lot of the things that I found in the Bible. Oh, they would acknowledge them, but then make excuses that didn’t hold water. Things about church discipline, and how salvation is by faith alone, but they then live like it is by works. To the place where a Baptist Pastor I knew would not leave a bottle of coke on his kitchen table, in case someone drove by and saw it and thought it was a beer bottle, and it made them stumble.
But I guess the biggest thing that drove me away from the Baptist church, but really it could have been just about any of the denominations of today, was their lack of genuine love for each other. They of course, made a big show of love, saying the right words, and telling each other that they will pray for them. But as you no doubt have seen, Christians are the only group that shoots their wounded. And if that wounded Christian is wounded so that the public is aware of it, all the better. One of those issues that I am thinking of is a young lady getting pregnant out of wedlock. Following the scriptures, it should be handled privately, and not be brought before the church, if the young lady understands that she made a mistake, and repents of it. The Baptist church, however, requires that lady to stand before the entire congregation and confess her sin.
Looking at Mary, the mother of Jesus, and how she came to be pregnant, and then Joseph who was called a just man, and not wanting to make Mary a public spectacle, but wanting to put her away privately, it seems like the whole public confession is totally against the teaching of the New Testament, and punitive at that.
I don’t see how a young lady, of 16-19 years old, pregnant out of wedlock, can feel loved if forced to stand before the entire congregation and confess her sin. It is a wonder that they don’t require her to wear the letter A on her clothing. This at a time when a young woman needs love and support from older women and families the most, they withdraw it.
Now we see churches trying to change, and to make the social gospel the big thing. Big production values, with rock bands and power point presentations, short films, etc. it is a wonder that they have any room for God in the building. And I think that is the feeling that young people get, and why they are seen to be leaving churches in droves. I hope that it turns around, but for that to happen, one thing will need to happen, and that is that God will have to be invited back into the building, and the church will need to begin it’s journey back into a hospital for the hurting, a refuge for the sick, and a shelter for those in a storm. I hope that it is not too late, because as the Church goes, so goes the nation.
You echo my thoughts almost exactly. I grew up in the independent, fundamental Baptist world and even earned my college degree from a prominent Christian university in SC. I did NOT get any kind of Bible degree though, as that was not my calling. (I did get a wonderful education, though!) I graduated from there in 1999 and I was completely disgusted with the legalism and blatant judgmental attitudes of MOST of the people around me. I grew with the belief that I was saved by faith alone, but it wasn’t until 2014 that I had an honest reckoning with… Read more »
Jason and pigpen, this was one of the best threads on the site in a while. Thanks to both of you for your thoughts on it. What goes on in our local communities has such an enormous impact on our own lives compared to the infuriating posturing that goes on in Washington. If either of you have more to say on religion send me a draft in an e-mail and I’ll definitely consider it for posting.