Primitive or Progressive – A friend of mine, who is now with the Lord in Heaven, understood, as do I, that the Church needs a reboot.
These next few thoughts are for your admonition and opportunity to analyze and critically think about our position as the local Body of Christ.
- The building – Are we going to church (building) or striving to be like the Christ of the Church? The Bible has much to say about the house church.
- The denomination – We need to be concerned about Jesus and the New Testament teaching of the Church instead of what the Baptist or any other denomination “leader” has to say. Just because Baptist is on the sign, a guarantee of a Body that is pleasing to the Lord and the Fundamentals may not exist.
- Oh boy, the ole membership process (the role) – most “churches” have that all wrong. Here’s something to muse upon, if baptism is necessary for “full” church membership?? How do you ‘unbaptize’ someone if they leave for another church building? “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.” When you’re added, you’re added, no matter what a church covenant, by-laws, or articles of incorporation say.
- The Church as an organism – The church has become big business, as an organization, with big dollars in the bank and no financial transparency to the members. Only a select few have access to the books (friends of the Pastor, deacons, and the ole businessman in the church) What is this about stacking up the tithe of faithful members in the bank? No matter what the Pastor says, 100% financial transparency to the members and the opportunity for the congregation to use the money as they see fit should be a common occurrence. Oh, stay away from “Roberts Rules of Order” If you can’t take care of church business without Robert, disband!
- Pastor as the employee of the organization (be careful of 501(c)(3) – The Pastor works for the Lord first and the congregation must be involved in all processes of the Church. Who’s the Head of the Church? Hint: It’s not the Pastor
- The pulpit, as the center of the congregation, places the focus on man instead of God. Sometimes Pastors get a “prophet, priest, and king” complex. i.e. “I started this ‘church’ so my rules” – If you run into this type of Pastor…RUN, RUN! He is not the rule maker – Christ owns the church and is the authoritative Head. Decision-making should not be from the pulpit to the people. The buck does not stop at the pulpit.
- Instead of segregated and age-defined SS classes, maybe kids should learn to behave themselves in a “normal” and all-inclusive gathering each Sunday.
- Just because a song isn’t 100 years old doesn’t mean it is ungodly. Don’t be afraid of the word contemporary (current, modern) The old Fanny Crosby songs were contemporary to Isaac Watts. BTW, Fanny wrote secular songs, as well as, co-wrote an opera piece.
- Quit worrying about big numbers – Baptists tend to buy a building, try and fill it, build more buildings to the point that the “business” dictates that the “we need people” (code for tithers) so we can pay our debt. “Wash and repeat”
We must get back to focusing on the Body of Christ, local and visible, more than the meeting place.
Summary: Too many Pastors, deacons, boards, and committees place the weekly bulletin, statement of faith, articles of incorporation, constitution, bylaws, and Robert’s Rules of Order over God’s Word. If you can’t start, build, and maintain a local assembly on God’s Word alone, you’re in the wrong business. Your desire and calling are misdirected.