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The secularization of the church

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Loyal
It seems many churches today what to bring the world into the church.
Of course we should allow unbelievers into the church, (whether it's a building or a group of people).
How else would they be saved? How else would they be a part of the body?

Even Jesus went out the tax collectors, prostitutes and sinners.
But He didn't go after them so just so they could come into His Father's house and practice sin there.
When Jesus saved people, He told them... go, and sin no more.

When people were practicing ungodly things in the temple, Jesus chased them out. He didn't allow
them to continue doing these things in God's house.

Of course we ourselves are God's house (our bodies are the temple of God).
Much could be said here about how God feels about us allowing sin our temples.

But back to allowing the world into the church.
Some churches allow gay members, gay clergy, and even bisexual church leaders.
(I wonder how you can be faithful to someone - if you are having sex with people of both genders?)
Some churches are putting in 3rd bathrooms to cater to the transgender and cross dressers.

I've seen some churches that have bingo halls and alcohol certain days of the week.
One church is actually at a winery, with wine tasting ceremonies after church.

Some churches allow the youth to put secular videos on the over-head projector to "relate"
to the unsaved. (I notice they play the same videos, even when everyone is supposedly already saved).
Some churches allow same sex couples to sit in the congregation, hand in hand, arm in arm,
and of course some are even willing to marry these people.

Instead of relating to the world, we should be relating to God.
Instead of making the church more worldly, we should be making the world more Godly!
Instead of bringing to world into the church to keep practicing the things they did on the outside
we should bringing them in to become more righteous, more conformed into the image of Christ.

God may love these people, but that doesn't mean He approves of their lifestyles of sin.
The church needs to quit telling these people that they (the church) approve of it.

I saw a video earlier this week of a church allowing Muslims to come in and worship with them,
"after all we all worship the same god". Some of the Christians were even bowing down towards Mecca.

God has called us to be Holy, righteous, obedient, a peculiar people, a royal priesthood,
He has called us to follow in the steps of Jesus, to walk in conformity to the will of God.

Instead of dying to our old selves and crucifying our fleshly desires, we are allowing the world
to come in and change our values, our standards, and even our beliefs.
 
Loyal
John 2:16; and to those who were selling the doves He said, "Take these things away; stop making My Father's house a place of business."

I have visited churches recently, they have snack bars, donut shops, and coffee stands... inside the church. One church even had credit card readers mounted on the backs of pews.
At what point do we lose focus on why we come to church? Is it to be filled by coffee and donuts? Or is it to be filled by God?

Are we coming to socialize and eat breakfast, or are we coming to receive "the bread of life". Have some churches gotten to the point of being so trendy and catering to the people...
that they have forgotten to cater to God? I see this much more in large affluent "mega churches" than I do in smaller poorer churches, it seems they don't really need the money.
... and yet, anything for a buck seems to be the bottom line.

I'm not saying coffee and donuts are bad or evil, but I wonder do many people come to meet God... or are they coming for the coffee?
 
Loyal
these mega churches are exploding I am witnessing one here in my home town, they have there stickers on the bumber of so many cars. The pastor lives in a Multi million dollar private estate, and does not like to talk about sin. But man thye pull in the crowds and it seems to be almost like a rock concert with there light show and smoke. BUt the kids love him and that draws a lot of parents to give up there traditional church in order to hang out with there kids at "church". Did I say the man does not talk about sin
 
Active
There's a church I've been going to for many years -- off and on -- but I've seen it go through lots of changes. It started out wonderful -- 30 or so years ago. A big choir -- lots of good classes for adults -- evening and Wedn Bible study services.

Over the years -- through a series of pastors -- one pastor let his wife 'fascilitate' an adult Sunday school of mixed genders. That was going against the concept that a woman should not be placed in a position of having authority over a man in a church setting.

the church was finally able to relocate nearly two years ago. Lots of Good features about the church. Multi-purpose building. Everything on street level for convenience of handicapped people. But they Have incorporated a small coffee bar off to the side of the front of the church. There are lots of greeters in the front. That is taking the place of 'meet and greet' time for during the actual service. And they do have donuts available -- that's all a lot of people have for breakfast.

And 'we' also now take part in the summer free lunch program. I helped out with that last summer.

Even without a pastor for a year the church has grown.

One of the features I Don't like is the "Praise and Worship" form. I grew up with hymnals and Still prefer that.

And the dress / behavior 'code' for a church service. The 'come as you are' concept. Seems that the coming to church worship God has had a 'face lift' and doesn't look very good.

Supposedly all these up-dated things are to draw in the kids / the newer more technologically up-to -date generation. It's almost amazing that anyone 'got saved' before all this new stuff existed.

(one thing I'm very thankful for this morning is that my keyboard is typing correctly again. It was doing the all caps thing again yesterday.)

There's also a very small church I go to -- not as much as before -- but it still has hymnals and three services a week. No donuts and coffee but a pot-luck on 5th Sunday months. But it's mainly older people who like the hymnals and special music. And they are big on missions.

Both churches teach Bible -- no doubt about it. The new pastor at the Bigger church has started out with a series on Ephesians 6 -- the armor of God. And the songs are a lot of the older songs but with a more up-beat way of singing and then they will have more serious songs that the older people know and the younger crowd are lost in. Because they don't have a hymnal to follow.

I have No patience for those pastors who live in Really nice houses. Unless, of course they are pastoring in really nice residential areas.

But the mega churches -- I don't like them. Start smaller groups instead. Lots of smaller groups. But I don't mean the 'small group' concept. That's getting popular, too. It's meant to encourage neighbor people who might not otherwise want to go to an actual church. It's less formal , obviously, but is God's Word being studied or is it more social interaction.

The focus Needs to be on God's Word. And spiritual growth.
 

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