My family and I just joined the area YMCA. We belonged to another gym, but I was the only one of our family that went there.
Anyway, I have gotten away from my usual treadmill in favor of the jogging track. I like the treadmill, but sometimes it feels like going nowhere in a huge hurry.
The first time I went up to the track, I scratched my head. As a follower of Christ, I believe that Sunday is the first day of the week. So, in my mind, if Sunday is #1, then the odd days are Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, while the even days are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
Some days, the crowd of runners and walkers agree with me. Other days, I go up there and find that there are some work week devotees running the wrong way. (j/k)
I have stopped trying to figure out which way to go. I just go the direction of the crowd.
Which is the way many Christians conduct their lives. And many churches today are providing a place to do so.
If a lot of people go to a particular church, the church in question is assumed to have something valuable to offer. After all, could that many people possibly be led astray?
In this day and age, unfortunately, yes.
It is becoming more and more difficult to find large churches that are actual doctrinal in their dealings with the Gospel and tenets of the faith. Treating the Word of God with kid gloves is easier than getting down and dirty with sin and sinners. It’s easier to fill services with…
- Interviews with controversial authors that write on topics outside of doctrinal truth.
- Sacrificing the needs of the people in the church in favor of the “show.”
- Insulting other points of view that differ from the pastor’s with name calling.
- Replacing the sermon with a rehashed stand-up routine bordering on plagiarism.
- Playing modern metal songs and delivering a message about their “doctrinal” significance.
And those are just some of which I have personal knowledge via podcast, media, or attending a service. Unfortunately, smaller churches don’t seem to be fairing much better.
The church in the book of Acts grew in a very short amount of time. And it grew through an intolerance of sin and a sense of community not readily found in the Church of today.
Gospel community is not easy. It is a dirty, messy, difficult, uncomfortable endeavor to shepherd a flock in the manner prescribed in the Bible.
But it is drastically important.
If our Lord continues to tarry, more and more substitutes for the Church outlined in Acts will become available. And the Church, if she is not careful, will weaken by not standing on the truth of God’s precious Word. And there will be (as there already are) plenty of wolves in search of sheep to devour.
Pray for your Pastor(s) and church leaders. Lift them up. And pray that God will continue to raise up leaders to soldier on through the days ahead.