“We promise you a safe environment where you will never be singled out or embarrassed.”

The title of this blogpost is a bit long, but it was a quote taken directly from a church’s web site.  As a web developer and designer, I enjoy surfing the web for new ideas and inspiration.  I often find myself at church web sites.

“We promise you a safe environment,”  I am tempted to ask the author what this means.  I’m unaware of “dangerous” churches in America.  Are there Houses of Worship in our country that some people would deem “unsafe”?  Statements similar to this are strewn throughout the entire web site. “Safe”  “Friendly”  “Non-threatening”  Talk about setting soon-to-be-Christians up for failure!  This gives the reader the impression that other churches are like a battlefield in the middle east.  “Non-threatening”?

When was the last time you went to a church where a greeter threatened you?  Maybe the Pastor promised a beating if you were found without your Bible?  How about an usher giving the stink-eye to anyone not dropping a buck into the bucket?  It’s time to get real America!

“You will never be singled out or embarrassed”

So, you are at a baseball game and you are smooching on your wife and a camera hits you and poof you are on the titantron.  Do you throw your popcorn up in the air, scream obscenities and carry on about them invading your privacy?  Of course not!  You smile and then get right back at it.  So why is it that people are so afraid of being embarrassed at church?  Is someone saying “If you are a visitor, we’d like you to raise your hand so we can get you a packet of information” all that bad?  Or, really, God forbid someone try and shake my hand?  There are more threatening individuals saying hi to you at every Walmart in America, guys.

I personally would love to design a web site for a church that would ask me to put, “You are bound to be embarrassed.   Someone WILL shake your hand.  You will be asked, ‘how are you doing?'”

What happened to the boldness of Christ in the church???

If you had a million bucks and you were just out downtown looking for someone to give it away to would you be timid?  Would you be worried that they were going to be upset with you for ruining their day?  Singling them out?  No, you’d walk up to them and say, “Hey, buddy it’s your lucky day!”

That’s the attitude we as a Church should have.  We have a gift far better than a million or even a billion bucks.  We have the love of the One True God.  We have Eternal Life through Christ and Him Crucified.  We have a living, breathing Savior and our best friend the Holy Spirit of God living inside of us. Not only do we have that gift, but we have the ability to “give it away”.  Stop being timid church.  ACT LIKE YOU HAVE SOMETHING EVERYONE NEEDS! Because you do.


19 Comments Add yours

  1. Michele says:

    I think people are afraid they will be exposed. Maybe they know they are not living right. By saying safe they may be saying non-confrontational. You won’t be judged by us, we won’t ask you to open up if you are uncomfortable. It sounds like begging people to come to their church. I wish we spent more time showing love so then they would feel drawn to us and our church.

  2. Veronica says:

    I think they are talking about altar-calls. They are obviously a seeker-friendly church. I have heard stories of people who raise their hands during altar-calls and then totally freak out because they are called forward and “embarrassed”. It is very sad that this is the kind of church that are popping up all over the place.

  3. Michele says:

    Veronica, what do you think they made them do? That never crossed my mind. I have always been in churches where the alter call was not embarrasing at all. Although I was too nervous to go down front myself at Calvary Chapel (there were sooo many people).I happened to be there one night when they said raise your hand in your seat. I was so thankful that day. Since then I’ve gone forward for many things. We can pray that people have the faith of a mustard seed and will go up or that chains are broken so they can go forward. Praise God for alter calls.

    1. Veronica says:

      I remember before got saved, I thought when they said a “private moment between you and god” and then made you stand up and go forward it was very uncomfortable. Now I realize that is just following the word. But when you listen to that statement it does seem sort of misleading… I dont think of a private moment as standing in front of a bunch of people I dont know. That is what I ment by my previous post. I am so thankful that I am a part of a church that does altar calls! This church Steven talks about obviously doesn’t do them, otherwise their statement has to be a complete lie. They are just breading a bunch of seeker-friendly, luke warm christians.

  4. Lauryn says:

    It sounds friendly to me Steven. I went to church with you once back when I was 12ish, and other than that a few times at my friends Catholic church. I wasn’t taught “how to go to church” as a child, and felt completely out of place in the catholic church. Someone invited me to CF and I felt really comfortable there. I loved the messages; I felt like they were speaking right to me, but I wanted to know more without feeling trapped and singled out. It happened… Within 2 months I was saved and baptized a couple months after that. Best thing I’ve ever done. And I am proud to say my daughter loves going to church! :-)

    Everyone is different. We have to share our love, not judgement.

  5. Hey Lauryn,

    Your feelings are valid. The problem is that “seeker friendly” churches aren’t Biblical. Encouraging messages have their place, but the point of church is to learn. A pastor’s job is to preach concerning sin. Church, in a way, is meant to make you feel uncomfortable. If you are comfortable then chances are you aren’t being taught about the things God requires of his people (the word you here doesn’t mean you, lauryn, specifically, I am speaking in general)

    Sin is a subject that “seeker friendly” churches ignore because it makes people uncomfortable. Jesus made people uncomfortable. Do you think the Pharisees were comfortable when Jesus called them out over and over again?

    The problem with churches like these is that they are all about numbers. The more people we can get in the door the more they feel they are doing for the Kingdom. Unfortunately, that is the mind-set of American church, not the rest of the world.

    The rest of the world is content spending months ministering to a few people in order for those few people to be able to impact other people and so on and so forth. We should be focusing on training disciple makers, not just disciples.

    Jesus focused on 12 guys. Don’t you think he’d have been more effective if he trained 1200 guys? We think so because that’s how we’ve been trained. But it’s been proven that you can only effectively train small groups like the number 12.

    Large churches with Large church mindsets ignore things like sin, tithing, giving, outreaches and other things like this in order to make people feel comfortable. However, getting someone saved and not training them is worse than not getting them saved at all.

    If hundreds of people get saved but are never taught that their sin isn’t okay with God then are they truly saved? Salvation isn’t a prayer it’s a heart condition.

    There are too many lukewarm people out there claiming to be Christians because they said a magic prayer.

  6. Lauryn says:

    I understand what you are saying, but I disagree. I felt welcome at my church and that gave me the chance to learn.

    Okay honestly I feel a bit angry and like I need to defend myself after what you said. It is family time for me and Emily now though, so I’ll let you know my feelings later.

  7. Lauryn, you are very unique. You had a drive within you that caused you to want to learn. You are not the norm. Most people are content with going to a church and only doing what they are told. They don’t go over and above unless they are encouraged to do so. I’m up for a healthy debate but at no point should this become offensive to either of us. You have to recognize that what has caused you to feel welcome and grow causes MANY people to be feel comfortable and complacent, which leads to lukewarm “christianity”

  8. Lauryn says:

    Unique… :-) Thanks, in many ways I am. But I walked through the doors of my church like many others in the beginning: broken and living in sin. I was in a bad place in life with no idea how it could ever change or get better after I had “made the bed” I choose. After the poor choices I’d made early in life I thought I would be stuck forever. And many many MANY people had that label on me: Teen Mom, and everything that went with it. Forgetting that I graduated an honors student, volunteer, baby sat since I was 9, never did drugs, never drank, never skipped school, never smoked… I made a poor choice to have premarital sex with an older guy I thought I was in love with and I got pregnant. That poor choice changed everyone’s view of me; all that I had worked to become was shattered. Nobody looked at the other parts of me; they just assumed I was a wild child, and “that poor baby” to have such a young mother. Everywhere I went I would get those looks. Nobody wants to see someone 18 and pregnant looking happy. I wasn’t “ready” to become a parent when I did, but as soon as I found out I was pregnant I was a parent. I made myself ready… I knew I had to live my life for my child. I was robbed of a positive pregnancy; I see my friends now married and having children and how happy their families are… I wish I could have experienced that. Emily was robbed of a proper family unit. I feel terrible about it, but it is the way it is. I deal with the hand I was dealt as best I can, but the views of the world typically don’t make it any easier.

    That is why I loved my church from the beginning. If I felt condemned or judged after my first visit, chances are I wouldn’t have gone back. That is the way I felt everywhere else and I didn’t need anyone else judging me. At church it was so different… nobody judged me. They simply loved me. They showed me all the love God has for me, and that love is overwhelming. I didn’t feel “church dumb” like the sit down stand up of the Catholic church, the words to the songs were on the screen (WooHoo), they put on the screen what they were reading out of (so I could find it in my Bible), they asked visitors to only fill out the visitors guide without financial obligation so the church could connect with them, and the sermons related to everyday life… teaching the word and how it relates to us. I felt good there and I was learning, feeling loved, and knowing there was help available to me.

    There are tons of classes and groups that are strongly encouraged. I went to the classes that told us about the church, how it started and their mission, “To impact the world with the love and message of Jesus Christ”. At that point I definitely felt the amazing love of Jesus and I was on my way learning the message. I went to the New Beginnings class, studying the Bible with a small group of people. Then I went to other various classes that were offered…. Getting to know the people at my church and diving into the Bible. After a while I joined a small group, which is also strongly encouraged as a way to get to know people and “connect” to people within the bigger church.

    I know you say there are many Sunday Christians, and that is true, but there are also SO many people who are passionate about their faith. Nobody is perfect, but no one has the right to judge either. We will all have our own judgment day.

    At my church we have talked about the difference between guilt and conviction. And they preach with love and passion, if you feel conviction the pastors are available to talk you through whatever it is you need to deal with in your life. I have seen people reach out to the homeless, give them the support they need to turn their life around, and now a man who was once faithless feeling alone in this world is a humble Christian because of the love of another Christian. I have seen drug addicts give their life to Jesus and “start over” in His love. I see the youth group reaching out to so many people with such pride in their faith! The hearts in my church are HUGE! Maybe not all of them, fair statement, but I am sure someone is impacted everyday… and that makes a difference.

    I can assure you sin, tithing, giving, and outreach are far from ignored at my “big church.” It is not just about numbers. Dr. John Maxwell recently preached an emotional message with that inclusion http://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inside-out-living/id307402413?i=83888039 Inside-Out Living 06/06/2010.
    …Please don’t assume all big churches are after the numbers.

    Some people are “lukewarm” Christians. I am sure we all see it on Facebook. That point is valid. What I am saying is that when I went to the church for the first time, I felt welcome and loved… because of that as I learned I felt convicted rather than guilty. I believe guilt would have made me turn away from church. Knowing the love was there made me feel blessed to feel those convictions and change my life.

    Now I’ve stayed up way to late, Emily is starting to get sick, and I have to be at work at 8:30 tomorrow. Let’s make this a great weekend, and let our faith light up the world! You are a smart man Steven; I enjoy reading your posts. If you want me to stop commenting let me know. ;-) Good night!

  9. Hey Lauryn,

    I don’t want you to stop posting at all. Actually this is the whole purpose of the blog. I am however very interested in the fact that you pulled this post and instantly made it about your church. The quote, the picture , the post wasn’t about your church but you assumed that it was. Don’t forget that I was raised in a “Big church” of 5 thousand and growing, but if I read this I never would have assumed it was about my church.

    You made some great points. You named all the things that church is about. Making people feel LOVED and making people feel COMFORTABLE are often times very very different. Your church made you feel LOVED which is what the church was called to. Making someone feel so comfortable that they never have to get involved is quite different.

    Catholic churches don’t even register on my scale here. They are very uncomfortable in a different way. They make you participate in such a way that if you don’t know your lines you look stupid. We are going to skip past Catholic churches for now for the sake of not bashing.

    All the things you said (Dr. John speaking on all the things I said are often ignored) should prove that maybe your church wasn’t included. I did say “Big churches with Big church mentalities” not just big churches. I still venture to say that you are unique. You were desperate and found God. Many people choose big churches to blend in, fulfill obligation and then move on.

    You said something that I do need to argue for the sake of every Christian reading this. You said “No one has the right to judge” somewhat inaccurate. The Word says, in matthew chapter 7, Judge not lest ye be judged. By the same measure you judge you will be judged. But it goes on to talk about teachers and prophets.
    A Tree and Its Fruit

    15″Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
    21″Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ 23Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

    It says that you will know them by their fruit. It continues to say that they can not bear good friuit because they are bad trees.

    This is our measuring stick to judge a pastor/teacher/reverend/doctor/etc etc This is regarding the leader. If the leader isn’t leading properly, the church will not be properly fed.

    Again, I’m sorry that for some reason you assumed the original post was about your church. I pray that if anyone else read this, they would consider the things spoken about, evaluate their current church, and make a sound judgment concerning what part they play.

  10. PS: if you enjoy reading, subscribe! It really helps me to figure out how many readers I have.

  11. Lauryn says:

    I know this post wasn’t about my church. It was about big churches (which my church fits into) or “seeker friendly” churches. I do have the feeling you aren’t too fond of my church (or some people you know who go there?), but it may not be the place you believe it to be. So please don’t over generalize all “big churches”. And saying seeker friendly… isn’t that what all churches should be: Open doors for people seeking a relationship with Jesus?

    I stand by what I say on judgment. Leaving the judgment to God has given me such freedom; I am happy with the way I feel. Do I evaluate my situations and surroundings? Sure I do. Do I get funny feelings about people? Sure I do. I know not everyone is trying to do the right thing, but I try not to assume things about people. I don’t know everyone’s heart. If you were listening to way FM this morning I pretty much agree with the conversation about John Ellis; I don’t really know what is going on with the guy, but I am not going to judge him. I don’t jump into celebrity gossip. I believe to an extent that people who are in the public eye (celebrities, politicians, church pastors) SHOULD display an appropriate, healthy, role model image. I know that isn’t reality.

    I am sure we could go back and forth on this. I believe I understand your message… don’t be complacent in your faith, never stop growing, show the world God’s love and message. I just don’t disagree with the statement in your post. I think it welcomes new people, and once they see how amazing God’s love is and learn His message they are compelled/convicted/want to do more and serve more. And I would say the same for tithing; it is something I learned about at church.

  12. As I said, you have valid points. I stand firm in believing that you are unique. Most people don’t pursue faith in America unless they are pushed and guided. You were at a point of desperation, which is where God wants us. The rest of the world understands being hungry and desperate. We don’t. Which is why a lot of people are content going to a big church and blending in.

    Being a “seeker friendly” church isn’t a good thing and let me explain why.

    The seeker friendly movement is characterized by the attempt to get as many people through the door as possibly, by any means necessary. Last year we saw such churches allow The Jonas Brothers to play at their easter service. Another gave away $1 million during an easter service. They preach generally a 20 minute message about how if you believe in Jesus He will make your life better, your marriage, finances etc. It’s called the prosperity gospel. The problem with it is that Jesus didn’t preach the prosperity gospel. Sure, He came to give us life abundantly but He didn’t tell us if we were Christians everything was going to be grand and a-okay. This causes many people to stumble and disbelieve in God because things don’t get better in their life within the time frame they believe it should.

    They generally don’t preach about sin, hell or repentance, and rarely is Jesus being the only way to heaven a subject of sermon. They believe that these things scare people and they’d rather not do it. One of the biggest leaders in this movement is a guy who is on TV all the time, I’d rather not use his name. He was on Larry King and denied that Jesus was the only way to heaven. A lady called in and said “What about where Jesus says I am the way the truth and the life, no man comes to the Father but by Me.” He then agreed but went on to say He’s not going to say that Jews and Atheists go to hell.

    That is the danger with Seeker Friendly churches. It means they are willing to do anything and say anything to get people into Church. Jesus wasn’t like that. He once told a man if he didn’t sell everything he owned and follow Jesus that he can’t be saved. Jesus NEVER compromised.

    The center of seeker sensitive churches isn’t Christ. It’s man. It’s making man comfortable, happy, and feeling unthreatened instead of speaking the truth, they only speak those things which people can easily digest and not be turned away by.

    The basic premise in the seeker-sensitive movement is that there are many people out there who are seeking God and want to know Him, but the concept of the traditional church scares them away from faith in Christ. But is it true that people are truly seeking God? Actually, Scripture teaches the exact opposite! The apostle Paul tells us that “there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God” (Romans 3:11). This means there is no such thing as an unbeliever who is truly seeking for God on his own. Furthermore, man is dead in his sin (Ephesians 2:1), and he can’t seek God because he doesn’t recognize his need for Him, which is why Paul says that there is no one who understands. Romans 1:20-23 teaches us that all unbelievers reject the true God. They then go on to form a god that is what they want (a god in their image or the image of something else). This is a god they can tame and control. Romans 1:18-20 says they knowingly suppress what they know about God through His creation and that they are subject to God’s wrath, another doctrine studiously avoided by the seeker churches.

    God’s invisible attributes are clearly seen in creation, but unbelievers take that clear knowledge and revelation God has graciously provided and flatly reject it. This leads to Paul’s statement in Romans 1:20 that they are “without excuse.” What man finds when he seeks on his own is nothing more than a god of his own creation. Man does not seek for God; it is God who seeks for man. Jesus said that plainly in John 15:16, and John 6:44. The idea of thousands or even millions of unbelievers really searching for the true God is an utterly unbiblical notion. Thus, this movement is based on an unbiblical concept of the nature of the unsaved person, which is spiritually dead. A spiritually dead person does not seek God, nor can he. Therefore, there is no such thing as a seeking unbeliever. He does not understand the things of God until he is made alive by the Spirit of God (1 Corinthians 2:14).

    Until the Father draws him (John 6:44) and the Spirit awakens the heart so he can believe and receive the gift of faith (Ephesians 2:8), an unsaved person cannot believe. Salvation is completely the act of God whereby He draws and empowers the dead sinner with what is necessary to believe (John 6:37, 39-40). What part do we play in the salvation of others? God has commanded that we are the instrumentality through which the gospel is proclaimed. We share the gospel, but it is not our responsibility to make people believe, or even to try to be persuasive or manipulate them into believing. God has given us the message of the gospel; we are to share it with gentleness and reverence, but we are to share it, offensive parts and all. Nobody believes the gospel because a speaker is persuasive. People believe because of the work of God in their hearts.

    God has not been vague on what His church is to be like. He didn’t leave us guessing. He has given us direction on how men are to lead His church (Acts 6:1-6, 14:23; Titus 1:5-9; 1 Timothy 3:1-13; Ephesians 4:11), the ordinances of the church (1 Corinthians 11; Matthew 28:19), and the worship in the church—it is to be on the “Lord’s Day” (Acts 20:7), and is to consist of preaching and teaching, prayer, fellowship (Acts 2:42) and the taking of an offering (Colossians 3:16). Here the seeker movement has missed the mark completely with its man-centered focus. When an unsaved person enters church, should our goal be to make him feel as comfortable as possible? When it comes to issues like our kindness, speaking respectfully, or even physical comfort, all who enter the church should be treated well. But the unsaved person should never feel ‘at home’ in church, which is the body of Christ. The preaching and teaching of truth should make him feel very uncomfortable as he, hopefully, realizes the state of his soul, comes to know the existence of hell, and recognizes his need for the Savior. This discomfort is what brings people to Christ, and those who attempt to circumvent discomfort are not being loving. In fact, just the opposite is true. If we love someone, we want him to know the truth about sin, death, and salvation so we can help him avoid an eternity in hell. According to Paul, when an unbeliever enters the church and the Word of God is preached expositionally (taught directly from the Scriptures), he will be convicted and called into account for his sin. The secrets of his heart are disclosed as he confesses and repents of his sin; this leads him to humble himself and worship the God who has provided the sacrifice for his salvation.

    If we apply the standards of the seeker-sensitive movement to evaluate Jesus’ ministry, we get some interesting results. Jesus was preaching to thousands, and in that sermon He clearly offends nearly all of those who hear Him. They desert Him, and “from this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him” (John 6:66). The Greek words in this verse mean they left and never came back. Jesus warned us that, far from healing our relationships with others, Christians will experience rifts in their closest relationships because of Him (Matthew 10:34-37). It is true that once we are saved life is better because we are reconciled to God and have a right relationship with Him. This provides the deepest peace that can be known. However, the rest of our lives will almost certainly be more difficult than before. God has said that we will experience persecution (Matthew 10:25), the rest of the world will look upon us as fools (1 Corinthians 1:18, 23), and we may even experience deep divisions in our own families all because of Christ (Luke 12:53). Jesus never intended for us to be popular with unbelievers, saying instead that He came to bring not peace, but a sword (Matthew 10:34).

    The basic philosophy, theology, purpose, and end of the seeker-sensitive movement are entirely man-centered. However, some would say that regardless of the purpose, motive, and outcome of the movement being wrong, we can’t argue with the principle of getting the unsaved through the doors to hear the gospel. Certainly any exposure we can give the unsaved to the gospel is a great thing. However, the seeker-sensitive movement sometimes doesn’t have the real gospel. Rather, it is a shell of the truth; it is hollow and void of the truths of sin, hell, and the holiness of God.

    I’ve done a lot of studying about this particular thing and some of the above was taken from various places. All sentiments are mine.

    Hope this help.

  13. Lauryn says:

    Okay, now I think I know what you are talking about. When you say seeker-sensitive I have a better understanding of what you mean. I saw Candace Cameron’s testimony and one of the things she talked about was finding a church home and things to look for. So there are churches out there acting like an Oprah show… I wasn’t aware of that, sorry. I am sure you have much more knowledge of that subject than I do, as I’ve never researched it.

    So you say seeker-sensitive as in a church that doesn’t have a cross up front because they don’t want to offend anyone, correct? I just think seeker-friendly sounds like a welcoming atmosphere for people who want to learn about Jesus or want their family to find a church home. I didn’t know the term was already associated with a negative connotation.

    On that note, still not having googled up on things, I can see what you mean about seeker-sensitive churches.

  14. =) All’s well. God is good. He uses these things to His glory. This blog is all about learning, both mine and yours. I wanted an open topic type blog because there are many people out there who have answers I don’t. I want to learn as much as I want to teach.

  15. Ryan says:

    I would like to chime in on this convo with some additional thoughts.

    The seek-sensitive movement is just as Steven explained it. And just as he stated it is in several ways un-biblical. Although I am a HUGE fan of setting the atmosphere for God to show up in a service (something CF does incredible well), I feel that seeker-sensitive, a label I DON’T apply to CF, (as a movement, not the literal definition) waters down the word and puts God in a box. I am the leader of the Create Team for the young adults ministry at Trinity (Fasten), and we often borrow some of the principles the willow creek (the birthing place of seeker-sensitive) uses to set the stage for God. I think based on other blogs written here, Steven would agree. Christianese is one of the biggest hindrance to people getting involved in church and is an issue that seeker-sensitive churches have combated very well.

    I actually used to attend a seeker-sensitive church and they did some things great! I believe we should be sensitive to someone who is truly seeker. I don’t believe we are doing people a service, in fact we are doing them an injustice, by hiding the fact they are going to hell and need to repent. Am I going to walk up to someone and tell them that point blank, well maybe :-), but probably not. Thats where the love of Christ comes in. The reason that seeker-sensitive churches fail is because they never train the new the believe. This is a fact that Bill Hybels (guru of seeker-sensitive) himself admitted too http://www.christianpost.com/article/20071127/willow-creek-s-confession/index.html.

    As far as a church being large, I feel that there is nothing wrong with growth. I attend a large church and have had much success training myself and getting plugged. I think a small church mentality can sometimes be more of a hindrance to people coming to church then a large church mentality. Often times small churches, especially in the baptist circles, become over grown clicks. A large church does, however have its draw back too. People can easily hide and never grow past the initial conversion. Take CF for instance, I know several people that attend church there. Some are complacent and are the epitome of lukewarm christian. Others have gotten plugged in, grown and are some of the most passionate Christ-followers I have ever met. One friend in fact is so passionate about his faith that he leads people to the Lord while making mulit-million dollar business deals (this is huge in the business world since often a conversation about your faith can end the deal). When there are that many people going to a church, you are going to get a mix of both types of people, with a nasty combination in the middle. Does this mean we stop growing large churches? Certainly not (I am reading through Romans, can you tell? lol). Growth in numbers can, but not alway, be a result of growth in depth.

    I guess in summary it comes down to the fact that churches have become more then country clubs that we attend on Sundays. I believe church, as an organization, is about to (and desperately needs to) change. What will it look like? Who knows. I do know that when 3% of Christians tithe, there is obliviously a lack of teaching. Its not the church’s (the building) place to condemn a person, but it IS the church’s (the body) place to bring people into the presence of God which will often bring conviction. An uncompromising faith and an unwavering walk in the way God has instructed will set us apart. It will make other feel uncomfortable in their sin and desire to change. This is true while at a church service or sitting at chili’s for dinner (eating chips and queso). Sin is a real issue, but its also a heart issue and can only be dealt with by the Holy Spirit.

  16. Ryan, I agree almost completely. You hit a lot of the same points but also helped explain that there is nothing wrong with a large church. It’s when the large church stops doing their job that makes them ineffective.

    I will disagree in one instance. You said the phrase “Lukewarm Christian” and I must argue that this is an oxy-moran. There’s no such thing as a lukewarm christian, only a lukewarm church-goer. Christ wouldn’t talk about vomiting one of His own out of His mouth.

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