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Thursday, October 17, 2019
Baptist Church

Consumer Church

Wednesday, February 17, 2016 View Comments Comments (0)
 Burger-King-Have-It-Your-Way
“And they continued steadfastly in the apostle’s doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of break, and in prayers…And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.” Acts 2:42, 47

The context for these verses is the response of some 3,000 people to the Apostle Peter’s preaching.  Peter boldly stood and declared to the people that the only solution for our sin sick soul is to repent and embrace by faith the Lord Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of our sins.

From this we learn that there are some key ingredients that result in the evangelistic growth of the church.  I use to term “evangelistic growth” because so much of what we see in the mega church era is transfer growth.  In an article entitled “The Myth of Church Growth” by David Dunlap he cites that for all the growth in the megachurch era, the number of Americans who claim to be “born again” has remained a constant 32 percent.  He goes on to say that up to 80 percent of all growth taking place today doesn’t come from conversions, but from transfers.

What has happened is that we have gotten away from making disciples as commanded in the Great Commission – Matthew 28:18-20 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”  Our mandate has been attraction and we treat the church as if it were a business which has lead to a consumer mentality amongst our congregations.  

There was a survey of 1,000 church attenders where they were asked why the church existed and according to 89 percent, the church’s purpose was “to take care of my family’s and my spiritual needs.”  Only 11 percent said the purpose of the church is “to win the world for Jesus Christ.”  Greg Laurie of Harvest Christian Fellowship said that in the long run, “if we train consumers instead of communers, we’ll end up with customers instead of disciples.  It might fill up an auditorium, but it will never turn the world upside down for Christ.”

God is not impressed with the fact that we have memorized the Great Commission…He wants us to fulfill it.  It’s time that we traded in entertainment for exhortation and embraced what it means to make disciples who crave a steady diet of solid teaching from the Word of God.  Put down those Twinkie sermonettes and learn to feed yourself from the “bread of life” (John 6:35).  

If we’ll focus on the priorities given to us in Scripture: worship, prayer, evangelism, learning, and loving we’ll see the Lord add to the church those that are being saved.  As we discover that church growth is God’s business and under His control, we will see consumerism driven from the church.

david ><({‘>


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