The Church Today
After reading this section, be sure to click on the link below
to learn how you can have a clear biblical philosophy of ministry.
Have you ever asked, "Why do we do what we do?" Does the Bible tell us what to do and how to do it?
One reason for struggles and division in the Church is that believers are not united in their understanding of biblical teaching concerning ministry - why we do what we do.
Most of us would agree that there appears to be some dissatisfaction, discontent, and even discouragement with the Church today. Believers go from church to church trying to find one with which they are more comfortable. Christian leaders try to find better methods and programs to "meet the needs" of believers and attract unbelievers. Expectations of both believers in the pew and leaders are often unrealistic. These unsettling concerns fill us with many questions that beg answers. Interestingly, the Church at large today has more money, members, and activities than ever before, and yet, is spiritually accomplishing less than ever before. Why?
How do we view the Church today? Do we view the Church as God sees it? Most of us would say that we believe we do. The following questions are asked to stimulate and encourage you to reconsider/re-evaluate your thinking about the Church.
- Do believers today really understand the essence of the Church (what it is)? Do they understand the biblical purpose of the Church (why it exists)? Do they describe the Church with terms that relate to property, programs, or personnel? Is the Church an institution, or is the Church an organization... or could it be something else?
- Do the leaders function more as a board of directors than a group of shepherds? Do they spend most of their time dealing with buildings and budgets rather than interacting and ministering to the average person in the pew? Who is supposed to direct the activities and direction of the Church? How does the headship and preeminence of Christ manifest itself in the practical life of the Body of Christ -- the Church? Would the Church still be considered "a church" if it did not have "a pastor"?
- If believers are the Church, then how do they go to church? If they gather as the Church for edification, then why do many/most worship services today seek to please the unbeliever (seeker)? How is the Church to fellowship together? Does the way we "do" church encourage or inhibit the expression of spiritual gifts?
- Is status, or one's level of importance, in the Church described on the basis of organizational performance? Is there a tendency to think of a "good Christian" as one who attends all church services, teaches, serves on the board, etc.?
- Are leaders overburdened with "ministry" responsibilities because they are paid and, therefore, expected to do the entire ministry? Do the weekly meetings resemble performance-oriented spectator events (centered on one or only a few) rather than a gathering of believers for worship and mutual edification? Is there an attitude that "bigger is better?" Is success measured by size? How big does a church have to be to be a church?
- Are people in the Church today truly finding spiritual fulfillment or just emotional pick-me-ups (religious feelings) that keep them dependent on regular attendance? Do their hearts yearn to know Truth so they can obediently apply it to their lives?
- What was Church life like in the first century? Would knowing the answer to that question make a difference to us today? Is first-century Church experience relevant to us today? The first-century Church had a heart for God and His program in the world. Does the Church today reflect God's mission and heart? Or are we just like any other organization vying for the attention, involvement, and financial support of our communities in order to keep our doors open?
Why is it important to consider these things? Because how we think church is how we do church!
Are you interested in exploring the answers to the above questions? Would you like to know how to develop a clear biblical understanding of ministry - why do we do what we do? Click on the link below to learn about a series of studies called Biblically Rethinking the Church.
CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE
[ Mentor's Page ]