Today when we think about church we tend to think in terms of what does this church have to offer me. How can this church serve me; what kinds of programs and worship do they offer and will I be expected to do anything. Are the seats comfortable, do they have a coffee bar, does the band crank it up or quiet it down.
Do we go to church in search of the presentation being God’s plan, His pattern if you will, of reaching the lost. The cross and Jesus shed blood. Jesus took our sins upon Him so that we could spend eternity with God. He was our bridge, His blood is the cure for our sin sick nature.
Do you think that perhaps today in many churches we are running sideshows with attractions, schemes and methods being used to lure people into church. We plan our service to entice and entertain. We place clowns and comics in the pulpits. We are not the first people to lose sight of God’s plan and pattern. The child of Israel lost the vision and corrupted the pattern just as we do today with our sideshow attractions.
The cross is no longer central in the church. We hide the cross in all of the attractions. Sin is hidden in the dark, the light is convicting. The light of the truth makes sinners feel uneasy. Let’s be honest, the cross is a bloody devise of torture. It’s horrific. So if we hide it in the shadows behind the amusements and entertainments we use to entice people we make it look more attractive. It becomes more comfortable. Therefore, we can draw more people in. WE will draw more people in.
Jesus says if I be lifted up I will draw all men unto me!
The cross MUST be the ONLY attraction. It is wrong to bait people into church. Jesus saves through the blood of His cross not the latest Christian celebrity or program. We must preach Christ crucified not our policies, not our buildings, not a movement. The church must stop preaching all this and Jesus too. We’ve got to tear down the groves and tapestries that hide the cross so that the world will see their sins on the cross.
How can we go into church and sing How Great Is Our God and corrupt His pattern. As I was studying this morning I was remembering back to all the times that I attended the old fashioned tent meetings out in the elements of an open air tent where ladies cooled themselves with the wave of a hand fan. The praising and preaching that was brought back then and the message of the Cross Crucified had people running to the alter. Now, it’s bow your heads, close your eyes nobodies looking. Be bold people, be humble, confess and repent. Pick up your cross and follow Jesus. Amen!
Today we have man-made services and buildings in an attempt to make religion operate to serve us. The new cross as is proclaimed today is this, “come and get”. Enjoy a pippin hot cup of coffee, relax in the theatre seats with plenty of leg room and enjoy the music.
The old cross is to come and give. The old cross did not bond with this world and we should not either. I find myself longing for the days of old. The days where the boldness of where preachers loudly proclaimed Christ Crucified!!
So again, ask yourself, “What Does This Church Offer?”