Monday, June 1, 2015

Church Should Be More Entertaining?

What we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ. ~ 1 John 1:3

"Church is boooooooring and it's on Sunday when sports (are) on TV."  Those were the words I heard last week from a self proclaimed Christian. (Read here to see what birthed the discussion and here for some sound words on the subject.)  Seriously?!  Boring?  Watching sports is more attractive than joining in worship with the bride of Jesus Christ.  The Church needs to "step up it's game" and make things more interesting, more fun, more attractive?  For who?  The world?  The false believer?  Yes, these are things I was hearing from one who challenged the need for church at all and what going to church should be.  Watching a charismatic self help expert "preach" to tens of thousands on your TV does not constitute going to church.  Preferring to sleep in rather than dress up in a suit and tie is not characteristic of a person possessing saving faith.  Oh, there was plenty more mockery about what church is and what happens there but suffice it to say, some people just don't like it because truth be told, they just are not truly born again.

Such an attitude is a far cry from David, the man after God's own heart.

I was glad when they said to me,
“Let us go to the house of the LORD.” ~ Psalm 122:1

For the Christian, the most blessed day of the week is to be with the saints of God in the house of God.  I'm not talking about simply showing up and watching everything happen.  If we don't view church attendance as something to cherish, to look forward to, how can we participate in what the Apostle Peter, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, instructs us to do here

As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. 
1 Peter 4:10–11

How in the world are we going to know who the people of God are that we might actually serve one another when we don't even step into the church building? The false believer, the unconverted sinner, has it all wrong.  They think church exists to serve them and make their life better.  They think it's about them feeling good they showed up and having been entertained by hirelings that they can now face the coming work week by being fed a pep talk, being patted on the back, and laughing at a man who claims to be speaking for the Lord God Almighty.

This is where we've come.  Man centered worship.  It's not about us.  It's not about you.  It's about bowing our hearts and knees in the gathered assembly of saints to give Him all praise, honor, and glory.

Encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 
Heb 3:13

Can that happen outside of church?  Absolutely and it must!  Although if you're one who doesn't attend church then I highly doubt you have a single trusted friend encouraging you in the faith. The greatest encouragement often comes at the end of our week, when we're battle weary and war torn over the effects of sin, our own and others.  Consider what the writer of Hebrews said;

Let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near. 
~ Heb 10:24-25

What is your habit?  Sleeping in on the Lord's Day, sitting in front of a TV, stupefied, watching grown men sweat over a piece of leather OR eagerly arising with great anticipation, that started Saturday night, about being with God's people in God's house?

True joy is in fellowship with the saints, serving side by side.  True joy is being deeply involved with the brethren. True joy is exhorting one another in the faith and encouraging one another in the fight. This kind of participation in the gospel produces far greater joy and satisfaction than anything life can throw our way.

Could soldiers fight a war without ever gathering at headquarters?  Could soldiers fight a war without ever receiving training?  Do you have a shepherd who could say like the Apostle Paul 

I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always offering prayer with joy in my every prayer for you all, in view of your participation in the gospel from the first day until now. ~ Phil 1:3-5

There are no Lone Ranger Christians.  True Christians love Christ with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength and serve one another in the gathered assembly as they worship and glorify their Father in heaven. 

If you hate church, if you think it's boring, if your ideas are to infuse entertainment into it to make it more interesting, more appealing, you are holding to ideas and practices that are incompatible with being a new creation, one born from above.

Church should be more entertaining? No, church should be more biblical, existing to worship the Lord Jesus Christ. 

He must increase
~ Kevin