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Seeker Sensitive Churches!
“Religion today is not transforming people; rather it is being transformed by the people. It is not raising the moral level of society; it is descending to society's own level, and congratulating itself that it has scored a victory because society is smilingly accepting its surrender.” --A. W. Tozer (1897-1963).
Fashions and trends keep changing in the sensual world. Not surprisingly, the same is on the rise even in the spiritual world! ‘Diverse’ doctrines are taught from the pulpits around the world. ‘Fancy’ theology is becoming more and more popular. Mega churches are making mega ‘moves’ in the arena of our “Chollywood.” Self-styled prophets and apostles are battling for the ‘best in the rest’ awards! The whims and fancies of our spiritual ‘elite’ are skyrocketing! Rather than being “God-centred” now many in the spiritual ‘business’ are trying hard to be “Man-centred” as much as possible! Yes, they say, we mean to have a down to earth, realistic, performance based faith for our people!! Many pastors and pulpiteers are becoming more seeker sensitive than Saviour sensitive in their ministry approach.
They design their divinity according to the “felt needs” of the people, they tailor their services according to the “moods” of the attendees, and they make up their atmosphere according to the “desires” of their consumers! Sermons are sweet and short – always pointing to the carnal side of humanity. "It is a poor sermon that gives no offence; that neither makes the hearer displeased with himself nor with the preacher" said God’s evangelist George Whitfield. They set up lights and smoke for a Hollywood ‘feel’ in side the sanctuary.
Hollywood never felt the need to change the set up of its theatres like our sanctuaries but some of our church leaders have changed their churches into I-max theatres! Choreo, drama, skits, mime, solo, instrumental music etc have taken over the serene and sober spiritual atmosphere. These things in themselves are not wrong; they can be used for God’s glory and to put across the truth to the contemporary folks. But when we depend on them heavily instead of Scriptures and the Spirit then it violates God’s laws.
Let’s make one thing straight. God’s work should be done according to God’s will. We are not the bosses to do whatever we like in the church of God. "It is not enough to do God's work; it must be done in His way and for His credit" wrote the esteemed pastor of Moody Bible Church Erwin Lutzer. Years ago, prior to modernisation of Evangelism and the technological invasion in the ministry to sinners, God’s man Billy Sunday rightly said, "Let's quit fiddling with religion and do something to bring the world to Christ." I think many of us need to hear it right, then we will get on to the right track to be moved by the Spirit of God.
"The only reason some of us are not exiled or thrown into prison is simply because we do not preach as fervently and as sternly as did Paul, John, Peter and others. This modern "Santa Claus" religion that is sweeping country today is not the religion Jesus taught and John practiced" cried out Oliver B. Greene. Is it Santa Claus religion or “Satan’s Class” religion? Think of it. “Care more for a grain of faith than a ton of excitement” said Charles H. Spurgeon. That’s why he is called the prince of preachers and widely read even today! He had the mind of Christ and the Spirit of God. So let’s heed to the wise counsel of an age old and fruitful evangelist who did his job very well and went to be with his Lord to receive the reward. After hearing from the horse’s mouth I hope at least some will understand.
It is reported in the news in 2007 that Bill Hybels the seeker sensitive movement guru has openly confessed the failure of his movement! He said, “We have made a mistake.” At least he had the courage to say it. Yes, at the end of the day the seeker sensitive church has produced just “pop corn Christians” who have no idea what God wants from them, and do not know how to live as true Disciples of Christ! Many have just become “paper saints” than becoming “proper saints!” In today’s materialistic world we don’t need the “self pampering” churches but we need “soul prospering” churches. Pray and seek God’s face to make us all truly “Saviour sensitive!”
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