Worship and Doctrine

In the matter of Christian theology, doctrine and practice, to engage in controversy for controversies sake is wrong. It is quite another thing to stand up for God’s truth as revealed and reasonably deduced from scripture. There are many matters upon which we can differ and agree to differ without doubting each other’s Christianity.

It is in the fundamentals of the faith that we all must seek to preserve, each according to our abilities and circumstances.

Many of the peddlers of error are speaking via the media to many thousands of people and there are pastors and bible teachers who write books and publish video sermons to counter these false teachers. For the rest of us our influence may extend no further than our immediate family and friends and local church.

We all like a quiet life. No one wants to be at odds with those he fellowships with or his local minister. Yet we are all called to speak the truth in love. We must always deal with our differences in a loving caring way, conscious of our own fallibility.

There are methods and approaches in the church today which while they may not be downright wrong, are the inlets to practices and doctrines which are detrimental to the Church and its mission of faithful proclamation of the genuine gospel of Christ

I know from my experience that much in the church today in doctrine and worship does not accord with my understanding of Scripture or the emphasis needed on preaching the Word fully and faithfully. Being in the minority how am I to deal with this situation? Should I remain silent and let the will of the many prevail unchallenged?

It is possible to be sincerely wrong. It is therefore necessary to identify whether the errors we perceive in the Church come from our own misunderstanding. If what they teach and practice jars your prejudices or upset your sensibilities, it is probably best to look at the good in the church and pass over the things that are not according to your taste.

Yet making allowance for this we must “test all things” and not blindly follow where others lead.

I can only speak for myself, when I say that my opinion of today’s worship style in the church is not the reverent, preaching and prayer centered, corporate worship scripture enjoins.

It seems to me, that it takes away from the congregation and minister.

The singers and musicians put on a “show” a la charismatic (without the phenomena,) and call it worship. Whether or not the members of the congregation actually sing the  repetitive and sometimes, shallow theologically, songs is a matter of seeming indifference to them.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1c/Bridges-Worship-Scene-01.jpg

Whatever of the heart goes along with the modern worship style, there seems to me very little scope for the mind.

Not only does the dominance of this form of “Worship” relegate the preaching of the Word to a subordinate position, I think it positively hinders it.

As for the actual preaching of the Word, it seldom reaches the heights it reached in past times. You can hardly see a Bible opened let alone expounded in any meaningful way. Sadly what with everything else that goes on in the service there is often not the time even if there was the inclination.

I have often gone to a church service and the Word of God is not preached at all but is supplanted by an interview, concert or video and it seems many delight to have it so.

Considering many people only attend one service a Sunday it makes one wonder how much teaching they actually get.

With the prevalence of false doctrine in the Church today, there must be sound and faithful preaching. People may condemn it as hate speak or whatever, but to tailor the sermon and service to soothe the scruples of non believers and not scare away mere professing believers is not going to achieve  lasting spiritual results. It will never combat the serious doctrinal errors and worldly inroads that beleaguer the Church in the twenty first century.

In saying all this I make allowance for the fact I am old fashioned and set in my ways. I am definitely in the minority but in good conscience based on years of bible study and attendance in various denominations, I can only ask of anyone who reads this, that they would have a good look at the things that we believe and do.

We must also remember that much of what we do in worship today is only of very recent origin and discards the historic practices of the evangelical church without adequately replacing them.https://i1.wp.com/visionofhopeumc.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/traditional-service.jpg

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Why do we need Worldly hype and gimmicks in our Children’s Ministry?

Sunday at Church we had a lady from the U.S. who was in charge of her Arizona church’s children’s ministry.

From my hearing of what she described, it seems to me that ,what with the bright colours they use in their children’s area,  the games, invited celebrities and felt need to generate excitement,that they have taken their lead more from the World and marketing methodology rather than Scripture.

No doubt there was teaching and evangelism in the program, but it seems to me, it was only after the young people had tired themselves out having a good time.

If , as I suspect,the teaching was the usual pablum dispensed by “seeker sensitive ” churches, you may wonder how much was sugar and how little was salt. I hope this was not the case here.

If we use carnal, worldly and sensual methods in any of our ministries, the chances are we will produce Carnal, Worldly and sensual Christians. More likely they will grow bored with the excitement they find in the Church and seek the excitement found in sinful and worldly pleasures and fall away.

I can truly understand the desire to bring people and their children into the church and keep them there.First of all surely, we need to bring them to Christ and disciple them.

The desire and aim of these innovators is commendable.  However the approach they take is what we would expect from an advertising agency or business enterprise with no higher aim than increasing their customer base and profits.

They claim that traditional methods are boring and that we are being left behind in the growth stakes.

They use entertainment and catchy   gimmicks and methods to capture the attention and attendance of great crowds of people.

They hope that by getting people within the walls of the church they will become Christians.

They seek through their grandiose programs to bring children to Christ but does He really need the help of artificial hype and slick marketing to bring children to Himself.

I wonder how big a church needs to be and how big their budget to support this sort of program?

How many families are drawn away from smaller churches to the bright lights these churches generate?

How many times do I hear of people leaving a small struggling church because they do not have a “children’s program” such as is found in these type of churches?

The ends seldom justify the means. When the Church looks like the World chances are children will think the Church and the World are interchangeable.

Rather let us seek to stand apart from the worldly approach to dealing with problems and seek in simplicity to proclaim Christ and share His saving love in a way which is pleasing to Him.

Let indeed, the children come to Him and not merely to a Christian equivalent of the “Wiggles”.

 

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Worship and Doctrine

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