Has the church become one big production or source of entertainment?
On this week’s Fearless podcast episode, Cissie Graham Lynch identifies a number of red flags she’s seen in some churches today. The episode marks the start of her series “The Elephant in the Room” to address topics many pastors and churches are ignoring—or simply giving up on and allowing the culture to set the standard.
“As I look at the church as a whole and I look at the social media of pastors, what has it really become?” Lynch questioned. “Have pastors become more of a self-help?”
While offering self-help tips for a healthy marriage or lifestyle isn’t a bad thing, it’s not what the church is primarily designed to do, she said. Rather, churches should focus on knowing and sharing God’s Word.
“[Many] churches aren’t teaching the basic truths of Scripture,” Lynch explained. “Churches aren’t discipling. They’re not evangelizing their congregation.” Instead, she said, many have “become focused on making church so popular. We’ve become so focused on making it a big production and making it an experience for people.”
That can happen, she said, when people take their eyes off of what God has called them to be as Christ followers. And when some pastors stop preaching the truth of God’s Word, that should be a red flag for us all.
“When you talk about the Gospel and the Good News, the world [should] be offended. We’re having pastors now who don’t want to offend anybody. So, they’re not telling them the truth,” Lynch said. “I think … the greatest stumbling block in the church today … is that we have sacrificed the Gospel in the name of love.
“We want to love, love, love. We don’t want to offend,” Lynch continued. “Well, if you love somebody, you are going to tell them the truth that saves their soul. You are going to tell them that sin … is keeping them away from a holy God that loves them.”
Ultimately, she’s found that “we ‘love’ as the excuse to not share truth.”
According to a recent Gallup study, only 20% of Americans believe the Bible is actually God’s Word. Truth has become relative even among Christians who once stood on the absolute Word of God.
Lynch doesn’t believe all of this responsibility lies on pastors’ shoulders.
“I think some of it comes to our own individual hearts,” she said. “Are we seeking somebody that’s going to give us a pep talk? … Or [truth that’s] really going to confront me?”
In the latest episode, be challenged to evaluate your focus and set your heart on the Word of God in a compromising culture.