Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Liberal New Ager On Mega Churches

It's interesting and instructive when a liberal UK news source offers up a stinging indictment of the way we go about church these days.

. . . popular evangelical Christianity is religiously vacuous. It is directed to secular ends which, arguably, should be promoted by secular means.

As a navel-gazer, I was depressed by [Rick Warren's church] Saddleback. It seemed the butt end of Christianity: stripped of history and icon­ography, wholly immersed in its secular surroundings, constructed according to a business model and promoted by motivational speakers – bland, cheerful, dull.

You can read the entire article by clicking here.

It's disturbing when non-Chistians can recognize the emptiness found in modern man-centered ministries, while we dance around and pat ourselves on the back for the big numbers and outlandish budgets we generate.

Is this what happens when the salt loses its savor?


Kristin said...

I see what you meant by your comment, last post.
Love the word...vacuous! It's definitely what applies here. I remember thinking how little of God seemed to be in the small group studies. Any criticism that I voiced was met with referring me to 2 Kings 2:23-24 and other verses quoted to be against criticizing pastors or church leaders.
It is truly a sad state of affairs for a non-Christian to have such astute and sad observation about some churches.

Grendel said...

"Vacuous" describes it perfectly. The "new model" in a lot of churches appears to focus on using God to enhance one's social circle or monetary acquisition, treating the Scriptures as "life-enhancing" rather than "life-foundation." Having been on the fringe (if not completely on the outside) of most social groups, organizations, and churches that i've been nominally a part of has given me an unusual perspective. It frustrates me that few enough Christians understand that a lot of what organized churches do winds up harming, watering down, or demeaning the Message of Christ . . . it isn't unusual, either, to have Kristin's experience, where any criticism is silenced or subdued by using the Word of God as a cudgel. The only way we as individual Christians can effect any change is by our own individual actions and attitudes . . . remember, each one of us is a representative of Christ both in our religious community and in the secular community. If we keep our focus on Christ, we will be receptacles of blessings and peace that will flow from above and thus to those around us.