This morning after I awoke, I began pondering the things that Jesus had done when He called His church from the seashores of Galilee. My thinking went something like this. – Come, I will make you fishers of men and we will start a fisherman class. Then to Matthew, the tax collector, come I will make you our fund raiser and start a tax collector class. Nathaniel was recruited to be a fruit inspector (remember, he had that special affinity for laying under fig trees), and we will start a fruit inspector class. Then to Judas He called and began a betrayers class.
Now in doing this, Jesus was trying to make the church attractive to the world. I have no doubt that when the music began at the beginning of the service, He had a praise team with ramped up music that appealed to the younger generation. What better way to attract the youth than do away with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Now I know that the Holy Spirit will inspire Paul to write a verse that says a psalm (pious song) should be used and hymns (sacred song) is what should be sung and spiritual songs (non-carnal ode) is what we should sing but – we want to be attractive and draw the youth and others in to worship with us so we will change that future verse to mean what we want it to mean.
So I guess my ruminations led me to ask, why did not Christ organize His church to be attractive to the world? If Jesus had just waited till this generation to be born and crucified, we enlightened and forward thinking people could have advised Him on how to build His church and make it attractive to the world.
Now we will put together the church that Jesus should have built. We need to begin in the parking lot with valet parking. That way they couldn’t leave early because they wouldn’t know where the car is parked and if they found it, their keys would be hidden. In the foyer there would be men and women that would escort all the people to the pews. This would need to be some one that is erudite and can speak hyper religiosity and spiritualese. Now understand that no one is burdened with a bible or book because there are these big screens hanging everywhere and songs and scriptures are thrown up there for us. Heyyyyyy no effort here. Can’t find those miniscule and obscure books. Don’t know where Titus is; Old Testament or New Testament. Understand now, I am here to be entertained and moved by this service so roll out the praise team and the cowboy singers and lets have a real hoe down cowboy or contemporary service. I digress, the message must be outlined on those big LCD’s because I don’t want to make the effort to write down, well you get the picture. Now the message that the pastor brings should be affirming and instructive in personal relationships and getting ahead and how to feel good about ourselves. Oh, yes; if the pastor or associate pastor has a wife that is pretty and slim and trim, it wouldn’t hurt to put her in shorts and a halter top being interviewed on the street in front of the church building hawking the garage sale following the morning services and the bake sales that have been scheduled. Now we do this so that our shallow people can bake and sell what they have baked and donate the stuff they don’t want and this makes them all warm and fuzzy inside. Hey, let’s do what some (so called) Baptist churches do now and instead of preaching the Word have a program that consist of a liturgical dance or as the world calls it – interpretive dance. I can imagine the men watching these scantily clad gauze wrapped women scooting around and doing suggestive movements. Yeah, that would put our mind on God and the presence of the Holy Spirit would be especially strong. NOW THIS WOULD DRAW A CROWD!!!!!!
You know this is tongue in cheek, even though each of these things mentioned are practiced in some baptist church’s. How sad the condition of our church when we don’t rely on the Word and the Spirit in our Worship. Each of the above comes from the desire of the flesh.
Jesus built His church the way He wanted it. Physically unattractive though it is, the beauty is an inward beauty that by the Word and the Spirit spiritually draw those that have heard the Word and desire to hear more. Jesus idea is not to draw physically where we might boast of our plans and abilities, but to use the Holy Spirit in His divine office to convict. Jesus has the better way whether we consider it unattractive or not. May we return to Jesus plan and attract through the Holy Spirit. Yes I know the mantra – the plan is the same but methods change, yet if we would do it Jesus way we would be a lot better off.