I recently read an article from a Christian pastor who was very critical of 5 types of Christian churches. His list included…
- The Prosperity Gospel Church – because it “views godliness as a means to gain”.
- The Liberal Social Gospel Church – because their churches have an “out-of-balance emphasis on social injustice, gay rights, transgender rights”.
- The Hyper-Charismatic Church – because they can “devolve into a false gospel through manipulation”.
- The Intellectual Church – because “they focus on ‘exegesis’ more than a relationship with God”.
- The Luke-Warm Church – because “this church wallows in apathy, is often loving, but never passionate… with only a Christian veneer”.
There is indeed a wide variety of Christian Churches, some of which follow systematic theology offered in the Bible more accurately than others. In my 33 years as a Christian, I have had the privilege to be an active member of an Independent, a Presbyterian PCA, and a Southern Baptist church. As a youth, I was a regular attender of two different “Luke-Warm Churches” and I have attended “Prosperity Gospel” churches and “Social Gospel Churches” over the years. From that perspective, I understand the writer’s concern. However, I respectfully disagree with the title, and therefore premise of his post, “Some Churches Should Fall Apart”.
In this current climate of deteriorating faith and deconstructionism, I wonder if we can be so dogmatic? Do we really have the luxury of being so divisive?
When we talk about churches that “should fall apart”, I believe we are throwing the baby out with the bathwater.
Do we try to build bridges or do we shoot those who believe differently than we do? More importantly, where is the line to be drawn on the word “differently”.
I am a staunch Biblical Christian
I have listed my core beliefs publicly and hold to them as the foundation of my faith, something I measure everything, including varying church theology, against. I suspect that the writer of this post would agree with every point on my list. However, I also think he, and many like him, would add a number of their own beliefs.
When one is looking for a church home, it’s good to understand the full scope of a church’s Statement of Faith (even if practice falls far short of the ideal). So, these distinctions are acceptable to a degree. However, given the vitriol we already have in this country towards all forms of Christianity, I believe it wise to keep the main thing the main thing. We need to find common ground between the remnant of believers God has left on earth. This, rather than being so divisive from within the body by saying “Some Churches Should Fall Apart”.
Again, to be very clear, I am the first to call out a church, pastor, or congregant that is causing others to turn away from a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through grace and faith alone (Eph. 2:8-9, Romans 10:9). However, beyond core beliefs, we are all individuals and God uses our uniqueness to attract us to Him (1 Cor. 9:22). That uniqueness translates into different versions of secondary theology and, I believe, we have the luxury to spend eternity In Heaven discussing these finer points of our views, with the One who established them in the first place.