Learning and Living the God-centered life

One Biblical Doctrine at a time…
Churches

Survey says...

Recently I listened to a program from the White Horse Inn that provided a number of surveys taken from fellow Christians. I thought you might find these audio clips interesting in light of our ongoing study of Bible doctrine.

Here are responses to the following statements:
1. The most important task of the church today is the transformation of culture. Click on this LINK

2. We need to make church more entertaining and relevant in order to appeal to the culture. Click on this LINK

3. The most important thing we need to communicate to our kids is that God is always there when they need Him? Click on this LINK

4. Christians should see the church as a resource provider and themselves as self feeders who make use of those resources. Click on this LINK

5. Since kids are bored with content generated lessons, so youth workers need to attract them with new and exciting things. Click on this LINK

6. The most important way of converting non Christians is to preach the gospel and with the sacraments of baptism and the Lord’s supper. Click LINK

7. It is more important to be the gospel rather than to preach the gospel to others. Click on this LINK

When a church goes liberal

A church may be orthodox in it’s doctrinal statement but liberal in its practice. Today we are seeing a steady but alarming decline in the preaching and teaching of the essential doctrines of the Christian faith. When we started the “Learning and Living” class in August of 2008 the curriculum was then and continues to be today Bible doctrine. In America there seems to be three primary camps within the evangelical church:
1. The orthodox camp which believes that the Bible is the word of God
2. The liberal camp which believes the Bible contains the word of God
3. The neo-orthodox camp which believes the Bible becomes the word of God


There are a number of reasons we see a popular movement away from camp #1 to camp #3 especially as it relates to young people. The following is an article by Carl Trueman which will help to explain how churches today get on the slippery slope that leads to liberalism and then into emergent heresy.

Not all historical phenomena that manifest themselves as doctrinal are necessarily immediately doctrinal in cause or origin.' That statement, made to me by a mentor in my field of historical theology, articulates a crucial principle, a principle that came to mind quite recently.

I have spent the last few weeks reflecting on the general question as to why churches lose the plot and end up going liberal. Of course, the simple answer is, 'Because of human sinfulness,' but that is not particularly helpful as an explanation of why particular churches lose the plot at particular points in time. Thus, over the next few days I want to offer a series of posts, in no specific order of priority, about more particular, immediate causes for the phenomenon of theological decline within churches. I should add that my reflections are avowedly Presbyterian, and I make no apologies for that; but I do believe that the causes I outline have their parallels within other Christian ecclesiological traditions such as evangelicalism etc.

The first danger I want to highlight is that of the celebrity pastor who is ultimately so big as to be practically beyond criticism. Some pastors are just so successful as communicators that, frankly, they are placed on a pedestal and become, in both their precept and example, authoritative sources of wisdom to their followers. In part this is because many rightly think that thankfulness, not criticism, should be the appropriate response to seeing the Lord bless a ministry. Who really wants to criticise a man who brings so many the good news? Yet in an age where sheer numerical success and the ability to pull in the punters and keep them enthralled is often assumed to be a clear sign of faithfulness, there are dangers of which we must be aware. Read More...

Check out this church video

Contemporary vs. Traditional

For those who really are trying to understand the differences between contemporary and traditional need read no further than this article. The “Learning and Living” research team spans the globe to find and bring to you the most current “hot topics” under discussion today in the evangelical church.

So for a clear and concise explanation of contemporary vs. traditional read the following story.

An old farmer went to the city one weekend and attended the big city church. He came home and his wife asked him how it was.
"Well," said the farmer, "it was good. They did something different, however. They sang praise choruses instead of hymns."
"Praise choruses?" said his wife. "What are those?"
"Oh, they're OK. They are sort of like hymns, only different," said the farmer.
"Well, what's the difference?" asked his wife.

The farmer said, "Well, it's like this - If I were to say to you "Martha, the cows are in the corn"' - well, that would be a hymn. If on the other hand, I were to say to you:

Martha, Martha, Martha,
Oh Martha, MARTHA, MARTHA,
the cows, the big cows, the brown cows, the black cows
the white cows,
the black and white cows,
the COWS, COWS, COWS
are in the corn,
are in the corn, are in the corn, are in the corn,
the CORN, CORN, CORN.

Then, if I were to repeat the whole thing two or three times, well, that would be a praise chorus."

The next weekend, his nephew, a young, new Christian from the city came to visit and attended the local church of the small town. He went home and his mother asked him how it was.
"Well," said the young man, "it was good. They did something different however. They sang hymns instead of regular songs."
"Hymns?" asked his mother. "What are those?"
"Oh, they're OK. They are sort of like regular songs, only different," said the young man.
"Well, what's the difference?" asked his mother. Read More...

Being relevant in today's culture


From the Sacred Sandwich Blog Site

The mission of the church

This is an excellent article that Kevin DeYoung’s blog site.

Here is Martyn Lloyd-Jones, the great Welsh preacher and longtime pastor at Westminster Chapel in London, explaining what Acts 6 can teach us about the mission of the church and the pastor:

But, and in many ways the most interesting statement of all, I sometimes think in this connection, is one that is found in the sixth chapter of the book of the Acts of the Apostles where we are told that a great crisis arose in the life of the early Church. I know of nothing that speaks more directly upon the present state and condition of the Church, and what is her primary task, than this sixth chapter of the book of the Acts of the Apostles. The essential message is in the first two verses: ‘And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration. Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the Word of God, and serve tables.’

This is surely a most interesting and important statement, a crucial one. What was the Church to do? Here is a problem, here are these widows of the Grecians, and they are not only widows but they are in need and in need of food. It was a social problem, perhaps partly a political problem, but certainly a very acute and urgent social problem. Surely the business of the Christian Church, and the leaders particularly, is to deal with this crying need: Why go on preaching when people are starving and in need and are suffering? That was the great temptation that came to the Church immediately; but the Apostles under the leading and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and the teaching they had already received, and the commission they had had from their Master, saw the danger and they said, ‘It is not reason that we should leave the Word of God, and serve tables’. This is wrong. We shall be failing in our commission if we do this. We are here to preach this Word, this is the first thing, ‘We will give ourselves continually to prayer and the ministry of the Word.’ Read More...

Reflection on Worship

Here is a good article by Trevor Wax on the subject of worship today in the church.

When it comes to worship, we are frequently told that form doesn’t matter. Style is not what’s important. I get that. I’m not downing contemporary music or advocating a return to liturgy, organs and hymns. I’ve been in contemporary worship services that have put me on my knees before the holiness and majesty of God. Cultural forms adjust and adapt.

But in worship today, there is a tendency toward casualness. The emphasis on feeling God’s closeness in worship may short-circuit the possibility of being transformed by a glimpse of the Transcendent One. There’s hardly any room for feeling awe in worship, and I can’t help but think that part of our problem is the form.

Form and content mirror one another. A church with serious Bible preaching is going to have a serious worship service (contemporary or traditional isn’t what matters, but serious it will be). A church with a feel-good preacher is going to have peppy, feel-good music.

Christians need to sense the weight of God’s glory, the truths of God’s Word, the reality of coming judgment, and the gloriousness of God’s grace. Trying to package the bigness of this God into most casual worship services is like trying to eat steak on a paper plate. You can do it for awhile, but at some point, people will start saying, “I want a dish.”

If you would like to read the entire article then click on this LINK.

Today's Bible interpretation "have it your way"

I just read an article by Shane Rosenthal called “You’re so Vain, You Probably Think This Text is About You.” He starts the article talking about the book by Jean Twenge and W. Keith Campbell called “The Narcissism Epidemic.” These authors have documented the slow and steady growth of narcissistic attitudes, behaviors, and assumptions in various aspects of American life and culture. Reality TV both encourages and normalizes self-centered behavior. Social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook encourage us to post pictures and updates about our minute by minute activities no matter how trivial, and child-centered schools reward kids merely for exerting effort, even if the actual work is substandard. Rosenthal goes on to say unfortunately our churches have not been immune to this cultural virus for according to Twenge and Campbell, American religion which used to challenge narcissistic attitudes and behaviors is now in many respects part of the problem. In today’s religious climate where churches compete for adherents as fast-food franchises do for customers, many religious groups simply give people what they want. Because reducing narcissism is not always pleasant, most people aren’t going to attend churches that demand humility.


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What is going on with American Christianity?

Teachers of the Bible in church have two important responsibilities; one is to guard people from false doctrine and the second is to teach what the text means from the standpoint of what the author meant when he wrote it. My old Bible teacher used the example of a glass that was filled with 100% pure drinking water. And then he says I am only going to put 1% arsenic into the glass will you drink it? He then makes the point that the 1% won't kill you immediately but after drinking it over a period of time will bring certain death. The illustration is for those in the church today that have abandoned the truth of the Bible. A solid reading of Romans Chapter 1 should convince us that God will give people over to what they really desire. And now what America has reaped in the wind she is reaping in the whirl wind, yes even within the "professing" church.

I have included as the main subject for this email a recent article from USA Today's religion and faith section. Click on this LINK. The article deals primarily with the 18-29 year old demographic but please don't limit your thinking of this problem to just this group it goes to the generation before and the one that is to come after. May I strongly encourage to process it in light of what the apostle Paul told young Timothy to watch out for at the end of the age.

2 Timothy 3:1-4 "But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them."

2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. Read More...

Entertaining the flock

These articles are placed on this blog site to make those in our community aware of what happens when gospel centered teaching and Christ centered preaching leaves the church. The only option are for things to move in a man centered instead of a God centered direction.

If you like MTV, Nickelodeon, and Disney World all rolled into one fun filled and exciting service then you will love Journey Community Church. This is one among the many new church plants that are growing at a rapid rate around the United States. This particular church is receiving much attention in the community and was written up recently in the Metro Spirit under the title Church of Rock II. Here is an actual quote from the article “It doesn’t happen often, but every once in a while I visit a church whose band is so good that I would pay a cover charge to get in. The band rocked the house at Journey Community Church in Evans last Sunday… The reporter Angel Cleary goes on to write about a comedic video skit along with two crash test dummies that were an illustration for a marriage skit. Here is the article from Christian Research Net and also here is the entire article you can read at this LINK. Read More...

Are we suffering from Biblical ignorance?

If we need evidence for the importance of learning Bible doctrine then we need to go no further than this article and audio clip. First the audio clip comes from Dr. Michael Horton with the White Horse Inn. And this was a question asked to students at a conservative evangelical college about Biblical ignorance. To listen just click on this LINK.

Crisis in America’s Churches: Bible Knowledge at All-Time Low by Michael J. Vlach, Ph.D.

A crisis of basic biblical and theological knowledge exists in America’s churches, and church leaders must do all they can to address this growing problem, so say experts monitoring the beliefs of people in Christian churches across the United States.

“The Christian body in America is immersed in a crisis of biblical illiteracy,” warns researcher George Barna. “How else can you describe matters when most churchgoing adults reject the accuracy of the Bible, reject the existence of Satan, claim that Jesus sinned, see no need to evangelize, believe that good works are one of the keys to persuading God to forgive their sins, and describe their commitment to Christianity as moderate or even less firm?”[1]

Other disturbing findings that document an overall lack of knowledge among churchgoing Christians include the following:

• The most widely known Bible verse among adult and teen believers is “God helps those who help themselves”—which is not actually in the Bible and actually conflicts with the basic message of Scripture.
• Less than one out of every ten believers possess a biblical worldview as the basis for his or her decision-making or behavior.
• When given thirteen basic teachings from the Bible, only 1% of adult believers firmly embraced all thirteen as being biblical perspectives.[2] Read More...

The evangelical mess

Dr. John MacArthur has some strong words on his “Grace to you” blog for the present day, “trendy” evangelical churches in America.

You don’t have to be an astute observer of the evangelical scene to notice the unrelenting barrage of outlandish ideas, philosophies, and programs. Never in the history of the church has so much innovation met with so little critical thinking.

Giving a thoughtful biblical response becomes harder and harder all the time. Merely sorting through all the evangelical trends and recognizing which of these novelties really represent dangerous threats to the health and harmony of the church is challenging enough. Effectively answering the huge smorgasbord of accompanying errors poses an even greater dilemma. New errors sometimes seem to multiply faster than the previous ones can be answered.

To sort it all out in a godly way, cutting a straight path through the wreckage of evangelicalism, several old-fashioned, Christlike virtues are absolutely essential: biblical discernment, wisdom, fortitude, determination, endurance, skill in handling Scripture, strong convictions, the ability to speak candidly without waffling, and a willingness to enter into conflict.

Let’s be honest: those are not qualities the contemporary evangelical movement has cultivated. In fact, the exact opposite is true. Consider the values and motives that prompt postmodern evangelicals to do the things they do. The larger evangelical movement today is obsessed with opinion polls, brand identity, market research, merchandizing schemes, innovative strategies, and numerical growth. Evangelicals are also preoccupied with matters such as their image before the general public and before the academic world, their clout in the political arena, their portrayal by the media, and similar shallow, self-centered matters...

The sad truth is that the larger part of the evangelical movement is already so badly compromised that sound doctrine has almost become a nonissue.

The mad pursuit of nondoctrinal “relevancy.” Even at the very heart of the evangelical mainstream, where you might expect to find some commitment to biblical doctrine and at least a measure of concern about defending the faith, what you find instead is a movement utterly dominated by people whose first concern is to try to keep in step with the times in order to be “relevant.”

Sound doctrine? Too arcane for the average churchgoer. Biblical exposition? That alienates the unchurched. Clear preaching on sin and redemption? Let’s be careful not to subvert the self-esteem of hurting people. The Great Commission? Our most effective strategy has been making the church service into a massive Super Bowl party. Serious discipleship? Sure. There’s a great series of group studies based on The Matrix trilogy. Let’s work our way through that. Worship where God is recognized as high and lifted up? Get real. We need to reach people on the level where they are.

Evangelicals and their leaders have doggedly pursued that same course for several decades now—in spite of many clear biblical instructions that warn us not to be so childish (in addition to Eph. 4:14, see also 1 Cor. 14:20; 2 Tim. 4:3-4; Heb. 5:12-14).

What’s the heart of the problem? It boils down to this:many inthe evangelical movement have forgotten who is Lord over the church. They have either abandoned or downright rejected their true Head and given His rightful place to evangelical pollsters and church-growth gurus.

If you want to read the entire article then click on this LINK.


What is happening to Christianity in America?

I have mentioned this before but the role of a teacher is two-fold in teaching the Bible. At times there must be a warning to those in the body of Christ where false teaching has crept into the church. And second the teacher must bring the truth of God's word developed from a hermeneutical study of the text. Again as you have heard me say over and over, hermeneutics is simply a system of Bible study in which the goal is to arrive at what the author meant by what he wrote. It seems for the last 5 years I have been constantly burdened with the amount of false doctrine and teaching that has invaded the evangelical church. Before coming to teach at Carmel I was hoping to have a radio podcast to review current sermons from the pastors of the largest churches in Charlotte. But long story short one day the phone rang it was Pastor Russ and as Paul Harvey used to say "now you know the rest of the story."

The point of telling you that background is because my study and research has led me to the extremes within the evangelical church. One of my goals in the development of the blog site is to point those in our class toward those pastors, teachers and theologians who are Biblically sound. As you know the church in America has suffered over the past 30 years in what has been referred to as a "dumbing" down of the gospel. The very things that Christians used to hold as precious and dear have now been compromised in lieu of tolerance. Many times since we don't understand the basics of the Christian faith we are passing down our experiences instead of the gospel. Basically we have arrived at the point where no one is right and no one is wrong. Because now in our postmodern culture we both get to be right. There are several different angels that I want to approach this subject from as it relates to what is happening to Christianity in America. And today I have a clip for you from the Resurgence Blog, which is the Mars Hill Church in Seattle pastored by Mark Driscoll. In this clip you have an interview from a staff member at Resurgence church with Dr. Michael Horton. If you were to ask the question today of Dr. Michael Horton, professor at Westminster Seminary in California, what is happening to Christianity in America, here is a sample of what he thinks based on much research and evaluation. He is the author of two very helpful books that the church today needs to read;
1. Christless Chrisitianity
2. The Gospel Driven Life

In this short video clip he deals with the subject of "moral therapeutic deism." Now at first glance you might ask yourself what is that? But you will soon understand after seeing this video. And will go a long way as we seek to answer the question "what is happening to Christianity in America?"

To watch the video, simply click on this LINK.

A litmus test for church health

Over the past 2-3 years I have been able to research a broad spectrum of evangelical websites. This is from those that are considered orthodox (the Bible is the word of God) to neo orthodox (the Bible becomes the word of God). Obviously Carmel and I fit into the first category. There is a website that I want to familiarize some of you who are regulars to this blog site. The site is called 9 Marks Ministries. I have listed the 9 marks they consider to be a litmus test for healthy churches. While they mention the nine marks as an overall guide, they are quick to point out these are not the only important marks of a healthy church. However they do believe they are the most neglected.

As a point of interest one of the key leaders at this site is Mark Dever who is the author of “The Gospel and Personal Evangelism” which was one of our give a way books for the May 2009 retreat.


1. Expositional Preaching

Expositional preaching (otherwise known as expository preaching) is the investigation of a particular passage of Scripture whereby the pastor carefully explains the meaning of a passage and then applies it to the members of the congregation. The point of a sermon, then, takes the point of a particular passage. This is in opposition to the topical preaching showcased in the majority of evangelical churches, where Bible passages are woven together to support a pre-existing point.

2. Biblical Theology

This emphasizes not only how we are taught but also what we are taught. In a sense this should follow naturally from expository preaching because the careful exposition of a passage should lead to sound theology. The majority of poor theology arises from a lack of careful Biblical exposition. Where there is poor exposition, we should expect to eventually find poor theology.

3. Biblical Understanding of the Good News

There needs to be a proper understanding and necessary emphasis on the full gospel. Where many contemporary churches teach that Jesus wants to meet our felt needs and give us a healthier self-image, that is not the gospel. The gospel message is that we are sinners who have rebelled against our Creator. But Jesus took the curse that was rightfully ours and all that remains is for us to have faith in Him so God may credit Christ’s righteousness to our account. When we de-emphasize sin and damnation to make the presentation more friendly and less offensive we cease declaring the full gospel.
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Is a Christ-follower a Christian?

Chris Rosebrough has come to a definition of a Christ-follower from listening to sermons from the largest seeker-friendly churches throughout America. To be fair Chris has his degree in Biblical languages and is an excellent apologist. Here is the definition he has come to for a Christ follower; someone who has made the decision to be an emotionally well adjusted self-actualized risk taking leader who knows his purpose, lives a 'no regrets' life of significance, has overcome his fears, enjoys a healthy marriage with better than average sex, is an attentive parent, is celebrating recovery from all his hurts, habits and hang ups, practices Biblical stress relief techniques, is financially free from consumer debt, fosters emotionally healthy relationships with his peers, attends a weekly life group, volunteers regularly at church, tithes off the gross and has taken at least one humanitarian aid trip to a third world nation.

Based upon this summarized definition, I've come to the conclusion that the world is full of people who can fit this definition but who've never repented of their sins and trusted in Christ alone for the forgiveness of their sins. This definition could easily apply to Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses. In fact, it could apply to Emergent Heretics, Unitarians, Muslims and practicing Jews. The reason why this definition of a Christ Follower could be applied to those outside of Christianity is because this is a definition based upon deeds NOT creeds.

To read the entire article you can simply click on this LINK.

You are here


Upon arrival at the local mall you see the sign that points to the location and reads “you are here.” I want to be sure that each person in our community knows exactly where we are right now. We are studying the “doctrine of God.” Even though that may be obvious there area couple of reasons for my explanation.

First of all we are looking at the vertical relationship between God and man. As in the lesson this morning there is a vital connection between the glory of God and the knowledge of God. The Christian life is composed of not only a vertical relationship but also a horizontal relationship. Please don’t think I am minimizing or ignoring the horizontal aspects of evangelism or Christian service. As a matter of fact the doctrine of the self sufficiency of God forced us to look at “how” we are serving God. But right now in 2010 we are concentrating on the attributes of God, which brings us to a focus on the vertical NOT the horizontal part of the Christian life. Read More...

Seeker-Friendly means...

During our retreat last weekend I was asked a number of questions regarding the “Emergent” Church. So I thought it might be helpful to give definitions to many of the current church styles and methodologies with the evangelical church. The first one we will look at is “Seeker-Friendly.” And for that description I will refer you to an article from the Parchment and Pen Blog Site.

Seeker-Friendly normally refers to the method of conducting a Sunday morning church service where all the events surrounding the service are tailored with the unchurched in mind. The goal of this model is to attempt to make the “seeker” feel comfortable by making the service understandable and enjoyable.

In this sense, the church is attempting to build a bridge with the unbeliever with the ultimate goal that they will hear the Gospel and be saved. The preaching model in the seeker churches follows suit. Every sermon is simply another way to present the Gospel. Deeper learning, fellowship, and discipleship are encouraged but are not normally part of the Sunday service. They are commonly found in mid-week small groups and studies.

Opponents of the seeker model will argue that the Sunday service is not meant to be for the unbelievers, but for believers. There is a wide range within the spectrum of how seeker-sensitive a church might be. One end might be thought of as “seeker-friendly” and the other “seeker-driven.” Rick Warren and Bill Hybels are often thought of as the modern day “fathers” of this model. It is primarily found in evangelical churches.

It may be better to define with a short video, just click on this LINK

Drive through church

The way we live in America can be easily demonstrated by the drive through window at the local McDonalds, Chick-Filet or Wendy’s. In most cases we are in a hurry, and since we live in the age of consumerism then we expect what we want and when we want it. In the case of the drive through, we can order, get it almost immediately and then be gone. Believe it or not I have eaten chicken nuggets so fast that I have almost finished at times before leaving the parking lot. My mouth looks like a tree shredder with nugget remnants flying past my mouth and cheek. Many people in church take almost that exact approach to Bible devotion time. As I have said many times before “the church isn’t influencing the culture but rather the culture is influencing the church.”

To get a better perspective on “DRIVE THROUGH CHURCH” click on this LINK.

Where are the Jeremiah's?

In the early 80's a new phenomenon came into vogue in the American church. It was based on finding out what the customer wanted and then find a way to give it to them. This movement to a large degree has been traced back to Robert Schuller and the Crystal Cathedral. Click on this LINK. Quickly this became the way to grow the church in width but it became very dangerous in regard to the depth. As methods, plans, philosophies and finally the American business model was put into the mega-church many of the mature saints simply left. And then in 2007 something happened that others have called the biggest church story in the past 50 years. Bill Hybels, the senior pastor of Willow Creek Community Church (20,000 members) announced that after 30 years of church ministry they made a mistake. In essence he talked about the millions and millions of dollars spent to get the consumer into the church instead of growing up the Christians in the church. As a matter of fact he was quoted as saying "it was the biggest wake up call of my adult life." Their conclusion, and here I am paraphrasing, back to the word of God and prayer.

The Bible reading for this morning is Jeremiah 32-36. Jeremiah was a prophet. This next is a quote from "Hermeneutics for lay people"
"Usually we think of the Old Testament prophets as simply foretelling the future, and certainly that is an important part of nearly every prophet's message. But the OT prophets primarily spoke to a situation at hand primarily a contemporary message or what we might call forth telling. To understand the prophet's message we must understand the historical background and the Occasion to which God was speaking. When studying the prophets we must ask, "What was God saying to His people?" This essential background for the Prophets is found in Kings and Chronicles. Supplemental background information can be found in extra Biblical references such as Bible encyclopedias and critical commentaries. But remember, the information that is essential to understanding the Prophet's message is found in the Bible itself. Read More...

The direction of "youth ministry" in America

This blog site is primarily dedicated to the teaching and training resources as they relate to the study of Bible doctrine. However at times I sense the need to include other articles from those who are making accurate Biblical observations regarding the evangelical church in America. This particular article deals with “youth ministry” and where it has been heading over the last several decades. As one who teaches in the adult ministries of a large Baptist church someone might ask “what does this guy know about youth ministry?” Well, as the former senior pastor of a small start up church I had the opportunity to hire and work closely with two youth pastors. This resulted in many hours of discussion regarding the training and equipping of young people in this culture for Christ. Also the discussions always seemed to gravitate back to the home, and the role of the parents as to the spiritual training of the children. When I would talk to our youth pastors the general evaluation of the kids was a lack of Bible knowledge, little to no Bible reading or devotion time, and an overall luke warm relationship with Christ. Upon closer inspection it became clear that Bible teaching, devotions, and prayer from the parents were not a consistent part of daily life within the home. It almost seemed to us that the parents had decided to outsource the spiritual development and training of their children to the youth ministry. Of course I am speaking in general terms but overall “youth ministry” in America is a holding tank to entertain and attract the masses, rather than to disciple in terms of self-denial, take up your cross and follow Christ. Hey folks when you have statistics that can verify less than 5% of adults have read through the Bible one time, then ask how might this translate down to the children in the home.

Therefore when I saw this recent blog post at CrossTalk I made a note and decided to post it today. This is hard hitting and for some it may even get you a bit upset. But I would ask that you evaluate the information in full before you have a knee jerk reaction. I have given you several links that can be helpful to check out as you read this particular article. We as the people of God need to be aware of what “youth ministry” is doing as it relates to the spiritual development of our children. But more importantly we need as parents to look squarely in the mirror and ask “what am I doing to train up my child in God’s word?”

Here is the article from CrossTalk:
Scott Brown made headlines at a recent conference for calling evangelical youth ministry today “unbiblical.” Scott Brown is right on target. Read More...