Friday, March 21, 2014

What I hate about seeker-sensitive churches

In his book The Gospel Call & True Conversion, Paul Washer ardently denounces modern evangelicalism, which is saturated with churches preaching seeker-sensitive human-centered messages.  The great tragedy is that many within these churches may not be saved because the congregants want to hear something other than the true gospel.  Apostle Paul warned Timothy that such a phenomenon would be common in his time and in the many generations to take place (2 Tim 4:3).

What I hate about seeker-sensitive churches boils down to one fundamental fact: they deny the gospel.  This may sound like an unjustifiably harsh rebuke, but there is no denying the simple reality that such churches avoid the gospel of Jesus Christ because they either deny it outright, or deny its power to save.  Paul's famous exhortation to the church at Rome makes it succinctly clear that the gospel is the power of God unto salvation (Romans 1:16), and for that he is unashamed. 

In other words, the gospel and the gospel alone is sufficient to save men.  Why?  Because God Himself has authored and perfected the gospel as well as the faith that responds to it (Heb 12:2).  Seeker-sensitive churches avoid preaching the gospel not only because they fear it is insufficient to save, but because they believe that it drives people away.  In some sense, that is true.  Christ's gospel is foreign to the unregenerate heart and convicting enough to drive sinful people away.

But herein lies the problem: seeker-sensitive churches are focused on the end goal of filling their pews, not directing people to true salvation.  So they preach a watered-down patchwork gospel (as good as no gospel) to make up for what they think the true gospel lacks, but it is merely an act to draw congregants, attract TV viewers, and build a corporate reputation.  There is no genuine desire to see their flock saved.

This is a terrifying reality in the modern church-- hordes of so-called pastors, ministers, and Christians denying the gospel and therefore denying Christ.  Such a denial will be met with exclusion from His presence for eternity (Matthew 10:33).  

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