These 5,000+ people need someone. Or something. Their leadership needs to hire someone. Or something.
The decision? Bring in another celebrity, this time from a state three time zones, and multiple cultural light years, away from here. What he will be is a new headliner. Someone who can fill the auditorium with new regulars.
They will say he will be their new “pastor”. What anyone knows who has a Bible in their hands is that he is not a “pastor”. And this, really, is not a “church”. This is some sort of weekly event, a modern “camp meeting” of sorts, but not a church.
But, the world doesn’t have a Bible in its hands. So the world believes us. We call it a church, so they think it’s a church. And, because it’s big and glitzy, they think it’s a “good” church. If a person with worldly values is looking for a “church” they like, they’re certainly going to pick a version like this.
And then, what they’ll experience … or, I should say, what they won’t experience, is church.
And they also won’t experience Christianity. Our heritage and family is so amazing, so wonderful. Yet there are virtually no trappings of our glorious past in this nouveau religious spiritual production. No gravity that comes from years of theological rigor, reflection and practice. No embrace of the sacraments. No concern for any kind of credentialing from the long line of keepers of the faith.
Nope. The attenders will hang their hat on the glibness of the next headliner. If he’s not entertaining enough, they’ll to to another venue. If he disqualifies himself, they’ll just find another. The church has trained the world to expect nothing more than this: Disposable, replaceable celebrities rather than substantial, well-trained men of substance, whose hearts are knit together with those of the people in their communities of discipleship — the product of years spent modeling godliness in their churches.
As mega-churches continue to lead the way in the United States, Christianity continues to decline. What amazes me is — can’t we see the situation for what it is? And won’t we do anything about it, before it’s too late?