Thursday, January 31, 2008

America Does Like Jesus, But Not The Church

Here is a clip from CNN interviewing Ed Stetzer about the offense of the follwer and that Christians today do have a bad name, and many 44% of people are annoyed by them.

Dang so I guess throwing my bible at that one guy and yelling at him to repent and believe was not a good approach. (Just kidding, I did not do that, so don't email me)




Props: Ed Stetzer

2 comments:

Christopher Lake said...

Carlos,

These numbers are very saddening, but for more than one reason, I'm not surprised. Too often, the church in America (and I definitely include myself in this statement) has not fulfilled its mission(s). I know that I have not consistently loved those outside the church as I should have. I have failed to reflect the character of Christ in my thoughts, words, and deeds to non-Christians (and other Christians) more times than I can bear to remember. I have been selfish and lax in many ways. Non-Christians' criticism of believers, and of the church, does have some basis in truth.

Here is a hard reality though-- non-Christians may say that they like Jesus but not the church, but the Bible disagrees with them. No non-Christian truly likes the Jesus of the Bible, who will return to judge those who don't repent of their sins and trust in Him. Our message is inherently a tough one for non-Christians-- BUT that doesn't mean that it should be communicated to them in an unloving, obnoxious way. Furthermore, we should be about spreading the glory of God with our lives, publically and privately, in such a way that the charge of hypocrite will not be so aptly applied to us.

Ultimately though, we do have to tell non-Christians the bad news of their sin and alienation from God in order for the Cross and redemption to even be intelligible to them, much less for them to be the incredibly Good News that they are. We need to preach the Gospel with our words AND our lives-- it can't be an either/or. Doing so winsomely is possible, but it can be tricky. I struggle with emphasizing either God's wrath and hatred of sin too much, or with skipping ahead to God's grace, with little mention of the former. These things are hard to balance in our coversations (well, mine, at least) with non-believers, but we must remember that our words and actions WILL speak to them of Christ... either accurately or inaccurately. God, help us to be faithful in how we show your Son to the world!!

Carlos said...

I totally agree that although they say they like Jesus they don't, at least not the whole person, they just like to pick and choose what aspects they like.

However it should be a slap in the face that WE as followers are seen as rude, arrogant and argumentative. There is a real stumbling block, that is the cross, nothing else should be there for people to stumble over.

In the book of Acts you see the Church as been seen in a positive light to all outsiders, because they cared for the poor, they took care of widows and made sure that no one went without. Not so today, we care for our 401K, we picket people and throw rocks at their homes.

The gospel will be divisive in the fact that people did kill the Leader, but often people stumble before they even hear the gospel, and that my friend is to our shame!

I really appreciate your comments!!