Tuesday, January 31, 2006

The Church if pastored by Bob Barker

Unregenerate soul - COME ON DOWN!

Revolution Church (Long Beach, CA) is having its Grand Re-Opening (with "new and improved" everything) on February 5 - which is known around the world as "Super Bowl Sunday." To get more people to come to the worship service, the church is raffling off two wide-screen televisions and two PlayStation Portables for the children. Revolution prides itself in being an emergent church with "practical messages" (usually church-speak for two minutes of Bible and 25 minutes of stories and jokes).

If this is an acceptable model of church behavior, I wonder what Jesus thinks of His Bride? Is she not attractive by herself? Must she put on the world's makeup in order to be "acceptable" to the world? Must we trick or bribe people to visit the church?

Too bad the disciples didn't think of this at Pentecost. Then we could read in the Bible that "Those who accepted his plasma TV were baptized and that day 3000 people were added" (Acts 2:41). Yeah, yeah, I know - they didn't have plasma TVs back then - but they plenty of other things they could've given away - like the GOSPEL!


Andy said...

I'm hoping this is not the same Bob Barker from The Price is Right. Although, it wouldn't surprise me after reading this.

David Trotter said...

Thanks for spreading the word about our Grand Re-Opening. We appreciate it. May your church prosper in every possible way. God bless.

David Trotter
Lead Pastor - Revolution Church

Jeff A. Spry said...

No problem. But the "word" I would spread is more of a warning than an invitation.

However, here's a better idea - if you're going to bribe people to come to church, just go all the way and pay them. Paul Proctor had the right idea - give half when they arrive and give the balance at the end of the service. Some might call that bribery but hey, if it works God must be behind it!

Pragmatism RULES!

What did Jesus give His "audience"? He gave fishes and loaves but they were already there. He didn't say "Come listen and I'll feed you."

What did Jesus promise His listeners - "expect pain, persection and maybe even death - all because of ME."

rickmysse@yahoo.com said...

Whether he is good or bad . . . one thing I know --- many people who were blind now see. Lives that were in ruin are being truly restored. I know for a fact that MANY have found a saving relationship with Christ at Revolution. If that is your testimony, thanks be to God. If you fancy yourself to be the keeper of the 'true' church and its your responsibility to judge other churches without 'being there,' you're deceived.

Jeff A. Spry said...

I have no doubt that God is able to save individuals through the gospel at any church. Paul says "For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe."

In Philippians 1, Paul says that some preach for this reason and others for another reason. He then says, "But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice. Yes, and I will continue to rejoice."

So, God can take a good-hearted but misguided approach of bribing people into the house of God and make good of it. I praise Him for that - not any man.

Rich Schmidt said...

This same pastor, at this same church, preached a 4-week series of messages last year on generosity, challenging their folks to give sacrificially to the work of Christ around the world. They raised money for two projects: one to enhance the kids ministry at their church and the other to buy 5 water wells, beds for a Bible college, and build a building for a church, all in India. They tried to raise an equal amount for each, but they ended up giving 40% more to the Indian projects than to their own church.

Does that sound like a church full of consumeristic narcissists to you? However they get people in the doors, the message that's changing people's lives there is the true gospel of Jesus Christ. People start as narcissistic consumers and are transformed into self-sacrificing followers of Jesus Christ. Or would you rather they only communicate to people who are already selfless & interested in God?