Favorite Hypocritical Church Complaints

I recently came across a blog post that quotes Kevin DeYoung’s book, Why We Love the Church, with some of the typical complaints leveled against the church. We need to love the church, warts and all, because the church is people. I have tweaked DeYoung’s quote a little into a list of favorite church complaints. 1. The church is lame. The ‘church-is-lame’ crowd hates Constantine and notions of Christendom, but they want the church to be a patron of the arts, and run after-school programs, and bring the world together in peace and love. 2. The church is too-programmatic. This crowd bemoans the over-programmed church, but then think of a hundred complex, resource-hungry things the church should be doing. 3. The church is too hierarchical. This crowd doesn’t like the church because it is too hierarchical, but then they hate it when it has poor leadership. 4. The church needs to…

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In Praise of a Boring Ministry

I wonder how many young men would choose to enter the ministry if they knew, from the very beginning, that their churches would never exceed a few dozen people, their salary would always be meager, their church budgets would always be tight, and all their labors would be scarcely noticed by anyone outside of their faithful few? Carl Trueman writes along these lines at his reformation21 blog in a recent post. In a world that is driven by larger than life celebrity personalities, it is no surprise that the church has a few of its own, leading large churches, writing books, and posting podcasts for listeners around the world. Trueman notes that these celebrity churches are led by celebrity pastors who have one-in-a-million type gifts and it is unreasonable to try to replicate this into other churches. Enter new Calvinism. Time Magazine recently pegged new Calvinism as the third most…

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How White Evangelicals Perceive Racial Issues

Divided by Faith, by Michael Emerson and Christian Smith, offers three lenses (page 74) through which white evangelicals typically perceive racial issues. Racial problems are caused by prejudiced individuals, resulting in bad relationships and sin. This is the most common feature of white evangelical perception of race. Along with this is the notion that the best remedies are also individualized. For example, white people and black people should focus their reconciling energies on building relationships with one another, and through this process the divide will heal. Racial problems are caused by other groups, usually African Americans, who try to make race problems a group issue when there is nothing more than individual problems. Since white evangelicals put a great amount of emphasis on individual accountability, some attempts to address racial problems that deals with entire groups of people will be met with resistance. Racial problems are actually a fabrication of…

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