THE CHURCH’S WEAKNESS

THE CHURCH’S WEAKNESS
“Modern Christianity is crucially weak at three vital points. The first is its compromised, deficient understanding of revelation. Without Biblical historicity and veracity behind the Word of God, theology can only grow closer to Hinduism. Second, the modern Christian is drastically weak in an unmediated, personal, experiential knowledge of God. Often, what passes for religious experience is a communal emotion felt in church services, in meetings, in singing or contrived fellowship. Few Christians would know God on their own. Third, the modern church is often pathetically feeble in the expression of its focal principle of community. It has become an adult social club, preaching shop, or minister-dominated group. With these weaknesses, modern Christianity cannot hope to understand why people have turned to the East, let alone stand against the trend and offer an alternative.”
– Os Guinness, The Dust of Death [1973]

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One response to “THE CHURCH’S WEAKNESS

  1. Wow! Guinness, writing what suddenly seems so long ago, hit it on the head.

    “Without Biblical historicity and veracity behind the Word of God, theology can only grow closer to Hinduism.”
    I don’t know the characteristics of Hinduism, but I have become increasingly aware of how ignoring Scripture or just selecting convenient bits out of context is leading to a very subjective Christianity.

    “Often, what passes for religious experience is a communal emotion felt in church services, in meetings, in singing or contrived fellowship. Few Christians would know God on their own.”
    Communal emotion describes what defines a ‘good’ service in most of my circles. Despite the clear teaching that the Holy Spirit is in each believer, they plead for Him to ‘come and be present’ as though the Spirit is busy on some other planet until requested.

    “Third, the modern church is often pathetically feeble in the expression of its focal principle of community.”
    So much of the time ‘church’ is a moment in the week spent among people I never meet elsewhere, often talking about trivialities…the weather…the price of gas… etc.

    Why has it taken me so many decades to realize this?

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