The results of a new survey from Lifeway Research may come as a surprise to pastors and worship leaders.
The study found that most churchgoers will put up with a change in music style or a different preacher, but they will choose to leave a church if the foundational beliefs are tampered with.
These findings can serve as a wake-up call, says the American Pastors Network’s (APN, www.americanpastorsnetwork.net), to pastors who may be trying to reach people through music, programs or style rather than the substance of the Gospel.
“It is crucial that American churches return to the core of the Gospel—the true focus of who and what the church should be,” said APN President Sam Rohrer. “Today’s pastors can get caught up in the style of music, programs offered, the environment and even how leaders dress. While these things may deserve some attention, they should not be the focus. The foundation of the church must be its theological position and how strongly it is rooted in the Word of God. Rightfully so, the people in the pews realize this.”
Source: Churchgoers Stay for the Theology, Not the Music or the Pastor – Christian News Headlines
TRUTH BOMBS: ENGLAND IS DOOMED
Article: Transgender people are being encouraged to become Church of England vicars as bishops launch a diversity drive.
Bishops in the diocese of Lichfield have issued new guidance to parishioners and clergy reminding them that LGBT people “can be called to roles of leadership and service in the local church”.
The guidance, titled “welcoming and honouring LGBT+ people”, warns that the church’s reputation as being unwelcoming towards gay and transgender people is stopping young people attending.
Source: Transgender people encouraged to become priests in Church of England diversity drive
TRUTH BOMBS: There are many reasons for this, but at the heart of it all is that people do not see that Christianity is a social and cultural framework for their entire life.
ARTICLE: Western Europe, where Protestant Christianity originated and Catholicism has been based for most of its history, has become one of the world’s most secular regions. Although the vast majority of adults say they were baptized, today many do not describe themselves as Christians. Some say they gradually drifted away from religion, stopped believing in religious teachings, or were alienated by scandals or church positions on social issues, according to a major new Pew Research Center survey of religious beliefs and practices in Western Europe.
Yet most adults surveyed still do consider themselves Christians, even if they seldom go to church. Indeed, the survey shows that non-practicing Christians (defined, for the purposes of this report, as people who identify as Christians, but attend church services no more than a few times per year) make up the biggest share of the population across the region. In every country except Italy, they are more numerous than church-attending Christians (those who go to religious services at least once a month). In the United Kingdom, for example, there are roughly three times as many non-practicing Christians (55%) as there are church-attending Christians (18%) defined this way.
Source: Attitudes of Christians in Western Europe | Pew Research Center
TRUTH BOMBS: If you worship God in a manner that is contrary to His teachings and commands, are you really worshipping God?
“And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not. And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD.” Leviticus 10:1-2 (KJV)
ARTICLE: An Atlanta pastor is packing the pews, but also facing criticism for embracing performances by scantily-clad aerialists as part of what he calls his new “normal worship experience.” Bryan Meadows, who leads the Embassy congregation, recently posted photographs and a video from the CreativeCon Conference, which included a time of worship that incorporated a female […]
Source: Scantily-clad aerialists now part of ‘normal worship’
TRUTH BOMBS: Christinaity, True from the start.
ARTICLE: What is interesting about this discovery is that first, it was found in Israel, the birthplace of Christianity. Secondly, it was found in a Jewish and Samaritan village, which would indicate that there were still Christians among both Jews and Samaritans considering that Jesus told His disciples that they would be His witnesses starting in Jerusalem but also in Samaria (Acts 1:8), where Philip also brought the Gospels to the Samaritan peoples (Acts 8). The third point to be made is that our Muslim friends continue to make and repeat the worn out argument like a mantra that the deity of Christ was invented by Constantine (who is blamed for every problem under the sun) at the Council of Nicea in 325 A.D. Dan Brown in his fictional book, The Da Vinci Code also argued that Constantine was responsible for inventing the deity of Christ. The major problem with this popular myth is that it is false. Early Christians long before 325 A.D. referred to Jesus as “God” as we see in the early second century Church Father, Ignatius of Antioch (A.D. 50 – A.D. 117). I have placed the relevant words in bold:
“There is only one physician, who is both flesh and spirit, born and unborn, God in man, true life in death, both from Mary and from God, first subject to suffering and then beyond it, Jesus Christ our Lord” (Ignatius, Letter to the Ephesians, 7.2.).
“For our God, Jesus the Christ, was conceived by Mary according to God’s plan, both from the seed of David and of the Holy Spirit” (Ignatius, Letter to the Ephesians, 18.2.).
Source: Answering Muslims: Archaeology and the Deity of Christ: Dispelling a Popular Myth