The Church! Who needs it? Especially in these enlightened days? Experts tell us that we double our knowledge every two years. We have entertainment plus right in our own homes. Video games and virtual reality…we can create nearly professional productions on our increasingly compact and powerful computers. Internet communication, social networking and information abounds! We own cell phones today that do everything but pay the bills (actually they do pay the bills – they just don’t produce the money to pay them). Endless venues exist for entertainment and hundreds of options are available with each one of them. What we don’t have, we can buy! If we can’t afford it, we’ll charge it and pay later. There is plenty of everything and enough in the way of permissiveness that we can usually get our own way and obtain what we want…often when we want! So…who needs the Church?
Did I miss anything? Well, maybe a few small details. There is growing immorality, international unrest, terrorism, widespread global poverty and a dearth of personal peace. The economy is a concern, families are experiencing turmoil and divorce remains far too common. Child, spousal, parental and senior abuse is on the increase. Teen suicide is on the rise and crime rates continue to escalate. In general the populace seems unimpressed with the past, discontent with the present and dubious about the future.
I do not want to oversimplify by saying that the Church will heal all of these ills. To begin with, it is not a given that all churches are accurately and effectively communicating the biblical message. And even the best church will have problems. After all, churches are comprised of people! However, the following list presents some of what a church can and should be.
A teacher giving knowledge to the spiritually untaught
An altar for the meeting of God and His people
A servant whose field of service is the world
A minister bringing good cheer and hope to the needy
A rallying point for good community effort and cooperation and
A starting place where souls may begin their journey toward eternity
A place where we dedicate our children, exchange our wedding vows, and bid farewell to our loved ones.
A hospital for sinners – Luke 5:31-33
A nursery for babies -1 Peter 2:2
A convalescent home for the ill -1 Timothy 4:7-9
A school for disciples – Matthew 28:18-20
A place of togetherness – Galatians 6:2
A place for sharing good news about Jesus – Romans 10:14
If one or more of the areas listed above apply to you, then you need the church! Be reminded, that though the church has many critics, it has no creative alternatives. Why not attend this Sunday?
FAITH & REFLECTION