All right, if you caught our first two episodes of our three-part opening series on the state of the church in America, you know the first question we tackled was is the church in America dying? And after defining our terms we decided that for evangelicalism in particular the jury is still out, it remains to be seen. And in our second episode we tackle the question of how did this happen? Well, we decided that we’ve been to appeasing to the world, we’ve softened our message too much to get the world to like us basically.
For today’s episode I want to tackle the third question that you the podcast listener had been searching for and that is, what can we do about it? If the church in America is dying, can it be saved? How do we reverse this trend? Well, as you might’ve guessed I have some thoughts on that. And what I’m going to do is I’m going to give you two ideas, two thoughts, two things we need to stop doing as Christians and then I’ll give you two things we need to start doing.
The first thing, we as a church and as Christians need to stop doing is we need to stop thinking or believing or hoping that the world will like us. The world is not going to like us, we’re promised that. Jesus said if we’re followers of His the world will hate us even. But we’ve bought this idea in American Christianity that if we just change our style, if we’re just appealing enough, if we change the look of our church, if we get woken up, the world will like us and then will listen to our message, but history and the Bible itself tells us that won’t happen.
We’re called to be salt and light in the world. Well, there’s two things about salt and light. One is they’re good, salt is good for seasoning. But if you’ve ever gotten salt in your eye or salt on a wound you know that it stings, that’s what salt does. It gets under the surface and it starts changing things and it hurts. And light for all the good that it does, the illumination of brings also if you’ve ever been in a dark room you know that whoever turns the lights on is not a popular person, it hurts your eyes. If you’re used to the dark light hurts your eyes. And we live in a culture that’s used to living in the dark. And when we as believers, as Christians, as Jesus’ followers, whatever the trendy name to give us is, when we shine light and we are salt in our culture it hurts people, don’t like it and they’re not going to, Jesus told us that.
The second thing we need to stop doing as Christians, and this is crucial, we need to stop believing our own bad press. We need to stop believing the things that the world says about us because it doesn’t like us, we need to stop believing that it’s true. We need to stop believing that our lack of influence or our lack of popularity is our fault, we’re not perfect by any means.
And also along with that we absolutely cannot be media-driven people. Our media, and our social media, and our education system and our entertainment industry or big tech companies and even corporate America, it has been proven and shown in recent events that they are number one, not truth seekers and they are not truth tellers. So if we believe them in what they say about us we’re believing lies. Those two things I think are the key things we need to stop doing as Christians, stop believing that the world will ever like us or ever approve of us or our message and number two, we absolutely have to stop listening to our own bad press and believing it.
Now for the two things we need to start doing. First off as Christians we need to recommit and refocus, teach, learn, and disciple people in a Christian worldview. And I think for most young Christians and even Christians in general the idea of a Christian worldview is something that’s foreign to them, it’s not something they thought about well. But a worldview is the lens that you look at culture, you look at the world and you look at yourself through.
And in America we’ve been founded on a Judeo-Christian worldview, a worldview based on Judaism and Christianity which is basically based on the principles of the New Testament, principles of the Word of God, the truth of the word of God. But with all the competing worldviews we have, the secularism, Marxism, socialism, and all the sub categories of that, critical theory, identity politics, all these things that compete against a Christian worldview on a daily basis, we’ve lost sight of what makes us different, what makes us unique. We’ve lost our commitment to the truth of the Word of God because our culture and these competing worldviews don’t value truth. We value truth, we speak the truth in love. Speaking the truth is a command, love is the modifier of the command. That’s how we’re supposed to do it.
But in recent times especially, I’ve noticed a trend even in my own church circles where there’s abandonment of truth in favor of making people feel good concerning their feelings hoping that if we do that they’ll listen to the truth later on. Problem is, competing worldviews don’t want to hear the truth so we have to double down on our commitment to the truth and our commitment to that Christian worldview. And the second thing we need to do, and this is the most radical of all, we need to start one praying for revival. Praying that the remnant of believers that remains in all our categories of Christianity, that God would use them to bring revival to our country.
As what God’s plan usually is, using that remnant, using that small group of believers who are faithfully praying to bring about His Kingdom in our culture. And along with that we need to prepare for trouble because trouble is coming. Those institutions I was talking about and even add to that, our government. For the first time in American history our government is becoming hostile to us, along with all the other, the media, social media, big corporations, education, with all those elements of our society being hostile to us that’s really nothing new, but it is new in the United States for the government to be against us, actively against us.
And no, it’s not to the level of persecution of the early church, but it really doesn’t have to be, to be persecution. Persecution rarely starts full-on, it usually starts small and then builds. But it’s, even if it’s not full-on persecution, it is hostility and we need to prepare for it. And the thing we need to pray the most, and this is a little counterintuitive, but when trouble comes the persecution never comes but if trouble comes we need to pray that it would come to us not to that Christian over there or that church over there. I can’t in good conscience pray, “God, please don’t bring persecution to me, bring it to someone else please.” The blessing is in those who are persecuted, the judgment is on those who persecute the church.
And in our society, our society is so polarized. Even in Christianity and evangelicalism we have people on one side who want to appease our culture, appease our government, those people that would be very easy for them to fall into the trap of not only facilitating the persecution of their brothers and sisters but maybe even participating in it. And I don’t want that to happen, I don’t want to see that happen in the church. So, pray for revival and prepare for trouble.
Those are my thoughts on the three questions. Again, these were the top three questions that came up to us on how to deal with the church in culture, the possible death of the church in the United States, how it happened and mostly most of all, what we can do to stop it. Stay tuned next week, next week on what you’ve been searching for. I’m going to change things a little bit, I’m going to put on my critic’s hat. Another topic that came up in our research is that you want to hear a review of the mini series The Chosen. And I’ve watched it, I’ve watched season one and I definitely have some thoughts to share with you on it.
As usual do all the things you’re supposed to do, like, comment, share, subscribe on YouTube, on Spotify, Apple, or any other podcast platforms look us up. And most of all, go to christianpodcastcentral.com, check out all the other content like this on our channel, and we’ll see you next time. Thanks for listening.