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There used to be a time when going to church was fun, amazing, and fulfilling, however, those days seem to be a thing of the past, like today when we enter sanctuaries that have all the amenities of a movie theater, minus the cup holders, we find ourselves using our smartphones to check the daily bulletin and service information, and oh yes, light a pathway to a seat. Though all of this is very worldly, the fact is, there are many churches binging on all of this, making it a primary function of the church’s work of ministry. And by using the latest media style blitzkrieg of over the top visuals they create an atmosphere that mimics the worldly mannerisms most are used to. All of it founded by narrated exegesis designed to ignite emotional support for the daily lesson of its good times for all in the church.
One question that has long been asked, but has not been answered by these churches that have a fondness for trending along with a worldly manner; Is, Where in scripture does it say to turn out the lights? Referring to these dark atmospheres in sanctuaries that today almost require night vision goggles to get to one’s seat if, God forbid, you get there after the grand performance begins. Are they embarrassed of their congregations, or that there are empty pews or chairs that might be seen on the broadcast, or (and this is the pinnacle) are they trying to appear as if they are so dynamic in what they do that everyone has to be there, cause if not, they are going to miss the glory of God?
Look I’m all for anything that sets the stage for the Holy Spirit’s work in the souls of individuals, but I know by hearing the testimony of many congregants who attend these churches that their witness is not bound to Christ independently. But through this appealing praise and worship that has led them to believe that church must appeal to one’s anxieties and emotions just like in the realm of social media where they are told everything is good, and we are all OK. One’s relationship with the God of all the universe isn’t built on emotions or feelings, it’s built upon faith. So, when churches bind their congregants by using visual hype presented in over the top performances through expressionist worship, they are not bound to a personal relationship with Him.
Col 3:16 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. Notice that in these verses it’s all about Jesus, and not about some hyped up magisterial event being put forth each week, or in any way about how we do what we do. While Jesus welcomes sinners He wouldn’t worship and praise the Father in brothels or places of darkness promoting evil.
Many of the leaders in these churches when asked why they do this they answer with this statement: The Holy Spirit is hip He can work using all the latest technology and trending issues to present Christ to those who are lost. And they would be right in that respect. But they leave out the fact that He works in righteousness and many of these venues as presented are from the darkness of the world. Though He can, and does enter in dark places filled with evil, His purpose is always to reveal the light. Using the world’s mannerisms to edify Christ is to promote the darkness that evil hides in, and is not a promotion of the LIGHT and LIFE that He represents.