The world around us is changing so fast that it is hard to keep up with everything that is happening. With that the church is also changing, and should, if we want to stay relevant and effective in our mission. I believe the church is about to go back to its original ways, and we will see radical changes that most of us are totally unfamiliar with.
Jesus gave the church its mission, namely to go out and preach the gospel to everyone in every place, and to teach and baptize them. But believers of the day chose instead to huddle together and enjoy sweet fellowship – until they were scattered by persecution. This persecution opened the door for the gospel to the known world as these believers took it with them wherever they escaped to. It took severe pressure to do what they refused to do voluntary in obedience.
Those days are back. Persecution has come home to the church in the West so that the church will take the good news outside of its walls once again. Christians that are so bent on being blessed will be given a choice sooner than they think as militant church haters get them in their cross-hairs more and more.
Consumers of the church will either convert to become living members of a living body, or leave to join the enemy. Jesus told us so.
Already we begin to see a division growing between consumers and participants, between secular and spiritual church goers. We will see huge changes in the months and years to come. Hearts will be revealed as the church enters the final lap before the Lord’s return, and it will be seen in our numbers, our attitudes and, most of all, in the way we do church. It will be no more about outward appearances, extravagant buildings, excellent music performances and fancy equipment, but hearts that are on fire for the Lord.
The question is, as it was at the beginning: will we do it voluntary or under the pressure of persecution?
The “none” category on the list of religions is growing, and we have work to do!