Thursday, November 3, 2016

Barriers to Church Growth

In preparation for writing this post I read several books, monographs and articles on outreach or evangelism or church growth.  Why Nobody Wants to be Around Christians Anymore, Thom and Joani Schultz, The Rise of Nones, James Emery White,

In Church RefugeesAshleigh Hope and Josh Packard, Group Publishing, say that numerous seasoned believers are leaving churches in droves.  

“What Works Today,” by Rob Toal, in The State of Church Ministry in America, 2017., October, 2016: 

I have also interviewed several leaders, young people and retired persons about their perceptions of the situation.

The recent monograph from summarizes the biggest barriers to outreach this way. “Today’s church faces profound challenges within the broader culture: political correctness, postmodern relativism, religious pluralism. We live in a society full of unchurched people who don’t know the basic tenets of Christianity or thee redemptive story the scriptures tell. The church at large has a poor reputation among non-Christians. Many hold distorted views of Jesus, the gospel, and traditional Christian faith, so they are biased against us before we had a chance to start a conversation.

I attended a recent conference on The Future of the Church and the above issues were mentioned prominently. They reported that some 4000 churches are closing in America annually. Some because of demographic shifts and some because they ran out of steam. 

As you read the items above, do you agree that the primary cause of church decline comes from a lack of interest and spiritual knowledge of the unchurched? 

Do you think other issues are most important?

Let us know your ideas. And, consider supporting us here. 


Laurie said...

The intangible presence of the Spirit of God is missed. Why? He is the one who draws. If He is not welcomed then the motions churches practice are fruitless.

Gary Sweeten said...

Amen! I find the supernatural is often left out of the discussion.