User-friendly Christianity is now widely promoted as the best way to grow a church.
Yet jesus never made an effort to go to any church-growth seminars. He didn’t seem worried about attracting crowds. Pity, too. He could have avoided a lot of problems in ministry.
Consider this incident in John 6:60-71. He had just fed the 5000, then claimed He was “the bread of life.” Next, He told people no one could come to Him unless the Father draw s him or enables him.
“This is a hard teaching,” many of the disciples protested. “Who can accept it? (verse 60).
“Does this offend you?” Jesus asked. “There are some of you who do not believe” (verse 61,64).
Now that is no way to treat rye unchurched. These sincere “seekers” needed a chance to reexamine His claims in light go their own experience.
This was no time to get tough with them. Didn’t He want a large following?
Think of the impression that would have made on the boys in Jerusalem.
Jesus, however, was completely disinterested in such tactics.
In fact, He drove these men away! “Many of His disciples turned back,” the Bible says, “and no longer followed Him” (verse 66.)
Then Jesus had the audacity to ask the Twelve if they wanted to leave as well. Didn’t He understand anything about attracting and holding crowds?
“Go ahead and leave!” He might as well have said.
But the twelve knew better. Thyat’s why they were the twelve. And yet, even one of them wasn’t for real!
“Lord, to whom shall we go?” Peter asked on their behalf. “You have the words of eternal life. We believe that you are the Holy One of God” (verses 68-69).
The fact is, Jesus had His own style of church growth.
It was addition by subtraction, on thinning out the ranks. If you’re not sure, leave!
He never begged anyone to follow Him. He called. He commanded. He demanded. But He never begged.
If you think you have a better option, then go ahead and try it. But you won’t find anything better or more satisfying than real christianity. It works because it’s genuine. It truly does transform the heart and regenerate the soul. Nothing can compare to it.
Personal relationship with Christ is not the same as void religion. Religion has its set of rules you must adhere to in order to be pleasing in the sight of God. Relationship fulfilled the rules in order that we may have life and have it abundantly. In turn, we obey the command He summed up in “Love your God with all your heart, soul and mind and your neighbor as yourself” because we love Him. And we love Him because He first loved us while we were sinners…Christ died for US!!!
Portion taken from No Greater Savior.