of Contemporary Churches
Have you noticed some things about churches that seem to be out of sync with the Bible? Send us a description. We’re compiling a list.
- Christmas is not a biblical “holy day.” I intentionally misspelled the word to illustrate the point that holidays are actually holy days. “In Scandinavia, the great feast of Yule with all its various ceremonies, had celebrated the birth of the winter sun-god. In the Latin countries there reigned Saturnalia, a cult of the god Saturn. The date December 25, coincided also with the birth of Attis, a Phrygian cult of the sun-god, introduced into Rome under the Empire. The popular feasts attached to the births of other sun-gods such as Mithras,were also invariably celebrated at the time of the winter solstice.” The early Roman Catholic simply adopted the pagan celebration into the church calendar and attempted to baptize it with Christian symbolism. But in the long run, the pagan character of the holyday has reemerged. For an extended discussion of Christmas see:
- An Historical Survey Regarding Its Origins and Opposition to It, by Kevin Reed
- What Fellowship Hath Christ With Belial? — An examination of the religious celebration of Christmas in light of the Scriptural duty of separation and the Regulative Principle of worship, by Douglas W. Comin
- Presbyterians Do Not Observe Holidays, by Samuel Miller, D.D.
- Holy Days: Index, by George Gillespie
- Sunday School is not found in Scripture, but is an example of the church following the lead of the culture. Sunday School works against the integrity and jurisdiction of the family by undercutting the father’s responsibility to bring up his children in the love and admonition of the Lord. Sure,fathers are largely irresponsible. But the way to encourage the irresponsibility is not to usurp their authority.
- Youth Groups tend to provide impressionable teenagers with the immature counsel of their peers, rather than providing counsel and godly models of faithful adults. Like most youth oriented programs and instruction, youth groups tend toward immaturity and irresponsibility. Popularity tends to command the attention of the participants. See Critique of Modern Youth Ministry, by Christopher Schlect, Canon Press, Moscow, Idaho.
- Pastoral Divorce, not divorce among the clergy, but the successive divorces that clergy and their families model by moving from church to church, sets a tone of covenantal infidelity among believers. If church membership involves a covenant with God and other church members, it is comparable to marriage. The Bible teaches that marriage is to be a life-long relationship. The same is (or should be) true of church membership. Every time a pastor leaves his church and covenants with another he is committing spiritual divorce among God’s people. The same is true for lay people, but the pastor has more responsibility in that he tends to set the model for behavior in his church. Should a pastor remain with single church for his whole ministry? Life-long relationships are the biblical norm for covenants.
Send your examples and comments.