Church for the unsaved

I'm big fan of author Tim Keller. His book The Reason for God has been one of the best books I've read this year. I've ordered a copy of his new book The Prodigal God. Here's an excerpt from it (with thanks to Al Bain).

"Jesus' teaching consistently attracted the irreligious while offending the Bible-believing, religious people of his day. However, in the main, our churches today do not have this effect. The kind of outsiders Jesus attracted are not attracted to contemporary churches, even our most avant-garde ones. We tend to draw conservative, buttoned-down, moralistic people. The licentious and liberated or the broken and marginal avoid church. That can only mean one thing. If the preaching of our ministers and the practice of our parishioners do not have the same effect on people that Jesus had, then we must not be declaring the same message that Jesus did. If our churches aren't appealing to younger brothers, they must be more full of elder brothers than we'd like to think."



mark said... 11/13/2008 11:44 am  

Yup. I've always been frustrated with the eldership of churches who blatently break the bible's command to NOT 'lord over' the church (1 peter 5:3) while saying they're fulfilling it and that we youngin's ought to 'be humble' (cuz that's our only bible-given command apparently: the first part of 1 Peter 5:5, forgetting the second and third parts!). Pride begets pride. Grr.

mike said... 11/13/2008 11:53 am  

With luck I'll have the book before anyone else in Oz... but I don't believe in luck do I.

Al Bain said... 11/19/2008 11:15 pm  

Hope you get it first. I'm hanging out for it too.

I think I had Reason For God before anyone else (unless you beat me to it!!).

Love your work on this blog mate.

Justin McNeil said... 12/07/2008 8:43 am  

Painfully true. I once read of a believer begging her friend, a prostitute, to give up her lifestyle and visit a church service. The prostitue replied "Why would I want to go there? I already feel guilty enough!" At what point did the message of Jesus stop attracting the guilty and start repulsing them?

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