It seems that so many churches are relying less and less on the Gospel alone to bring people to Jesus Christ. From studying the Scriptures, I see nowhere we are told by God to use culture and relevance to draw people into the church so that they can meet Jesus. In fact just the opposite is true concerning culture in how we are to reach the lost. If we obey the Bible’s commands as to how we are to live as Christians, we will live in a way that is pleasing to God and make us the light of the world that Jesus talked about in the Bible (Matthew 5:12-14). We are told to go out and proclaim the Gospel, to go out into the world but not be held captive by the world (Col 2:6-8). When we dedicate our lives to prayer, study, and submision to God’s will, we will live in such a way that the world notices the difference. We will not live in a legalistic way as some do who judge everything under the sun, but we will live in a way that people without Christ notice the difference. When we have the chance to verbally witness to people, it is the Gospel that the Holy Spirit uses to draw people to Himself and not the lure of relevant culture.
I fear many in the church have forgotten that it’s God’s job to convict sinners of their sin and it’s our job to spread the Gospel message of God’s saving grace. If we change the nature of the church from teaching the whole council of God into a church with the goal to solely draw people in, then we will completely miss the purpose of the church. The purpose of the Church is to preach the Gospel (this I do not dispute), but that is not it’s sole purpose. The church is the body of Christ, therefore to be a member of the church you must be born again. It’s the job of the pastor to teach the flock and nurture them with the Word so that they can grow as Christians. I do not object to inviting people to church and teaching salvation from the pulpits. However I do reject turning this into the only purpose of the church. It is the responsibility of all of us who are in Christ to go out and be an example to the world by our actions and our verbal witness. When we forsake the in-depth teachings of the Scriptures in favor of just teaching salvation, we will find our churches full of people who never mature in the knowledge of Christ (1 Corinthians 3:1-3).
The Gospel is enough to bring people to Jesus. It is by the power of the Gospel that the Holy Spirit convicts sinners. The Gospel does not need a gymnasium, a tennis court, swimming pools, play grounds, professional bands, coffee shops, huge expensive buildings, relevant themes, self-help topics, the promise of prosperity, hip and cool sermons, circus acts, high profile speakers, etc… to draw people to Jesus Christ. The Gospel has been and forever will be enough to lead people to Christ. I really wish the church would focus more on spreading the Gospel and far less time on trying to figure out how to do the job of the Holy Spirit.
8 But what does it say? “aThe word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,
13 for “aWhoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
aMatt 10:32; Luke 12:8; Rom 14:9; 1 Cor 12:3; Phil 2:11
bActs 16:31; Rom 4:24
1Lit to righteousness
2Lit to salvation
aIs 28:16; Rom 9:33
1Lit put to shame
aRom 3:22, 29
aJoel 2:32; Acts 2:21
aEph 2:17; 4:21
bActs 8:31; Titus 1:3
1Or preach the gospel
bRom 1:15; 15:20
bIs 53:1; John 12:38
aGal 3:2, 5
1Or concerning Christ
New American Standard Bible : 1995 update. 1995 (Ro 10:8-17). LaHabra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.