As I've visited churches and adult Sunday School classes in my area of California (USA) over the past year, I am shocked at the low level of teaching. No wonder Christians are floundering in these times. In many churches, and in most churches with lots of young adults - most of the members don't have the slightest concept of what happened for them at the cross, what prayer is supposed to accomplish, faith, healing and so forth. The latter two aren't even mentioned in most churches, probably because of some of the crazy Word of Faith teaching going around. A few months ago I called for a New Kind of Faith Teacher (see link here). I've come to realize more than ever how badly these New Kind of Faith Teachers are needed. When the calamities come more and more, I'm not sure what Christians are going to do. And, I'm not sure what the leaders are going to tell them to do except the same tired out old worn-out phrases - "Well, just pray." "Well, just trust da Lord." These are good phrases but without proper understanding of what they mean, the phrases become just that - phrases - and essentially useless.
This condition in our churches would be tragic enough if it was confined to the young. But the elderly, some of whom have been in church for 60+ years, don't seem to know much more than the clown-youth-group-trained young adults. The elderly Sunday School classes seem to be just a rehash of everything they have heard for the past 20+ years. No wonder Christians here in America don't practice their faith often. They don't know anything. How can you practice something you don't know. If you've only putted balls on the putting green, but never played a game of golf, you probably will flounder in playing the game. If you've only practiced first year pieces on the violin for 20 years, then after 20 years you won't be playing too well.
Churches today want us to "do something," usually for the poor. Anyone can help the poor. So what is supposed to set apart Christians? They know something others don't. And they're CONVINCED in their hearts and spirit of it. They are supposed to share their knowledge so others (for Arminians) can make a decision to follow Christ;(for Calvinists) so others can become Christians if God woos them, But if we don't have any foundation, how can we tell others, and especially, how can we disciple those who do come to Christ. In Hebrews 5:12 we read,
In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!
I am convinced that God has raised up plenty of mature, relevant, Biblically-based teachers. So what is the problem then? Churches refuse to allow them to teach. The churches continually use the same people or newer ones who aren't mature enough in their own faith to adequately teach. The same thing goes for the real-deal prophets too. Too many false prophets are allowed into the church to speak and teach. Or, no prophets are allowed. I guess only God can open the doors to these God-ordained true teachers and prophets, almost forcing churches to accept them. But I wonder what God will have to do to get churches to open those doors? Bring the churches to their knees? It'll be most interesting to find out.
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