I recently was in conversation with a gentlemen who has been a Christian for approximately sixty or more years, he remarked to me that back in “his day,” he would have twelve to fifteen teens in his class. He followed that comment with, “They just don’t come anymore!” Not be an alarmist, but friends the Lord’s church in the United States, numerically speaking, is in decline! According to Rob Whitacre, an evangelist whose ministry is focused on traveling to congregations to lead workshops geared towards evangelism stated, “The church has been declining for forty years!”
Now, if a business has been in decline that long, wouldn’t a new course of action be developed? Or, if a school district is losing students, would a sense of urgency be felt quickly. The answer is, “yes.” Much could be said about addressing the problem of the church losing members. Has the culture become so overwhelming that Christians are drawn more to a pagan society? Are we so busy that we simply do not have time to consider such things as local evangelism or consider how we can be better equipped to expand the borders of God’s kingdom on our street, in our community, or within our families?
The root causes of such decline may take some time to determine, but the solution is found in our intentionality to embrace the Great Commission, equip ourselves, and evangelize. Matthew 28:18-20 says, “And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’”
It is not necessarily about filling pews, but more about transforming lives through Jesus Christ! Well, maybe I am being an alarmist. Realizing “they just don’t come anymore,” should push us to action!
South Green Street church of Christ