The Christian Post is reaching Christianity Today-levels of apostasy and subversion. A couple recent articles underscore the total corruption of the organized Church, then I’ll demonstrate the consequences with a guest villainy from President Mark Tooley of the Institute on Religion and Democracy and a… spineless slug-ainy from megachurch pastor Bruce Wesley.
Why consumer church members leave your church
By Thom S. Rainer, 2 May 2021
“I’m not getting fed.”
It’s one of the most common complaints of church members looking for excuses to leave a church. The gripe is that the pastor’s sermons are not providing the person adequate spiritual growth. And most of the time it’s baloney.
Baby talk aside, yes, it is the duty of the Church to benefit its members. Clergy are not to be like normal rulers, thinking it’s all about the fame and fortune and what they personally choose to do with it all. This teaching is straight-up Red-Letter Jesus:
“When the [other ten disciples] heard about [James and John fighting for the power seat], they became indignant with James and John. Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Note that Jesus was talking to his inner circle of Church-founding Apostles, not the crowds. Note also that this incident is recorded in Matthew 20, Mark 10 AND Luke 22.
For being experts in the Law, you clergy are surprisingly ignorant when it talks about you.
Proceeding upon this Scriptural instruction, that the purpose of Church leaders is to benefit the Normies in the pews…
Most of the time “I’m not getting fed” is a lame excuse to say the church is not catering to my desires and preferences. It’s a clear indicator of the growing trend of church member consumerism, and it has been exacerbated by the pandemic.
Self-centered, consumer-driven church members are leaving. Here are some reasons why:
1. Because they never get satisfied. That is the nature of consumerism. Desires are met only for a season. Then the church member wonders what you have done for them lately. And if the church members feel like he or she has gotten all they can get from the church, they will move on to another church or drop out altogether.
Man: “I need help.”
Pastor: “No, you need another sermon.”
Man: “I quit.”
Pastor: “Consumerist! You think it’s all about you, eh? I wasn’t going to bring it up but your tithing has really fallen off since you lost your job. If you give when it hurts then Jeebus will bless you!”
2. Because they have no greater purpose. We all know church members who are the pillars of the church in the best sense of the word. They are giving, serving, and sacrificial. They have a greater purpose than themselves. They seek to serve the Lord by serving others. They never ask, “What have you done for me lately?” because they are too busy doing for others. The consumer Christian has no purpose beyond his or her own preferences. And that’s really no purpose at all.
You are nothing to the organized Church but a paycheck… an ox in need of a harness.
3. Because they are often divisive. Consumer Christians seek for themselves. And if they don’t get what they want, they can be critical and divisive. They may leave when they sense the support for their negativity is waning. They will complain that other church members did not support them. And they are, thankfully, correct.
No organization can survive by cutting loose its membership at the moment they want membership to have a benefit. Least of all, an organization that prides itself on charity work.
4. Because they know better than everyone else. You can usually count on consumer church members to send the pastor an article or podcast link to demonstrate how other churches are doing things so much better. For the consumer church member, the grass is always greener — until they move to the greener grass of the next church. And then they see problems there.
The same problem, no less: We. Don’t. Matter. Our input isn’t wanted, our service only as the servants of the Godless and the screwup. A (male) congregant asking for help is asking for dismissal.
5. Because they don’t understand the meaning of biblical church membership. Check out the characteristic of a church member in 1 Corinthians 12. It’s all about how the members of the body are functioning for the greater good of that body.
I read that chapter. Guess what? The gift of leadership is mentioned separately from the gift of teaching. I am no leader but I can teach, and I have considerable knowledge of Scripture. Far more than even a professional PhD, if we’re talking about what Scripture means instead of what it says.
I am not allowed to teach in any church I’ve been to because pastor declared that’s his job. Maybe an Elder, when he needs a break.
And look at 1 Corinthians 13. We call it the “love chapter,” but it’s really how church members are to relate to one another and to the world. The consumer church members can’t relate to biblical church membership because it’s sacrificial and driven to serve others.
Not to tout my own horn but let me demonstrate my gift of knowledge. Notice how Chapters 12 and 14 discuss spiritual gifts but Chapter 13 talks about faith, hope and love instead? Paul was making the point, in the middle of his discussion on various supernatural empowerments, that what really counts is trusting God and being there for your neighbor. You don’t need to be a prophet, minister or surgeon. You simply need to care and try.
Which is exactly what this chucklehead is advising AGAINST. You hope to get help from Pastor? That he’ll love you enough to inconvenience himself and put your needs first? GTFO, consumerist!
So, pastor, know that you are not alone when you hear those dreaded words, “I’m not getting fed.” It has been said countless times by countless self-centered church members. Rejoice in your church members who serve, encourage, love, and sacrifice. They are God’s instruments in your church.
Yes, rejoice in the chumps who always give you stuff while demanding nothing in return. Chumps are getting hard to find.
The consumer church members are nothing but noisy gongs and clanging cymbals. When they leave, there is a lot more peace and God-given quiet in the church.
We close with a bit of ironic hypocrisy. That boldfaced about noise was said about members of the Church who don’t love their neighbor… and here is the former president and CEO of the SBC’s Lifeway Christian Resources calling for the removal of his Church neighbors who aren’t easily exploitable.
Can I be an effective pastor if I don’t like management?
By Sam Rainer, 27 June 2021
Nota bene, Sam Rainer is a member of an organization called Church Answers that was founded by the preceding article’s author, Thom Rainer. Oh, hey, lookit that…
Pastors are not managers, at least in a corporate-business-world-publicly-traded-company-sort-of-way.
Um… your bylaws…
But pastors are shepherds. And shepherds manage sheep.
Pastors are shepherds… shepherds manage sheep… but pastors are NOT managers… pastors only manage sheep…
Leading a church involves management. A church hierarchy assumes management. And most churches—even smaller congregations—are not completely flat in structure. Even at the most basic level, churches require management. Who pays the bills? When does the meeting start? Who is responsible for snow removal? Who fills the baptistery? What is our policy? Those are basic managerial questions. Most churches are more complex.
The vast majority of pastoral roles include management.
The answer, of course, is Yes. You can be a pastor if you hate management. You’ll just have to hate your life. Every working moment of it. You will learn to hate every person who brings you another problem. You will remember lactating in the nursery as the good years of your career and secretly ponder the joys of working in a warehouse. On the night shift. Because there’d be NO PEOPLE TO MANAGE.
Feel free to skip a step and change your career right now. No, you were not ‘called by God’ to lead. Excuse me, to be a pastor. Because that’s totally not leadership, it just involves leading. There’s a difference. Shut up!
So, can church leaders be effective if they don’t like management? Yes, but they must compensate in these ways.
Be self-aware. One of the core problems of bad management is poor managers often do not recognize their weak managerial skills. When you’re self-aware about your weaknesses (and willing to admit them), then you’re more likely to receive help from others. No pastor can (nor should) do it all. And all pastors should be self-aware of what they can and cannot do.
QED. Be self-aware enough to know that you’re going to hate the job so you can find a more suitable career as quickly as possible.
Discern what to delegate. Just because you’re naturally good at doing something does not mean you are able to manage others doing the same thing. Some pastors delegate their responsibilities too quickly. Others delegate the wrong responsibilities. And some tasks should never be delegated. Delegation with discernment makes up for a lot of managerial weaknesses.
Delegation is a critical, fundamental aspect of management itself. Many people who hate management are the people who can’t/won’t trust other people to do a job, and that’s the exact reason they hate management.
Don’t fear being the doer. Some people prefer doing tasks. Others prefer managing people who do the tasks. If you cherish a few tasks, then don’t give them up. Keep doing them. For instance, a pastor might enjoy locking the church after the evening service as an opportunity to prayer walk. Or, if you’re an artistic type, there may be certain creative tasks that are difficult to manage. Good church leaders know what select tasks they enjoy most and keep doing them, sparing their followers the inevitable and overbearing micro-management that would accompany overseeing others doing them.
That’s delegation again. Look, you can’t delegate management WHEN YOU’RE THE MANAGER. You can’t delegate major decisions. You can’t delegate discipline. You can’t delegate hiring/firing. Yes, you can be a miserable manager but please don’t, for the sake of all the people who will need you to do your fucking job.
You don’t have to like management to be an effective pastor. But shepherding a congregation does involve managing others. …If you’re weaker at managing, then you can compensate through self-awareness, discernment, and doing the tasks you enjoy most.
Let’s be honest here. Why would somebody want to become a pastor knowing they’ll hate the duties of being a pastor? For the bennies. The prestige. The chance for a mediocre life of no accomplishments, no hardships, no trials, no changes, no life, just a quick slick chute from Now to the grave repeating fairly tales to the credulous.
But they are not fairy tales. God is real and He wrote many words about bad shepherds. That’s a good reason to say No to the pastor slot even for those who enjoy management.
All pastors should both teach and execute. Few master both.
Indeed, but as I touched on with the previous article, the portion of pastorhood which can (and should) be delegated is the teaching bit. No clergy today wrote Scripture so there’s nothing stopping a layman from being a better teacher of it than Pastor is… least of all, the lack a government-recognized credential.
But the pastor MUST lead because he is the leader. Look at the org chart. You can’t be on top and not be on top at the same time.
So then, what becomes of a church that has a leader who doesn’t want to lead and that treats its members as a flock of sheep to be regularly fleeced?
Well… somebody is going to lead it, by default. It won’t be the pastor. He’ll find some OTHER authority to absolve him of leadership’s heavy burden. An authority outside his church.
The happy ending to that is moralistic therapeutic deism:
Megachurch pastor heartbroken as 125 test positive for Delta variant of COVID-19 after camp
By Leonardo Blair, 6 July 2021
Bruce Wesley, lead pastor of Clear Creek Community Church, a multi-campus megachurch headquartered in League City, Texas, says he’s heartbroken after more than 125 youth and adults who attended a student ministry camp tested positive for what health experts suspect is the Delta variant of COVID-19.
What a crock of lies. Remember in my previous post,
…The CDC runs Coof testing at 1,000 times higher sensitivity for the unvaxxed than the vaxxed. It’s safe to assume that most of those kids aren’t vaxxed, not that any of them should be. The IFR for kids is zero.
“Health experts suspect” it’s the eeeevil scary Delta variant! But so far as this article goes, none of those kids are even sick. I very much doubt that Pastor Wesley will have 125 funerals to perform.
“More than 125 people reported to the church that they tested positive for COVID-19 after camp. And all who were sick came home and exposed their families to COVID. I’m aware of a number of families where everyone got sick after camp and obviously, that’s horrible.
Suck it up, buttercup. That was normal life for 10,000 years until March 2020, when normal life was banned by the New World Order.
That breaks our hearts. We’ve been diligent to follow strict safety protocols for over a year as a way of loving our neighbors and loving one another,” Wesley said in a video statement posted on YouTube Sunday.
No, you gutless gizzard Wesley, ending civilization in general and Christianity in particular is no way to love your neighbors. You can’t handle risk. You can’t handle disapproval. You’re afraid to make a decision. You’re a coward and you don’t even care if people know because pastorhood gives you enough defenses to pretend that cowardice and caring are the same thing.
More than 400 people participated in the camp designed for youth between the sixth and 12th grades. Wesley explained in a letter to congregants that in consultation with the Galveston County Health District, the church canceled services for July 4 and again on July 7. They hope to reopen on July 11.
The same clergy who would complain that I don’t attend church, shut down church for the slightest whiff of Chinaballs. That’s the happy scenario of having a pastor who’s not a pastor: he does a minimal job, with minimal damage, and is generally too cautious to ever do anything. “Join me on my quiet slide into irrelevant mediocrity! Let me pillow your suffering so you can pillow mine, too!”
Then there’s the unhappy scenario of absentee leadership: a leader who lets the wolves in. Wolves such as Mark Tooley, president of the Institute on Religion and Democracy.
True rainbow culture
By Mark Tooley, 5 July 2021
Pride Month has concluded with its profusion of rainbow flags celebrating sexual liberation and autonomous individualism. Corporate America was among its chief celebrants, with many rainbowing their logos. Government buildings, which should only showcase state emblems, went rainbow. And of course liberal Protestant churches further amplified their rainbow commitments. Many liberal Protestants complain of USA flags in or around sanctuaries as idolatry but affirm rainbow flags unironically. Look for annual July 4 sermons and blogs against American flags, just days after Pride Month hoopla.
You talk tough for a Methodist, Tooley.
Rainbow culture can be found almost exclusively in Christian-shaped societies throughout the West. Rainbow flags and logos aren’t common in historically Islamic lands, or in Hindu or Confucian or Buddhist shaped cultures.
That’s because LGBT is an attack against Christianity specifically. Once we Christians are persecuted, and it’s coming soon, it’ll be a bad day for the fags. The inner circle will have no further use for their cultural arsonists.
Sexual liberation and pride contravene historic Christian teaching of course. But Christianity teaches human equality and the importance of the individual. The Gospel proclaims freedom, rightly understood, against coercion. It also affirms human creativity. Rainbow and pride culture reject orthodox Christianity. But they are ungrateful descendants of it.
Tooley lies. Christ teaches that we are equal before God. Not that we are equal in any other way. Indeed, the abovementioned chapters of spiritual gifts and the metaphor of the Church as a body are counterexamples against the lie of equality.
Similarly, Christianity does not teach individuality. Goes deals with humanity at BOTH the macro and micro levels. Re-read the Old Testament, how God dealt with people by nation and tribe.
Tom Holland, author of Dominion, How the Christian Revolution Remade the World, notes that the “secular” West is suffused with Christian shaped assumptions. And the culture war is often a Christian debate over the meaning of human equality and freedom. The Christian-shaped West rejects state and religious coercion as found in Islamic and eastern societies.
Forty-eight hours later, that didn’t age well.
The imposition of rainbow ideology is often blamed by traditionalists on “elites.” Obviously there’s truth there on advocacy by corporations, universities, and government, amid efforts to stigmatize if not silent dissent. But it would be wrong exclusively to fault cultural elites while romanticizing the “populist” sentiment of the general population.
The boldfaced is intended to drive a wedge between you and “traditionalists”. There is no non-traditional Christianity. Our religion has not changed one jot or tiddle since first-century Anno Domini.
A teacher can teach how to recognize a lie but a pastor is needed to take action upon the discovery of a lie. Otherwise, we’re just arguing on a blog.
Polls show support for rainbow ideology is wider than just rich urbanites. Corporations would not tout it if not perceived to be in their commercial interest.
Universities would not tout if concerned parents of students and alumnae donors would object.
Government would not tout if more concerned about voter reaction.
HAHAHAAAA!!! Actually no, this joke’s not funny.
Even much of flyover country including religious traditionalists have passively acceded to the rainbow even if not directly flying it themselves.
Sure, Tooley. Go fly your freak flag in backwoods Kentucky. Let me watch.
Pro-tip for liberals: Anybody who uses the phrase “flyover country” unironically knows nothing about said flyover country and should not attempt a visit. How close are we to civil war? Biden is threatening to go door-to-door with syringes… that close.
Choose life. Stay home. Oh, that’s right… you’d prefer an abortion. Well, God can’t say I didn’t warn you. Which was the only reason I warned you.
Yo’ mama should’ve had an abortion.
Some hardcore rainbow opponents have looked to authoritarian societies as the desired corrective. Orban’s regime in Hungary, recently downgraded by Freedom House’s ranking as only “partly free” after being “free” for 30 years, is often cited for its resistance to the rainbow. Russia, far more authoritarian, is sometimes often celebrated for its defiance of rainbow ideology.
Christianity shouldn’t be political except against the enemies of LGBT rainbow theology..?
The more effective antidote to rainbow ideology is remembrance of the original rainbow from the Book of Genesis: “Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.” After the Great Flood, God offered grace and mercy to Noah under a new covenant premised on faith and good living whose fruit would be human flourishing.
Grace and mercy was not the rainbow covenant. The boldfaced is only a partial quotation. Here’s the entirety of Genesis 9:15: “I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life.“
The rainbow promise was not grace and mercy. It was God promising to never again drown us all like rats In punishment for our wickedness, according to Genesis 6:5-6.
It’s Christ who offers grace and mercy. Not a covenant, even; an offer conditional upon repentance.
The rainbow has been adopted by the depraved because they mock God for promising to not destroy all life again. But they deliberately forget, that God only promised to not destroy all life with water again.
But Tooley does have a point, that this foul corruption has spread into many, many churches. How did that happen? Clergy didn’t want to lead, and didn’t care if their people suffered for their poor decisions. And so they threw open the doors of doctrine to personnel to funding… inviting in anybody who would supply what Pastor wanted, in return for access to entire congregations of chumps.
This is the Schrodinger’s pastor. He wants the perks of leadership without the burden that the perks are meant to bear, so he parades himself as somebody important while begging outside powers to absolve him of his responsibilities. He is simultaneously the leader and the servant, the middleman brokering the betrayal of the trust put in him.
Perhaps he leads by showing videos of leaders. I knew one of those. Wouldn’t let anybody else teach but didn’t want to bother teaching himself, so… video Bible study.
And then, when somebody within the organization begins to ask pointed questions about the lack of spiritual sustenance, that “consumerist” is lovingly escorted to the exit.