Where is Our Point of Connection Today?

     We had just come through the great war.  As a nation we were convinced of the need for God in our lives.  In spite of all the horrible events it fostered aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaJule_MillerWorld War II was a turning point for our nation and for the Lord’s church.  We were entering a time when the vast majority saw the need for God in our lives.  We could present the truths of God in an intellectual setting and expect men and women to accept and apply those truths. 

For more than 40 years we remained in an intellectual setting.  These were exciting times and the church enjoyed growth it had not enjoyed in more than a hundred years.  These were the days of tent meetings, two week revivals  and Jule Miller filmstrips.  The culture of the United States was such that people hungered for God.  The point of connection required only that we plainly and intellectually present God’s Word.  These were exciting times!

In the last couple of decades things have changed in our culture.  We have moved from a culture intent on soaking up knowledge to a people yearning for the comfort and security found in the physical.  No where is this more evident than in our politics.  Our last election was a referendum on this very subject.  We now seem intent on surrounding ourselves with those who can  promise us the most comfort and security.  We see this displayed politically by politicians who present cradle to grave health care.  We are spending money at an unprecidented rate all in hopes of taking care of everyone short term.  It has become a culture concerned about only the problems of the here and now.

How does the church position herself to take advantage of the shifts in culture?  How do we cast a wider net and continue to remain in the water of God’s Truth?  If our approach remains the same as it was in the period immediately following World War II we become irrelevant.  How do we remain relevant and continue to stand for truth?  Obviously we must change how we connect with those outside Christ in the 21st century.  The major question remains, “How do we change so that we can remain relevant and continue to teach truth?”

If we examine the ministry of Jesus we will find that He was addressing a people who were at the same place culturally as the United States is today.  How did He address these people in such a way that He connected with them?  For the most part the message of our Lord was not a message clothed in intellectualism.  What we see from Jesus is a ministry involved in the lives of those He was serving.  We see Jesus feeding the hungry, healing the sick, and caring for those who were less fortunate.  We see our Lord actively involved in the everyday lives of those He taught.  He loved them.  When you examine the ministry of Jesus you see a ministry that was concerned not with numbers but a ministry that was concerned with making the world a better place by showing those who were hurting a better way.  This was not a “sabbath only” ministry.  Jesus didn’t center His ministry on “doing the Sabbath more perfectly.”  Jesus centered His teaching in the lives of those He served.

If the church is going to continue to remain relevant, we must stop centering our attention on “intellectualism.”  Today the point of connection in our culture is exactly where it was in Jesus day.  Our point of connection is not in bigger facilities and more programs.  Our point of connection today is in showing men and women a better way to live their lives through Jesus Christ.


2 Responses to Where is Our Point of Connection Today?

  1. Isn’t it interesting that it was this same post-war intellectual culture that passed down the idea of a steady job (and steady retirement) and all things comfortable in spite of the fact that the only constant in the world is change? It seems that biblical knowledge increased, but understanding and wisdom did not keep pace. And today, the religion of having the right head knowledge is a testament to that generation’s teaching.

    After losing 60 or 70 years to intellectualism, the church needs to get moving on obeying the gospel. Enough talk. Time to be quiet and do.

  2. Jan says:

    We should be living our lives in such a way that people can see Christ living in us and want what we have. If we aren’t into Christ 100% how can we expect others to want what we have? It’s all about relationship.

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