Elephant in the Church – Check out the comments and add yours

September 5, 2007


This is a post from Mark Batterson’s blog thought it was good – http://www.evotional.com/2007/09/elephant-in-church.html

Just thought I’d do a little blog brainstorm on our next sermon series.

We’ll kick off a series this weekend titled The Elephant in the Church. The series plays off the old idiom: the elephant in the room. It’s a reference to obvious truths that everyone ignores. I want it to be a series where we honestly and humbly acknowledge the church’s shortcomings, but give it a positive spin by talking about how we are the church and we can be a solution to the problem.

I’d love to draw on the wisdom of the blogosphere. What are some taboo topics we ought to be talking about? What are some confessions the church needs to make? What are those issues that everybody is thinking about but nobody is talking about?

What are the elephants in the church?


4 Responses to “Elephant in the Church – Check out the comments and add yours”

  1. BrentD Says:

    THESE ARE ALL GREAT: here were some comments from Mark’s site

    the church is homophobic.
    southern churches are racist.
    church people are all middle-class, white, republicans.
    How can the church claim to know the only way to heaven?

    1) We spend most of our money on ourselves. We pay lip service to the “widows and orphans” thing, but in reality we really just want better bands, more charismatic speakers, and more comfortable seats.

    2) We don’t really live out Christ’s commandment to “love one another.” We think it sounds good, but we’d rather just have our churches be REALLY good at marketing instead.

    3) We don’t seriously ask people to consider the cost of following Christ. We think that whole “take up your cross and follow me” thing makes sense for missionaries, and maybe some pastors and staff, but not really anybody else. We just want to have a good job, and nice house, and live comfortably. We don’t really want to hear that death imagery that Jesus liked to use with His followers.

    4) Church leadership is more than willing to allow the top 3 to keep money-giving members in the seats each week.

    Todays church is one of domestication and idleness. Instead of asking people to live outside of their comfort zone and reach out to others in love, todays church creates a sort of safe cocoone in which to safely wait for death.

    Todays church is not for the artist, the musician, or the free spirit. It is only for conservative republicans.

    Why are there some many churches in every city and why can’t they work together? Why does every church need its own version of every ministry?

    Great topic! I would say that alcohol is the big elephant in the Church. Seems to me that this is a Biblical grey area and b/c of that, most preachers will stay away from the topic.

    Of course Church leaders (staff and non-staff) will be encouraged or required to not drink publically as to not cause others to stumble, but what does that mean for the general population?

    Is it hypocritical for a Church leader to drink in moderation privately, giving the impression publically that they don’t drink? Is drinking in moderation ok, and if so, what defines moderation?

    What Love does.
    the devastation porn causes.
    country club mentality.
    The importance of reaching children with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
    purposeless churches.
    really following Jesus in all that we say and do – being radically sold out to living life His way.
    Would Jesus be Republican or Democrat? (obviously neither) but as others mentioned, attacking the idea that there is one party for Christians.
    The importance of repentance and confession – to God and to others.
    Creating safe and healing community within the church. We are all in recovery.

    New headlines talk of Mother Teresa writing that she didn’t feel God’s presence over half her life.

    Sometimes before prayer, especially in charismatic/pentecostal churches, preachers ask, “How many believe God’s going to…?” I always hesitate to answer because I truthfully don’t know what God is going to do. I only know what He can do. I’ve seen too many instances where God could have done something, but He didn’t.

    For example, God can restore lost fingers, arms, legs, etc., but He doesn’t.

    1) The church as a whole is as much a place of hate as it is of love. We have failed.
    2) Church unity. It is frequently mentioned by Jesus, but seldom talked about from the pulpit. Not just within the church, but across The Church (globally).
    3) The church has a lot of disagreements, none of which matter as much as “Jesus Loves You”

  2. BrentD Says:

    An Email sent to me: so I posting it for another pastor –

    Good call! Tackling the tough issues is an important role of the Pastor. Paul said that he didn’t fail to preach the WHOLE COUNSEL of God. No topic was off limits. Go for it! I saw Mark Batterson’s blog on this and have been thinking about this for some time. I have a series called “Church Uncensored” scheduled for sometime in 08!

  3. App Says:

    You’r exactly correct with this writing!

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