More and more, I become disturbed with what church is becoming today. I don’t know about you. But I was raised and have been a part of several type of churches. Churches with contemporary worship and modern worship. And I was raised listening to Hilsong worship music, music by Hosanna, Passion, and Paul Baloche. Darlene Zschech, Delirious. And I have also listened to old fashioned music from the churches I went to. I like both styles. I have to admit, the more beat it has, the more I am drawn in. But the lyrics is the most important part. If it is not worshipping Jesus in all ways…it is not worship.
I have witnessed the evolution of worship music in our culture today. It has changed drastically. There used to be very heartfelt lyrics that had meaning. Now…not all, but most Christian music has become worldly. Making the beats faster and becoming more entertainment value and not glorifying God at all. I’m not saying that you cannot have a good beat, guitar riffs and crushing vocals. I’m just saying…what is the intention of doing all of that? To be worshipped or to worship??
Once we become the focal point of the congregation, we have lost our way. Once we become the rock stars that everyone aspires to be, we have lost our way. Jesus is supposed to be the focal point. Jesus is supposed to be the rock star. Better yet, He IS the rock we lean on. So why do we lift our hands for the attention of someone else? If we truly believe in the message we share, we don’t have to wrap it up in a trendy bow. It speaks for itself. Jesus died for you and me. The murderer, the adulterer, the homosexual, the thief, the beggar, and the leper. It is the most important message ever.
There are a lot of churches who are so full of the world that you can’t find the church. I’m not pointing any specific fingers because that is not my place. But I have been a part of worship teams of all kinds. Even I was tested in my loyalty to the Father. I was trying to please man and get a crown from Him when I should have been trying to please God and receive my crown from Him. So, in the brief time, where I had experienced life on a stage on Sunday…I struggled. People would compliment my voice and I reacted in false humility. Initially, I didn’t do it for human praise. I did it to honor God with my gift. But sometimes you can worship your gift more than the giver. And God gets leftovers.
I am careful now in what I listen to. Even worship music. I am careful in who I listen to. I tend to shy away from most TV preaches and evangelists. Because, if I don’t focus on Jesus truth, I can be swept away by someone else’s. Some people in the world might not have any truth and instead of reading the Bible, they just watch a watered down version of church on TV. But what these people may not know is there is a lot of untruth out of there. And it is disguised as Christianity. But is more like World-ism.
When you look at the word “world”, you will notice the “L” in it. When you remove the “L”, you have the word “word”. Jesus came to take the “L” out of the world and bring the word. L stands for lies. He took the lies out of the world and replaced it with His word, the truth. But they don’t go hand in hand. You cannot worship the world AND God. You cannot worship lies and truth. You cannot make the church into a club scene. That is where sin breeds more sin. And sin is in contempt of God’s word. I think the reason why we make church so accessible and accommodating is because we wan’t to make Christianity look cool. But Christianity was never meant to be cool and trendy. That is why there is so much persecution in the world. Why do you think Jesus was persecuted? Because he was a the hub of popularity and social media? No. He spoke the truth, he showed the truth and He died for it. He is the martyr of our hearts. He is the martyr of our salvation. He bridged the gap between our sin and the love of our Father.
So next time you go to a church service, if it looks more like a concert than a sermon, maybe you should re-examine what YOUR priorities are. Are you going there to feel good and be entertained? Or are you going to truly seek what it means to be saved and walk in God’s mercy and grace. Personally, when I see a worship leader in ripped jeans, moussed hair, and looks more metro, I question on the image he is trying to convey. You can be a rock star or a disciple. But you cannot be both.
While churches should be accepting, they should not accept everything. Churches say dress how you want, live how you want, and act how you want. We accept you anyway. We are all about love. Love can change a person. But love without discipline can be the downfall. We must love, but that doesn’t always mean accept. When you love someone, it doesn’t mean you agree with them all the time. Love crosses boundaries. Love touches nerves. Love does not watch someone fall off a cliff. Love sometimes requires taking a plunge. Even at the risk of losing someone. You can love someone. But you cannot truly love someone and never expect any change. Churches can say they love. But if they never point out what people are doing wrong, they are not really showing them true love. They are crippling them with the false idea of love.
I pray that churches will rise up and lead their sheep to a greener pasture. They should not masquerade their music as the world’s. They should not add or subtract anything from the Bible. And most importantly, they should speak the truth firmly but loving. They should not see dollar’s signs on a person’s soul. Or misuse funds for material or personal agenda.
My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. “Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests; because you have ignored the law of your God, I also will ignore your children.-Hosea 4:6
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.-Romans 12:2
“‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.-Matthew 15:8
You can say you love God. But if you never give up anything for Him…your dreams, money, time, fame and any gain, then you don’t really love Him. You love yourself and your possessions more.
In conclusion, I speak this with love and full conviction. I am not perfect nor do I strive to be. I just pray that people’s eyes will be open as mine are being opened.