The State of the Church
The Church in the world.
Church is an extension of God’s Kingdom on earth.
are a vision to the world of what the Kingdom will look like
The Church shares the love and the Gospel of Jesus with the world.
Mathew 28:18-20. Jesus wants us to teach what He taught; He wants us to be
imitators of Him.
He went out to the Samaritan woman, an enemy and hater of
the Jewish people, and still shared the love of the Father with her. In turn,
she went and gathered others to listen to Jesus speak.
The Church, capital C, hasn’t done much of this. The northeast region has replaced Washington State and Oregon as the least
Pew, Gallop, Lifeway, the American Bible Society, and Barna, all
significant studies, have done surveys of the region. Here’s a bit of what they found
At the bottom of the list was Albany, NY, Boston, MA, and
Providence, RI, making what they call the new unchurched belt
What does that look like and mean?
Facts from the region: for every church, there are about 35,000
people in the area of that church.
After the recent poll that showed the number of “nones” on the
Nones: People with no church background do not see America as
a Christian nation.
Only 2% of the population are active Christians.
That means out of every 100 people, only 2 are active Christians.
In a town like Sutton, that is nearly 9,000 people, that means nearly 180. With the surrounding towns, where the population goes to nearly 90,000, only 1,800
What is going on?
Churches have realized that they must be active in going beyond
the doors of the building and reaching the people.
Every week, 400 churches will close their doors for good
3,500 people will walk away from the church because they’ve been
hurt by or become disenchanted by the Church.
church isn’t fire insurance.
church doesn’t save people. God does. We are just here to point them to the
often, we forget that the Holy Spirit convicts people, not the pastor, other servants, and God himself. John 16:7-9 “The Helper will not come
to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict
the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment concerning sin.
The Importance of Discipleship
Here’s just a bit it of what we see:
Peter says, “Like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so
that by it you may grow in respect to salvation” 1 Peter 2:2,
“Hear then the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it,
the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is
what was sown along the path. As for what was sown on
rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it
with joy, yet he has no root in himself but endures for
a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word,
immediately he falls away. As for what was sown among thorns,
this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the
deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. As
for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears and understands the word. He bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in
another sixty, and in another thirty.”