The Church and Future Generations

Picture1Thanks to by buddy Phil Auxier for posting this and sending it to me. Says exactly what we want to be as a church… never waffling on our convictions, but breathing the grace of the Gospel into every corner of our ministry. From Ray Ortlund’s When God Comes to Church.

Do we want to guarantee that our children will run in the opposite direction of our most cherished biblical convictions?  All we have to do is sterilize our churches.  Make them rigid, unresponsive, grim.  Require of our ministers that they play the role of scolding, scowling Reverend Eat-Your-Peas. Treat the gospel as a theological system only, rather than also as a personal remedy.  Use the Bible as ammunition for “culture wars” rather than as food for life.  Withdraw from the historical situation in which God has placed us.  Build up the walls, reinforce the barriers and make certain that no experience gets in here.  Ignore the fact that “doctrine only” is not itself a biblical doctrine.

But do we want our children to embrace our biblical convictions with joy?  Let our churches become environments fertile with revival potentialities.  Let’s shape our churches with deliberate intention that their content and tone may encourage our children, and all others, in true experience of God.  Let our convictions open up to their eyes a glorious vision of God and to their hearts the succulent pleasures of God.  We cannot trigger a divine visitation on our churches, but it isour responsibility prayerfully to offer our Lord a church steeped in the gospel and tenderly responsive to his presence.  His Spirit’s blessing should not have to work against the logic and ethos we create.

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