In 1930, Dietrich Bonhoeffer (yes, I am still reading/savoring the Marsh biography) wrote of New York City churches the following indictment:
“In New York, they preach about virtually everything except … the gospel of Jesus Christ.”
Eighty-seven years later, what would Bonhoeffer say about NYC. For while there is Times Square, Redeemer Presbyterian, Calvary Baptist, Trinity Baptist, Brooklyn Tabernacle and others, New York is still a theological wasteland in many regards. However, the “city that never sleeps,” is not alone. I believe there are countless other American cities today in which Bonhoeffer could write the same indicting missive.
And this truth breaks my heart because there is no time “such as this” in which the Gospel of Messiah Jesus is so desperately needed. The Millennial Generation is abandoning the church building often because the message inside contains nothing that will answer the hollow vacuum of their souls. We must and we can do better but the question is – do we want to try?
The Gospel is uncomfortable. The Gospel is awkward. The Gospel is, yes, often condemning. However, the Gospel is lifechanging. The Gospel is eternal. The Gospel is Messiah Jesus.
Hot tub youth parties are fun but they don’t offer eternal life. Ear tickling messages might bring better offerings but they are not life changing. Fixing roofs is important but it is not Messiah Jesus. WE MUST AND WE CAN DO BETTER. LET US DO MORE THAN TRY. LET’S DO IT!
I recognize this is not a touchy-feely blog post to end 2016 but there is no more time. We must all become affected with CHD – Compulsive Honesty Disorder – that focuses on one message and one message only …
The Gospel of Messiah Jesus!