Jamen Walker | Category: Library Resources
Our book of the month for March is John MacArthur’s Ashamed of the Gospel: When the Church Becomes Like the World. MacArthur is the well known pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California. He has been in the ministry for over forty years and has written dozens of books, often sending the alarm to the church when it starts to embrace the world. This volume is no different. It is actually a more important work because he believes that the very gospel is at stake.
John has a very distinctive way of writing. He is easy to read and doesn’t pull any punches. He has a straightforward manner in getting his point across.
MacArthur’s argument is that many in the church have become pragmatists, believing that it is acceptable to try anything necessary to get people in to the pews of the local church. Various means have been used such as different forms of entertainment: man-centered worship, watered-down messages that are nothing more than stories, and the like. To many, churches have become a place to have felt needs met more than anything, in opposition to serving others, having fellowship with other believers, and worshipping God.
The sad thing about all of this is that the gospel is being hidden away and its restorative power is not impacting unregenerate men and women. The gospel is stripped of its power and in its place we have people in churches who are led to believe that they are saved and who may not be. In addition, while church attendance is rising, godliness is not growing and is not a priority. The Word of God is minimized and is not taught properly.
This being the case in many instances, the church as a whole is in trouble. Too few of the spiritually mature are seeing this epidemic for what it is and even fewer are willing to confront the problem. This book was published in 1993. If this was true then, what are we to surmise of our situation in the present?
At 3RGC, we should be thankful that God has provided a congregation (especially leadership) that values the truths of Scripture and will not accept false teaching. Faith and repentance are more important than the attendance number sheet. Worship is directed to a holy God instead of on ourselves. Many churches cannot honestly say this for themselves, and we should continue to strive to reach our community, for the gospel is the power to salvation.
The purpose of our church blog is to serve the overall mission of our church: to delight in the beauty of God's greatness,