CHURCH & MINISTRY
7 Issues the Modern Evangelical Church must Face
By Robin Vinz Salvador
Robin blogs at Vinz Ideas, a Christian blog in the Philippines.
As we inch closer and closer to the end times, the church will face more and more issues than ever. All churches in the world — be it a modern Christian church in Dubai or a Presbyterian church in London — experience them, and they have been causing struggles for both members and leaders.
The following are critical problems all the churches of the world must address in order for the faith to become a brighter beacon of God's love.
More than One Savior?
There is a growing opposition in the West towards Christians who believe that the only savior is Jesus Christ — the traditional Christian worldview, as stated in John 14:6, is:
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."Christians should hold fast to this belief, even though they will be continue to be lumped with hatemongers and terrorists as the proliferation of other religions around the world will continue to rise; it is one of the most important cornerstones of the Christian faith.
A Limited God
Some evangelical scholars — Clark Pinnock, John Sanders, and Gregory Boyd — are claiming that God does not have an infinite knowledge of the future. Called Open Theists, these evangelical scholars believe that God neither predetermines nor foreknows the moral choices of people.
This, however, contradicts what the Bible teaches, as it is clearly written in Jeremiah 29:11:
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."God knows what kind of future we will have if we do not choose Him, and he has already created a beautiful future for us if we do.
Gender Roles in the Church
God created man and woman equal. In fact, according to Galatians 3:28, there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for we are all one in Christ Jesus. Strangely enough, there are verses like 1 Timothy 2:12 that restrict women from teaching and sitting in positions of authority.
Because of the contrasting nature of the ideologies of this conundrum, two schools of thought have emerged: evangelical egalitarians and evangelical complementarians. The former believe that because men and women are equal, women also are just as qualified to become pastors, teachers, and elders. The latter, on the other hand, state that although men and women are essentially equal, the two genders should be assigned to different roles.
Either way, whichever you believe in, what matters is that both men and women serve God so more people can be shown the way.
Scientific and Technological Progresses
Advancements in science and technology are a double-edged sword. While technological leaps make our lives more convenient and scientific discoveries help us understand better the world around us, they also change the way we live — for better or worse.
Cloning, fetal tissue research, genetic engineering, reproductive technologies — these are just a few examples of the technological advances that have recently sprung up. Despite their possible ethical/moral implications, Christianity has yet to create a clear stand on many of these issues. In fact, some Christians are wondering if the Bible, a book that was written thousands of years ago, has an answer regarding what should be our position regarding these things. And perhaps most importantly, it can no longer be ignored; the time has come for Christians to recognize that these things will be either be approved of or confronted by our faith.
One of the most saddening and disturbing realities the body of Christ is facing is Christians' growing lack of knowledge of the Bible. A lot of people have begun believing the non-existence of Satan, the sinning of Jesus Christ, and the doing of good works to be absolved of sin — theological beliefs that do not have any biblical basis.
One of the roots of evangelical Christianity is knowledge of the Scripture. But with that foundation starting to weaken, many of the church's members face a great risk of falling away. Indeed, this problem is something that must be resolved.
It is said that the church will face great difficulties in the last days. While they are inevitable, that doesn't mean we should just let these things damage the body of Christ. Rather, we should be aware of them and stand fast to the truth.
Image Credit: Scott Norris; "Beacon"; Creative Commons
Tags: Biblical-Truth | Church-Issues | Controversial-Issues | Controversial-Issues | Current-Issues | False-Teaching | Ministry-Church
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