2 Churches?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by JamesBell, Apr 18, 2008.

  1. JamesBell

    JamesBell
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    Hi everyone. It has been quite some time since I've posted here, so I will assume most of you all don't know me. If that is the case, let me start by saying "nice to meet you."

    Now, on to my question. I am a member of a Southern Baptist church and am quite happy there. I don't necessarily consider myself a "Southern Baptist" because in the past I've attended an Independent Fundamental church that will probably always feel like my true "church home".

    That said, I've recently discovered a large church in my area called Life Church (or lifechurch.tv- they often refer to the church by its website address). While I don't think this is something that will ever become my "church" I have enjoyed going to it on Saturday evening.

    Just to describe it quickly- it is a very large church, with several campuses around Oklahoma and a few in other states. Each church has live worship (meaning non-traditional music- resembles a rock concert at times) and a pastor for the campus. However, the message is watched on large screens via sattelite from the original church in Oklahoma City.

    It is fun and the teaching seems to be solid (though I've been exactly three times). I'm just curious if anyone has a reason as to why it would be a bad idea to attend this church just for the teaching that it does provide.

    Thanks everyone!
     
  2. Joe

    Joe
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    Hi James

    I read your post a few times, and bolded some of it.

    To sum it up-
    You all get together to watch a movie via sattelite and listen to live music. The movie includes a "biblical message". Nothing wrong with that...:) There are others who do more than listen, they worship to the music. Sort of like "actively following along" to the rock music in your own way. I consider it similar to working out to an aerobic video with Suzanne Sommers.

    Regarding the Pastor they have onhand, it would be interesting to know which church he attends.


    Imho, there is nothing wrong with attending this event on Saturday evenings
     
  3. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    Three times is probably not sufficient to get a handle on the church. One good step would be to ask for a doctrinal statement.

    If, however, the pastor begins a six-part series on how to have a great sex life, run as fast as you can.
     
  4. JamesBell

    JamesBell
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    Tom, you are correct that three times isn't enough to fully understand the church. But, most of their messages (minus music) are on their website. I haven't seen anything that really raised my eyebrows any to this point.

    I like the way you summed up the service Joe. It basically is listening to a praise band and then watching a televised sermon. I guess I'm a little hesitant to accept it because it is so "non-traditional" The fact that there are several "Life Churches" doesn't bother me. It is the fact that the pastor at each location says only a few words and then the TVs come on. It just isn't what I would really consider "church".

    As for the pastor- he doesn't attend a different church. The campuses all have several meetings each weekend. (They call it an experience- which also bothers me some. It should be you worshiping God, and they seem to be looking at what they get from the experience I guess.) I believe the normal schedule is two meetings on Saturday evening and three or four on Sunday. The pastor at each location is busy all weekend by just being there. I don't really know what his true function is, and I've yet to be able to find him after a service to ask.

    I guess the reason I am asking is because after going with a friend, I see some value to the message that is being preached. But their method of delivery is causing me to wonder if it is something I would be better off ignoring.
     
  5. Dale-c

    Dale-c
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    You mention going to an IFB church as well.
    I am not sure what your particular IFB church is like but they are often very traditional.

    The life church is going to obviously be non traditional (though they are forming their own new traditions)

    Often IFB churches are so wrapped up in traditionalism that they lose sight of the real meaning of a Church, while the mega churches revolt from that and throw out the baby with the bath water.

    I would encourage you to look not on style or tradition but on content.

    Also, are they really fulfilling all of the roles of a local church with their satellite program?

    I am being carefully to not simply rule out the place without knowing more but I would encourage you to proceed with caution.

    Tradition of style is not a fundamental of the faith but often when people so radically change and remove tradition they tend to toss out a lot of good with the bad.
    I will not accuse these people of doing that without further knowledge but I would guess that they probably have.
     
  6. JamesBell

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    The IFB church that I went to was indeed very traditional. They are the typical IFB church in my mind (KJVO, no non-traditional music is accepted, etc.). I disagree with some of their stances as much, or more than, I do with the "church" in question now. However, their heart for missions work and the clear love of God that was exhibited more than made up for the short comings in my mind.

    I will say that life church does a pretty good job of filling the role of the traditional church. Two or three weeks ago a tornado hit the area of the original church. In fact it was within about a block of the church. There was a rapid response from people in the church, seeking to help those that were affected. These people were helping people clean up their homes and neighborhood- but were also preaching the Gospel while they did it. That is a big part of the reason that I decided to continue giving them a chance.

    I believe you may be correct in that they attempted too hard to get rid of the traditions. Like I said, it would never be my church home- it is just another opportunity to hear a good message. But, I don't want to be involved with something that I shouldn't be- and I thought asking here would be a good way to have other Christians weigh in on the issue. So far, it seems as if everyone is about where I am- somewhat suspect but with no real reason to reject the notion.
     
  7. exscentric

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    Their lead pastor seems to have been trained in a Disciples of Christ school, their website is a place you should begin your search for an answer. Is it revealing information you seek about the people you will be fellowshipping with, the doctrine you will be getting?
     

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