"THE CHURCH GROWTH MOVEMENT"

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by Pitipat, Dec 16, 2004.

  1. Pitipat

    Pitipat
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    Fellow Believers,

    Never in my lifetime have I seen anything that has been as controversial and divisive as the CGM.
    One of the most astonishing things about is that it has this in common with Bill Clinton, either you support it with a "fever" or oppose with a "frenzy". No one seems to be lukewarm when it comes to this subject. It certainly incompasses the doctrine of inclusiveism. I have found this in Churches of Christ, Catholic, Assembly Of God and numerous Baptist Churches including FWB and SBC in my community. There seems to also be an age division, with those 35 to 40 years supporting it and most of the opposition coming from the older group. Could this be because in the past few decades sound doctrine has been made to be divisive. The first thing that cast doubts on this program is the "pedigrees" of the greatest proponets of it namely Bill Hybel, Rick Warren and One of the Grand parents Robert
    Schullar. Theologically this group is tied to the FULLER SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY and is 100% pragmatic.
    And anyone interested enough to pursue this further can research the teachings of the likes of socialists of THE NEW WORLD ORDER such as the G. W. Friedrich Hegal, Peter Drucker, Bob Burford and Tom Patterson. Beware of the Trogan Horse, its like Hillary Clintons "ITS FOR THE CHILDREN".
    Is it really.
     
  2. All about Grace

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    At least you don't paint with broad strokes and make hasty generalizations.

    :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

    You can't have a serious dialogue about this subject with the type of accusations (I will not use the word ignorance) you display here.
     
  3. izzaksdad

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    Check the credentials of Jerry Vines, Johnny Hunt, Adrian Rogers, David Gallamore, Joe Brown, Don Wilton, John MacArthur, Steve Gaines, Ronnie Floyd, Fred Luter.

    These men Pastor mega-churches. I do extensive research on growing churches/CGM. These men preach expositiory messages, they decry sin, and they train their people to be soulwinners. These churches are also Pastor led. These men have one main agenda: WIN SOULS.

    If you win souls, baptize, and disciple, you have no other option but to grow.
     
  4. NateT

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    In fact Jerry Vines was on CBS a few years ago for saying that Muslims would not go to heaven unless they profess faith in Christ. The segment was introduced as "Hate Speech"

    btw. I'm lukewarm on the movement [​IMG]
     
  5. blackbird

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    Nate---I was at the worship service in which Dr. Vines made that comment!! I like a preacher whos gonna get up and tell the truth, don't you!!??? Be he a pastor of 25,000 member FBC, Jacksonville or my little "Po-dunk" church here in Mississippi!! In fact, I won't blink an eye if I just go ahead and "ditto" Dr. Vines---Muslims will not go to Heaven unless they profess faith in Jesus Christ---unless they repent of their sins and receive Jesus as their savior and Lord---they will die in their sins and spend their eternity in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone!!

    Brother David
     
  6. izzaksdad

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    blackbird,

    just for facts sake, it is 27,000 member fbc, jvlle! [​IMG]

    Tom Brokaw is one who has been known to deliver all the facts to. Funny that that story pretty much only highlighted those statements.

    nate, the fact still remains that if your church is a Great Commission Church, it has no choice but to grow.
     
  7. semstudent

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    I find myself to be lukewarm on this issue. I would say beware this movement was propelled by C Peter Wagner from Fuller, he is also a proponent of the power evangelism methodology. I try to weigh their strategies against scripture and allow the Holy SPirit to guide me to truth and assist me in growing the growing the believers and the church I shepherd.
     
  8. donnA

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    Why is it when churches grow it automatically means someone is doing something wrong. Like comprimising the gospel. A church is supose to grow, and God is the one doing the growing. I think the accusations come from people in small churches that are not growing.
     
  9. dianetavegia

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    Well spoken Donna! Our Hispanic Ministry is the only one in this area. We also offer American Sign Language Translation and remote hearing aids for our elderly. We pick up at the retirement homes too. Our church is growing by leaps and bounds, usually 7 or more new members a week. I suggest it's because of our visitation, evangelism and our programs and certainly not because any gospel is watered down. On the Contrary!
     
  10. dh1948

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    I was first introduced to the church growth movement in the early 70's as a young pastor. God seemed to put a passion in my heart for leading churches in biblical methods which produced growth. Over the past 30-something years I suppose I have heard all the arguments, pro and con. I choose to come down on the pro side. If a local church is a living organism, which we pastors like to say, then it must grow. Don't all living things grow? They pulsate with life. It is true that a church can be alive, but sickly. It can't survive forever in a sickly state. It must die or get well. There are thousands of churches in America that are alive, but they are really as dead as last year's bird nest. I believe Jesus said something about this in His letter to the church at Sardis.

    Fellow pastors, your church does not have to be like Saddleback, Willow Creek, or FBC Jacksonville to be a live, growing church. Every year I go to the Pastors' Conference at FBC, Jacksonville. I always marvel at what God has done and is doing in that church. When I leave coming home, I sometimes feel a bit depressed for a short while. I guess it is because I am on my way back to a small, rural county in southeast, AL where I will have 250-300 in attendance this Sunday. But you know what? The closer I get to home, the brighter things look. God causes me to remember that He has planted me where I am and He has planted Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, and Jerry Vines where they are. Just because I am in a smaller situation than they does not mean that I can become anti-church growth in my philosophy.

    I can be used by God, right where I am, to lead my church into a spiral of growth that will honor and glorify the Lord Jesus. REJOICE!
     
  11. Karen

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    NOTHING more controversial or divisive? Support with fever or oppose with frenzy?
    Stick around on the BB for a while and you may change your mind. [​IMG]

    Karen
     
  12. Bartimaeus

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    The scripture is clear. Take a minute and think about this statement: God's methods are as important as God's message.
    David knew he had to have the ark to have the full blessing of God for his people. God was pleased that David would recover it from the Philistines. But remember this......God told him HOW to do it.
    My question is...Is CGM man's way or God's way? Are these the methods that God has given or are they just another version of the 60-70's circus church movement?
    Thanks -------Bart
     
  13. Broadus

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    Just for the record, John MacArthur, though pastoring a large church, is very much not a part of the church growth movement.

    Bill
     
  14. NateT

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    Let me clarify for a moment on my "lukewarm" comment.

    I love large churches. The largest one I've been in was about 5000 (that's large to me, nothing like MacArthur or Vines, etc.)

    There is no way that a Great Commission church won't grow.

    However, there are plenty of ways to make a non-Great Commission church grow. The purely pragmatic things, like "let's change factor X, and that will attract the crowd we want."

    I don't think that a large church neccesarily means that someone sold out their principles in order to get numbers. In fact, I think there are plenty of cases that are just the opposite.

    What bothers me is that so many people that you bump into in church circles who are big on the CGM miss the point. They make it all about programs etc.

    I want a church to grow because people like Dr. Vines etc are preaching God's word faithfully and completely. I don't want the church to grow because the first Sunday of every month, the Sunday School with highest attendence gets to go to Outback steakhouse care of the pastor.
     
  15. izzaksdad

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    Nate, I believe we need to identify what the CGM is and is not. Men like Vines, MacArthur, Hunt, etc., would not say they are quote/unquote "Church Growth Movement" pastors. What has happened in the last 25 years, maybe even more recently, is the mega church phenomenon. Churches like 1st Jax, Bellevue, 1stWoodstock, Grace Community, Rock Springs- these churches have been led by long tenured pastors who have been stressing several things for years: SUNDAY SCHOOL, SOUL WINNING,EXPOSITORY PREACHING, THEOLOGICALLY SOUND MUSIC MINISTRIES, AND EQUIPPING THE SAINTS TO DO THE MINISTRY. And these churches have grown as a result. They did not grow to mega status overnight, it took several years to build.

    I beleieve with the publicity of Saddleback, Mecklenburg Community, New Spring, Willow Creek, Fellowship, NorthPoint- all churches that have seen relatively rapid growth in a short period of time (with maybe the exception of saddleback- he has been there for years), the publicity has been mainly on their methods and not necessarily their message. As a result, these other churhes aforementioned, have gotten noticed and maybe have been lumped into what is now coined the CGM.

    I do not believe that the CGM is a movement at all. In many cases it is a novelty, and some guru coined the phrase when speaking of these churches, and now we associate CGM with pragmatism and cutting edge mehtods.

    Lee Robertson, Jerry Falwell, Cutis Hudson, Bill Monroe- back in the day they would not have been considered nor been aware of a CGM- they were just preaching the Word and winning souls, and promoting Sunday School.

    What do you think?
     
  16. av1611jim

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    I tend to agree somewhat with you, Izaaksdad.

    I would offer this caveat however. What some would call the CGM (IMO) is actually nothing less than an incorporation of business growth principles. Survey the community, find out what folks want in a "church" and then give it to them A business that does this will inevitably grow. Hence Walmart. In my day it was K-Mart. Before that it was Sears. They all played the "give-em-what-they-want" card. I see this as being identical to the philosphy of fellers like Rick Warren. He in fact said as much. Survey the community and give 'em what they want.
    This is not God's way.
    OTOH; men who over the years have streesed God's way of building the church, i.e. soul winning and discipling, have seen their ministries and influence grow in their respective communities.
    The two, although similar in outward appearences, are literally WORLDS apart.
    In His service;
    Jim
     
  17. gb93433

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    If anyone would take the time to check out around the world where chruches are growing the fastest it is where the believers are persecuted.

    That certainly throws out the CGM.
     
  18. gb93433

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    The average mega church grows about 3% each year. Whereas, the average church plant grows 50% each year. What does that tell you?
     
  19. LarryN

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    Hey, if anyone wants to know who has the fastest growing churches- check out this quote attributed to Russell Anderson on the Hyles-Anderson College website (he's the "Anderson" in the school's name):

    "Hyles-Anderson College is tried and proven. The fastest growing churches in the world are pastored by graduates of Hyles-Anderson College. No other pastors are producing more fruit for Christ."

    :rolleyes:
     
  20. izzaksdad

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    av1611jim,

    Whether you agree with him totally or not, at least check out J. MacArthur's book, "The BOOK on Leadership". it deals precisely with what you have stated. He gives some great info and biblically based leadership and growth principles.
     

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