Three Types of Churches

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by J.D., Apr 4, 2008.

  1. J.D.

    J.D.
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    I picked up on something when reading Ian Murray's biography of AW Pink recently. To summarize, Pink spoke of churches that were:

    1. Experiential - they want to experience or feel something
    2. Preceptive - based on rules, "just tell us what to do - don't make us think"
    3. Doctrinal - based on scripture studies, "let us think".

    Are there any other ways we might catagorize churches or individual Christians other than these three catagories?
     
  2. TCGreek

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    Seeker sensitive.
     
  3. JustChristian

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    Evangelical
     
  4. J.D.

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    "Seeker-sensitive" would be a large grouping consisting of the three types. Yes?

    Let's think about this. I'll say that Seeker Sensitive churches are 40% expereince, 40% precept,and 20% doctrine. Agree?
     
  5. J.D.

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    A large grouping. Or did you intend to say "evangelistic"? I would say that Evangelical churches are pretty much evenly split among the three types. Evangelistic churches are 10% experiential, 80% preceptive, and 10% doctrinal. ?
     
  6. Dale-c

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    J.D. great thread.

    As for seeker sensitive, I would say that are mostly 1 and 2.
    They don't care for doctrine or they would not be seeker sensitive.
    But they would probably be mostly experietial.
    But since it is based on what the audience wants, then I would have to say it could vary.
     
  7. Dale-c

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    J.D.
    You might say another way to put it is that these are the "primary colors" of churches.
    Find a church and the color of the church will be the result of the mixture of the three.
     
  8. TCGreek

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    Agreed, although I was wondering about 40% each to experienial and preceptive.

    But I guess you're correct.
     
  9. J.D.

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    Right. Let's talk about an appropriate mix. How about 80% Doctrinal, 10% Precept (there are some things you just have to make rules on), and 10% Experience (sometimes I get a "feeling" even though I didn't plan on having one!).
     
  10. J.D.

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    I think Idid put 40% each to exp and prec. Anyway, this is fun but I'll have to check back tomorrow. Sleepytime!
     
  11. JustChristian

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    Yes. I meant to say evangelistic. Actually though when I looded the words up one of the meanings of evangelical is evangelistic.

    evangelical


    Main Entry:
    1evan·gel·i·cal Listen to the pronunciation of 1evangelical
    Pronunciation:
    \ˌē-ˌvan-ˈje-li-kəl, ˌe-vən-\
    Variant(s):
    also evan·gel·ic Listen to the pronunciation of evangelic \-ik\
    Function:
    adjective
    Date:
    1531

    1: of, relating to, or being in agreement with the Christian gospel especially as it is presented in the four Gospels2: protestant3: emphasizing salvation by faith in the atoning death of Jesus Christ through personal conversion, the authority of Scripture, and the importance of preaching as contrasted with ritual4 a capitalized : of or relating to the Evangelical Church in Germany b often capitalized : of, adhering to, or marked by fundamentalism : fundamentalist c often capitalized : low church5: marked by militant or crusading zeal : evangelistic <the evangelical ardor of the movement's leaders — Amos Vogel>
     
  12. Timsings

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    Dale, I think you're moving in the right direction. A church has to be and do a lot of things. If it neglects any of these because it has gotten too concerned with one aspect of its ministry, then it is going to have problems. For years I've heard stories about a large church that was praised for the numbers of baptisms it had every year. But its membership never seemed to increase significantly. The story was that they were losing members out the "back door" as fast as they were bringing them in the front door. They were so focused on evangelism that they could not relate to their new members' interest in doing some kind of missions, ministry, or service, in the community.

    Each church must achieve a balance among these three elements. That doesn't mean that all churches must have the same balance. It means that churches experience the "variety of gifts" from the Holy Spirit just as individual believers do. Each church must find its gifts and develop them without ignoring the elements of church life where their gifts aren't as strong.

    Tim Reynolds
     
  13. J.D.

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    Right, "evangelistic" is a characteristic of some evangelical churches. In it's broadest definition, evangelical simply means "non-sacramental" or by convention "non-Roman Catholic". But a fundamentalist might narrow the definition to "non-catholic AND non-fundamental".
     
  14. webdog

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    They don't care about doctrine? You sure make quite a few blanket statements on the BB. They take doctrine to it's purpose...to reach the lost! What the "audience wants" is something to fill the void only Christ can. THAT is the purpose of 'seeker sensitive'.

    As to the OP, there are 7 churches in Revelation. I would say that should be the baseline for this discussion.
     
  15. J.D.

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    Pastor Hybles has admitted that his church is doctrinally shallow. He thought a progression from experiential to doctrinal would take place but that never happened.

    Emerging churches like Mars Hill are attempting to be doctrinal, but they are struggling with it IMO. But much of the emerging church is downright anti-doctrine.
     
  16. webdog

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    Willow Creek is an extreme example, and not the norm. They also employ women elders, so I believe they are lacking in quite a few doctrinal areas.
     

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