by Michael Carl on October 19, 2014
I posted this elsewhere to explain what is meant by 'the church is in ruins.' 

First, we need to determine what we're talking about when we say 'the church.' Yes, the Church of the Lord will be victorious and He is preserving it even now in accordance with His promise in Matthew 16:18, '"...I will build My church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."' However, that doesn't mean that in order to fulfill that promise the church might not need correction at times. 

If I recall from history, there's that little thing called the Reformation. Then there was the First Great Awakening, the Second Great Awakening, the 1857 Awakening, and the Welsh and Hebrides Revivals with their companion revivals in North America and Asia. 

In many of the churches in this country, we unfortunately have dumbed-down worship to where the service constitutes little more than a 30-minute pop concert followed by an offering and a 25-minute motivational speech. And this is in the 'evangelical' church. 

To illustrate further, I went to seminary twice and earned two Master's Degrees, both with a missions focus. At both schools, top American evangelical seminaries, the Missions Department consisted of three maybe four full-time professors. The Counseling Departments had five, maybe six. In the Upper division missions courses, one of my classes had two students (me and someone else). In the upper division counseling courses, they were jammed, 30-40 students each. What this means is that we're narcissistic and inwardly looking. How else can you explain why what John MacArthur calls, 'The Gospel of Self-Fulfillment' flow from this nation's pulpits? Why are some churches' sermons little more than marriage counseling sessions or how to raise a family? 

The Gospel Jesus ordered us to proclaim is in Luke 24:45-47, '45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, 46 and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, 47 and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem."' How many times in recent weeks have you heard of a pastor preaching against divorce and remarriage? How many times does your pastor call upon the people in the pews to repent of their sin and turn completely towards Christ? 

This is what is meant by the churches being in ruins. Where is the honour and reverence of God's holy name? Where is the fear of the Lord? Where is the Gospel according to Jesus?

Michael Carl, MA, MAR
Priest, Journalist