It’s saddening that God’s people still struggle with taking tools for transformation and making them objects of worship.
Here are three common idols in churches:
1. The Place
Because the Lord does a great work in the hearts of His people when they gather, the places of gathering can move from a tool for transformation to an object of worship. Thus, if a leader mentions “relocation,” the leader is essentially threatening to cut a bronze snake into pieces. We must remind people that the building is not the church, that His people are the church. God does not live in the place where we gather; He lives in the hearts of His people.
2. The Past
Because the Lord worked in amazing ways in the past, the past can become an idol where people long for the past more than they long for the Lord. Being grateful for the past is one thing, and worshiping it is quite another. If “former days” were great, they were only great because of the Lord.
3. The Programs
Because God changed lives through a program or event, people can elevate a program to an unhealthy place. Programs can become ends in themselves and not tools used in a church’s discipleship process. When this happens, they exist as modern-day bronze snakes.
4. The Pastors
Most Christians if you have noticed also start worshiping their Pastors and leaders at a point. This is why we don’t have berean Christians anymore because we take everything the Pastor says in, hook, line and sinker. We don’t try to go back to the WORD to find out what it says anymore. The Pastor said it and so it is.
Leaders must constantly point people to the person of Jesus. Only He is worthy of our worship and only He can transform hearts. When we help people see the greatness of Jesus, idols look less attractive.
Leaders must also continually remind people of the purpose of the church. (Yes, I know it is another “p,” but it fits.) A church exists to make disciples. When a church embraces the mission of making disciples, programs are viewed as tools and not as ends in themselves. (this is why I am so in love with House on the Rock church PH)
Send your confessions and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and I will do justice to them. You are not the only one that needs help, we all do