Arguably the most influential Baptist Evangelist in history, Charles Spurgeon once wrote about the influx of entertainment into the churches in his day. That was well over a century ago. Spurgeon writes,
An evil is in the professed camp of the Lord, so gross in its impudence, that the most shortsighted can hardly fail to notice it during the past few years. It has developed at an abnormal rate, even for evil. It has worked like leaven until the whole lump ferments. The devil has seldom done a cleverer thing than hinting to the church that part of their mission is to provide entertainment for the people, with a view to winning them.
Little did Spurgeon know, what he wrote couldn’t ring any more true so long after he was gone. The Church’s obsession with attracting the world inside of its doors with competitive world-class performances and theatrical productions is nothing to balk at. The carnality has overtaken nearly every brand of Christianity — including the Southern Baptist Convention.
J.D. Greear is the president of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) and his image fits a growing swath of millennials who are hell-bent on undoing the sacred traditions of the historic church, the reverence of the regulative principle of worship, and most importantly, the primary function of the Church — to go into all the nations and make disciples. His church — a corporate conglomeration with at least 11 branches strategically planted around the Raleigh-Durham, NC area — is putting on a “worship” service for Good Friday. And if you want to go, it’s going to cost you.
Greear announced on Twitter,
I seem to remember how Jesus reacted once when he came into His people’s place of worship and found money changers there. You can read about in Matthew 21:12-13. Needless to say, he wasn’t pleased.
I get it; a production of this stature costs money to put on. Perhaps that’s the problem though. My recommendation is that if you’re looking for a place to worship on Good Friday, find a small church who preaches the gospel and obeys the calling of the Church. God doesn’t need your money to worship Him.
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.John 4:23