March 29, 2021•390 words
Coffee & Christian Worldview
Mistaking activity for real, disciple-making ministry is a prevalent error in local churches.
But what about parachurch organizations?
For over 20, I have seen parachurch activities prioritized, even by churches.
"It's for the Lord."
Many times these people are not in a local church.
Parachurch = with/alongside church. Distinct from the church.
Parachurch ministries easily fall into the trap of activity for its own sake, without ever evaluating the fruit.
Fun, social club, volunteer organization? Even accomplishing a necessary goal in the community.
If no one is growing in their knowledge of Scripture, application, knowledge of the Lord, it's not disciple-making itself.
How is each activity, each program, actually growing individual believers in discipleship? What is the contribution?
A negative effect of parachurch activities is neglect of public worship. People would rather be busy.
So many times, parachurch leaders have not been discipled themselves by real pastors in a local church.
Pastors and elders often think: if you're involved in 2 or 3 or 4 ministries, you must be mature!
And they won't make inquiry.
Oftentimes, parachurch organizations functionally replace the church in Christians' lives.
Pastors will even allow that because it's "ministry."
An ecclesiology problem.
Parachurch organizations have a wide range of activities.
Example: people who have not be theologically grounded, sharing personal testimonies to strangers as quickly as possible, considering that evangelism.
Because of their emotional high, they think they have been spiritually productive.
The Bible sets our goals and methods.
If a parachurch organization is pointing you away from the local church, then biblical discipleship is not their priority and goal, and not the result of what they do.
Discipleship in the church for the church.
If "discipleship" is happening apart from the church, it should be questioned?
Example: pastoral training under our organization.
What is the direction of the training? To the church, pastoral training for the church. It should flow to the church.
Our activities are always in support of the ordinary means of grace, never to take people away from them.
A compliment, not a supplement or substitute. Parachurch organizations carry no obligation.
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🎧🥃🧥💋 Finally See The Light
Written by Bryan Teoh
https://freepd.com/music/Finally See The Light.mp3