How Many People Would Attend Jesus' Church Today?

If you attend a mega-church or a home church, let's just stop for a minute and put Jesus in place of the person leading the congregation in either "building".

The words of Jesus were harsh at some moments, He definitely would never be a youth leader in this present time so He would definitely have to be the pastor. Yet, when crowds started to get large He would turn around and say something to confuse them, even the disciples, and test their reason for really following Him from place to place. If we study the Gospels it is obvious that Jesus and the disciples were homeless while they spread the Good News. That's right, they didn't have a building that they invited all their friends to. Instead they lived out their faith in front of strangers every where they went.

Now that you can picture Jesus in front of you, where ever you go on Sunday, how about we look at some of the things He said in the Gospels while teaching.

Salt and Light

13 "You are the salt of the earth, 24but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet.
14 "You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.
15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.
16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. See Also Mark 9.

Salt Without Taste Is Worthless

34 "Salt is good, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored?
35 It is of no use either for the soil or for the manure pile. It is thrown away. He who has ears to hear, let him hear."

The Cost of Discipleship

25 Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them,
26 "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.
27 Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. See Also Mark 8.

Temptations to Sin

7 "Woe to the world for 10temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the one by whom the temptation comes!
8 And if your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life crippled or lame than with two hands or two feet to be thrown into the eternal fire.
9 And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into the hell of fire. See Also Luke 17 and Mark 9.

Pay Our Taxes and Tithes

17 Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to 28Caesar, or not?"
18 But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, "Why put me to the test, you hypocrites?
19 Show me the coin for the tax." And they brought him a denarius.
20 And Jesus said to them, "Whose likeness and inscription is this?"
21 They said, "Caesar's." Then he said to them, "Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's."
22 When they heard it, they marveled. And they left him and went away. See Also Rom 13.

Woe on Unrepentant Towns

20 Then Jesus began to denounce the towns in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent.
21 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.
22 But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you.
23 And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted to the heavens? No, you will go down to Hades. For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day.
24 But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”

The Father Revealed in the Son

25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children.
26 Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.
27 “All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.

If all of this bothers you, then just skip over reading all of Matthew 5, that chapter will convict anyone. In Matthew 25 it will convict us again if we have never fed the hungry, clothed the needy or visited the sick...that's just not taught often on Sunday either. Jesus was also very specific about loving our enemies, loving ourselves, and our neighbors at all cost to show His love on earth. But of course we should never love anyone or anything more than Him. When Jesus spoke of love it wasn't an emotion, or a word, it was an action that He told us to show. Does your church believe these things that Jesus taught? Or do they ignore it, or even worse water it down to something that doesn't offend anyone?

If you speak the truth of the Gospel then it is promised, by Jesus, that the world will hate you for it. Even your pretend churchy friends will stop talking to you, believe that. Read John 6 and Matthew 10.

It is easy to forget that the object is not to keep rules. The object is obedience to the Lord, not being slaves to mindless rules or repetition. “The letter of the law kills, the Spirit gives life” (II Cor 3:6). Anyone who requires a demonstration of that proof should drop in on a legalistic church and hang around a few weeks. He or she will be heartbroken over the way rule-keepers “omit the weightier matters” in order to “tithe mint, dill and cumin” (Matthew 23:23). There is also the modern day Pharaohs who exist only to have church members build more structures. I'm not saying we don't need buildings, but they should be used to shelter the homeless and feed the needy instead of filling them with comfortable chairs that we can fall asleep in.

You don't need a middleman to have a direct & personal relationship with God that empowers you through the Spirit to serve others as Christ served us. Then you can meet with a body of believers, called a church, and share with them all the good things God has shown you during the week.

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