Pastor Daniel Cox http://wp.me/pVFTo-uS responding to blog post on www.andrewgarcia.com
Great article! In reading Garcia's article I was struck by the fact that he is only dealing mainly in secondary issues (His point on doctrine not withstanding). They are legtitimate secondary issues that must be faced but not the pressing need of the hour.Yours' however, cuts more to the heart of what I think the deeper issue are. If I may, allow me to add on to several point you made.
Point 1) I feel that we are trying to duplicate the wrong things. We are trying to duplicate the methods of the great men of God and not their walk. On the whole, they walked with God in a powerful way with far more dedication than many of us are willing to commit to. It was their walk with God and the tangible experience with God that empowered all that they did. Their ministries were founded on the supernatural; ours are not. I have to say that the 2nd generation Independent Baptists have, to some degree done us a dis-service. They have implied and out right stated often, that if we just "did" what they and the first generation did, then we could have the same results. Wrong. Results are God's. Our business is to pursue God with the equal and passionate hunger that they did.....and only in that duplication do we have a chance of seeing revival.
Point2) I believe we have accepted an incorrect paradigm and the following may state more correctly what is true. Mega Churches,
- A) are not the norm for the history of the Church
- B) They are not always the healthiest environment for believers to grow
- C) more sheer number rarely produce true and lasting joy in ministry
- D) numbers are never a true mark of a spiritual healthy Church
Point 4) Life is what is missing.......we are, on the whole absent of the power of the Holy Spirit. I may, at another time suggest ways to seek His power, but I think any diagnosis that does not start with the obvious absence of the power of the Holy Spirit is a misdiagnosis. Let me share a quote that I think is on point:
- "We had done quite a lot of thinking and self-examining the previous few years. It seemed to us that so much of Christianity was being spread by advertising designed to “put across”something, that there as very little genuine recognition of the supernatural. Suppose we had awakened today to find everything concerning the Holy Spirit and prayer removed from the Bible – what difference would is make practically between the way we work yesterday and the way we would work today and tomorrow? What difference would it make in the majority of Christians’ practical work and plants. Where does the supernatural power of God have a real place? Challenged by this we begin the think and look over our own lives and work….”
"Fruit growers use baskets, and in the Church we have to organize methods and programs. They’re important and necessary. But if the crops fails and there’s no life in the trees, you’re not going to improve matters by buying better baskets.” Vance Havner