Over the past week we have examined the major church movements underway today – Emergent, Incarnational, Organic, Reproductive, and Sim Card. You may be asking “Why didn’t you mention the “Missional Movement?” One simple reason – I believe every true church, no matter what movement it is a part of, has to be missional or it isn’t a church. My partner and I talk about this in our new book, Effective Staffing for Vital Churches, to be released in November by Baker Books.
You may also be wondering why I didn’t cover the Attractional church. The reason is simple – it won’t play any part in the 21st century. The Attractional church that sits and waits for people to come to it, will die a not-so-slow death. The Attractional church as we know it today is nowhere near what God had in mind. In fact, every biblical indicator suggests it is apostate. I don’t believe God honors the Attractional church.
The Only Valid Conversation
The only valid conversation that will shape the 21st century church is the one that focuses on being the church in the world, transforming it, and bringing in the Kingdom of God. That means that any form of conversation that focuses on the mere survival or health of the institution isn’t a welcome partner in this ongoing conversation. It also means that any conversation that denies the validity of the institutional church simply doesn’t understand the context of Western culture and will have little effect on the 21st century church.
At this point in time, Western culture is based on three foundations – we are institutionally based, economically driven, and concert enthralled. We are not an agrarian culture, we don’t barter for goods, and we don’t do things on a small scale. If Western Christianity is going to bring the Gospel to bear on this culture, it will have to do so within the context of these three foundational realities. So let the conversations continue.
Question: In your opinion, what are the positive and negative aspects of the Attractional church? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.