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The Explosive Growth of U.S. Megachurches, Even While Many Say Their Day is Done
One of the more popular series last year on the blog dealt with the question "Can Megachurches be Missional?" It was part of a continuing-- and important-- dialogue within the Christian world.
Several people have written and researched at length the trends found in megachurches. Whether it is our LifeWay Research/Outreach Magazine list of the 100 Largest Churches in America or John Vaughan's helpful research, Elmer Towns' articles for Christian Life, or what Warren Bird and Scott Thumma are researching, megachurches are of interest to many.
The fact is that many practices found in smaller churches trickle down from larger ones, but also because we are a numbers-oriented culture-- we want our church to grow, so we try to copy what the growing churches are doing....
Yes, there was a point to that long rant, but just as I had finished typing it all up, and just as I was about to hit "submit", my wife called, erasing the entire thing...ug. she's done that many, many times...terrible timing. Not that anyone cares, but I want to finish that up when I have more time. And I know...blah, blah, blah...shut up already.
Ha-ha...wow, Thank you for not commenting. I know how strange and unbelievable things like that sound. Keep in mind though that we are finite beings living in a physical world, it's all we know; we are born, and we die. Our reality is restricted to the physical; things we can touch, see, and smell, and assume other things exist because science tells us they do. The real reality is that we are spiritual beings living within a temporary physical shell that we will shed one day and move on to paradise or destruction. When we were created, God made us (our spirits) eternal. There are battles going on around us at all times, angels, demons, and who knows what else. Reality is the spiritual world that we are currently blind to, the world all around us; an invisible bee hive that will one day, become our new reality. Comments like the one I made are impossible for anyone to comprehend or believe, save for the experiencer. Keep in mind that the things we hope for are spiritual. God, Heaven, Hell, Satan, demons, angels, along with all that God has prepared are all in place and exist, we just can't see them with the eyes He made for us.
Not to say people can't/don't see angels on occassion if they should choose to reveal themselves. The problem arises when trying to figure out who to believe; seperating the genuine from the contrived...we can't. In my darker days,when I used to travel outside of my body, I never saw any spirit beings so I have to assume that there are several dimensional layers. Well, I've never told anyone this, but I did see a bound demon one time in my living room. It was bound tight, arms and legs, and all it could do is turn its head to look at me. I know that sounds way out there to everyone, but remember, the spirit world is all around us at all times...our eyes just don't have the ability to see it; not unlike x-rays, gamma rays, etc. I'd rather not have any comments on this because unless you are the experiencer, anything like this is impossible to believe and it's easy to call the person a loon with a wild imagination, or just chalk it up to vivid dreams...um, nope.
I agree with John in that all of the angel sightings are highly unlikely. Unfortunately, I think much of it is a way to keep the support coming in or pure hysteria where, through the corner of ones eye, they see all kinds of things fleeting to and fro in the shadows. Even the ungodly, lost, etc claim to see and entertain Angels on a regular basis. When I was Charismatic, everything was attributed to demons and people were seeing things on a regular basis. One night, my girlfriend was in a room bending backwards while standing and it seemed very unnatural. I asked what she was doing and she said an angel was fixing her back. As she went up and down, she said an angel was doing it. I was kind if freaked out. I didn't see anything or feel anything unusual as I walked around her. If you pay attention to the stories, nobody ever describes an angel and they always seem a bit calm when telling considering their stories they had witnessed something from another dimension
Wayne wrote: http://5ptsalt.com/2013/02/21/persecuted-church-seeing-angels/ Any have any thoughts about seeing Angels? Apparently the persecuted church 'sees things' according to the quote attributed to Paul washer on the above link. I have read quite a bit on persecuted martyrs like Tyndale and the English protestant martyrs...strangled and all burnt to death, but none saw any angels.
It seems to me bro that there are several folks coming into churches like this who always make the claim that abroad, faith is much higher, therefore signs and wonders are more evident, than in the faithless west.
One such - Derek Prince - claimed miraculous healings in a far off country, naturally gaining notoriety in Christian circles. But one wealthy believer decided to investigate and caught a plane to the exact place, to see for himself a town turned upside down by God's power. He found nothing - nothing at all.
Now I can't comment on this particular occurrence you mentioned, but I do think it highly unlikely. We know, though, that angels do minister to those who are heirs of salvation, and angels are certainly allocated to each of God's people. But whether or not God would permit us to see them, I don't know.
Christopher000 wrote: Thanks, Beware. I didn't know I had to be carful with him...just the opposite, in fact. I came across him when I came onto this site and was researching the Roman church. I don't know who Mehaney is but I'll check. Faith healer maybe? I'll google him.
Thanks, Beware. I didn't know I had to be carful with him...just the opposite, in fact. I came across him when I came onto this site and was researching the Roman church. I don't know who Mehaney is but I'll check. Faith healer maybe? I'll google him.
I've been to many large capacity churches and I've found every one I've been to to be non-denominational which always turned out to be Charismatic. Maybe Pentecostal, I'm not sure what the difference is. Speaking in tongues, people being slain in the spirit, etc Either that, or they were very careful not to speak out about any particular religion or lifestyle, so as not to offend. Gotta keep those tithes coming. Boy, what a business. "God told me you are to give a love offering of $1000.00." "Oh, okay, well, I can't disobey God."
Looks like there are already some good sermons put up by SA on the topic. The size of the church is not that important, though to have a biblical style church government, with elders, etc. it is going to a membership of over a 100 to carry out God's Only Plan for Doing Church.