Paul's Passing Thoughts

Church Shootings Add to the List of Why “Worship” Purpose Builds Make No Sense

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on December 30, 2019

ppt-jpeg4“We can add another practical question to the conversation: As a visitor to a new church, will you now be scrutinized by volunteer “security” people packing a Glock that they practice with 50 hours a year? When you reach for that tithe in your coat pocket, should you do so very slowly?”

Another church shooting  occurred in Texas yesterday, but with a new twist: armed parishioners took the guy out in about six seconds. If you watch the videos closely, some of the armed parishioners were already preparing to draw before the guy even stood up and started shooting. That’s because the guy was obviously creepy and wearing some sort of baggy trench coat and a weird looking hoody. I don’t go to church, but if I did, I would defiantly carry, and if I was there, would have taken up a position on the guy for readiness purposes. The guy had “active shooter” written all over him.

This is just another problem with institutional purpose builds that are places of “worship.” First of all, if you are a Christian, ALL of life is worship at all times and in all places. A purpose build where you go to “worship” at a particular place and time detracts from that truth. Secondly, if the church is “the people and not the building,” why all of the vast investment in infrastructure?

Because churches are public institutional buildings, anyone can walk in from the street during a “worship service.” They are referred to as “visitors.” Armed volunteer security can prevent a massacre, but a visitor with ill intent is always going to have the element of surprise. Even in this case where the guy was a walking billboard with “trouble” written all over it, two parishioners died.

Christian gatherings, that is, biblically speaking, were never for evangelizing. In fact, purpose builds are closely related to a false gospel that conflates justification and sanctification. Christian gatherings for “prayer, the breaking of bread, and teaching of doctrine,” were/are NOT for evangelizing. Christian gatherings are for sanctification and sanctification only.

Hence, real Christianity functions very much like a literal family and not an institution. Anyone coming to a home fellowship meeting is going to be familiar and known to those gathering together. Each home fellowship should decide for themselves if they want to invite curious seekers.

Institutional Christianity that requires a central meeting place where its authorities operate have myriads of other problems. To name a few more, in countries where Christians are persecuted; for example, in Muslim countries, Christians insist on gathering together in purpose builds at a particular time and place to make their slaughter more convenient. Why would they do that, and spend good money for the privilege? Answer: because church doctrine makes gathering together in a purpose build efficacious to the church’s salvation process. Church soteriology calls for submission to church authority as part of the salvation process, and infrastructure speaks to that authority.

Moreover, the church build model doesn’t work everywhere and in every cultural circumstance. Many cultures do not have an economic system that will support institutional buildings. In many countries, such builds are illegal unless approved by the government on a case by case consideration. In China, only the state church is allowed to have institutional buildings. This was also the case in the Roman Empire during the 1st century. That’s why Christ’s called-out assembly was primarily made up of home fellowships.

Also, last week, you may of heard of the stabbing attack on a gathering of Jews at a Rabbi’s house. The news stories also referred to a “synagogue” that was near by. Though thought of as a purpose build for worship, the Hebrew word is the Greek version of “ekklesia” translated as “church” in the English Bible. The idea of both words is a “congregation” or “assembly,” or more with the Hebrew version, “house of gathering.” In Jewish tradition, synagogues were primarily family homes where Jews gathered and that is also true today as can be noted by the news story. True, the attack illustrates that such violence can also happen at a home fellowship, but for the aforementioned reasons, very, very unlikely, especially if home fellowships take precautions. Private homes do not lend free access to whoever wants to walk in for any given reason; you just don’t walk into someone’s home uninvited.

In addition, if a home fellowship is aiding someone in a domestic violence situation, everyone in the fellowship is going to know and precautions can be taken. In contrast, when churches are involved in such situations the congregation is not aware for the most part. These are volatile situations, especially when the church is counseling a spouse to divorce her violent husband and maybe even paying for the divorce. This is a tragedy waiting to happen and puts the whole congregation at risk unawares.

We can add another practical question to the conversation: As a visitor to a new church, will you now be scrutinized by volunteer “security” people packing a Glock that they practice with 50 hours a year? When you reach for that tithe in your coat pocket, should you do so very slowly?

A book with many chapters could easily be written on the dysfunctionality of the institutional church system that flows from the false gospel of progressive salvation. Hopefully, people will give this issue more thought as this illogical system collides with real-life reality.


One Response

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  1. lydia00 said, on January 6, 2020 at 1:08 PM

    Oh yeah. It’s getting worse and worse. And not just that but now insurance companies are demanding a lot of security accommodation by Churches not only for this with hired security patrolling the parking lot and the church but also for children areas in order to insure them. Money, money, money.

    What’s the point?


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