If 80% of the church is lost

I listened to a Matt Chandler sermon today.  Chandler is pastor of the Village Church outside of Dallas, TX. He was basically trying to talk the pious church people into leaving the church he pastors.  He was preaching about “church people” who complain about all the people with messed up lives, far from God, who were attending the church.  (He specifically mentioned strippers and chain smokers.)  It was a Jesus-like, “You will always have the poor among you” sermon, even though Chandler did not use that Scripture.  He was implying that as the “far from God people” got saved, got clean, and became followers of Jesus, that they would no longer be the “far from God” but their job would then be to bring the far from God to church.  So their church should always have the strippers and addicts attending the church, even though the faces should change.  And he said, if the church people were not OK with that kind of church, then they should find a “safer place where they would be more comfortable”.

The most relevant part for you who read my blog, the majority of whom are church going Christians, is that Chandler said 20% of the Village Church were committed, Jesus loving, God followers who were all in.  They do their best to live their lives for Christ.  That is one out of five people who go to the church.  He said 40% of the Village church attenders were pretty good people, not quite all in, not quite committed, but seeking Jesus.  He estimated that 40% were completely lost and attend church to make themselves feel good about themselves.  And they attend the Village church because they think the music is pretty good and Chandler’s preaching is somewhat entertaining.

If I did not think he was pretty accurate, I would not be sharing his views.  When the church has 5,000 people, that is 1,000 all in, 2,000 seeking, and 2,000 completely lost.  When your church has 100 people, that is 20 all in, 40 seeking, and 40 completely lost.

I do not know what we can do about the fact that the world judges the church by the 80% of the church that is not committed to Jesus.  And it is not that the church needs to shed the 80% of non-committeds.  We need the Lord to move so that they become committed to Him.  And then we need the Lord to bless the church with more people who are lost.  But how long is long enough for the 80% to spend at a particular church?  I do not know, but to spend your entire life in a church where you are not growing in Christ is a waste of your time and is not beneficial to Jesus’ church.





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