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Seeker Unfriendly

Commentary by Roger Oakland


   Not long ago, I was asked to speak at a “seeker friendly” church. A couple of weeks before the date I was to speak, a pastor from this church called me and wanted to know exactly the content of my message. When I told him that my topic would be the importance of creation to Christianity, he expressed some concerns. “We will likely have a number of evolutionists in our service, he said. “We don’t want to offend any of them.”

    A few days later I received another call from this same pastor. Apparently there had been a skit scheduled for the morning I was to be the guest speaker at his church. He wanted to let me know that the time for the message had been reduced. “Would it possible to cover what you are going to say in five to ten minutes?” he asked.

   The Sunday came and I was at the church ready to speak. A skit was performed by two men who played the role of “birdwatchers” as they presented their case. The theme of the skit was to show that God is creative, but not necessarily the Creator as described in Genesis. “You just can’t take the Bible literally,” one said. Then later he added: “The Bible is a good book to learn about faith, but it was never intended to teach on scientific matters.”

    My message that followed was short and brief. I presented my view that creation is the basis of the Christian faith. Then I shared some of my personal testimony of how I had been converted from an evolutionist to a creationist, then to a Bible believing Christian. I shared how God had transformed my life and now the lives of others around the world by the overwhelming evidence that supports the biblical creation view. As the message continued, I noticed that the necks of the people seemed to be stretched upward indicating they were listening to every word.

    I concluded my message by presenting the gospel. “God is the Creator and man has been separated from the Creator because of sin,” I said. Then I told the congregation that the indoctrination of evolution was Satan’s clever plan to deceive people that God didn’t create. Finally I mentioned it is infinitely important that we acknowledge the Creator and what He has done. “As well,” I said, “the Creator is also our Redeemer, and He wants to have first place in our lives.

   The skit was “seeker friendly.” My message was not, although it was based on the truth. It seems to me when we try to bring people to faith by watering down the Bible, we have removed the power that transforms lives. Faith comes by hearing the Word, the Bible states.

    I don’t have a problem with using drama for the purpose of drawing people to Christ. However, a seeker friendly message that isn’t biblically based could actually be responsible to leading people to Hell. Then it would be seeker unfriendly. Let’s make sure the gospel message remains biblically based.

    I am Roger Oakland. This has been a biblical perspective to help Understand the Times.

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