Why I Believe Church Buildings Should Reopen
The only cure for the rampant wickedness of the human heart is the gospel
First, let me say this: I understand COVID-19 is a real threat, especially to certain individuals. Many protect themselves by wearing a mask or simply staying home. If you are at high risk or sick, I would encourage you to stay home and join your church online.
Our world is in a mess. We are heading toward one of the most important elections in recent years, riots are sweeping across our nation along with fear and conspiracies about COVID-19 and the rising case numbers. And now, more recently, the high profile names who were connected to Jeffrey Epstein’s international sex trafficking ring are trending online. It’s obvious people need Jesus. The only cure for the rampant wickedness of the human heart is the gospel.
Church buildings must reopen. We must not remain silent. While it is not illegal to have a church building here in the USA in many other places in the world churches can’t have a building. And until that day comes here, I’m advocating for church buildings to be allowed to open.
Now before you tell me the church isn’t a building it’s people let me say that I agree with you. That’s why this article is titled: Why I Believe Church Buildings Should Reopen. Why is it okay in many places for riots to take place but yet people cannot gather for a worship service? The times we are in don’t surprise me. The Bible warns us of difficult times in the last days:
“But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.” - 2 Timothy 3:1-5 NIV
The church can thrive with or without a building per say but the mere fact churches are being targeted calls for the church (the people) to stand firm. In America Christians have the right to worship in a church building without having to meet in secret such as in places like China, but that right is coming under attack. Many will agree and many will likely disagree. That’s okay. I’m not writing this to debate anyone. I’m just stating what’s happening.
I love what Pastor Ed Young, founding and senior pastor of Fellowship Church, said in a recent Christian Post article: “Look at our culture. There is so much going on right now spiritually, especially among young people facing depression, anxiety, and attempting suicide,” Young, who leads the evangelical megachurch in Grapevine, Texas, told The Christian Post. “I have counted the cost of not opening our church versus opening, and I believe that risk and faith go hand in hand. It’s critical to reopen churches.”
I agree that it’s critical they reopen.
We must take a stand.
Hundreds can flock into Walmart, The Home Depot, Target, the beaches, etc…but yet gathering to worship Jesus has become, for many, something they hate and cannot stand. God hasn’t given us a spirit of fear or timidity but gives us power, love and self-discipline (see 2 Timothy 1:7). If we don’t stand for our rights now tomorrow our children won’t have any rights to stand for.
We must take a stand. The spirit at work in our nation is from the pit of hell. This recent article clearly shows the hearts of many: “Rioters carrying “Black Lives Matter” signs threw Bibles into a fire in front of the federal courthouse in Portland and burned an American flag, leaving bystanders wondering what that act of arson had to do with protesting against police brutality.”
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The Christian Post article I quoted above with Pastor Ed Young also states: “Young, author of The Fear Virus, believes fear is what compels many churches to remain closed. Many pastors, he said, fear they’ll face online vitriol, criticism from the media, or their services will be poorly-attended should they reopen. He noted that some pastors have said they'll suspend in-person services until they're able to guarantee the safety of their members.
“I understand where these pastors are coming from, but I disagree,” Young said. “I can't guarantee I’ll be in a 100% safe environment when I take my trash down to my street. It’s simply not doable.”
“I just don't want us to lose our boldness and I don't want the church to mail it in. Throughout church history, the church has not mailed it in. We've stood in pandemics, we've stood during wars, and in all sorts of chaos and mayhem. Today, technology has allowed us to take the easy way out.”
I’m thankful for technology but we can’t let it be the easy way out. If you are at high risk or sick, by all means, watch church online. I would do the same! I’m not suggesting watching church online is an unforgivable sin. We can’t let the world simply push us online and not be allowed to gather in-person. The church has stood firm before in the face of pandemics and wars and persecutions of all kinds and I believe she can do it again.
I’ll never judge a pastor or church for keeping their building closed. That’s not my job. I’m simply challenging the church to stand firm and encourage other believers to be resolute in these troubling times.
So, if you ask me, I believe church buildings should reopen. Each pastor must make that decision for the flock they shepherd regardless of what man says. At the end of the day, what God says will always trump what man says.
I love you, Church.
Just remember the words of our Lord Jesus in Revelation 22:12a: “Look, I am coming soon!”
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