Even in South Africa, reasons for not loving the church — or ever going to a church — are the same as in America. I talked to four male students yesterday at the University of Johannesburg and I did a “man survey” with them. One of the questions was, “As a man, what would you change about a church so you could say, ‘I would go there’?” All four of them answered, “I want church to be less judgmental. I don’t want to hear the pastor tell me to repent.”
They think the church is judgmental. Perfect. They should join us cause they’ll fit right in. Their statement that church is judgmental is, in itself, a judgmental statement. Furthermore, their desire for the church to stop calling people to repent is their own call for the church to repent!
The church is a place for losers, dropouts, failures, deadbeats, and outcasts. Jesus came for the sick, not the healthy. He came for the sinner, not the righteous. Pray that South Africans, and Americans, would feel, by God’s grace, their need for Jesus’ saving work in their lives. Then, they’ll be able to join the rest of us hypocrites as we seek to pursue Christ together.