Let the Spirit change your way of thinking. ~ Ephesians 4:23 CEV.
There is much more we would like to say about this, but it is difficult to explain, especially since you are spiritually dull and don’t seem to listen. You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong. ~ Hebrews 5:11-14 NLT.
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. ~ Ezekiel 36:26 NKJV.
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! ~ 2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT.
Ellen G. White
"Men are needed who pray to God for wisdom, and who, under the guidance of God, can put new life into the old methods of labor and can invent new plans and new methods of awakening the interest of church members and reaching the men and women of the world." ~ Evangelism, p. 105.
"In the cities of today, where there is so much to attract and please, the people can be interested by no ordinary efforts. Ministers of God’s appointment will find it necessary to put forth extraordinary efforts in order to arrest the attention of the multitudes. And when they succeed in bringing together a large number of people, they must bear messages of a character so out of the usual order that the people will be aroused and warned. They must make use of every means that can possibly be devised for causing the truth to stand out clearly and distinctly." ~ Evangelism, p. 122
"As you work, devise, and plan, new methods will continually present themselves to your mind, and by use the powers of your intellect will be increased. A lukewarm, slack performance of duty is an injury to the soul for whom Christ has died. If we would find the pearls buried in the debris of the cities, we should go forth ready to do the work required by the Master." ~ Ministry to the Cities, p. 96
"As field after field is entered, new methods and new plans will spring from new circumstances. New thoughts will come with the new workers who give themselves to the work. As they seek the Lord for help, He will communicate with them. They will receive plans devised by the Lord Himself. Souls will be converted, and money will come in." ~ Testimonies for the Church Vol 6, p. 476.
"The prevailing monotony of the religious round of service in our churches needs to be disturbed. The leaven of activity needs to be introduced that our church members may work along new lines, and devise new methods. The Holy Spirit’s power will move upon hearts when this dead, lifeless monotony is broken up, and many will begin to work in earnest who never before thought of being anything but idle spectators. A working church on earth is connected with the working church above. God works, angels work, and men should work for the conversion of souls." ~ Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, p. 204.
"God selects His messengers, and gives them His message; and He says, “Forbid them not.” New methods must be introduced. God’s people must awaken to the necessity of the time in which they are living." ~ Manuscript 5, 1902 (November 2, 1901), Paragraph 15.
- Rainer, Thom S. and Rainer, Sam S. III. (2008). Essential Church: Reclaiming a Generation of Dropouts. Nashville TN: B & H Publishing.
- “Changing the atmosphere of the church is just not enough. Changing the setting or the physical features of the church won’t solve the problem. The people of the church must make a conscious decision to stop looking inwardly and begin to reach outwardly. An inwardly focused church community is a dying community because they are letting go of the bond that holds them together” (p. 50).
- Stanley, Andy. (2012). Deep and Wide: Creating Churches Unchurched People Love to Attend. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.
- “The most ineffective way to begin a conversation about change is to talk about what needs to change. You should never begin a conversation about change by addressing where you are now. You should always begin with where you want to be.When you begin a conversation about change by discussing what needs to change, you generally begin with something that someone is emotionally invested in. That’s a recipe for failure. Or termination… So the best place to begin any conversation about change is the future. What could be, perhaps what must be!” (p. 271-2)
- “There is an inexorable link between an organization’s vision and its appetite for improvement. Vision exposes what has yet to be accomplished. In this way, vision has the power to create a healthy sense of organizational discontent. A leader who continually keeps the vision out in front of his or her staff creates a thirst for improvement which, in turn, produces an appetite for change. In this way vision contributes to developing a culture that is comfortable with change. Vision-centric churches expect change. Change is a means to an end. Change is critical to making what could and should be a reality.” (p. 274).
- “One of the primary reason churches are empty is because church leaders love their models more than they love people.”(p. 281).
- Lewis, Robert and Wilkins, Rob. (2003). The Church of Irresistible Influence. Grand Rapids, MI: ZondeRvan Publishing House.
- George Barna--”Americans are not going to patronize an institution which appears incapable of living what it preaches” (p. 40).
- The stumbling block for the church is not its theology but its failure to apply what it believes in a compelling way... Christians have been their own worst enemies when it comes to showing the world what authentic, biblical Christianity looks like--George Barna (p. 213)
- Cole, Neil. (2005). Organic Church: Growing Faith Where Life Happens. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
6 Myth-Debunking Truths About the Church
- The Church is a Living Organism Not a Static Institution – Most of the metaphors and explanations for the Kingdom of God and the church in the New Testament use natural concepts for identification and description: the body, the bride, branches, the field of wheat, the mustard seed, the family, the flock, leaven, salt, light. When the New Testament uses a building as a metaphor for the Church, it is quick to add that it is made up of living stones (1 Pet 2:5) (p. 34-35)
- The Church is So Much More Than a Building – At least four times in the Bible the Scriptures come out and say plainly that God does not dwell in buildings made by human hands. . . it is important to note that the early Church did not have any buildings for the first three hundred-plus years. . . . Buildings are not wrong or immoral. It is not the buildings that are really the problem. Unfortunately, we often begin to function as though the church buildings are our life source. . . . A building can become an artificial life support system that keeps a church alive even though it died long ago (p. 37).
- The Church is Not to be Bound to A Single Location – we are always asking the wrong question: Where? All along, the right question is--Who? Where you worship is nothing compared to who it is you worship (p. 39)
- The Church is Much More Than a One Hour Service Held One Day A Week – When you imagine the amount of resources, energy and time invested in a service held only one day a week it is remarkable. With all the importance placed on this event you would expect there to be a lot of Scriptural directives to make sure people get it right.But if you search all of the New Testament looking for the commands or injunctions having to do with this important weekly event, you will find them sadly missing (p. 39-40)
- The Kingdom of God is Meant to be Decentralized, but People Tend to Centralize – God has always intended for humankind to spread out and fill the earth with His glory. . . . The Church has been given a command to spread out and fill the earth as well. . . . it seems mankind always wants to settle in a single location. We always tend to settle for lesser things as well. . . . Jesus’ plan was to decentralize and he paid a dear price to make it possible. We need to discover the power of a decentralized movement with power distributed to each part that can in turn generate new life. Jesus’ plan was ingenious (p. 43-44)
- We are Each God’s Temple and Together We Are Also His Temple – God dwells in His people! We are His temple, all of us from the smallest to the biggest (2 Cor 3:16; 6: 19). Our hope of glory is not in the buildings we use but in the Master who is building His life in us. . . . The world is not very impressed with our sacred houses of worship, in fact, other religions have built more beautiful ones. We must let them see something they cannot reproduce: a new life in Christ. A transformed soul . . . now, that is something that the world cannot accomplish and is dying to see! (p. 44-45)