Is There Room for the Philosophy of Men in the Church?

Man-centered theology leads to man-centered practices in the church.

Man-centered theology is actually the philosophy of men, seasoned with some Bible passages to attain human potential for human achievement. When the ideas of pastors and leaders in the church are scrutinized, they either point people to the honor and glory of Christ, or they speak of human performance.

This is highly visible in today’s Christian music, but it was also a problem in old hymns (look closely). Where is the focus of the Christian song you are singing, today? Is the subject, telluric man? or is it exalted Christ?

Human potential and achievement, borne on the back of performance (oh, yeah, with God as your ‘co-pilot’ helping out), is the gospel for too many people, today. In reality, it is the world’s gospel, brought into the Christian pulpit, by wolves in shepherd’s clothing (Ezek 34).

The evidence of unbelief in Christ, the wisdom of God and the power of God (1 Cor 1:24), is clear. Christ is sporadically summoned to assist with their church growth initiatives. Proponents chime, “He has to bless this.” Newsflash…no He doesn’t.

It is impressive when a church’s worldly philosophy and worldly practices produce successful results, meaning, statistical increase in quantifiable categories. A pastor has arrived when perfect strangers refer to a local congregation as, “Chuck’s church” or “R.C.’s church,” etc.

The true church is Christ’s church (1 Cor 12:13; Eph 2:20–22; 5:25). It is built exclusively by Him (Mt 16:18). We know it is the Spirit, preaching the Word, that builds His church (see Acts of the Apostles). Nothing else. In the Spirit’s preaching of the word (1 Cor 2:4), God calls His remnant to follow Him (Jn 10:3–4; Rom 8:30). They always do because they are the chosen few (Rom 11:5), who receive His Spirit (Jn 1:12–13; 20:22; Acts 1:8), according to God’s predetermined plan and foreknowledge (Acts 2:23; 1 Pet 1:2).

Some supercilious facades are too unimaginably big to receive the title, “Little flock (Lk 12:32).” Still, they lust for more, more, more. Growth is the drug I’ve been speaking of. In the body of Christ, we call it a tumor.

When will Barna, Pew, and Harvard ever learn that God’s church growth program is absolutely on target (no statistics needed — Jer 33:22). That has been true since the foundation of the world (2 Cor 2:19; Heb 4:3). The precise number of elect, regenerate, believers have entered eternal glory in every generation. If David was punished for counting his troops, what are the Evangelical and Pentecostal churches guilty of today? Gallup-ing horses with chariots are not to be trusted (Ps 20:7).

What is rarely spoken of with this orientation to worldly philosophy and accounting, is the pastors who are as guilty as their agendas before God. They are deceiving countless numbers of people with their worldly gospel. They may keep their jobs in the mega-entity, but what about the day of judgment (2 Cor 5:10; Jas 3:1)? With greater sadness and pity, we consider those pastors striving with the same techniques they received from their mega-brothers, but with far different results. Woe to you for not preaching the Gospel (1 Cor 9:16). Call me a “reductionist Gospel preacher,” but the whigmaleerie that passes as Gospel, today, I can never forfend.

With conversating psychologists and philosophers in the church pulpit, today, faithfulness to the Gospel of grace is negligible, in favor of performance-driven, high octane, caffeinated Christianity — strange fire and twisted truth. With the energy of a rock concert or sporting event, today’s church-of-the-world is filled with the ideology and spirit of the world. Congregations remain oblivious because many Christians, under the tutelage of “try-harder” have never actually heard the Gospel clearly preached.

Pastors who have succumbed to worldly philosophies and spirits have three options: first, follow Rob Bell and Joshua Harris outside the church; second, follow the charlatan false teachers as they continue in their corrupted course; third, repent from the greed, lust, and spiritual gluttony at the glory-now buffet. The day of judgment will reveal who actually received the grace to repent (Acts 5:31; 11:18), and unlike today’s lot, those pastors who were actually redeemed by the Lord will be counted as those who were faithful to bear true witness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

David Norczyk

Spokane Valley, Washington

February 14, 2022

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Some random theologian out West somewhere, Christian writer, preacher

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David Norczyk

Some random theologian out West somewhere, Christian writer, preacher