Facebook Church, Is It Enough?
04/21/21 - Worship
I don't know what God thought of us about this time a year ago, when almost all of us were attending Facebook Church. I'd like to think He was pleased that we were doing the best we could with what we had under the circumstances, but I don't know that! What we were doing did not meet the examples for the church worshipping that we see in the NT, but neither did staying home and doing nothing. So, as I said, we did the best we could with what we had, to try and help the family stay focused. I pray God was indeed pleased.
Advancements in technology over the years have progressed to where basically everyone who wants one has their own TV station, and it was definitely a blessing to be able to connect in a limited way online with fellow Christians and simultaneously 'tune in' and worship as best we could from our homes when we were told to stay at home.
Across the brotherhood though, we're witnessing a very negative result a year later, where many people have decided that what was the best they could do under those circumstances, is the only thing they are willing to do now. Facebook church has become their normal Sunday worship plan, and they have abandon meeting with the saints in person.
We know there are still some cases where FB church is the best some can do, given other health reasons and things beyond their control that make them miss church. But what about the rest who have resumed normal life for the most part? Have they made FB church the new normal?
I wouldn't be questioning these things if it wasn't out of love and concern, and you may desire to disagree with me, that's OK. But let me ask this question. Do you think it pleases God at all for people to stay home when they could meet every example of the New Testament church's pattern and attend in person? Why would I ask that? What's the difference in the two?
Those are just a few thoughts that come to mind, but let me say that what God truly wants, just can't be accomplished by cameras and iPads. God wants His saints to participate in the worship together, as a whole or as a group. We've said before in this space, that we are not an audience when we are assembled for worship, we are the performers. God is the audience. During those weeks we were at home a year ago, I was basically a spectator watching a production. Although I was trying as much as possible to worship, it just didn't meet the same spiritual needs that assembling with the saints does.
As time goes on, we are now hearing many people say FB church is just so great, because if they are busy when church is live, they can just go back and watch it at their convenience. If nothing about that thought affected you, go back and read it again. If people are waiting until it's convenient, until they have nothing 'better' to do, can you see the danger in that line of thinking? Facebook church is deteriorating the true purpose and meaning of the saints assembling for worship even when it's live. If people have already become accustomed to watching when they have a free moment, how long will it be until people don't even bother watching at their convenience?
I sincerely pray that God looked down on us last year and smiled as we tried to hold things together for a period when the doors needed to be closed while Covid was new and rampant. But if we have resumed life in every way except for going to church, I fear we are letting the Lord down. God never intended for technology to replace His structure for the worship of the church.
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