DISCLAIMER: I’ve enjoyed some great times in church buildings, and God has been pleased to do many great things in them, so what I’m about to say should not be construed in the wrong way. In only offer it as food for thought:
… The question has been raised as to why we spend so much on church buildings, sound systems and conferences when with a fraction of the money we could no doubt bring the gospel of Jesus Christ, and leadership training, to the entire population of the world through a network of dedicated evangelists and apostles using mass media. I think its important for people to think about why the church buildings are so important and why we must first hold EVEN MORE Real Estate before we can seriously get on with the Great Commission.
Everyone knows that the church buildings are “the House” and we must “Love the House”. But how can we love the house if we don’t have one? This time honored principle goes back to the days of wise King Solomon and it still works well today.
Next: Church buildings are of primary importance because people want them. If you don’t give people what they want, they won’t come to church, will they? And what’s the good of that?
Having a church building makes people feel like they are really “on the map” as a “real church” when they have a building. These little groups that keep meeting without church buildings and papers from the government are not important. If they were important, they would have a building, right? But they probably can’t even raise enough money for a building. That just shows how pathetic they are.
The buildings create a powerful platform for the pastor or denomination who controls them, as the case may be. Everyone knows that most people are biblically illiterate and can’t be trusted to give a message from God. The ones that God has truly anointed will be the ones who can speak in a church building to the many.
Its About the Money, Honey.
Church buildings are an accepted place to raise money for further expansion, and a reason in themselves for raising money. It doesn’t seem quite as good to pass a collection plate around in someone’s home. Its a proven fact that people will give towards building programs.
Buildings are Something we can Believe In
People believe in buildings. They last longer than people most of the time. The real estate grows in value. People may backslide, church leadership may become apostate, but as long as the building was properly constructed, no earthquake comes, no serious public persecution comes, and no litigious person can successfully sue the church for its assets, the church building will remain, perhaps for generations to come. And if you live in England, even if you lose all your believers, the church building can always be sold for cash to muslims for use as a mosque, thus releasing valuable assets into liquid form for other purposes.
Buildings are Convenient
Owning a building means you don’t have to drag sound equipment around everywhere. Just because George Whitfield could preach to ten thousand people without a microphone doesn’t mean that God expects us to go hoarse when speaking to 80 or so people. We need sound equipment, and if we rent a building, we would have to carry it around and store it somewhere anyway. Much better then to have a place for the sound gear to safely dwell. It can always be insured against theft, anyway.
Buildings Help Us Feel Safe
If ever a persecution breaks out against Christians, the Government and the Police will know exactly where to find us if we are all congregated together in a well marked building. That should make us feel very safe in these Last Days.
A Building Helps Us Build a Name for ourselves, and not to Scatter
Only a fool would dispute that buildings really help in Branding, and separating our group of Christians from inferior sorts. Without a proper building, its harder to establish a separate identity as a local church. People should have a clear concept of what they are buying into, and the territory of the building is a good place to establish what the church is all about. People scatter when moving from rented hall to rented hall unless the process is managed carefully. To avoid people scattering, they need a central landmark to come to. Even the pagan people in the days of the Tower of Babel understood this principle.
Buildings Create a Platform for Worthwhile Ministries
Buildings allow a chosen group of specially anointed people (the pastors and their chosen guests) to minister to a larger group of people all at once. Even after years of training, most people don’t have the ability to say too much publicly without causing everyone to cringe with embarrassment. The few people who do have something worthwhile to say should be rewarded by being given access to the public platform of a church building.
Church Buildings are Monuments
Church buildings are a monument to the fundraising and leadership ability of the person who got people to give for them, and to a lesser extent, to the nameless and faceless people who contributed the money to make them a reality. They are a focus for the religious life of the community, and as such, should be held in honor by all.
Well, folks, I hope you can now see why the vast majority of our giving should be directed towards church buildings. What good would all this evangelizing be if we had nowhere to bring the people to, anyway?