The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Sold--and bought

Does church marketing discount the Bible?

In an age of church marketing, unbiblical advice on how to choose or build up a congregation is often sold--and bought. Doesn't God call us instead to be the Christian community? These questions can serve as guides as we think biblically about what it means to be a congregation.

1. Are there people in your parish that you don't like?
If not, where else will we learn to love our enemies? Popular opinion encourages us to find a church where we feel comfortable, think the same way and have the same social values as other members. But the Bible emphasizes the Christian community as a place where people with different values can learn from one another, where conflicts can be addressed, where enemies can learn to forgive and reconcile. The believers in Acts 15 worked on issues until they could conclude with the consensus, "It seems good to the Spirit and to us."

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February issue


Embracing diversity