Confusing, and Not Confusing

Okay, honestly I find today’s reading (1 Corinthians 14) quite confusing, AND I am not trying to make comments on each chapter that are controversial or even really theological, but rather just impressions I have and applications – especially as they pertain to starting a church (for the Vegas Strip.)

So here are a few things I got from this chapter:

  1. God wants Christians who attend our gatherings to be built up by what’s going on. I’m probably known as a pastor who makes church “entertaining” and I’m actually proud of that. To “entertain” means to capture and hold attention, and I think that if we have people show up to learn about God and hear the gospel, and we don’t capture and hold their attention, it’s a sin. However, there are reasons we need to capture and hold their attention, and one is to strengthen believers. If we come together and people are totally focused the entire time, but the church isn’t strengthened, at best it was a waste of time.
  2. God wants non-Christians who attend our gatherings to understand what’s going on. Throughout this chapter the Corinthians are reprimanded for doing things in their service that wouldn’t be clearly understood, especially by unbelievers. The sad truth is that I’ve rarely been to a church service where everything could be clearly understood, especially by unbelievers. There’s almost always Christian code words, and inside jokes, and unexplained traditions, that leave those outside “the fraternity” feeling … well, outside the fraternity. And confused. And frustrated. And, by the way, I’m talking about contemporary churches. In fact, I’m probably talking about yours’.

So, yes, this is a confusing chapter – but let’s not be confused about the purpose of our gatherings, or confusing in what happens in our gatherings.