Timothy Dalrymple, writing for Patheos , points to an interesting tension in our assumptions about Christianity today. Commenting on John Wilsons Wall Street Journal Houses of Worship series, Dalrymple singled out what he thought to be the most striking paragraph:
Consider the alleged exodus of young people from the church. We wont lose students because we didnt entertain them, said the dreadlocked Philadelphia activist and preacher Shane Claiborne on Twitter. We will lose them because we havent given the FULL gospel. Mr. Claibornes comment made me think of another gifted preacher, Jesus, who also met with a mixed reception. From that moment, we read in the sixth chapter of Johns gospelafter Jesus said that “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you” “many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him.
Many do believe that the droves of young people leaving (or never attending) churches has much to do with the quality of the message delivered: If all we receive from the pulpit is lukewarm encouragement to be nice, its no wonder why people dont show up. But its also not quite true that, if we only had preachers who told the hard truth in charity, people would be attracted. Consider John 6: The greatest preacher in the history of Christianity drove them away by the thousands.
Read more here .