Saturday, May 10, 2008

Innoculated but still Sick, What now?

The question of the hour for this "post bible belt" missionary:

How do we relate to / deal with the "innoculated"?
When you get a measles shot, they inject into you a weakened, dead version of the measles bug. Your body develops antibodies so that when you encounter the full strength, "real" measles you aren't impacted by it. You have been innoculated against measles.
So many in the Southeast have been innoculated against the Gospel. They've had just enough of a dead, dying, weak version of the Gospel that they are oblivious to the real, full strength version. They see themselves as Christ followers but are missing the transformation that follows an encounter with the "real" Gospel--a Gospel full of Christ. They've had their shot of religion.
The folks I'm particularly concerned about are not antagonists--like the antagonistic religious leaders that Jesus faced. They are merely apathetic for anything more than nominal Christianity. As a missionary in the Bible Belt, what do we do with these people? I don't have the answers...yet...but I know it's a question that we Bible-belt missionaries, church planters, and church leaders have to wrestle with. What do you think?


Chris Ruppe said...

OK that is good! Really good! You got me thinking. I am going to piggy back your blog post and put it on mine and get some feedback. This is really good stuff. So my comment is on my blog at I will post May 12th.
Keep Dropping those hammers!

Andy Wright said...

Same scenario in the Dakotas. It is good to hear someone thinking about those issues. I have found it helpful to always assume that many of the people in the congregation are nominal Christians (i.e. unbelievers). And thus when I preach from God's word, I attempt to point out the "marks" of a Christian and lovingly warn people that no matter how much they may outwardly look like a Christian, if they don't exhibit the marks of a true Christian, they have not had saving faith and need to repent and savingly believe.