I may be right. I might be wrong.
I’m listing possibilities for the church of 2021 below. What I like about my title “perhaps” is that I’m not claiming they are prophecies. If I am right, then I’m a genius. If I’m wrong and someone shows me this blog a year from now, I will point out “perhaps.”
I am having fun with this. I’m basing my “perhaps” on reading, Bible teaching, and common sense. The list is edgy, needed, change oriented, and painful.
The church will be purified but not vanquished!
Youth edgy. I use the word “edgy” to describe the new ways of following Jesus that will emerge. When I was a Jesus Movement hippie, the churches that developed were not the churches of our fathers and mothers. Witness the beginnings of this edginess with Sean Feucht (Google him) who is leading spontaneous worship nights in cities across America. Interesting to note the prayer/worship gatherings have been banned in some cities.
Church Building Wasteland. If/when the economy drifts downward, the church in America will move away from the expense of buildings. The buildings to survive will be multi-use and outreach oriented. The buildings most difficult to financially maintain will be single-usage-weekend buildings. In my community, this wasteland has been happening for years, and many church buildings sit derelict and empty.
Missions Online. It is expensive to send missionaries from America to overseas. Always, there will be both full-time and short-term missionaries as Jesus said, “Go into all the world.” I have begun to hold online mission conferences on discipleship and have found them to be effective and cheaper. The paradigm of missionaries being the primary means of evangelism and teaching internationally has been replaced by mobile devices. Apostolic ministry and mentoring will become a major focus for travel with international missions.
A New & Loving Boldness. All of us who follow Jesus have been taken aback by recent events. I’ve talked to Christian leaders, business leaders, pastors from overseas, and many of you. We are in a listening mode right now. The Spirit will speak, giving latter-day wisdom, and enable us to speak with refreshing, loving boldness – soon.
When You Confess Jesus, You Lose. This will be the most difficult. Many who claim Christianity will continue to drift away from Jesus as Lord, the Bible as inspired, and actual truth for lifestyle. Will I/you/we profess Jesus as the singular Lord and Savior when that confession places your possessions or life in jeopardy?
I repeat: The church will be purified but not vanquished!
If you look at Interruptions #45: The Church in 2021 at www.grantedwardsauthor.com, you will find more “perhaps” for the church.