What are the pros and cons of attending a mega-church (megachurch)?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
A "megachurch" is defined as a Protestant church that has an average of 2,000 or more regular attendees to weekend services. Megachurch demographics: The composition of the megachurch has changed i...

July 01 2013 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Terry Galloway Christ follower, Bible lover, mission of sharing the gospel
Michel covered the pros very well. There are many pros including the impact a large membership can have on community efforts for poor, abused, addictions etc. 

Having been a member of a mega mega church for six years, I left after the cons where too much to tolerate. I will just give the cons that I discerned though each believer must discern for themselves and know where God wants them to worship and serve.

In my case, though the church said that they believed in Bible inerrancy and authority, they preached against then sin of adultery but welcomed homosexuals without calling for repentance. They preached on 1 Corinthians 5 several times but mocked the Word and said that they don't do church discipline. They don't follow Matthew 18 for conflict resolution and the elders do not look at matters of dispute. The lead pastor is in control. 

They welcomed heretical teachers of popular books to speak at the church and politicians. They preach a hell-less, hyper-grace gospel (www.gotquestions.org has good answers) and said that the worthless servant being put into outer darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth does not mean hell. They preached on divorce and remarriage as to what God says in the Bible and then said, but I say if the couple has waited two years it is okay. They were preaching straight through Acts and then skipped Acts 5 because it is not seeker-friendly. I spent lots of time in prayer for this church. I still pray for the head pastor particularly as I forgive him and want him to receive more courage to speak truth and not fear pleasing man.

When they share the gospel it is man-centered, antinomian, easy believism without repentance. Many in this particular church are using it as a social club in the Bible-belt South. Are people getting saved? Yes some are. God is the author of salvation. People who are new to the Bible and milk drinkers are being encouraged to read the Bible for themselves which is very good. But as my neighbor who was just baptized there said, he wishes his small group would just study a book of the Bible like Acts because they are always reading Christian books instead. Plenty of people really worship the speaker which we all must guard our hearts against idolatry. 

The more immersed in the Word a believer gets the more discernment they receive. In my case, I knew when God was leading me to leave. The mega mega church had been very good for my teenager, but even he was recognizing the false teaching and wanted to go.

I have met many others who have left too, but it is very much up to the individual where they are on their walk with Jesus. We ourselves should be following the Greatest Commandment to love the Lord (which includes loving His Word) and loving others by telling them the truth in love. The Great Commission also says teaching them to obey God's commands. It bothers me for this particular church to distort the Truth to make Jesus more politically correct. That is not the gospel.

January 27 2014 13 responses Vote Up Share Report

Open uri20150816 3767 1tn9rak mark wilkinson retired school teacher and missionary
Where I live in the Midlands of England there are no mega-churches - in fact few such places in our country at all (only in large cities).

Instead we have a situation where there are 'black holes' where there is no gospel witness at all. This is because the local village Anglican church is 'dead' with liberal theology and more of a social club than a place of worship in God's presence. This has forced real believers to travel to towns a dozen or so miles away for Christian worship, teaching and fellowship. No doubt they also find areas in which to learn and exercise their gifts.

However, we are called to be light and salt in the world. How does this happen if there is no local community of Christians? How can one invite one's neighbour to a gospel service if there is nothing local? What about the elderly who have no transport of their own, yet yearn for regular fellowship in their locality? What about the children of unbelieving parents who have some interest in spiritual matters but have no access to Sunday School because they cannot walk the distance to town?

The very presence of a church building in a community is a regular reminder to that community of their missing dimension in life. Witnessing Christian believers attending that place during the week and receiving invitations to attend special services is a stimulus to those who have all their material comforts but need to seek the Lord while He may be found. When Christians desert their community and drive many miles away for fellowship, we may ask what message this gives?

Perhaps another reason why the small church is not popular is because it places more responsibilities on those who are members. Regular committed attendance, service and giving are essential in keeping the group going. Lack of faithful commitment can mean the end of Christian witness and gospel outreach in an area. I suspect that not only can a person 'get lost' in a 'mega-church', but it is all too easy to sit back and let others carry the load. Such people never develop their spiritual gifts and are content to muddle through their Christian lives - lukewarm believers! They are not workers but shirkers!

There is great blessing in being a member of a small church (but not too small). It is a place where spiritual maturity develops as one contributes to the needs of the saints and the local community. But it is not for the faint-hearted!

May 08 2014 3 responses Vote Up Share Report

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