We live in a world that is changing with new technology by the second. Over the last three years we witnessed the rise of netbooks as an alternative to bigger, more expensive laptops. They popped up everywhere. Now, they are fading out of the market due to changes in laptop computers and the explosion of tablets like the iPad. Cisco made headlines this week by canceling the Flip Video Camera line. Flip cameras were all the rage a couple of years ago, but smart phones with equal (or better) video capability made them obsolete. That’s just how things go sometimes – the thing that’s the hot item one day, can be gone the next. Most people can look back on the days when they had a tape player, but now it’s just a memory of something that has faded away because of a better alternative. Given enough time, everything that is popular today will someday be obsolete.
Now remove the name of your favorite tech item from 30 years ago and insert “the church.” Church was all the rage back in the day. Everybody went to church. It’s just what you did. However, things change over time and the church was replaced by better alternatives. The biggest movement in the religious world today is to get away from the “stuffy, traditional” church experience and come to God on your own terms. People will tell you “I don’t need church. I come to God in my own way.” I even heard someone say recently “I don’t go to church. Me and God have an understanding.” My first response was “Oh really? Did God sign off on this understanding?” After giving it some thought, though, I realized that it’s time to start taking these people seriously. Has the church “jumped the shark”? Will the church go the way of Flip cameras and fade away at the rise of something more efficient?
Is the church becoming obsolete?