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Long For Truth: <div id="ArticleTitle">There Is No Such Thing as a Seeker<br />Part1–What's wrong with being seeker friendly?</div>

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

There Is No Such Thing as a Seeker
Part1–What's wrong with being seeker friendly?

Steven Long 5/29/12

The seeker friendly church dominates much of the Evangelical scene today. With its pragmatic approach evangelism and its non-confrontational message of the gospel this movement has been growing rapidly ever since its conception in the late 70's, early 80's. The idea conceived is to approach the individual with "no pressure" and slowly introduce them to the Christian faith. In the end, the person sees how they can be a Christian without being a rules-hound or following a list of do's and dont's while not sacrificing intelligent thought and logic. This is a noble cause, to be sure, but there are several problems with this line of reasoning:

1. Scripture never demonstrates or promotes seeker friendly methods. Never in all the pages of Scripture do we find any of the apostles practicing "friendship" or seeker evangelism. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy being around people and I enjoy making friends. But this idea that we must "earn" the right to speak into one's life before we can give them the Gospel is absolutely bogus! Somehow, I don't imagine Jesus sending out the apostles to preach and telling them, "Okay, guys. Go preach and tell them the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand. But first, make sure you befriend them, otherwise they won't listen." Actually, Jesus said something more like this,

(Mt 10:14-15) And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town. Truly, I say to you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town.

Jesus’ statement in this passage has nothing to do with building relationships before giving them the gospel. “Aha!” one may say, “But Jesus did say to seek out those who were of peace. Doesn’t that mean there were those seeking God?”

Actually, the culture of that time, and still in many parts of the world, was open to hospitality and indeed felt the responsibility to receive strangers into their homes. A perfect example of this from the Old Testament would be in Genesis 18 when the two angels came into Sodom and Lot felt the responsibility to allow them to stay in his home for protection. This same practice carried over into New Testament theology (Mt 25:35, Heb 13:2). Seeking out the man or person of peace was, simply put, seeking out those who practiced hospitality and would gladly allow the apostles to stay in their home even at the risk of offending the village or town.

2. The ends should never justify the means. While it is a noble thing to befriend a person and build a relationship with that person we must remember that only God knows the final outcome of that person’s destiny. We should not, therefore, violate the fundamental principles of Scripture in order to try and “save” a person. When we do this we are treading on the ground of the Holy Spirit, whose primary role is to sanctify believers but also by the Father’s doing to draw His elect. Therefore, it is pointless to invent new ways to soothe a person into the gospel; it’s just not gonna happen, which leads me to my last point:

3. Scripture declares that no one seeks God. For all my seeker friendly friends out there (no pun intended , we as believers have to own up to it: Scripture declares that man, in his natural state is an enemy of God! Consider the following passages.

(Rom 3:10-12) as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands;
no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.” (emphasis mine)

(Mt 12:30) Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. (emphasis mine)

(Ro 5:10) For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. (emphasis mine)

(Php 3:18) For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. (emphasis mine)

Scripture declares over and over that those who are unbelievers, those who do not know or accept the things of Christ are His enemies. How then can call those who are enemies of Christ “seekers?” We cannot.

And so the question remains as to what a seeker of God really is. This is the very question we will tackle in the next post. Stay tuned.

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