Saturday, November 3, 2007

Don't confuse "effective" with "efficacious".

Currently the Church and Change group is responding to the recent article --
A Shocking “Confession” from Willow Creek Community Church
By Bob Burney
Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Here is a post from the C&C discussion board. This WELS C&C presenter wants to be sure "effective" and "efficacious" are not confused.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Don't confuse "effective" with "efficacious"
. The Gospel is timelessly efficacious, the church and its
representatives may or may not be effective. I pray we are all seeking better methods of delivering God's truth. The Means of Grace demand an audience.

We do want to seek to be effective as we share THE efficacious. To fail to differentiate these two will likely cause one to either fall into the liberal left ditch of "Church Growth Theology" or into the loveless right ditch of "Us Four, No More, Shut the Door" or "All I Have To Be Is Faithful" mentality. If it is not important for us to be effective communicators and ambassadors of THE efficacious in our 21st Century culture, then the Seminary needs to stop requiring homiletics and education classes (I have a hunch that's also why we switched from German to English and today translate our materials into Spanish).

The WillowCreek study was to examine how to help people better mature in their faith -- the very thing Scripture wants all of us to do. I believe we would all agree with this same need for self-examination in our own churches and church body.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Below are the three senarios I had used at the C & C conference as I discussed relevance.

Three scenarios

1. You are on the side of the road with a flat tire and someone pulls up behind you, pops open his trunk and approaches you with a set of jumper cables . . . .


2. The previous week, your boss offered an optional seminar in the parking lot on tire-changing techniques and roadside safety . . . .


3. You’re on the side of the road with a flat tire at night and a car pulls up behind you. Three really big, scary looking guys jump out speaking a foreign language . . .

Church and Changer presenter - jp

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

"the loveless right ditch of..."All I Have To Be Is Faithful" mentality."

How pathetic. Apparently this WELS pastor is too busy defending Willow Creek to read 1 Corinthians 4.

This synod is in trouble.

ABC

khe said...

Effective and efficacious are synonyms. Its like trying to make a difference between drunk and inebriated.

Michael Schottey said...

I agree with some of what he said. I have heard that mentality from a WELS Pulpit. Actual Quote:

"If we go door to door and evangelize we may be doing more harm than good...getting in the Holy Spirit's way"

There is a generation (My Father's Generation) of pastors who were taught to be scared of evangelism. The next generation over reacted and now we have church growth. Neither side is effective or efficacious.

No one is upset with Church Growth because they really like evangelism. People are upset with church growth because they attempt to improve upon the Holy Spirit's work with "new and inventive" means. (read: stolen from reformed methodologies) They sow the seed of God's Word so shallowly in people's hearts feeding them only spiritual milk that they simply steal the wandering Mega Church hoppers and no more.

John said...

People are upset with church growth because they attempt to improve upon the Holy Spirit's work with "new and inventive" means.

Mike,

You realize that you just quoted the C&C mission statement.

I am waiting for his follow up to the 3 relevancy scenarios he listed. Anyone care to guess the conclusions he wants his audience to draw?

Michael Schottey said...

Yes John...I did realize it.

Anonymous said...

Three scenarios

1. You are on the side of the road with a flat tire and someone pulls up behind you, pops open his trunk and approaches you with a set of jumper cables . . . .


John,

I have no idea what JP is getting at with his three scenarios. Is he trying to say that the Gospel isn't relevant unless you present it in the right way?