In my years as a “professional Christian”, I have encountered many who pick apart everything about churches and other believers. Much to my shame, I had joined that group for a period of time. At the end of the day, it stole my joy and made me less effective in ministry. Here are some of the issues I’ve seen people use to measure the spirituality of others.
Music. The knit-pickers say no one should listen to secular music. When it comes to Christian music, it must not be written after 1812. (The older the song, the more spiritual it is…eyes rolling) The modern knit-pickers will tear a new song apart and eventually find something wrong with it. Work hard enough and you will find something wrong with EVERYTHING!
Preachers. Because I preach, I can give a knit-picker some great material. “He dresses too nice. He uses the wrong version of the Bible. He shouldn’t joke around when preaching. He shouldn’t tell stories, because preaching is supposed to be a dry, emotionless explanation of the Bible. And, oh, that preacher’s wife. She prances around here like she owns the place. (I’ve found that some people are jealous of pastor’s wives…I don’t know why) And we have to talk about how his kids behave like hellions. Mine do too, but I’m not the pastor. He is.” A friend of mine preached and said the word “kid” in reference to his children. A man rebuked him after the service, telling him that a kid is a goat. That man must have been so hungry for God’s Word that he came away with that (sarcasm intended😀). I must also knit-pick about how the pastor doesn’t visit enough and wants new people in the church. How dare he?
Dress code. How does a dress make a woman holy and pants make her a hooker? I’ve seen immodest dresses and modest pants. And what about a suit and tie makes a pastor holy? Please give me some scripture.
Church furniture. I know people who left a church recently because the church exchanged a wooden pulpit for an acrylic one. “They’re becoming like those charismatics!” Praise the Lord! Some churches would do well to get an ounce of enthusiasm. Another church moved the Lord’s Supper table. The pastor was told it is a sacred piece of furniture. Jesus didn’t have one. Don’t gasp! Most church tradition came from an unbiblical group that will be left unnamed. For some ridiculous reason, evangelicals have picked up on some pagan practices because they’re traditional.
They don’t act like I do. Jesus fought this mentality. The Pharisees were blowing a gasket because the disciples weren’t following a cleansing ritual in Matthew 15. Jesus told them that they drew near to God with their mouth but their heart was far from Him.
I’m not knocking discernment, but most of this is done out of self-righteousness. God is not honored by this nor is He impressed. Self-righteousness is a sin that dominates the organization called the church. The true body of Christ is not so infected because I’m distinguishing true believers from those who know how to play the part.
My job is not to pick you apart. My job is to build you up in your most holy faith so that you can go out and do the same for someone else. Please be someone who builds others up.