Over the past several years some new terms have surfaced in the Christian Church across our land. Two that are heard very often are Seeker Sensitive and Attractional. Under these banners some very large churches have come into being and are presently operating. In regards to being Seeker Sensitive many churches have attempted to glean from their gospel presentation things that might be offensive to first-time visitors to their church, things like sin, repentance, hell, the cross, the blood of Jesus, etc. To be Attractional is often translated into being hip and with it, in regards to architecture, technology, worship bands, atmosphere, etc.
As I study the scriptures I do not see a Seeker Sensitive model anywhere, especially in the life and ministry of Jesus. Often, the words of Jesus turned people away when He got down to the nitty gritty of what following Him would look like and what it would cost. As far as being Attractional, the greatest testimony of Attractional Christianity I find in the Acts of the Apostles. What was it that drew people to the Apostle’s message, what was it made the church in Jerusalem come alive and shine forth to the extent that it was said, “Their numbers were increasing daily.” The chief attraction of the early church was the drawing power of the Holy Spirit that was manifested in Christians loving and serving one another.
Think of it, with no technology, no facility, no worship bands, and no promotion, that church went from 120 to 3,000 to 5,000 in less than a month’s time. This all happened through the preaching of the cross, the shed blood of Christ, a call to repentance and holy living. This church was devoted to the Apostles’ teaching, they were devoted to fellowship, they were devoted to prayer. And these were all done corporately. Their love for one another was so great that no one considered their own goods to be their own, but freely sold them and shared the proceeds when needs arose around them. One of the greatest testimonies of that church was, “There was not a needy one among them.”
This was all done without age-appropriate divisions of ministry, without Sunday Schools, Youth Groups, Singles Groups, Young Marrieds Fellowships, or Senior’s Groups. The church was one, they loved one another from the heart, they served one another from the heart, they shared their possessions freely with one another. Their gospel was not a words only gospel, it was a gospel saturated with the attractional power of the Holy Spirit. And as a result Jerusalem was in awe (Acts 2:43).
In 1978 my family and I moved to Southeastern Utah to oversee the planting of a new church. During our first two years in Moab, Utah we saw God do many miraculous things. To begin with, He took a handful of people and increased their number to 200 in a fairly short span of time. During those first years we met in an old American Legion Hall that was too cold in the winter and too hot in the summer. We had no public address system. The main meeting hall had concrete walls and floor so the echo in the room was incredible. During that time no one was coming to our services because of our building, our technology, or our worship band. They were being drawn by the power of the Holy Spirit and what it was He was doing in individual lives.