Picture the tower of Babel. If there is only one "word of God", it got lost among the many interpretations and messengers. Although I do not belong to any sect of "Christians" I believe the sayings in Matthew 6:6. Pray in solitude and in silence.
I think there are several reasons for it.
1) First and foremost is the fact that we are so over-scheduled. It's become an expected fact of life that we are busy every day. Sunday has become a day to catch up on the chores and other things we didn't get done the other six days.
2) Traditions aren't passed down from generation to generation any longer. At once time, parents made church attendance and bible reading mandatory and it became part of kids lives. That is no longer the case.
3) Controversies within the church have damaged its reputation.
4) This one is mostly for men, but Sunday is the biggest day for sports on television.
5) We're a more skeptical society than we once were. Jaded and practical minded. We're science oriented. People have doubts that the church has the answers we're looking for.
6) There is a greater variety of practices out there now. Buddhism, Islam and many others that weren't in the mainstream of Western society years ago. There's more competition for traditional churches.
Church has let too many people down, and discerning people find way too much of both hypocrisy and contradiction from the pulpit. Many churches claim the bible as their source of teaching, and many never open their bibles in or out of church. It's rare that I meet a person who has read the bible in its entirety and claims any real understanding of it. Many churches teach or encourage division, and many church leaders do not live up to their own teachings. It's hard to stomach. A lot of churchgoers, and even many spiritualists, teach God as more of a concept than an intelligent being, and believe mankind can self-heal...which is not working.
My guess is many are tired of waiting for the Messiah.........
THE IMAGE IS GONE,one can not go to church and find something different like it was in the time of Christ when you could pass from ORDINARY................TO EXTRAORINARY.
i think all the controversy has hurt churches. also i'm guessing that most people see church as a social thing and many people don't want that part of religion. also many people say they believe in god but not enough to waste time going to church as it cuts into their lives.
All the previous answers seem perfect and reasonable but I will like to add more to it. Christians have various views about the church and the Sabbath day, so people do use different days for worship while to some worship does not really begin and ends in the church, it is a daily activity. Secondly, the various Christians sects failed to give people reasons to hold on to the church this is because some preachers make hate speeches against other christen sect, for instance we all know what is being said about the catholic consequently some people are confused by a conflicting church. Thirdly, some Christians hold that the days of miracles are over while others hold that miracles still happen, therefore it may seem that the church has lost its power as in the days of old when things happen and people usually believe in the apostles because of the miracles and signs they witness but today religious teachers only want to speak and expect their follower to hope for a miracle which they can not even assure them. Fourthly, some people think that the church failed to change the evils of the world (they preach more on riches and not on how man should treat his fellow man) because many people go to church or belong to other religious group yet things did not change and most at times it is the same preachers that commit the worst unbelievable crimes, which means the church is a disappointment to many. Lastly, I think until we learn the truth that we are ignorant of many things an d then learn to find a common ground of good will for all despite our religion and men will stop to merely belief in God but will start living in God , like I said in my book, “it is time we truly know why Jesus wept…” which I think is a book for all humanity as it is truly time to mark a new beginning for humanity.
I Can not answer for everyone but I can answer for myself. It seems that church for the most part is for people to go and let their neighbor know how religous they are. I sometimes think that the majority people wear the religion on their sleeves but not in their heart. As christ said in the new testament they are as white washed tombs. they look good on the outside but on the inside they are full of dead men's bones.
The biggest reason is that people are literate and educated.
In the past the church maimed, tortured and murdered people who did not attend it. Until the 20th century and in third world states of the USA, non attendance meant loss of job and loss of family.
Jesus said "where two or three are gathered together in my name" But in fact where three are gathered, the first will declare himself a priest with a special relation to God, and will collude with the second to persecute the third.
Churches enjoy "judgement", because this gives "the righteous" the illusion of power over others. The others however know that mankind is in need of mercy, not judgement.
Jesus said "Love God and love one another". This by passes churches and "the righteous", all of which Jesus hated. Christianity was the invention of Paul the Apostle.
Jesus was neither God nor the messiah - all this was the political machinations of priests and churches. Jesus did have a few good things to say though . .
Best talk to God alone and directly if that's possible. If not find a handful of people you trust regardless of how religious they seem.
If you have ever been to a church service outside, you have been in Gods church. Most of the structures built in his name would better serve their community by housing the homeless and feeding the poor. Most churches are about money and growing just like any corporation.
As a child, I was dragged off to church every Sunday for twelve years. Why? If God is everywhere, what is the point in going to a particular building to worship Him, when you can do it the comfort and privacy of your own home?
Contrary to what some people believe there are more people going to church these days than what there were even just 10 years ago. The news reported that there was a big increase in church attendance since the financial crisis. The increasing amount of natural disasters around the world have increased church attendance also. Obviously people have more faith in God than they do in their lame governments. And also contrary to what some claim, church organizations do house the homeless and feed the poor. In fact it is only church organizations that do. I mean ask yourself, when have you ever seen an atheist or non-believing organization run a homeless shelter or food kitchen. Never. For these reasons more people are overlooking the same old lame political parties and paying more attention to Christian political parties. I think there seems to be a group of anti-religious people that like to hang around Hubpages to spread their anti-religious, anti-God, um, yeah I think I can use the word hatred to describe it. Little do they know that just because they seem to be about half of the Hubpages membership they are still a very small minority in North America and other parts of the world (I mean besides Russia and other countries where communism has had a big impact). In fact this is the reason why I don't come to Hubpages much anymore. Although I do like to answer some of these stupid questions.
"There's a season for everything..." When God finally calls whoever you are who's among His dearly beloved children ..."harden not your heart".
I believe it is because too many that have not been called to preach are representing the church:
1 John 4:1
"Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world."
"I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive."
Also, there are many Christians proclaiming to be saved when they do more cursing and wickedness than most. This does not set a good example of who God is and what He wants for us. God lives within you and the main purpose of the church is to feed the spirit of God in you with Godly teachings.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law."
I think a lot of people still do go to church but I doubt that religion, in the traditional sense, will see any resurgence. If religious dogma insists that we all believe the unbelievable in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, how can it maintain membership?
Churches could gain membership by addressing social problems in general and the welfare of their members individually. Condemning unbelievers to hell serves no purpose. Claiming that one possesses writings authored by God doesn't change many minds. Insisting on adherence to man made laws and superhuman moral behavior won't fill the pews either.
Churches should primarily function as social institutions serving their communities and membership. After all, why would God, if God exists, need Sunday rituals or anything else from us? Churches are for people -- God doesn't need a church.
My thoughts, respectfully.
Religion and spirituality are two entirely different things. I feel that religion serves itself, while spiritual practice, such as meditation, serve the person. We all must find our way through the vast spiritual deficit on this planet, and religion doesn't provide answers. Spiritual practice connects us to the Source, without all the doctrine and hypocrisy.
If we look around there is good and bad in everything. You can google anything and get dirt on it, the same goes for any church. Some people pray from home and some just don't bother. It is beneficial to congregate with like minds and dedicate a small portion of the week to give thanks and honor go God. I think people still go to church. I see hundreds and hundreds at many different churches every weekend. I too go through stages of non attendance but God always lives in my heart. God either lives in your heart or doesn't and any old excuse not to honor him will do.
It seems that people generally prefer to do other things than go to church. In my own church (Community of Christ) we've seen urban congregations diminish while rural congregations thrive. Why? There is just many more activities competing with peoples' time in urban settings than in rural ones. I don't want to say that people living in the country don't have anything else better to do... but that's not far from the truth. Church provides a place for people to socialize with each other. Whereas if you live in the city, there are many places to go to socialize, other than church.
I had been a church goer all my life, trying to be good and follow the Bible, praying, hearing what God has to say. However, I'd come to learn that many lies exist in the church and among the people who attend it every Sunday. If hurts to say but when people take kindness as weakness and as a target to take advantage of you, you can only go say far to tell yourself to `forgive one another` the way Jesus did. I had been brainwashed to accept this since I was a child and forced myself to be that way. Indeed, I had forgiven many people who had used me for theirs personal gain. And I never asked for anything in return. but that made me even more vulnerable to be the easy target because others would see that `I don't mind playing the fool.` We'll wake up everyone! I do mind. I do want other people's respect too. I too am human. I didn't come here to play Jesus!
Ultimately, I stopped going to church. And the interesting thing is, the farther I was from church, the closer I am to the truth and reality! Instead of joking to myself that I can forgive and forget, now I can stand up to myself by saying I don'tlike what you did or you owe me money. Stiff like this I had a hard time saying due to the church brainwashing of `you can take money with you when you die` or `money isn't everything`. Well, f@@@ that bull@@@@! I deserve the same rights and treatment just like everybody else and no f@@@Inc religion is going to shove this bullcrap down my throat!
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