As desirable as the involvement of church members is, it should not become an end within itself. Some have become so concerned with this matter that they have employed a “Minister of Involvement” to get folks busy and keep them busy. Some of these churches have achieved a high level of involvement. Sadly, such involvement is frequently seen to be in things more of the flesh than the spirit. If a church has 90 percent of its members “involved,” but much or most of it has to do with the use of its $500,000 gymnasium, participating in a church-sponsored golf tournament, going on church-planned scenic tours on the church’s bus, working in the church’s crafts club, or in its aerobics class, just what is the advantage to the Lord’s work in such “involvement?” “For what is a church profited if it should gain 100 percent involvement, but lose its own God-given aim in the process? Or what shall a church give in exchange for its membership ‘involvement’ and numerical growth’?”
Take away the gym, the entertainment angle and the highly structured programs geared more to social than to spiritual aims and it will soon be seen why so many are “involved.” Perhaps the best that can be said for such carnally-oriented churches is that they will relieve many of the surrounding congregations of some of their carnally-minded members.
This is the source of the rapid “growth” of many of the larger churches—not from conversions, but from membership transfers who are more interested in a country club with some religious overtones than they are in the church of the Lord. If this is what it takes to get maximum “involvement” a church is better off with only 20-30 percent involved if they are faithful to the Lord’s purpose and work for His church.
Given a choice between 50 people who know the Book and love the church, and 2,000 country club types who can’t bear more than 20 minutes of pulpit pablum every Sunday that sends the grossest sinner out feeling good about himself, the 50 will be the better and strongest choice every time.