How does a Religious Community Respond to a Successful Church Plant? – Part 2

As promised in my last blog post (if you’ve not read it yet I encourage you to do so now), I will share a few more thoughts about the whole issue of The RESCUE Church being wrongly accused of being a cult by some in the “religious establishment” in our community.

Let’s start by looking at the definition of a cult.  The dictionary defines the word cult as follows:

  • a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist, with members often living outside of conventional society

As a Christian, I would further define a cult as any religion/belief system that rejects the deity of Jesus Christ and deviates substantially from orthodox Christianity as taught in the Bible.

So once again, I want to say very clearly and publicly that THE RESCUE CHURCH IS NOT A CULT!!!  In no way does our church meet that definition and in no way are we deserving of that label!

So who are we?  And what do we believe?  And what is it that goes on inside our church walls?  My hope is that as I answer these questions it will help remove some of the mystery and rumors surrounding our rapidly expanding church.

Who are the people of The RESCUE Church?

We are your neighbors.  We are your co-workers.  We are your parents, your sons and daughters, your family.  You know us.  You see how we live.  We’re not bizarre, extreme, or fringe elements of society.  We are common, ordinary people whose lives are being transformed by an Amazing Savior!  If you’ve noticed some radical changes in us (our priorities, our relationships, the way we talk, the activities we choose to no longer participate in, etc.) it’s because that’s what a real relationship with Jesus Christ does…it transforms us from what we used to be to what He wants us to be.  The changes in our lives simply indicate that we have moved past empty, hollow, dead religion and have come to truly know Jesus and walk with Him daily!

What does The RESCUE Church believe?

You can check out our core beliefs by clicking here.  We’ve got nothing to hide and I encourage you to look over our core beliefs in great detail.  But I will sum it up by saying this:   We believe the Bible to be God’s inspired and authoritative Word to us.  Even though it’s growing more and more unpopular within the religious establishment in America today, we still believe the Bible is God’s truth!  We don’t have the right to change it or to stop preaching certain parts of it that have become politically incorrect to a godless culture.  So we believe when our lives do not line up with God’s revealed truth in the Bible, WE are the ones who need to change…not the other way around!

What happens at a weekly worship service at The RESCUE Church?

From some of the reports I’ve heard coming back to me from people in the community, I’d be afraid of checking out our church too!  Snake handling?  Kool-aid drinking?  People dancing and flopping on the floor in the isles?  Sacrificing chickens? (ok, I made that one up!)  C’mon people!  Seriously, let me take you on a brief “tour” of a Sunday morning service and help put these laughable rumors to rest:

Oh, before we walk into the church building let me first address our dress code:  “Come as you are!”  We are intentional about inviting people to come to Christ just as they are, so please don’t feel the need to dress up.  Just be prepared when you walk through the doors to see people in casual attire much like you’d see them at the grocery store, shopping mall, or movie theatre.  Now that we’ve taken care of that, please join me for a rundown of the rest of the service…

  • Our coffee bar opens at 9:30 am – We want our guests to feel welcome and wanted at The RESCUE Church.  On any given Sunday you will find people spread out all over our facility sharing fellowship, laughter, and free coffee before the service begins.  As the service start time of 10:00 am draws closer you can find a seat in our worship center located on the 2nd floor of our building. 

 

  • We begin the service with music – Our music style is very similar to what you hear on a contemporary Christian music radio station.  Our music is led by talented musicians who use contemporary instruments (guitars, drums, keyboards, etc.) and do so at a high volume!  We don’t apologize for our energy during our praise and worship.  We have much to praise God for!  We’re not going to hell anymore!  We’ve been saved and we serve an AWESOME GOD who is worthy of our praise!

 

  • We take an offering – Part of our worship to the Lord is our obedient giving of tithes and offerings to Him.  We understand that many churches and TV ministries have turned people off to Christ by being high pressured and over-focused on people’s pocket books.  So we always make it a point to invite our guests NOT to feel pressured or obligated to participate in the offering.  We certainly won’t stop you from giving if you desire, but we want you to know that we are just glad to have you in God’s house with us.

 

  • We hear a relevant, practical message from God’s Word – Our worship services are ultimately centered on the preaching of God’s Word.  Our messages speak to real-life issues and they are presented in a clear, creative, and conversational style.  If you enjoy having your sermons read to you by a monotone, unenergetic speaker and if you prefer to walk away from church not really being clear on what you just heard…you probably won’t care much for how we do our sermons at The RESCUE Church!

 

  • We close our service with a time of prayer and commitment – We end most of our worship services by offering people an opportunity to make a commitment from their heart to the Lord.  Then we pray and dismiss our people to go live out their faith in Christ in every area of their lives during the upcoming week.

That’s it.  That’s what an average Sunday looks like inside our growing church.  I don’t see anything in there deserving of the mysterious ‘cult’ label, do you?

To all the haters:  I invite you to put down your “hater-ade” long enough to be informed of the facts.  And I ask you to please stop giving credit to Satan for what God is doing in and through The RESCUE Church.

To everyone:  I invite you to come and see for yourself what a healthy church that has God’s hand of blessing upon it is all about.  We’d love to see you this Sunday at 10:00 am!

About Jon Sanders

Follower of Jesus; Husband to an amazing woman; Father of 3 great kids; Pastor of a multi-site church with a vision to reach rural America for Christ!
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