Churches of Christ in Decline?: Prescription for the Baptists

An excellent post by Ed Stetzer on the declining numbers within the Southern Baptist Churches. It’s amazing how similar our problems (and the solutions) are.

About Jay F Guin

My name is Jay Guin, and I’m a retired elder. I wrote The Holy Spirit and Revolutionary Grace about 18 years ago. I’ve spoken at the Pepperdine, Lipscomb, ACU, Harding, and Tulsa lectureships and at ElderLink. My wife’s name is Denise, and I have four sons, Chris, Jonathan, Tyler, and Philip. I have two grandchildren. And I practice law.
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0 Responses to Churches of Christ in Decline?: Prescription for the Baptists

  1. Jon Shelton says:

    I don't know what to say about the baptists, but as for us, I think the reason for our decline in numbers is pretty clear.

    "The results of espionage of Satan can be seen today in declining membership and many congregations leaving the old paths." (Guss Eoff – March 2008 Gospel Advocate)

    You haven't said much lately about the GA, but this issue was something else. "4 Tactics of False Teachers." They make shocking accusations about those that aren't in line with their beliefs.

  2. Joe Baggett says:


    I can't even read these publications like the GA, Spiritual Sword etc. anymore. They are only about telling people what to think and trying to control the mainstream churches. These publications and editors along with our schools of preaching and University professors are the ones who have led us to where we are and how we think. If we keep listening to them we are doomed to drown in a postmodern sea of irrelevance flooded by dogmatic religious law. Most all of them ignore reputable research from well respected sociologist and demographers that says we are in serious trouble.

  3. Jay Guin says:

    I take Jon to be facetious (emoticons are so helpful! 🙂 ). I agree with Joe, as well.

    The opinion leaders of the moderate and conservative churches are leading their elements of the Churches to oblivion, as the numbers evidence.

    The problem isn't old/new paths. It's legalism vs. grace and selfishness vs. surrendering anything other than the gospel to bring the lost to Jesus.

    Now, the progressive leaders are doing much better, but we still struggle to communicate (and we aren't doing as much better as we should be).

    At Pepperdine I attended a session with church planters who were struggling to raise the funds for planters who were proven to be successful. But most churches are unaware of the success plants are having or how to tell a good plant from a bad one.

    We discussed in class the near-impossibility of communicating among progressive churches. Other than the lectureships, a few seminars, and a few blogs, it's just not happening. Actually, the internet is the most efficient means of communicating we have.

    There is actually going to be a gathering of churches in the SW US later this year, with the idea being to share ideas. If it goes well, the organizers plan to do the same thing in other regions. It's a start, but it's a very inefficient means of communicating.

    Oh, well …

    I keep trying to think up a solution, but God hasn't given it to me. I hope to post something on it in a bit.