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Are Churches Ritualistic

You believe that present church services are too stiff,too formal, and too planned? Or another way of stating the question would be do you believe present day church services hint at being ritualistic?

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 ---Mima on 1/8/08
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A lot of churches are stiff and boring. Find one more to your liking. You do not have to stay where you don't feel you are being blessed, are happy, or getting what you need. And anything we do on a regular basis is going to become ritualistic.When we learn something,we tend to do it the same way,over and over.Then it become boring and less exciting. This is why we have to continue to learn new and different ways of doing things. Variety is truly, the spice of life.
---Robyn on 9/9/08


without structure when would services end? Isn't that the point of planning?

Otherwise you may end up with a lot of good times minus God.

There is a place and time for everything. Regardless of whether one keeps Gods Sabbath or Sunday - if you have 6 days of the week to have fun why must Gods day be for you too?

Isn't the purpose of service to learn about God - if someone equates learning with stiff and formal maybe they are not letting God in?
---Rhonda on 2/14/08


#1 Mima: I know schizophrenics and psychotics who appreciate spontaneity too.
"Having asked many spirit filled people about their experience with the Holy Spirit. At least 95% have said that spontaneity(the unexpected and unplanned for) plays a large part in Spirit led events".
So? How do you determine these people are Spirit filled? Does that mean orginization is not of God? Do I have be spastic to prove my spirituality?
---j._nonymous on 2/13/08


#2 Mima: I don't neccessarily disagree with you. But you gotta give me more than what %95 of your friends say to convince me. How do we measure spirituality? By how high people jump? How loud they shout? I know people like this who are just as carnal as anyone else. How about lifestyle? What about more mundane moments? Or do we need to be getting high all the time to show how spiritual we are?
---j._nonymous on 2/13/08


Having asked many spirit filled people about their experience with the Holy Spirit. At least 95% have said that spontaneity(the unexpected and unplanned for) plays a large part in Spirit led events.
---Mima on 2/13/08




I agree that things can get stiff but what's wrong with 1 Cor.14 where the instructions for an assembly are to have songs,prayers,tongues,prophecies, revelations, and lessons? We plan to have these at every service. God has freedom and moves wonderfully through this.
---john on 1/14/08


Where do some people here get the silly notion that free-wheeling spontaneity is necessarily more spiritual?
---Jack on 1/14/08


Some people find unstructured services unhelpful.
Why does anyone ... happy=clappy, silent, ritualistic, or whatever ... feel they have a right to impose what they like on others?
---alan_of_UK on 1/14/08


If I went to a church where they 'waved flags,' I would head for the door. I have seen some bizarre thngs,

1. They put saw dust on the floor, when the laity rolled around on the floor they looked like breaded chickens. (A holy roller church-in Tn)

2. A church where some of the laity ran around the inside of the building screaming. I only do that in the gym.(In Ca.)
---MikeM on 1/14/08


What is the problem with rituals? God instiuted the most elaborate ritualsitic worship we have ever known. Look at the books of Exodus and Leviticus. Rituals galore. He even instituted the ritual of 'communion' when He was here.

Rituals are only bad when we do them as a means of salvation as opposed to remembering what they point to.
---dan on 1/14/08




Yes, most churches just want to entertain. If you want real spiritual food from the teachings of Jesus and Him alone, then try (google) Spiritoftruthministry on internet blog radio. Or, start your own study group keeping Jesus' testimony the center.
---Dr._Rich on 1/14/08


most churches are ritualistic. they make up programs to choose how their service goes. you'll never hear a sermon on convictions,standards,or making sacarifices. they're all afraid they might have to give up something, which is exactly what the Bible says, and live the way God wants them to. YOU PEOPLE BETTER WAKE UP, JESUS IS COMING BACK SOON AND YOU BETTER HAVE YOUR HEART IN THE RIGHT PLACE. DON'T LISTEN TO THESE SO CALLED PREACHERS. DON'T FOLLOW YOUR PREACHER TO HELL.
---phillip on 1/14/08


Some churches end up in this rut- going to church on Sunday morning and performing the same ritual week after week. This is when the church body needs to pray for revival- for new birth and growth.
---rraea8898 on 1/12/08


j.nonymous)I think the flag waving/back flips etc are sensationalism and are carnal. I was speaking of 1cor 14:26 and on where Paul speaks of each member having a word,pslm,prophecy and all and that all should be done in order. That envolved participation of the members which you do not often see today no matter how the Spirit is quenched. Maybe you go to a unique church,but I do not even see alter calls for salvation or encouragement for people to value being CHRIST LIKE. That is my experience:)
---jody on 1/12/08


**The problem is that too many Christian parents who attend liturgical churches NEVER teach their children about the liturgy and what it means. It becomes boring and meaningless without knowledge.**

Good point. I will agree with you that children's primary spiritual education should come from their parents.
---Jack on 1/11/08


I believe that alot of church services in denom. are stiff and formal,etc.They are usually,very ritualistic.They usually "plan" everything.I am familiar with one church in my area that passes out a program for NEXT week's service. You can't expect God to move in a box!! He won't do it.
---donald on 1/10/08


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The OT Church has structured services and JESUS took part in them AND He NEVER condemned them. Hmmm

The problem is that too many Christian parents who attend liturgical churches NEVER teach their children about the liturgy and what it means. It becomes boring and meaningless without knowledge.
---Greyrider on 1/10/08


**Pastors cannot afford to take chances, lest the church service be led by the Holy Spirit.**

You're just saying that cause you want to be the star, Mima.

That's one thing that liturgy, when done right, does. It actually puts the clergy in parentheses.
---Jack on 1/10/08


#1 What does the statement "allowing the Holy Spirit to move" mean? I would imagine it should mean to change people into the likeness of Christ. However, I mostly hear it in the context of people jumping up and down, shouting, singing for long periods of time, and generally throwing structure out the window... Is this biblical?
---j._nonymous on 1/9/08


#2 I'm not against any of those things per say, but it's just as easy to accuse parishoners of confining the moving of the Holy Spirit as it is the pastor. Some limit the Holy Spirit to the liturgy and scoff at the aforementioned. Others limit the Holy Spirit to the aforementioned and scoff at the liturgy. Is jumping, shouting, flags, cartwheels, etc, always an indication of a move of God? I would imagine those types could be just as dead as anything else.
---j._nonymous on 1/9/08


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jody: "the Holy Spirit is not allowed to flow as was the intent in the early church". How do you think the Holy Spirit "flowed" in the early Church?
I believe there are 2 main evidences for a move of God: #1 People repenting and getting saved. #2 People being transformed into the likeness of Christ in how they live life. Aside from that, I'm not sure it should mean anything else. Everything else is external and not neccessarily genuine (though it could be). What do you mean?
---j._nonymous on 1/9/08


Mima
religion church services are a set of values based around belief expressed through customs & traditional ceremonies. This may seem ritualistic but only if the Holy Spirit is not guiding us.

How many times have we all read the same story in the bible and each time gotten a deeper mean & understanding of Gods Word?
---Shawn.M.T on 1/9/08


Here is a truthful statement."They function on a predetermined schedule set up by an employee called the pastor. His job is to conduct a service and he doesn't take chances by allowing the Holy Spirit to move."
---jody on 1/8/08
Pastors cannot afford to take chances, lest the church service be led by the Holy Spirit.
---Mima on 1/9/08


I have to agree with truthseeker in that in most churches that I have seen whether they be charismatic or traditional, the Holy Spirit is not allowed to flow as was the intent in the early church. In that sense, yes the churches are ritualistic. They function on a predetermined schedule set up by an employee called the pastor. His job is to conduct a service and he doesn't take chances by allowing the Holy Spirit to move.
---jody on 1/8/08


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#3 Some may say I am spiritually immature for letting such a thing distract me. But that thought can go both ways. If I am immature for letting flags get in the way of my worship of God, it is equally immature to distract many so a few can wave flags. However, some of my botheredness is due to my own religiosity and set ways. But at the end of the day, I think the alter should be prioritized. It's symbolism is more powerful, and is all inclusive.
---j._nonymous on 1/8/08


The body of Christ is supposed to function
as a whole, with each member contributing.
Unfortunately, within the standard "church
service" you find a one man show. It is difficult for each member to exercise their spiritual gifts, the way a church service is structured.
---truthseeker on 1/8/08


#1 We should question if the rituals are meaningful. Are they well prioritized? Example: I use to attend a Church where people could go to the alter and do business with God in the middle of worship. This was welcomed then. At some point, a person came to the Church who used flags and banners to worship God. Nothing wrong with that in my opinion. However, people stopped going to the alter because the flags were taking up space and people were getting hit.
---j._nonymous on 1/8/08


#2 It was like going through a gauntlet just to do business with God. I found it to be a huge distraction. The point: there is nothing special about the alter, and there is nothing special about flags. They are both symbolic. But (with limited space) the symbolism of the alter is more important because anyone can engage in it. The symbolism of the flags is limited to a small group of (mostly) women who wave them.
---j._nonymous on 1/8/08


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EVERY Church has some kind of structure in its services--call it ritual, if you like, though the preferred term is liturgy.

The real question is what kind of liturgy are we going to have: that which has been determined by the apostles and preserved in living tradition and practice, or some new preacher's bright ideas?
---Jack on 1/8/08


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