As I passed the large billboard to my left, I noticed an image that looked somewhat familiar. I wasn’t sure if it was Willy Wonka or the Wizard of Oz. Since this billboard sat in front of Potential church, I knew it could have been either. We are still somewhat in the summer season after all, and this means that movies are usually the main text used in purpose driven churches everywhere.
When I got home, I did a search, and lo and behold, I saw that it was a billboard for the Wizard of Oz. A series as described by Potential:
Our journey down the yellow brick road will remind us that, whether here or somewhere over the rainbow – courage, wisdom and heart are essential to reaching your God Potential. So tap your heels, take courage and invite every munchkin you know to make Potential Church their home – because we all know that : “There’s no place like home.”
Why, why,why? I know I probably sound like a redundant and annoying sound to a lot of people, but why not just preach the Bible by itself? Don’t just read it to people because they can just read it for themselves. Pastor, teach it to them. Instead of teaching a “you must do this so God can do this, or you aren’t meeting your Potential,” just preach the gospel. Instead of preaching, “You need to be a radical Christian, and not mediocre,” preach the gospel! God doesn’t bless you because of the stuff you do. He doesn’t bless you because of your obedience.
1 You foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified? 2 This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? 4 Did you suffer so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain? 5 So then, does He who provides you with the Spirit and works miracles among you, do it by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? (Galatians 3:1-5)
It is by faith. It isn’t by FAITHFULNESS. In other words, it’s not by how hard you work in order to prove your faith. It’s by believing God. If you think you are being obedient, just check out the ten commandments, and let me know how that’s going for you. So, being wise or having heart or being courageous doesn’t help you meet a potential. We haven’t been saved to meet a potential. Christians believe that Christ died for their sins. Sins they constantly commit.
7 “Which of you, having a slave plowing or tending sheep, will say to him when he has come in from the field, ‘Come immediately and sit down to eat’? 8 “But will he not say to him, ‘Prepare something for me to eat, and properly clothe yourself and serve me while I eat and drink; and afterward you may eat and drink’? 9 “He does not thank the slave because he did the things which were commanded, does he? 10 “So you too, when you do all the things which are commanded you, say, ‘We are unworthy slaves; we have done only that which we ought to have done.’” (Luke 17:7-10)
Here Jesus shows us that no amount of obedience on our part will merit God’s favor or blessings or anything. Christ is perfect. If you are a Christian, then God sees you as being perfectly obedient because Christ was perfectly obedient on your behalf. How can you add or take away from that? Praise God for this awesome news!
Lastly, the Wizard of Oz? Normally these “churches” try to stay relevant. Is there a DVD release that I don’t know about? Are they remaking it? We ought to be preaching Christ. Not the Wizard of Oz. Not the tin man. Not the tin man in a suit. Not the yellow brick road. Preach about Jesus Christ, preach about the sinfully enslaved and wicked humanity, preach about the narrow road.