4 thoughts on “The Screwtape Letters | Letter Sixteen”
To me this is a question of foundation in faith. Matthew 13:1-9, the Parable of the Sower, describes seed being spread on various ground and which ones we should be. Shallow ground brings fast growth but fizzles after a short time, but deep ground brings a good rooted growth that will last. Matthew 7:24-27, Wise and Foolish Builders, again describe what type of ground faith should be built on to grow and last. Solid ground brings strong faith and unstable ground brings calamity.
He doesn’t want the patient to become a one church member, but, instead he wants him to “church shop”. This results in the patient looking for a church that fits his thinking and does not put to many constraints on his behaviors.s
When a person becomes a church connoisseur or a church shopper we will assume they are looking for what suits them, not whether or not the church is biblical. The problems with this approach are many.
First, you miss the point, a Christian is a pupil not a critic.
Second, a sense of superiority can fill the shoppers heart.
Third, it feeds into our culture’s “it’s about me and what I want” mentality. There are many more problems with being a lifelong church shopper, for that is what you will become, always shopping because there is no perfect church.
God desires unity, becoming a church connoisseur “makes the man a critique when the enemy wants him to be a pupil.” Shopping for a church doesn’t allow us to become planted in the house and grow spiritually. I imagine a church connoisseur is spiritually immature and concerned more with their flesh. They’ll look for something they won’t be able to find instead of building a relationship with Jesus.
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