Apologetics Index
Seeker-Sensitive Churches

Seeker-Sensitive Churches


Christian churches that provide services designed to make non-Christians ("seekers") feel welcome in a pressure-free, culturally-relevant atmosphere. Jonathan Edward's "Sinners in the hands of an angry God" wouldn't be heard in a seeker-sensitive meeting. The Gospel is presented through modern worship, skits, and jargon-free, brief speeches. (John Wimber, in his testimony, recounted how Christianese initially puzzled him. When his wife took him to a church service, someone asked him, "Have you been washed in the blood?" Wimber says he wondered, "When do they make you do that?")

Seeker-friendly churches are sometimes criticized by Christians who feel the Gospel message is being watered-down. Others claim such churches are employing business marketing techniques rather than engaging in evangelism.

Seeker-sensitive churches also must remain relevant to established Christians looking for nurture:

One fundamental of the SFC [Seeker-Friendly Church] movement is that the same service cannot target both seekers and believers. It is said that you can reach one or the other but not both. Most thoughtful proponents of the straight seeker-service agree that it is not worship, and cannot give Christians proper nurture.

Therefore, in many churches in the SFC movement, a 'seeker-focused' service is targeted for the unchurched, and some other weekly believer-focused service becomes the worship service for believers. In many other SFC churches, there is only one main weekly service which serves believers and the unchurched. This is called 'seeker-sensitive' worship.

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