I most recently spent half a year at a PCA church, and then another half a year at a Southern Baptist church. I attended Sunday services as well as Wednesday night Bible study. I am now looking for a new church. For now, I just look around for a sermon I like and listen to that. In this post, I’ll explain why I think men don’t like church.
There are three areas where churches fail to attract men:
- Feminism, sex and marriage
- Policy and current events
The PCA church discouraged me from becoming a member of the church because they said that conversion to Christianity due to reason and evidence was contrary to their teachings, and a “red flag”. Their words. I didn’t try to fight them on it, because they are Reformed Presbyterian, and this is their actual view. Their approach to apologetics was “pre-suppositional”, which is to say, they try to convince people to become Christians by asking them to assume that the Bible is infallible, without any argumentation or evidence. Naturally, this doesn’t work, so they aren’t trained to answer any serious questions from non-Christians. (1 Pet 3:15-16)
The Reformed Baptist SBC church is led by people like Russell Moore and Al Mohler, who take the “magic words” approach to evangelism. I.e. – they think that people become Christians just by speaking Bible verses out of context to them. So, when the atheist asks “do you have any evidence for God’s existence?” or “do you have any evidence for Jesus’ resurrection?”, their response is to quote Bible verses to the atheist, which have nothing to do with those topics. Christianity has lost so much influence in the culture under their approach, which is not even Biblical. (Mat 12:38–41)
These approaches to evangelism are not used in any other area of human endeavor. No one replies to questions about auto mechanics, or software engineering, or gardening, or cooking, by spouting Bible verses. In literally every other area of human endeavor, the laws of logic and supporting evidence are seen as assets when making claims to know something about the world to someone who disagrees with you.
Feminism, Sex and Marriage
First wave feminism simply asked for women to be given the same liberty and opportunity as men. That was good. But later versions of destroyed all distinctions between men and women. By destroying femininity, feminism directed women away from the traditional life plan of marriage, children and home-making.
Feminism changed how women voted. Today, about 75% of young, unmarried women vote for policies like taxpayer-funded birth control, taxpayer-funded abortion, no-fault divorce, affirmative action for women in schools and in the workplace, taxpayer-funded daycare, public schools, single-mother welfare, social security, etc. These policies and programs raised tax rates, and grew government, making it easier for women to have children without having to choose a marriage-ready man she wasn’t attracted to. Instead, she could choose men she was attracted to, and just use government programs as a substitute provider if it didn’t “work out”. Thanks to feminism, we have a 42% out-of-wedlock birth rate, and it’s rising. Few female college graduates are debt-free. About 5% of women emerge from college as virgins.
Under feminism, the traditional male roles and virtues were deemed “sexist”. Women were shamed for choosing early marriage, large families, and stable men who were good at being husbands and fathers. Instead, women today chose men based on appearance. They spend their 20s and early 30s giving men who will not commit to them premarital sex. The men who are getting sex thrown at them have no interest in Judeo-Christian values, chastity, fidelity, commitment or raising children. Women mistake the men’s willingness to have sex and cohabitate as signs that they are close to marriage. But in fact, chasing the hot bad boys just eats up the chastity, youth and beauty that could have made them interesting to the marriage-minded men they scorned. Later on, they realize that they’ve wasted their 20s on bad boys, but by then they are not attractive for marriage.
What has the response been to feminism from pastors and churches? They accept the anti-male, anti-marriage policies, that came out of feminism. They accept the promiscuity, and the marriage-delaying that came from feminism. Today, pastors just try to bully the men who were passed over to marry the women who had previously rejected them, despite the higher risk of divorce caused by the women’s past behavior.
Policy and current events
Most pastors are anti-intellectual, and they believe that this is a virtue, since they are focused narrowly on what the Bible explicitly says. Because of this, they aren’t able to understand which laws and policies allow Christianity and Christian families to flourish. I agree that what the Bible speaks about is of the highest importance. But we need to understand how to achieve the goals that the Bible states, as well as how to counter the forces that threaten the achievement of those goals.
For example, Christianity thrives when marriage thrives. Christianity is passed on from parents to children. Anything that threatens marriage, or interferes with parental authority, weakens the influence of Christianity. So, policies like higher taxes, no-fault divorce, SOGI laws, all harm the Christian family, while policies like lower taxes, protections for Christian businesses, protection for Christian schools (statements of faith, moral codes), etc. are all good for Christian families. But most pastors never talk about policies or laws, because they don’t think about how to defend the Christian worldview, how to educate Christian children, how to promote marriage, how promote Christian moral values in the public square. Even protecting the right to life of unborn children is ignored.
As the churches lose relevance, it becomes tempting for pastors to accept what the secular left promotes as good and true and beautiful. The big one is pastors pushing for redistribution of wealth by the secular government as a solution to “poverty”, even though the Bible only sanctions voluntary charity. This diminishes the cultural relevance of the church and elevates the secular government. SBC leaders like Russell Moore champion amnesty for refugees and unskilled illegal immigrants, not realizing how it will harm Christian institutions and values down the road to import large numbers of people who will eventually vote for policies like higher taxes, bigger government, etc.
15 thoughts on “Why don’t men go to church anymore? The decline of male church attendance”
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Graceway Bible Church, Edgewater Florida. Leader is Des Strydom, my motorcycle mechanic and former engineer. Eye opening. Related churches around the country.
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I would go even further and say that government policy has an impact on what percentage of the population gets saved. Law has eternal implications, and it is wrong to separate the Christian call to evangelism from the call to political activism. They are connected.
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“Be ye therefore wise as serpents and harmless as doves.”
I think this verse (Matt 10:16) shows the goal of a duality of the christian mind. Doves are, by their nature, peaceful creatures while serpents, by their nature, are hunters. Too many modern christians want to be doves and see it as virtue when they kick back and allow themselves and other christians around them to be consumed. “Vengeance is mine, I will repay”, right? So just let the Lord handle it while we let the world go down the toilet. They don’t understand that they are becoming useless salt! A serpent has no arms or legs, it cannot simply go in and brute force attack its prey, it must learn to feint, to engage and then to strike the fatal blow. As christians we also must learn to engage, to respond in an effective way when “attacked”, and to drive home the message of the gospel when there is no logical defense left! How can you engage in the battle if you insist on never learning to fight? You can read all the books on Kung Fu you want, but if you only ever read and never engage you will be shocked when you go down in a true fight!
Modern christians are lazy. They won’t even read their own bibles, but rely on others to tell them what means what, while they paste together “daily bread” posts to try and understand the Word. Shameful.
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Well put. It put it this way having been a bit slow and arrived at this conclusion aged 60 years old. When it says ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay”, we forgot that, in Christ, we are His body, He is the head.
He and the Father are one He said. This being the case logic dictates we, via Christ, are one with the heavenly Father.
Therefore, in Him, we have the authority to ‘Do justice,and love mercy’…whilst walking humbly with our God.
Therefore we fight as directed by the Holy Spirit in any and every aspect of life as required.
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If you’re a Calvinist by definition you could shout curses at an unbeliever and if one of the elect they would come to salvation anyway. Likewise all your knowledge can’t affect the non elect so why bother?
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Hence a question that I asked of a pastoral candidate once “How does your understanding of the foreknowledge and predestination of God affect your actions in fulfilling the Great Commission?”
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That’s such a good question.
I think on the middle knowledge view, humans choose to participate in evangelism because they realize that their actions are part of God’s plan to draw others to himself.
Why bother doing anything at all if it is all determined? Why bother putting clothes on in the morning? Because that is life, ok a very small part of it!
The truth is the heavenly Father set perimeters for His children. They can live to their hearts content within them. He will, as a shepherd, go looking for them when they go astray. And he will most certainly not let them be lost.
And Jesus is the good shepherd who does his Father’s work as any faithful son will. They have the same characteristics of course.
Thus we have the privilege of sharing in that. But it is not just ‘you must repent and trust and follow Jesus’, it is much more. It is all life and all truth as found in Christ, all the good things in life. We can make witnessing a chore, rather than realise we are seeking friends out of enemies as the Holy Spirit guides and empowers us.
And we must above all love sacrificially, God, our neigbour and, we mustn’t forget, ourselves as we will not be able to love God or our neighbour if we do not.
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If a pastor isn’t preaching regularly on sin and Hell, and against abortion, sodomy, divorce, transgendering children, jab idolatry, Marxism, etc, then he is not a “man of God” that I can much respect. How can I be held accountable by someone I do not respect?
Also, if he does not do these things, then I believe that I am correct in assuming that he is not doing them because he fears the Jezebels in the pews more than he fears God. Since I do not respect them at all, I cannot respect pastors who do not ever stand up to them.
So instead of attending pretender churches, I am just a missionary TO the churches.
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When it comes to the PCA, I think I might get what they’re worried about, the difference between mere intellectual assent and faith in Christ coming from the will and the “heart” (do not read heart as mere emotion, but the seat of the desire or love of God, what Aquinas would call the incensive part of the soul, the other two parts being intellectual and volitional).
Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying your faith isn’t real, I don’t know. And I’m not even saying they went about it the right way, I don’t know. I also know men who come to Christ may have different emotional states from great emotion to great placidity.
I also think that’s the idea with the views on the Gospel. Christianity isn’t a mere philosophy. My understanding is that you present the Gospel and God provides some with an intuitive sense (again not to confused with mere emotion) of its truth and a choice to accept or reject. Hence the metaphors of “seeing” the light or “waking up”, I don’t “reason out” what my room looks like when I wake up in the morning, I switch on the light and I can see it.
Apologetics can be used to break up intellectual resistance to the truth by undermining false reasoning, and can buttress the faith of believers, extremely worthy goals. But the problem isn’t only the intellectual part of the soul, and logic fails in utility without the first principles provided by the intuitive faculty.
Agree. Belief in God contains philosophy but is not limited to philosophy nor apolgetics. The Bible is clear that even the demons know about God. We must acknowledge that we are saved by what Jesus did on the cross and the resulting forgiveness and grace that flows from that. Our intellect alone doesn’t save us, our humility in relation to who God is is also necessary. As a result we are to love and serve His people. Christianity needs both the mind and the heart (love)
We need humility toward others who don’t have a strong grasp of apologetics and set and example for them by our love for them.
Our lives are to reflect our gratitude to God for what hH has done. If we are strong in apologetics our spouses don’t have to be as we are all different parts of the body of believers as the Bible clearly points out.
We are gifted differently and are called to different aspects of ministry.