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Christian Sociology and the Church

QUESTION: Christian Sociology – The Church in Society


God ordained the church to serve specific functions. The church is intended to function as a community composed of individuals working together to nurture each other and going out from it to serve the larger society.

One principal role of the church is to proclaim the truth regarding sin, repentance, and salvation. The church can play a critical role in turning a society toward God by explaining that both individuals and societies are guilty of sin and will be held responsible.

Christian Sociology – The Church as Community
Another role of the church in society is to model true community by demonstrating what it means to “love your neighbor as yourself.” The church must show that God is relational and the initiator of all relations. Schaeffer is adamant about the need for community in the Christian church: “I am convinced that in the 20th century people all over the world will not listen if we have the right doctrine, the right polity, but are not exhibiting community.”1 This timeless call to serve others in love is grounded in Ephesians 4:11–16.


Rendered with permission from the book,Understanding the Times: The Collision of Today’s Competing Worldviews(Rev. 2nd ed), David Noebel, Summit Press, 2006. Compliments of John Stonestreet, David Noebel, and the Christian Worldview Ministry at Summit Ministries. All rights reserved in the original.

1 Francis A. Schaeffer, The Church at the End of the 20th Century (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1974), 73.

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