Is what we refer to as “mega” actually miniscule in God’s eyes? (Note: minuscule & miniscule – both commonly used, but I prefer to use miniscule.)
In our limited, finite minds, what we think of as “mega” is always “miniscule” to God. Think about the vastness of creation, the world, the ocean, etc. People refer to churches containing thousands of members as “mega” churches, but in light of all the people in the world, and so many unchurched, non-believers, and non-followers of Christ, even the churches with 30,000 plus members are not considered mega to God. Yes, these churches may be considered “mega” to us in comparison of the average church, but, again, God loves the whole world (John 3:16), and that sounds pretty “mega” – right?
Many believers say they do not care for “mega” churches, but since God has stated in His Word that He desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:4), perhaps a “mega” church might even be a God idea? After all, in Acts 2:41, we see the early church adding 3,000 new converts in one day. If a “mega” church is preaching the gospel message of salvation through Jesus Christ alone, and following the Bible as the fully infallible word of God, teaching the truth of scripture, and leading people to follow Christ and His teachings, criticizing such “mega” church growth seems contrary to the great commission, and the heart of God in general. It almost seems selfish to voice strong opposition to these type of “mega” churches. It’s sort of like saying, “I’m saved, but I’m not really concerned about the rest of the world, or about thousands coming to know The Truth.” To balance this out, we know, Jesus also told us that narrow is the gate that leads to life and wide is the path that leads to destruction, and few in number are those who find it.* Again, few in God’s eyes, may be different than “few” from our perspective. That being said, we know, that there are mega churches and small churches alike that are filled with members who have still not found the path (of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ) that leads to life.
Often, those who express negative feedback regarding the so called “mega” church claim one of their primary concerns is not being able to personally know or connect with other people, or, more importantly, in their view, the Pastor. Fellowship, accountability, and being in real community with a church family is vital to the growth and maturity of every follower of Christ. This is where discipleship occurs, and so this is very important. It is true that some who attend mega churches do so in order to remain anonymous, and/or to avoid connection, fellowship, or committing to serve, etc.. This also occurs within smaller churches, but perhaps not as often. That’s another subject altogether. However, most larger or “mega” churches offer and strongly encourage small groups (which often meet in homes) to promote connecting people within the body of Christ. In regards to the Pastor, yes, you might have to be okay with just knowing Jesus as Your Shepherd and not your Pastor so well, but, after all, isn’t that the goal? (Even still, larger and mega churches provide numerous leaders and elders to cover the pastoral connection.) In America, there is no need to be concerned about finding a good “smaller” church, as it appears that the smaller churches are everywhere, and there are not near as many “mega” churches. If there were more “mega” and “smaller” churches really being “the church” as depicted in Acts, perhaps there would be some “mega” changes in our culture. Perhaps that’s what we need to ponder and pray about? Finally, there is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one Father of us all, and we are one church under the Great Shepherd, and so “mega” or mini or whatever the size, we just need to be “the church” or the body (hands, feet, and voice) of Jesus to a world full of hurting people.
Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all, in all, and living through all. Ephesians 4:3-6
On a final note, when The Lord brought deliverance to the Israelites from the hands of Pharoah through Moses, and the number of people delivered was pretty mega – 600,000 men plus women and children! This is a picture of the salvation God has offered to us all through Jesus Christ.
That night the people of Israel left Rameses and started for Succoth. There were about 600,000 men, plus all the women and children. Exodus 12:37
On this night the Lord kept His promise to bring His people out of the land of Egypt. So this night belongs to Him, and it must be commemorated every year by all the Israelites, from generation to generation. Exodus 12:42
Only God is awesome and His works are awesome and mega too! Heaven will be the true mega church!
“Who is like You among the gods, O Lord—glorious in holiness, awesome in splendor, performing great wonders? Exodus 15:11
For the Lord Most High is awesome. He is the great King of all the earth. Psalm 47:2