R.C. Sproul | – With the rise of seeker-sensitive churches, how do we understand biblically "seeking" God?

What is a “seeker-sensitive” church? And are they biblical? From Ligonier’s 2017 National Conference, R.C. Sproul and John MacArthur explain how seeker-sensitive churches distort what God commands the church to be and to do. Do you have another biblical or theological question? Ask Ligonier is your place for answers. Just visit [support us]


About The Author

Ligonier Ministries Ligonier Ministries is an international Christian discipleship organization founded by theologian Dr. R.C. Sproul in 1971 to equip Christians to articulate what they believe, why they believe it, how to live it, and how to share it. Proclaiming God’s holiness is central to Ligonier’s purpose. Ligonier produces Renewing Your Mind radio broadcasts, the Reformation Study Bible, Tabletalk magazine, books through the Reformation Trust Publishing division, and various teaching series. It also offers academic degrees through Reformation Bible College. In addition, Ligonier hosts national and regional conferences, offers an online learning community through Ligonier Connect, streams twenty-four-hour Christian internet radio through RefNet, and makes available thousands of unique discipleship resources online at Ligonier.org. Ligonier Ministries

Comment (41)

  1. Everyone is listening to Paul. No one is listening to Jesus. Jesus said.."Obey My Sayings and Seek ME Everyday for your Provision and the Father will Deliver you from Evil." Jesus did Not say..Seek the bible. Jesus did Not say..Seek Paul. Jesus did Not say.. Seek the church. The whole Purpose and Plan of Salvation is in the first seven chapters of Matthew. Jesus is Emmanuel..meaning "God With us." He is in our own mind and heart. When We seek Him..He gives us our provision. He is the Only Truth for us. Jesus spoke to the people in the bible..but they are no more worthy than we are. Jesus speaks to me personally everyday Truth for me. Why would I live to what He told some bible person?? You people have Totally missed the Whole idea..of Jesus.

  2. +ZoneFighter1.. I am not a catholic..they have too much fluff and error..but Christians are no better. I am a Follower of Jesus Christ..purely and truly. Jesus never said anything about appointing apostles..nor did He ever say Paul would be coming with a different and better Way than Himself. Paul was a Pharisee and he did what Pharisees do..appoint himself and make his own laws. It is fine with me if you want to follow Paul and his law but I follow Jesus..simply, purely and truly. Jesus is the Way. Not Paul. I do not care what the catholic church or any other church does.. You guys can fight your church battles forever!

  3. +Bo Linam.. Thank you for your comment. I read the bible..every word. But I read with Jesus Help. Jesus Helped me know the verses that were important for me and those I marked and read. Much of my bible is unmarked..but I Trust Jesus.. and I leave the rest of it alone. Just because Paul was wordy..does not make him right! I am not really interested in what he thinks. Jesus did have me mark some in Paul's writings so I know there is some value there. But I have learned in my life to Trust Jesus Alone. I am very cautious of the words on men..in the bible or out!

  4. +Alyanna Asumen..Paul does not teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus teaches His Gospel in Matthew first 7 chapters. Paul teaches his own gospel and it is not what Jesus teaches. I will Stay with Jesus. But thank you for your comment.

  5. +Alyanna Asumen..it was Paul who said the bible was "god breathed".. because he wrote most of the NT. but Jesus did not say the bible was "god breathed"…nor a lot of other things Paul said either. Jesus said..Follow ME. You have made Paul your god. You are worshipping idols when you worship your bible and your men.

  6. +Saved_by_Grace..Jesus Never said one thing about Paul establishing any church..Paul commissioned himself. Jesus definition of "church" is "revelation" to each and every person individually. That is how Peter "knew" Jesus was the Christ..through "revelation" to Peter. Jesus definition of church was Not a group of people with a hierarchy. You really need to go to Jesus for some Help understanding Him.. He never said Paul was going to come along and change His Gospel to a "better way." Your saved by grace fairy tale is not going to save you. That is Not Jesus Gospel.

  7. +timon mills..you are Not my judge. Jesus speaks to me everyday of my life. Jesus said.."Obey My Commandments and Seek ME Everyday for your Provision.". That is what I do..exactly as Jesus asked. That is the Will Of God. Jesus Never said Paul was coming with a different gospel and that I should seek him. I do not worship idols. I worship Jesus..Alone. Worship Paul all you please. Fine by me. I Obey Jesus..Not men.

  8. +Katy A: TheOrganizedPlanner..you do not need to be sad at all. I have read the Entire Bible with Help for every word..With Jesus. He is the One Who Showed me what was important for me to Know and what was not. I marked the verses He showed me and I re-read those and any others He shows me. You have no idea my relationship I have with my Savior..You judge where you have no business. And I certainly believe Him before I am going to be concerned with your opinion..but you are forgiven.

  9. +grantorino 2009.Jesus said.."Seek ye FIRST the Kingdom of God and HIS Righteousness." Jesus said to Seek Him FIRST. He Speaks for Himself. He did not tell me to seek the bible or Paul. You seek whoever you please..But I Seek Jesus. He showed me the bible verses that are helpful to me and those to leave alone. I am in Gods Hands. Your judgment means nothing to me.

  10. How could anyone make a joke about someone being killed by God and going to Hell like MacArthur does in this video? Very disturbing. The audience thought it was pretty funny. I see no humor in people dying lost and going to Hell.

  11. New Covenant Christian Experience.                          If you think you know scripture read the following.   With no additions or subtraction.                Read how an Evangelist dealt with some of these issues; speaking at a public presentation. The following reveals what many do not understand; and further proves that a Sabbath to Sunday change in the Bible is absolutely impossible.

    “I had just finished preaching on the subject of the Sabbath in one of my evangelistic outreach programs.  I stepped off the platform to greet people as they were leaving. 3 young men blocked my way in the aisle. One of them addressed me in quite a loud voice loud enough to cause about 50 people near the front of the auditorium to stop and listen. “Dear brother” he said, “we were disappointed tonight, with the way you put us back under the Old Covenant; don’t you realise that we are living under the New Covenant, and should keep Sunday instead of the Sabbath?”  

    Though the congregation were leaving the Church, a group near the front gathered closer to hear all that the young men were saying.  It was obvious that I would have to take the time to answer the trio's challenging question. As I suspected, they turned out to be young seminarians in training at a local Bible college. Eagerly they held their Bibles in their hands and waited triumphantly for me to answer.

    Usually, I do not like to debate controversial matters in a public forum, for fear of stirring up combative natures, but there seemed no way to avoid dealing with these ministerial students, who had my path completely blocked and the circle of listeners looked at me expectantly for some explanation. “Well, it seems as though you have studied the subject of the Covenants quite deeply,” I suggested. “Oh, yes,” they affirmed, “we know all about the Covenants.” “Good,” I replied. “You undoubtedly know when the Old Covenant was instituted.” One of them spoke up quickly, “It was instituted at Mt. Sinai.” “And how was it ratified?” I asked. Without a moment’s hesitation one of them answered, “By the sprinkling of the blood of an ox(Bull).” “Very good,” I commented, “and how was the New Covenant ratified?” All 3 chorused the answer, “By the blood of Jesus on the cross.” I commended the young men for their knowledge of the Scriptures and asked them to read me 2 verses out of their own Bibles.

    Galatians 3:15“Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; though it is only a man's covenant; yet if it is confirmed, no man annuls, or adds to it.”           

    Hebrews 9:16-17“For where there is a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is in force after men are dead: since it has no power at all while the testator lives.”          

    They responded eagerly to the invitation, and read the verses, commenting on each one after reading. “We agreed that the New Covenant did not go into effect, until after Christ died; and nothing can be added or taken away after He ratified it on the cross,” the spokesman for the group asserted. All three nodded their heads emphatically over this point. I said, “Now you must answer two more questions for me. Here is the first one, and you must think carefully to give me the correct answer: When did Sunday-keeping begin?” There was a moment of shocked silence; the boys looked at each other, and then down at their feet, and then back at me. I gently prodded them for the answer, “Surely you can tell me the answer to this question. You have known all the others, and have answered correctly.          

    When and why do you think people began keeping Sunday?” Finally, one of them said, “We keep Sunday in honor of the resurrection of Jesus.” I said, “Then I must ask you my last question. How could Sunday keeping be a part of the New Covenant? You just stated that nothing could be added after the death of Christ. He died on Friday and was resurrected on Sunday, if Sunday was added after Jesus died it could never be a part of the New Covenant could it?” The three young men shuffled their feet, looked helplessly around, and one of them said, “We will study into that and talk to you later.” They then fled from that auditorium as fast as they could go; I can assure you that they never returned to talk about the covenants.”

  12. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS SEEKER SENSITIVE CHURCH IN THE BIBLE…. YOU ARE ALL ARGUING ABOUT YOUR MAN-MADE THEOLOGY…. LEARN THIS ONE THING: MARK 16:15-20(KJV) 15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

    16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

    17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

    18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

    19 So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.

    20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.

  13. The best is to get involved in a church you are comfortable with. What the church is doing wrong, they do not teach to have a relationship with God.
    The bible shall only be understood in the end.
    What man is not capable in teaching , God is really convincing and more than capable. God does not want you to lay out the bible 100% , he wants you to communicate with Him.
    Does he not say , I shall be your teacher? Yea and Amen!!!

    And to think God does not exist, is the most stupid and ignorant religion on earth, considering you are born the most intelligent creature on earth and die for nothing. Really! What moron is so ignorant. Scientists are struck with amazing facts of what you are made of and the best minds in history admid 100% there has to be a intelligent and superior power behind the existence of the world we know.

  14. I love God and i learn directly from God. I can't worship a human when I can directly seek answers from God. God revealed to me the truth about my sufferings and how to overcome that to attain liberation. But being a normal human it is not easy to follow everything that God revealed. I fail sometimes but now I know what I have to do about my liberation. God is the best guide.

  15. This guy's adding to Acts 5 to the story of "adding to the church " because of Annanias & Sufira. This man us adding man made doctrine to the Bible. Revelation 22 states "if any man adds or takes away from this book he will be eternally cursed".

  16. My city is filled with seeker sensitive churches there is too many churches and not enough Gospel all of these churches know each other, they listen to that Contemporary music their members think believing in Christ is about being American, living in a HOA and social club. They use phrases like "church life" " I love my church" they speak none of Gods judgements, they are cliques and have movie nights while we have brothers and sisters dying for Christ and being persecuted in other countries . They ignore this . Maybe God is using COVID against them gathering while believers out side of America are dying, watching their churches burn down and in some cases physically assaulted all for these seeker sensitive churches to have movie nights and BBQS .

  17. It's very concerning that Seeker Sensitive churches and the whole New Apostolic Reformation movement seems to present "church lite", and the precious souls who are seeking God's Word and His Truth, are left without the spiritual food they need. Only God's Word can lead sinners to repentance and real, lasting, transforming change.

    MESSAGE TO ALL CHRISTIANS – Matthew 7:“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it."