Why Do Good Churches Die?

Title: Why Do Good Churches Die?

Bible Book: Revelation 3 : 1

Author: Jackie Kay

Subject: Church, Death of a; Growth, Church



Dr. Kervorkian’s name has become familiar to all of us because of his involvement in helping dozens of people commit suicide. There appears to be an epidemic of unnatural deaths among churches that once were alive and vibrant. The death of any church is unnatural. Many a person has been guilty of complicity to kill a church. Ironically, some were convinced they were doing it for the right reasons. Why do good churches die? The Word of God reveals the following ten reasons why good churches die.

Good churches die when they…

I. Displace the Person of God

Rev. 2:4.

Ephesus had left their first love. It is entirely possible to love cultural traditions more than God. It is possible to love denominationalism more than God. It is possible to love religious activity more than God. Position, power, and prestige can replace our love for God. To Simon Peter Jesus asked the probing question, three times, "Do you really love me?"

Good churches die when they…

II. Deny the Spirit of God

Zech. 4:6

The supernatural presence and power of God was the birthmark of the early church. We have allowed our charismatic friends to scare us away from anything that appears to be the anointing and unction of the Holy Spirit. You do not have to sacrifice truth to enjoy the fire of the illuminating presence and power of the Holy Spirit. We prefer no fire to Holy Ghost fire!

Good churches die when they…

III. Disobey the Word of God

2 Tim. 4:2-3

Our convictions are not to be determined by situational ethics, party politics, or societal norms. Political correctness and God’s plumbline are different things. The Word of God is, and shall forever be, God’s standard for His people. 2 Tim. 3:16 reminds us that the Scripture is totally sufficient to reveal truth and reveal sin.

Good churches die when they…

IV. Dismiss the Warnings of God

Heb. 2:3

Hebrews contains six warnings to churches. He has made clear the consequences of neglecting to give attention to the unbent knee, the unpaid tithe, the unkept vows, the unconfessed sin, the unshared truth, the unyielded life, and the unteachable spirit.

Good churches die when they…

V. Dilute the Holiness of God

Isaiah 59: 1-13

Dr. R. G. Lee used to say that "sin is a madness in the brain, a poison in the heart, the leprosy of life, and the cancer of the soul." Jeremiah says that God’s people no longer blush at sin. Churches that tolerate sin are destined to die.

Good churches die when they…

VI. Divert the Priorities of God

Matt. 28: 18-20

Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost. There are no substitutes for evangelism, discipleship, ministry, and missions. We are not called to play, party, politic, pander to the world’s philosophies, or prostitute the Gospel on the altar of cultural acceptability.

Good churches die when they…

VII. Disdain the Man of God

Hebrews 13: 7,17, and 24, I Tim. 5:17-19, Eph. 4: 11-12

The pastor is the shepherd (poimen), the spiritual elder (presbuteros), and the leader (episcopos). He is to be respected, loved, prayed for, encouraged, and followed as He follows the Lord. God judged Israel when they murmered against Moses. Many a church has viewed God’s man as a hirling and treated him with disdain, and many a church has died. Good churches die when they…

VIII. Divide the People of God

Eph. 4:1-3, Proverbs 6:19

God hates those who sow discord among the brethren. Many a church member has contributed to the death of a church when they forced their own personal ungodly agenda at any cost.

Good churches die when they…

IX. Delay the Urgency of God

Eph. 5:14, "Awake…"

God’s call is to repentance...now! The day is far spent. We take God literally, just not seriously. The whole land is made desolate because no man layeth it to heart.

Good churches die when they…

X. Disregard the Appeal of God

Rev. 2:5, 11, 16, 3:3, 22

The appeal of God is to remember, repent, and return. He has removed many a candlestick! Sadly, many a good church has died a horrible unnatural death because of these ten reasons.


Praise God, we serve a God of the resurrection. God can breathe across a valley of dry bones, He can resurrect Lazarus and He can breathe the new breath of revival into any church that remembers, repents, and returns.


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