Surprising Insights from the Unchurched

After surveying hundreds of converts, preachers, and transferred church members, Thomas Rainer discovered these important factors as to why people become church members:
90% rated the preacher and his preaching as the number one reason.
88% said defined and proclaimed doctrine.
49% rated friendliness.
42% said other varied issues.
41% said, “Someone from the church witnessed to me.”
38% said family members attended there.
37% sensed an atmosphere of God’s presence.
25% had a friendship with a member.
25% said Bible classes were a major factor.
25% cited the children’s ministry.
12% said other ministries or groups.
11% said worship style was important.
7% said a convenient location.
Rainer said that the things church members often think are most important are actually least important to those they are trying to reach. He also spent considerable time discussing the importance of preaching and doctrine to those seeking a church.
Unchurched people want a church family that is committed to the Lord and proclaims the message of repentance and conversion rather than a church that teaches everyone is okay. Rainer also found that many churches have adopted strategies aimed at attracting people from other congregations rather than choosing to be involved in saving the lost.
The gospel taught with love and firmness still works!
[Adapted from an article by Bill McDonough, who surveyed Thomas Rainer’s book, Surprising Insights from the Unchurched.]

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