For many in the West, being a Christian may seem to have little or no cost at all. To a lot of South Africans, being a Christian means little more than ticking a box on their census form (what we call “none of the above” Christians). That’s why about 80% of South Africans claim to be Christians, but only about 56% say they attend church regularly (at least once a week).
To make things worse, in our Western society some have tried to cheapen the cost of discipleship in order to entice people and draw in the crowds. We live in the age where preachers are told to have “seeker-sensitive” churches, where the church is viewed as a business and the congregation as consumers.
As consumers must be given what they want, God needs to be presented as ‘consumer-friendly’. Most ‘consumers’ want to be made to feel comfortable and ‘positive’ - even if they haven’t repented. And so God is presented as a nice grandfather, whose main concern is to make you happy. We talk exclusively of God’s love and avoid any mention of his holiness and justice.