John Robbins grew up in a Christian family in the Detroit area. His family was very active in their local church. The normal routine was Sunday school, church, inviting someone home for dinner and then back to church for youth group and evening service. John has experienced church from every angle as a member, visitor, leader and in other areas of service; from changing diapers in the nursery to preaching, singing and teaching on Sunday morning. Going to church remains an important part of John’s lifestyle and faith.
So, why write a book questioning churches in America today?
As John became a man, he started noticing churches changing along with the communities we live in. The focus no longer seemed to be on God. Rather than pointing people to Jesus, churches were trying to make the worship service entertaining and comfortable. Churches need people in the pews, but at what cost? The bible warns that it should not be at the expense of losing our first love. Jesus is not a fan of lukewarm Christians.
A View from the Back Row was written to call the church back to its roots, the only thing we have to offer others, our hope in Jesus Christ. Many churches struggle with the business mechanics and politics, but we can’t let them be or become the focus. One of John’s favorite questions is, “Does it have eternal value?” If not, then don’t let it distract from the reason a church exists. Being faithful in a fallen world is a daily struggle, but the bible instructs us to do just that. The focus should not be on building a church. That is God’s job. We are to build disciples. How they worship on Sunday is more important than the coffee and music. One of the top reasons people aren’t going to church today is they don’t think its necessary. Perhaps in our attempt to make church more attractive we’ve become too much like the world.
A View from the Back Row reflects on church history — where, when, what, why and how. It offers some simple solutions to get the focus back where we belong. While it is up to us as individuals to pursue God and place Him first in every area of our lives, the church we attend plays a critical role in our daily walk. Time may be short. As the old hymn says, “Revive us again!”
While Solomon said there is no end to the writing of books, we hope and pray this book will encourage and inspire many to become disciples of Christ, draw closer to Him and help the churches they attend do the same.