It’s been in the news recently that Costco is at a bit of a crossroad with their clients. Due to “shelving capacity,” the Costco company issued a notice to all stores to remove the latest book by Dr. Dinesh D’Souza from its shelves. The book is entitled “America: Imagine the World Without Her.” This book has made its way into many homes and, given the latest reviews of the movie, has gained great popularity.

I confess I have yet to read the book but it is certainly on my “To Read” list.  Even still, knowing the premise, having previewed the movie and knowing the impact of D’Souza it made me start thinking in a different light.

The Church: Imagine America Without Her. Seriously, think about it. What would America look like without the church? Let’s be a little loose in our terminology for just a second. And let’s allow church to mean all those who subscribe to some form of Christianity even if they don’t “go to church,” you know the spiritual but not religious types. That is a lot of people. According to an American Religious Identification Survey (ARIS) in 2008, approximately 76% of Americans profess to be Christians. That means out of the 314 million people that live in America more than 238 million of them say they are Christians. I did say that number included the spiritual but not religious types. So let’s get a little more conservative with our numbers. In this same survey, 51% of those who professed to be Christian actually attended worship somewhere. So that means that only about 120 million people who claim Christianity actually go to a place of worship. With a predominantly “Christian” nation you would think that we would be a just, moral, godly people right?

The truth is, we aren’t. It seems that in my lifetime alone we have slipped past the point of no return. Not necessarily embracing immorality but rather turning a blind eye in the name of political correctness. With the idea of tolerance at the heart of most matters, Christians choose to be silent. Truth be told, if you look at society today you are seeing what the world looks like without the church. Open your eyes for just a moment. We live in a nation whose lawmakers legislate with lawlessness. At every turn God is being removed and forgotten in the public eye. We slaughter thousands upon thousands of innocent children on the altar of choice. We have abandoned the godly model of the home replacing it with selfish lust. We have replaced the vow of marriage with the idea of a dissolvable contract. We fight and appeal for the freedom to be intoxicated with alcohol and illicit drugs. We measure success by the emblem on a car or commas in a bank account balance rather than by the content of a person’s character and a heart pleasing to God.


It’s not about professing that you’re a Christian anymore; it’s about showing the world that you are one. We have long since abandoned the principle “actions speak louder than words.” Our inaction has spoken louder than ever and not in a good way. Have you ever wondered what would have happened in the temple had Jesus not flipped over the money tables and driven the people out? I saw a meme the other day and to be honest I laughed when I read it…a lot. Then the sadness of the image overtook the humor. It was a picture of Jesus in the very act of flipping over the tables and it said, “If Jesus did this today, Christians would probably say Jesus wasn’t acting like Jesus.” Sadly, I know those Christians. Is it you?

 It’s not popular to be offensive, to hurt someone’s feelings, or even correct them. But, the truth is…we are losing our churches. Sure, you may say, “Andrew, we have churches being built all over town, numbers are growing” and whatever else. We are building sure, but at what cost?  Is truth being preached?

I honestly feel sick to my stomach for a number of reasons. First, I don’t know if we can win back the church and that breaks my heart. I don’t know what the church is going to look like when my kids are old enough to realize the gravity of the gospel. Secondly, I don’t know if people care about the church anymore or understand why it’s so important. Remember the statistics I just gave: 76% of Americans say they are Christians, but of that 76% only 51% of them go to church somewhere. Why wouldn’t all 76% go? We all know, preach and quote John 3:16 and, while the words of that verse ring true, God did send Jesus to die for us, it was more than that. He sent Jesus to save us and keep us. He didn’t leave us to fend for ourselves. He set up a lifeline, the church. Jesus said he’d be building one, Matthew 16:18. If Jesus built it, He would have to buy it. He did that with His blood, Acts 20:28. If He shed His blood, that means He died for it, Ephesians 5:25. So, yes Jesus died for me…but just as important if not more, He did for His Church! I want to be a part of that.

To imagine America or even the world without the church you would have to imagine the world without Jesus. Friends, I don’t even want to conceive that thought. The sad reality is that we are living in that world today and the church is growing more and more scarce every day. What are we doing to revive, rejuvenate and rebuild her. The walls in the day of Nehemiah were not built by nothing, they were rebuilt because the people had a mind to work, Nehemiah 4:6. We need people willing to stand in the gap and build the walls.

By Andrew Chavarrilla