#1 – We are answering questions that no one else is asking.
I’m glad that we can debate theology and know terms that make us seem intelligent and cause other people to scratch their heads; however, at the end of the day people are not asking about the five points of Calvinism, the trichotomy or dichotomy of the Spirit or the peccability/impeccability of Christ! They are asking “why is my life falling apart?” Or, “how do I get past the fact that I was sexually molested when I was eight?” Or, “how do I, as a single mom, lead and provide for my family?”
Too many people are so obsessed with their theological labels, I believe, so that they don’t actually have to do real ministry! (Source)
Note: Perry Noble's post continues, however, he chose to use some rather colorful language in a few places, so the reader is warned to be watchful of this if you choose to follow the link above.This goes back to the erroneous "Jesus didn't die for correct theology" argument. Yet, it seems as though Perry Noble is missing a key point. If a pastor is teaching the Bible, God's Word, then things like total depravity, justification, substitutionary atonement, the Trinity, the nature of God and Christ, etc. will come up. The church does not exist as a counseling center for people who are going through a rough time! Rather, the Church exists to preach the whole counsel of God, and to share with people the hopelessness of their lost, sinful state, and then to point them to Jesus Christ, who offers salvation from sin, death, and the righteous wrath of a holy God!
Noble says that people want to know "why is my life falling apart?" Or, "how do I get past the fact that I was sexually molested...?" The answer to these is to teach people about sin, and about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Newspring pastor notes that people are not asking about the impeccability of Christ. Perhaps not in those terms, however, a right understanding of the nature of Christ is necessary for salvation.
The seeker-driven model has always sought to address "felt needs," but has done so at the expense of the greatest need of all. What good have we done if we bolster the self-esteem of an abuse victim, but have failed to share with them the Good News of Jesus Christ and Him crucified for our sins? The root of every "felt need" is sin. Inevitably, if God's Word is rightly preached, sin will be addressed and "felt needs" will be dealt with in the process.
So, what is the #1 problem that the Church needs to address? In this writer's opinion, and to use the words of Phil Johnson, it may just be "worldly churches and hireling shepherds who trivialize Christianity."