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How can you hold to an optimistic view of the future when most churches today see the world getting worse and worse until Jesus returns?

The Bible is very optimistic … Actually, this pessimistic view that permeates today’s churches is a relatively new phenomenon. Prior to, and well into, the 19th century, the almost universal view was that the Christian faith would continue to grow until it covered the earth. The book gets into why Christians should be optimistic as well as the reasons behind this shift from optimism to pessimism. In a nutshell, it is a consequence of failing to fully obey God’s directions.

When the church fails to obey, the faith falters, grows weaker, and begins to lose its influence in society. This, in turn, leads to discouragement… followed by a search for excuses that gives rise to new doctrines, doctrines that say the church was never meant to be more than a small fraction of the world’s population. Christians, discouraged by their earlier failure, are attracted to these new teachings and the churches that teach them prosper and grow. Churches that refuse to compromise the clear words of Scripture lose members; they shrink and fade away. In this way, the new teachings displace the old and become the standard of the next generation.

This has happened over and over again in church history and is the primary reason for the present pessimism in the churches.