Make Him Church (S)hop (Screwtape)

The Screwtape Letters (Westminster Bookstore)

Posted at The Reformed Reader:

I love this section of Screwtape Letters where Screwtape, the older demon, gives his young demon-nephew Wormwood some tips on duping “churchgoing” Christians. Screwtape says that if Wormwood can’t get a certain Christian to skip church altogether, the next best thing is to get him to church shop/hop, in a cynical and critical way, never opening up to receiving nourishment from preaching or joining the fellowship. After all, it’s harmful to Satan’s cause if a Christian becomes a living, serving, and active part of loving church fellowship that humbly receives the Word.

“My Dear Wormwood:”

“You mentioned casually in your last letter that the patient has continued to attend one church, and only one, since he was converted, and that he is not wholly pleased with it. May I ask what you are about? Why have I no report on the causes of his fidelity to the parish church? Do you realize that unless it is due to indifference it is a very bad thing? Surely you know that if a man can’t be cured of churchgoing, the next best thing is to send him all over the neighborhood looking for the church that ‘suits’ him until he becomes a taster or connoisseur of churches.”
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