A View from the Pew

The Church vs. Institution

by Forrest Davis



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 5/1/2006

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 392
ISBN : 9781420882629
Format : Hardcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 392
ISBN : 9781434321145
Format : E-Book
Dimensions : N/A
Page Count : 1
ISBN : 9781467065276

About the Book

The underlying thesis of "A View From The Pew" deals with the institution’s presentation of a god that micro-manages one’s life versus a god that allows a person more personal choices, along with personal responsibility. The institution assumes the role of God’s representative to the congregation and teaches them on a subject by subject basis to live and manifest their Christianity primarily through their attendance and support of the institution and its selected programs.

Those institutions in question promote/emphasize (1) much praying, (2) much congregational praising of God. (3) Manifesting spirituality in their prepared "worship" programs, (4) reliance on God’s constant provision for their protection as well as their every need and/or want, (5) and, acceptance of life’s disappointments as having been allowed or approved by God.

The congregations are admonished to read their Bible, but are taught only selective scripture that supports institutional doctrine. Some of that teaching is purposely taken out of context or misquoted entirely. God is presented only as a one-way street named LOVE. They claim that a true Christian will be an active participant in some local church. They do not want their authority challenged.

Sermons have become less and less specific to audiences of a million different imaginary gods. PC’s gospel of "No absolutes" has hammered specific Bible teachings into the Christian history book. The thrust of those anemic sermons is to console, without offending.

Much of the ongoing ministering to the congregation comes from the group’s ignorance of the Bible and how to live an overcoming Christian life. Dysfunctional families are created and sustained as sheep to be tended by the shepherd called the institution. Many institutions have taken that as their primary role. They light the fires of confusion, then chase around in their "Dear Abby" role trying to put them out. It’s another form of job protection, perpetuated by use of the "mushroom theory."

This book suggests that a "born again" believer and follower of Jesus Christ has been restored to an individual relationship to God the Father, through Jesus. It suggests that that relationship cannot be monitored or censored by men’s doctrines or by a controlling institution, which is nefariously representing Christ’s Church.

About the Author

He was raised in a traditional Southern Baptist family. They were very active in attending and supporting their local church.  In fact, church attendance took priority over most all other family activities. That protestant background and its particular definition of Christianity is obviously reflected in his concepts and conclusions, even though he does not now endorse all of the doctrines and practices he was once taught.


After establishing his own family and household, he maintained his learned concepts of “Christianity” and the “Church” through almost 50 years of marriage. He and his wife Alta were blessed with four children.


As time passed, he began taking issue with the overall presentation of Christianity by some churches, and by much of the media. He had come to resent what he considered to be a negative image of Christianity being presented both in and out of the church. He believed that the lack of uniformity as well as basic fundamentalism within the church had contributed to a distorted definition of Christianity to the world.  He had observed  that the Network News, Television, and Movie media never missed a chance to slam Christianity by searching out and concentrating only on negative stories they could find that would add dishonor to its image. He is generally conservative politically and sees many Christian principals as being almost opposite today’s liberal culture. He began a new search for biblical confirmation of Christian doctrines at the age of 70. He was widowed at age 72 after 53 years of marriage to his childhood sweetheart. He is age 77 at the printing this book.


Although he did not obtain formal education beyond high school, he was and is innovative in his ongoing search for knowledge. Some of his diversified accomplishments include* licensed pilot* Computer technician in the 50’s* Certified Member “American Society of Traffic & Transportation”. *  Railroad director. *  Executive in Fortune 500 Company. * Active US Naval Air Reservist * Christmas tree farmer. His hobbies include art, photography, cartooning, music, softball, golf, fishing, and reading.