“You can’t judge a book by its cover”—that’s a phrase we’ve all heard before. It simply means you can’t evaluate people by externals—clothes, appearance, or size.
What’s true of people is also true of churches—you can’t tell the effectiveness of a church by its building. The small church building on the corner with the peeling paint and cardboard taped over broken windows may house a group of vibrant Christians who are making a real difference in their community. And down the street could be a large, ornate church that feels like a mortuary inside.
To discover the traits of an effective church, we have to examine what’s on the inside. Fortunately, Jesus Himself shows us what to look for.