In this church (and so many others) there are TVs hanging from the ceiling (big ones), pool tables, a snack bar, electric drum set, several gaming consoles, and a ton of members. And this is just the youth ministry.
Now, this can be considered a miracle by a lot of Christians. Look at what God has done for this church. They are blessed. In reality, I think it's the opposite. Materialism is a plague that is further destroying Christianity from the gem that it was pre-300 CE.
I went to a revival at a tiny Church in North Georgia and it was one of the greatest religious experiences I've ever had. The conversation I had with a woman afterward was not-so-great when she asked me what church I went to... but whatever. The point is that the church was nothing but a tiny building with pews and a handful of pastors. Next door there was a kitchen and a dining room.
That's all it needed, and that's all churches ever need. The rest is materialism.
It was mentioned to me recently that someone was bragging that his church came fully equipped with a gaming station complete with PS3s and Xbox 360s so that they could play games like Halo 3 before receiving the message. This is not what the church is supposed to do. This is how cults brainwash.
During this time, I've never seen a religious question asked, I've never seen a prayer, I've never seen a lot of things going on that should be happening in a church if anyone takes themselves seriously.
It's hard to really consider any sort of Christian tenants other than the violent ones when you're shooting up your fellow church members in Halo 3. Nothing against Halo 3. I love the game. But it's not exactly Guitar Praise.
That being said, gaming can be good for fellowship among Christians. But my major point is that Churches shouldn't be spending about a thousand dollars to hang a flatscreen in a hallway (actually seen this) when there's real work to do for the community. They just let the poorer but harder working churches take up the slack.
Churches are on the front lines of the poverty war. They do a lot of things that no other organizations will do, so it frustrates me when I see a church that no only doesn't do these things when they have the capacity to, but spend their gobs of money on their members.
I'm not saying that you won't find good Christians at these 'material' churches. Occasionally you'll find a handful. But they're being fooled. While I was at the Torch, I met some people who were genuinely searching for God, but they subdued themselves into taking half-baked sermons at face-value without doing their own soul searching.
Whenever I find myself in one of these churches, I don't give to the offering. No matter what. I don't think that my 10 bucks for the poor should go to another Xbox controller because Timmy threw it into the flatscreen when Ronald spawnkilled him three times in a row for the ultimate pwnage.