Sunday, March 04, 2012

Who are we?

An important question for believers to ponder every day and especially on the day we culturally set aside to gather with other Christians. Take a few minutes this morning to read this post from Neil Cole, What is the church?. Here is a sample...

In the Bible the church is not defined but instead is described with pictures: a flock, a field, a family, a body, a bride, a branch, a building made of living stones. Never is it described by the pictures we typically have today: a building, a business, a school or a hospital. We have replaced an organic and life producing view with an institutional one that does not produce life but at best simply tries to preserve it and contain it.

The predominate way of seeing the church today contains, conforms and controls the people. The biblical pictures of the NT are all about releasing and reproducing the life of the church, not managing and controlling financial interests.

The church is not about control, ritual, formalism or religion. It is about mission, the presence of God among the people of God being equipped for the mission of God.

Jesus died for a people, not an organization. He left His great commission to us all, not just a select few. His teachings apply to all of us, rich and poor, educated and not, young and old. Ask yourself today after you get home from church. Was I equipped in some way to carry out God's mission or was I just given some information? Was I encouraged to participate or simply expected to sit and watch? Was I encouraged or merely entertained? Ultimately was I more on fire and enabled to take the Gospel to the lost after church than before? If you were not, why did you go?

1 comment:

markoffaith said...

It is a very important topic, and I tend to agree with the assertion.

However, I do feel that many of the modern expressions of "church" lack a sense of the holiness of God and the holiness we are called to.

Yet the real meaning of holiness is not dead ritual or form, but a life-imbued passion for God. It is this Life and Power that we should draw near to at church gatherings and also encourage one another to draw near.