Church, Defined or Confined?

Posted: June 16, 2010 in Random Thoughts
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Summertime is here and in an effort to do things a little differently and keep things fun for the students in my youth group the leaders and I decided to hold our worship and Bible study on Wednesdays at the lake. We’re blessed to be within driving distance of Beaver Lake, a very beautiful lake here in the Ozarks, so why not? It takes a little extra work and a little more time but I definitely think it’ll be worth it. All of this got me to thinking about the church and how we tend to define it in post-modern America. For most people church is a place you go. Think about it. People ask “Where do you go to church?” and we answer, “I go to church at…” We also speak of the church building as being “God’s house”. I have to ask though, is that really a biblical concept of the church? Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to have a place to meet and our church has very nice facilities. I’m grateful for that and I think we should certainly be respectful of those facilities. I’m just saying that if we read through the book of Acts and the epistles I think we’ll find that the biblical concept of the church is so much more than facilities or a place where we go. The church is described as a building (Eph 2:21-22) but only in the sense that a building has structure and purpose. The church is also described as a body (1Cor. 12:27) which means it has a design and a purpose and it’s described as the Bride of Christ (Eph 5:26-27) which teaches us of the deep love Christ has for the church. I’m pretty sure Jesus’ love is not for our buildings but for His people. You see the church is not a place we go to, it’s something we are. We are not defined or confined by our buildings. Jesus Himself said, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am among them.” (Matt 18:20) and 1 Cor 6:19 teaches us that our bodies (not our buildings) are the temple of the Holy Spirit. We need to get outside the walls of our buildings and be the church, wherever we meet.

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