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Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Our Church

ec·cle·si·ol·o·gy
n.
1. The branch of theology that is concerned with the nature, constitution, and functions of a church.

Why is it so difficult for us to assemble together? Maybe it would help if we could first agree on Church ownership. Is it my Church? Is it our Church? Is there even such a thing as “their” Church? Whose Church is it anyway?

I believe the Church belongs to Christ and that He gave Himself to redeem it. It isn’t my Church. It belongs to my LORD and I am only part of it. I belong to it; it doesn’t belong to me. Shouldn’t I rather seek to serve it, serve in it and through it than seek to be served by it?

Consider your definition of Church. Is it a particular denomination? Is it a building? I think most of us will agree that the Church is at least (or at least should be) a group of people who are distinguished from other people by the way they love each other. So if I serve the Church then in essence I am serving my brethren.

What would happen if we all began to serve each other? What if we really begin to prefer our brother before ourselves?



“Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;” Romans 12:10 (KJV)

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16 Comments:

Blogger Jody said...

what a good word. i agree, verily. loving and serving one another is what Jesus taught, not adhere to a strict morality, have a pretty building, be an exclusive group, polish your pride, etc.

9/20/2005 09:56:00 PM  
Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

The Church is...Israel. HA! I believe that actually...

9/21/2005 05:27:00 AM  
Blogger Kristi said...

If you want to get technical, I believe there is a universal church, which is the complete body of Christ, and the local church, which I define as a called out group of believers who assemble together for the purpose of worship, edification, fellowship, and service--all in love.

Kc, I think you have hit on a big problem in churches today. We are not serving each other in love as we should.

9/21/2005 08:06:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Thanks to everyone for your thoughts and encouragement. It seems there are many these days who are concerned that the Church might change or concerned that it might not change. Personally I am more concerned with the foundation. I am considering a series of articles on the Church and if He allows it then I plan to move very slowly with them. I am hesitant at this point to define the Church very far in either direction, by what it is or what it is not. I really hope to dwell on the foundation for a bit before moving forward.

I would like to know though; do we agree that the Church belongs to Christ? Do we agree that it is to be distinguished from other people groups because we love one another?

9/21/2005 10:03:00 AM  
Blogger The JadedCM said...

My church is the church around the world which consists of millions of followers of Jesus Christ.

But after looking at your picture, I can see that I am wrong.

9/21/2005 10:27:00 AM  
Blogger pecheur said...

The church is "the work". You know the MB work. Only a local visible body. For it were universal and invisible then why can't I see it.

I could go on but I am afraid my feathers would get ruffled.

Sorry I've been away tons to do Thanks for the plug.

9/21/2005 02:27:00 PM  
Blogger pecheur said...

Sofyst,

Church=Israel????

Don't you mean Israel=Church?????
That's replacement theology not the other way around (je crois).

9/21/2005 02:28:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Ken thanks for posting! When I made that sign I was thinking that’s what most Church groups would really like to say if they were honest. ;-)

Pech I know, more excuses “I had to help the survivors”. ;-) Good to have you both home safe. I know you’ve got a lot to share.

9/21/2005 03:02:00 PM  
Blogger jeff said...

I believe the Church belongs to Christ and that He gave Himself to redeem it. It isn’t my Church. It belongs to my LORD and I am only part of it. I belong to it; it doesn’t belong to me. Shouldn’t I rather seek to serve it, serve in it and through it than seek to be served by it?

This is true.

A lot of people have missed the point of church due to the fact that ownership has been perceived as being the Pastor's or the Board's or the congregation's at the monthly business meeting.

When we focus on Christ, everything else works out.

Of course, some would say, "Why meet in a church building at all?" I say, "Why not?".

Our relationships within the walls are vital when we're focused on Christ as the head.

There's something liberating about giving up our rights to ourselves and choosing to honor God first.

Great post!

9/21/2005 08:55:00 PM  
Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

Pecheur, no, I mean the church is Israel. I would never say that the church replaced Israel. Israel is still in existence. I would however say that not all who are 'Israel' are ISRAEL. Just like not all who claim Christianity are Christian. But all who are truly Christian are Israel.

9/22/2005 02:31:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Jeff I’m really glad you’re here. I know you’ve put a lot of thought and consideration into this subject recently and I think you have gained a unique perspective. I’m looking forward to hearing more of it.

9/22/2005 04:16:00 AM  
Anonymous pecheur said...

Sofyst,

I see what your saying now.

pecheur

9/22/2005 11:17:00 AM  
Blogger dorsey said...

A lot of what has been considered church is centered on "doing." I think a more authentic conception of church revolves around "being" (from which "doing" naturally flows).

When I was a youth leader, occasionally I would spend the whole meeting time tossing a football around or shooting hoops in the parking lot. There would always be a "religious" kid who would chastise me soundly for not having a proper youth service prepared (actually, I was counting on that kid to set up my illustration). I huddled everyone and briefly discussed that, as believers, we were the Church, whether we were singing praise songs, or praying for each other, or studying the Bible, or playing football, or eating pizza, or going to the movies together. It's Christ in us that makes us the Church, not a set of behaviors. They got it, too. I began to see it reflected in the way they interacted with each other. It was awesome.

We've created a real problem by calling buildings churches. There are people (pastors, even!) who actually don't understand that God is just as alive in my garage as He is in the "sanctuary." For them, church is a place you go, not who you are. It's messed up.

I'm still trying to figure out how to serve those people, preferring them before myself, without the inevitable offense of our fundamentally differing worldviews.

Great post, KC.

9/22/2005 08:53:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Dorsey I really appreciate your input and thanks for the kind words. You’ve zeroed in on what I hope we can eventually discuss. How do we serve God, one another and His creation given all of our differences, not to mention the many offences? In my heart I know the answer is in keeping the commandments to love but I’m hoping to first clearly establish the foundation of our love.

9/23/2005 03:25:00 AM  
Blogger Kris said...

"What would happen if we all began to serve each other? What if we really begin to perfer our brother before ourselves?"

Jeez kc are you saying that we should deny ourselves?...... I've heard that same thing somewhere before.

9/23/2005 04:41:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Pretty radical stuff huh? ;-)

9/24/2005 09:41:00 PM  

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