Monday, January 13, 2014

The Church Is . . .

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance...
Tonight at a meeting we began by looking at the first chapter of Ephesians.  Read it and consider what the Lord created the church to be.  Then allow your understanding of the church to be changed.

I believe the church is much more about relationships with God and with one another than it is about an organization that we choose to belong to (or not).  I  believe it is created and headed by Jesus Christ, not by any human beings, though human beings, filled with the Holy Spirit, are a part of it and take part in it in various ways.

Earlier today I encountered the following written by Sumair Mirza in 2010.  I forwarded it on to folks from our church who are considering in what ways the church is an "organism" and in what ways it is an "organization."  What do you think?  Would you be willing to study and share?  If so, let me know!

Go to for Sumair's original writing - also you can listen to it being read to you!
Sumair Mirza writes:

As we look throughout Scripture we can see several analogies used of the church to convey a variety of characteristics for this regenerated group of people.

The church was first introduced by Christ in Matthew 16 at a time of great importance. It was a time after John the Baptist’s execution and followed the feeding of the five thousand – a time where interest and confusion were both at high points. John 6:15 exemplifies the mindset of the crowd as they viewed Christ as instituting a Kingship by force – a political reformation from a political messiah, if you will. It is at this time that Jesus hears Peter’s confessions and begins to establish an understanding of the church in contrast to that of the Pharisees and Scribes.

The word used for the church is “ekklesia” (which means assembly in Greek) is helpful in ensuring we understand the church is not an institution or building. It is beyond infrastructure and is about a body of disciples who are following the true Triune God. As the new church was being unfolded, as something that was organic and refreshed from a Jewish heritage, the need to define, clarify, and explain is where analogies were most useful.

Three analogies that helped present a more complete picture of the church are [click here to go to Sumair's original post and continue reading]: ...

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