When you “go to church” these days, it seems that staged teachings and “worship” performances by the “anointed” few during Sunday “services” have become substitutes for the diverse gifts and “one another” imperatives of the New Testament.
When you truly “are the church”, however, shared teachings, songs and diverse gifts arise among us – each and every one – by encouraging and strengthening “one another” in the Lord as functional communities which gather together.
My prayer is that God lead you from the safe confines of “going to church” into the challenging adventure of “being the church” once again.
May you find the courage and zeal to pursue “church” as an expression of the New Testament’s many gifts and “one another” imperatives, rather than settle for an enticing but distracting substitute.
~ Jim Wright
When Jesus died and rose again, everything changed. But what did the believers do on Monday? Better yet, what did they do the following weekend? Sabbath observance was so ingrained in many of the new believers, somewhere in the first church this stayed and became the new ritual for Christians that has been passed down. Century after century. It’s not readily documented in the book of Acts but it happened and we see the fruit today. If I observe this one day and make it special then I feel good. Maybe Paul first noticed the religious spirit of denomination/observance in Corinth,
1:10 Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 11 For it has been declared to me concerning you, my brethren, by those of Chloe’s household, that there are contentions among you. 12 Now I say this, that each of you says, “I am of Paul,” or “I am of Apollos,” or “I am of Cephas,” or “I am of Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?
Contentions! And so it began and hasn’t ended. If only we can trust our Head, Jesus and let him lead us.