The church grew, was filled, got saved and was persecuted. It feared. It heard. It prayed. It has prophets, teachers and elders. It got called together. It sent. It spread. It had joy. And it was fed. (From The Acts of the Apostles)
You don’t have to go to church, because if you belong to Jesus, you ARE the church.
God never intended church to be an architectural structure. Jesus didn’t die for a civic organization with helpful ministries. The apostles didn’t martyr themselves one by one to establish a once a week committee meeting that sings a couple of worship songs and calls it a wrap.
No. Church is radical. It is alive. It is a body. It is a gathering. It is the called out of God. It is the bride of Jesus the Christ.
I am writing to God’s church in Corinth, to you who have been called by God to be his own holy people. He made you holy by means of Christ Jesus, just as he did for all people everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours. 1 Cor.1:2
You don’t go there. You can’t go there. But you absolutely must be graphed into it. You must be in it. You must be the church.
You must take your rightful place in the body
Every single person that is in the church is a necessary part. Find your necessity. Fulfill it.
The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ… We have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit.
Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part… and God has put each part just where he wants it… All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it. (Read all of 1 Cor. 12 here.)
You must be in Jesus
Outside of Jesus there is no salvation. There is simply no peace outside of him.
His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. Phil. 4:7
Peace be with all of you who are in Christ. 1 Pet. 5:14
You must be interwoven with other believers
Shaking hands at the door and exchanging pleasantries doesn’t cut it. Our lives are to be deeply and intimately connected.
Knit together by strong ties of love. Col. 2:2
You must be intentional about gathering
Not just in spirit. You have to physically be together with other believers for the purpose of fighting through the battles that deter us from heaven. The need is urgent. The need is constant.
Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Heb. 10:22-25
You must give and receive
Maybe you are at a place that you feel like you don’t need it. Great! Then you are the one called in this season to do the giving. The relationship is mutual. The love and support is reciprocal.
Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. Rom. 14:19
Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen. Eph. 3:20-21
Up next… Growing Church God’s Way