On this day, the first, when Jesus rose
Alive, and set aside his burial clothes,
His faithful followers come together and meet,
To sing his praise, around his table they eat,
And in his Name they pray for peace
And courage to speak, that he increase,
His grace be given, his saving truth be spread,
Because they know he lives who once was dead.
Their God is Father, they in Christ immersed,
This day they glory in him whom God raised first.
Steve Preston wrote today on his BibleTalk email list: “The kingdom, the church, will last for ever. However, it will not always exist on the earth.”
What a wonderful distinction! The people of God will participate in God’s eternity. But their passage on earth will be brief. They will be relocated to that place that Christ has prepared, Jn 14.1-4.
The great blessing is that we know where he went, and we know how to get there. He calls us to follow him there.
If you have not yet begun that journey, start now. If you have, call others to join with us.
Over on my Plink area, I mention a phrase in a prayer read today, asking God to “help us to bring into being your Church of the future.”
I like the phrase, and then I don’t either. Here’s why I like it. Continue reading
WHY DO PEOPLE LEAVE THE CHURCH FOR A DENOMINATION?
Prior to the mid-20th century seldom did one hear of a member of the church of Christ leaving the church to join a denomination. There were, of course, exceptions because throughout the history of the church there have been defections from the one faith (Ephesians 4:5). Still, it was a rare thing for one to leave the church for a denomination. Continue reading
A brother in Florida mentioned Saturday that the electricity in his home was supposed to be restored in a few hours, after Hurricane Matthew swiped the Atlantic coast headed north. A person asked, “Does the church have electricity?”
The person was referring, of course, to the building where the church met. That’s unfortunately language, but you figure out how to get people to change their vocabulary.
Her question, however, invites reflection on the state of our congregations. Continue reading
We meet together today as God’s holy people, purified by his word of truth and cleansed by the blood of Christ in baptism.
“He did it to make her holy. He made her clean by washing her with water and the word” Eph 5.26 NIRV.
Our meetings reflect our character, which in turn determines our thoughts given to the mercies of Christ, our gratitude thrown upward to God, our praises louder for new life in the Spirit, our prayers fervent that others might come to this knowledge.
Church is not only an event, but a people. Church is definitely not a place, though time and place are essential. In church activities happen, but it’s more, a realm of Being.
Having said that, we go to church (that’s a very biblical phrase, BTW) to give, more than to receive. (More blessed, remember?) We go for our brothers and sisters in Christ, for their edification. We go for God, to meet him in a sacred moment, to glorify, and glory in, him; we go for Christ, to obey and find him.
Church is not a ritual to satisfy a legal demand, but one of many acts of obedience. There, life is found and lived and rejoiced in.
Be there today.