I have heard through the years that a church must decide whether it is a "Sanctuary for Saints" or a "Hospital for Sinners." Why these two statements do stress the fact that we use our Sunday assembly to both encourage and heal, they miss the point of who the church really is. The church is a group of people who together are finding their way on the journey with Jesus. Now all of that sounds somewhat like Christian Jargon and doesn't help us practically with why we should invest ourselves in the church. We can be a people on the Jesus journey without stepping foot into the building each Sunday.
Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola have put some language to a new thought about what it means to be the church. I hope to draw on this language so that we can think through the purpose and power of the church for the next few weeks
"The church is Jesus Christ in corporate expression. So, properly conceived, the church is the reassembling of Christ so that He might be made visible on the earth...We see Him, hear Him, touch Him, taste and smell Him through our sisters and brothers within whom He dwells. Genuine church life is born when groups of people are intoxicated with a glorious unveiling of their Lord. Jesus Christ is the only foundation upon which an authentic church can be built." (Jesus Manifesto, 143)
In the next two weeks I want to talk about what it means to be that corporate expression and the dangers of using church as a means to a specific end. Join me in the conversation with your thoughts, complaints, questions using the comment section.