Let’s think about what it means to be the church. Our fifth ministry value says:
“Youth will connect to the Church for life when they come to know it as more than a weekly program. The Church is a place where children, youth and adults share life experiences, which will allow them to grow into a deeper understanding of true community.”
In the bible, show me where “church” means coming to a building with a steeple on it once or twice a week.
Ephesians 2:22 says, “In him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.” And 1 Corinthians 3:9 says, “For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building.” So the place where God resides is not in the church, but in us. The church is not where God lives, the church is a man-made institution designed for people to come together and worship God.
These are different things. I think it’s important that we start to wrap our brains around this truth.
So we know where God lives, but what then is the church?
In Acts 2 we read about the early church. It’s where everything gets started that eventually leads up to where we sit today. And after Peter gives the very first sermon, what does this early church do? Go back home to their “normal” lives? Nope.
Here’s what they do: vs 42-47 “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”
Does that sound like what you know of and experience in the church today? True community is doing life together. That’s what the church is supposed to be. That’s how it started. How do we get back to that?