The reason why many “churches” do not have the nature of The Church is because there is a widespread lack of understanding of what The Church really is.
First of all, The Church is not a building, a charter, or a gathering of folks. The Church is a living, spiritual and natural being comprised of many members that carry out vital functions.
Contrary to popular belief and contemporary manifestation, The Church is not a “country club” for the saints or the museum of the “frozen chosen.” When you become a member of The Church, you are not simply a number, you are grafted in, as a finger to a hand. You are part of a glorious body. This body nourishes each member and the Head, Jesus, gives each member instructions for the work to be performed.
While I’m here, let me hang my hat for a minute…Each member has a UNIQUE function. All of us are not called to preach, just like every cell in the body is not called to be the eye. Imagine a body full of eyes…that is a freak of nature! Speaking of the ministry, not everyone is called to preach the same message or even to preach in the same manner. Each of us are fearfully and wonderfully designed — individually and expressly — by the Hand of God with a unique purpose to carry out equally unique assignments.
The Greek word for “Church” in Matthew 16:18 is “ekklesia.” It is a word meaning “called out assembly.” More to the point, it is a GOVERNMENTAL, not a RELIGIOUS word! Many folks dont know this, but the Government of Rome at the time of Jesus’ earthly ministry called their upper legislative assembly the Ekklesia. Furthermore, the ancient city-state of Athens called its legislative body, Ekklesia.
Now put this in context…When Jesus said, “upon this rock (the truth spoken by Peter) I will build my Ekklesia; and the gates of hell will not prevail against it, He was saying that upon the truth that He is the Christ, the Son of the Living God, He will establish His everlasting government. This is what was prophesied in Isaiah 9:6.
Jesus did not come to establish another religion; the world had (and has) enough of them. What He came to re-establish was the governmental order that was ordained from the foundation of time!
That said, The Church is not about religion. The Church is the point where God connects with man through Christ. It is God’s earthly government, duly deputized and empowered to have dominion over the earth!
Church should be an ER for the wounded, a kitchen for the hungry, and a sanctuary for the besieged. It should be the point where God’s Heavenly Government is dispensed on the earth. It should be the place where the lost can come to catch the revelation of a loving Father, who wants to reconcile them to Himself and loved them so much that He gave His very best in the Person of His Only Begotten Son!
I feel like preaching, but I’ll take my seat now…
© 2011 – Derrick Day (www.derrickday.com)