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May 16, 2006

These traveling evangelists in Louisiana went from town to town and sharpened knives for money. They pushed the cart.
I guess I have always heard these sayings, but in the past few days I have heard them several times. Sayings like "Thank you for the church which we are saved by" and "Jesus died for the church" and "Jesus and the church, you can't separate them" and "All the blessings in Christ are to be found in his church".

I hear these people who are saying these statements using them just like MOTC. But even beyond that, I believe these are preacherisms. (feel free to use that word, but I get credit for it). Things said maybe originally by a preacher, that out of context are not correct but get repeated and become scripture.

I have spent some time looking at all the places in scripture where Jesus died for something or someone. Never is it the church. In fact it is often stated that he died for ALL.

We can have an affair with the bride, which I guess to think that through is a weird affair with ourselves. We can do that and not have any commitment to the groom. Well not real commitment.

We are saved by Jesus
We carry his name
We are added to his church

Can you separate church and Jesus?

It seems apparent that we were meant to live in community. That we are added to a big family of God. But if the folks you gather with are not following Jesus. If they are placing people in slavery then they are a church, but maybe not his church. That is not a call for perfect churches. But what if the message got twisted over time just enough that it was a superb counterfeit. A counterfeit message that was not what Jesus came to offer. Why does that passage in Galatians hit me right between the eyes?

More later, but think about the blessings in Christ. Do they all come through the church?

5 Comments leave one →
  1. May 16, 2006 8:21 pm

    I like the affair analogy…puts it in perspective.

    You are making me think.

  2. May 16, 2006 10:39 pm

    No – absolutely not. Not all blessings in Christ come through the church.

    First and foremost (I think) it is an individual, mostly maybe, internal relationship with Christ that brings the most blessings.

    I don’t have time to expand on that answer, but definitely could. Maybe need to, but not tonight.

    Good series. Continue, please.

  3. May 16, 2006 11:06 pm

    The blessings of Christ…

    Everything we need for life and godliness is given to us through our knowledge of him.

    But I do still believe that church, at its best – defined as individuals/groups of believers who are a reflection of Christ in this world… can be a tremendous blessing to fellow believers. The thing is… the opposite of that is true too! That’s why it *always* comes back to Jesus!

  4. May 17, 2006 9:54 am

    Your thoughts brought two N.T. churches to mind. Corinth, a real mess, but still called the church of God. Then there were the Galatians, saved by grace but in danger of being eternally lost if they bought into that “other” gospel – which was not The Gospel.

    One a matter of spiritual growth and other a matter of spiritual foundation.

  5. May 17, 2006 2:11 pm

    really great comments from everyone. Lee, I was thinking the same thing. Certainly a church doesn’t have to be perfect to be a church (Corinth) but when you make it another gospel, which is no gospel at all, there are serious warnings.

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