Tuesday, August 17, 2010

"church" & church

Here is the church.
Here is the steeple.
Open the doors.
See all the people.
Close the doors.
Hear them pray.
Open the doors and they all walk away.

From the time most kids learn this little rhyme, they also learn that it is not right. Most good little evangelical kids will be quick to tell you that a church is not a building. However, the argument could easily be made that most Christians still operate under a false understanding of what church is. It may not be a building, but it is still just what happens when a group of people gather at that building. It is less about a community of people, and more about programs that attempt to draw people into that building.

In the Bible we see a very different picture of church. It is truly a community of people sharing life and faith together. They do draw people in and multiply as well, but not because of any constructed activity or program. Community by its very nature draws people. Perhaps we ought to come up with a terminology to help us distinguish between “church” and church. Maybe that word has just lost too much of its meaning.

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