When Jesus walked the earth, He met outside and taught people in the christian mysticism disarray. There were people sitting down in the grass. There were people sitting in trees. Some people were probably on their way to the market with their livestock and saw the crowd listening to Jesus preach. They would stop to hear what Jesus was saying and had their cow or chicken there with them as they listened to the message. No one was dressed up in a formal way. When Jesus spoke, there were babies crying, people in filthy clothes, and people walking around toward the back of the crowd.
Was it considered a church meeting when Jesus would preach to the crowds? Of course it was! The church meetings throughout the New Testament include meetings outside, meetings around a fire, meetings in homes, and meetings in buildings. Paul was in a church meeting one time, and while he was teaching, a young man was sitting in a window sill. Imagine if during the next Sunday morning service somebody decided they couldn’t hear as well from the back so they climbed up and sat in the nearest window sill? Someone would probably call security.
Here’s the point. The building is not holy. But we believe it is. If you meet in a park, meet in a home, meet in a fancy Catholic building in Rome, meet in a tree house, it’s all the same. Jesus said that “Where two or more are gathered together, there I am in the midst.” Do we really believe that? C’mon, do we REALLY believe that?
Let’s test it out. Could you meet with one other person, just one, on a Tuesday night in a park? You would read the Bible together, pray together, share hearts, worship God, and touch the Lord together. Would you consider that church? Be honest now… would you still feel like you have to cover your God base by going to the official church meeting on Sunday morning? Would you still feel like you have to dress up, sit on a pew, and listen to a sermon in order to feel like you’ve been in church?
Our actions sometime betray our right Biblical concepts.
Our religiousity runs deep. It’s all we’ve known, it’s all we’ve seen, it’s all we’ve been taught. It’s what we’ve believed for a long time now…even though it is unbiblical. What about all the other things you maybe unaware of that you believe and practice…. that may be unbiblical? The Holy Spirit will help you. But it sometimes takes tremendous honesty and courage to grow.
Why did the New Testament Christians meet in homes? It is certainly not that a house is more righteous than a building. Once you see and understand the essence of body life and what church really is, you will see that THERE IS NO NEED FOR A BUILDING. In fact, it can hinder and get in the way. Also, once your eyes are opened, you will stop associating “being fed” with that of listing to a message once a week. The New Testament Christians were not “fed” by a three point sermon once a week by a paid professional.
What is the point of meeting together anyway? What is the essence of the church meeting? The purpose is to touch the Lord, to encounter Jesus, to be built up in faith, and to edify one another. When this happens, He feeds us. He edifies the church. We are built up and encouraged and He is blessed. The essence and point of the church meeting is more easily accomplished as we keep it simple and don’t include all the extras and unnecessary practices.
It’s Time to “Go To Family”
Many times in Christianity we use words or phrases which are not found in scripture. Phrases like “give your heart to Jesus, make a commitment to Christ, once saved always saved, loose your salvation, our church body, or the body of Christ here” – none of these phrases are found in the Bible.
Many times the idea behind such phrases was originally founded in scripture. But over time, we add to their meaning. Over long periods of time we create man made doctrines, and then we assume they are Biblical. Assuming that certain things are true without questioning them gets us into a lot of trouble in the church. Over time our words and phrases get packaged, re-packaged, and then packaged again. Many times the arguments and discussions we are having are not Biblical themselves. In other words, we are often asking the wrong questions. Or, the dilemmas we are trying to solve are based on assumptions that are in error themselves. Almost always, words and phrases we use that are not found in scripture are not scriptural ideas