Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The church, our Mother

Once again, I'm feeling kinda swamped and don't have the leisure to do too much abstract thought. But I want to keep up (and wrap up) our ongoing discussion about "church."

Most of you know that I have a great admiration for N.T. Wright. I think he's one of the most progressive, pragmatic, and biblically grounded theologians in recent history. And so, what I have to offer you today is an excerpt from his book "Simply Christian" (pg. 210-212):

"If God is our father, the church is our mother." The words are those of the Swiss Reformer John Calvin. Several biblical passages speak in this way (notably, Galatians 4:26-27, echoing Isaiah 54:1). They underline the fact that it is as impossible, unnecessary, and undesirable to be a Christian all by yourself as it is to be a newborn baby all by yourself.

The church is first and foremost a community, a collection of people who belong to one another because they belong to God, the God we know in andthrough Jesus. Though we often use the word "church" to denote a building, the point is that it's the building where this community meets. True, buildings can and do carry memories, and when people have been praying and worshiping and mourning and celebrating in a particular building for many years, the building itself may come to speak powerfully of God's welcoming presence. But it is the people who matter.


It is within the church, even when the church isn't getting everything quite right, that the Christian faith of which we have spoken is nourished and grows to maturity. As with any
family, the members discover who they are in relationship with one another. Churches vary enormously in size, from scattered handfuls of people in isolated villages to enormous congregations of many thousands in some parts of the world. But ideally every Christian should belong to a group that is small enough for individuals to get to know and care for one another, and particularly to pray in meaningful depth for one another, and also to a fellowship large enough to contain a wide variety in its membership, styles of worship, and kingdom-activity. The smaller the local community, the more important it is to be powerfully linked to a larger unit. The larger the regular gathering... the more important it is for each member to belong also to a smaller group...

So, what do you think?
What do you agree with?
What do you disagree with?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

A little more Crowder

Hey everyone. As most of you know, me and my little family were on holidays this past week. We had a great time hanging out with family in the Radium, BC area.

I have no wonderful insights for you this week, although I hope to wrap up our ekklesia discussion very soon. But in the meantime I want to give you all a little more Crowder.

The David Crowder* Band recently released a new album, "Church Music." As usual, they have put together one of the most progressive "worship" albums out there. These guys are awesome.

They also happen to be very funny! To promo their album they posted a series of "Rockumentaries" on YouTube. Please enjoy the following responsibly:

[Sorry that the video doesn't fit properly on this blog template. Double click on the video to watch it properly on YouTube.]