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Hallelujah Bread #1, The Church is Not a Building

 

Anyone who sees a steeple atop a building and labels it a "church" does not know the whole story. The entity called the church is far more than an edifice or institution. The Apostle Paul called "the church" a mystery. 1Corinthians 2:7,8 This immediately presents us with the notion of something profound, something mysterious.


The church was borne out of the root of Judaism but in the centuries before the incarnation, life and resurrection of Yeshua (Jesus) the Messiah, it was unknown although hinted at by the prophets. Jesus insisted that his followers receive "the promise of the Father” in Acts 1:4." In the book of Acts we read how the assembled disciples were suddenly changed by the (dunamis power of the Holy Spirit). This was the birth of the church.


Church is translated from the Greek word Eklessi'a. This term is extremely significant. It defines the church as those who are called out, or the 'called out ones.' The church is therefore about people, people who God has personally summoned to become sons and daughters, adopted children of God. The people of God are exhorted to come together to praise God and to interact, edifying one another. Wherever two or three are gathered (Matthew 18:20) Jesus promises to be present with them. The gathering of believers is the true church whether it be inside a building or out under the sky. It is a body that is not required to have a single priest or leader to guide them although individuals with more maturity and experience are expected to guide and maintain order.


An important aspect of this mystery is the fact that those who believe are called by God to believe. Believers at some point, are translated into the "Kingdom of the dear son." Colossians 1:18, Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and has translated us into the kingdom of his dear son.” It is a very significant fact that the Gospel is “the power of God.” (Romans 1:16 and 1 Corinthians 1:18 and 1:24)This should be understood as part of the mystery of God. It is God, by his power who calls us, opens our minds to know him, and transforms us into something called "a new creation." (2 Corinthians 5:17) God interacts with his adopted children in a very personal way guiding them in the knowledge of the Truth through the word of God.


Another mystery of the church is that it is "not of this world." The
called out ones become individuals who have the inner sense that their lives and residency are not focused on this world or its worldly dreams, treasures or wisdom. The church has another destiny and another hope which is eternal in the heavens. As far as this world is concerned the believer finds no concord, no fellowship. We may well be hated by the world because Jesus, told us so, many times. "We are in the world but not of it." If we were of the world the world would love its own, but I have called you out of the world. Here is the text from John 15:19: “
If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.”


Throughout the centuries the church became altered by men who wanted to have power and control over others. Christian sects were based loosely on the life and teachings of Jesus. Religions and denominations set forth to make up rules for managing the people who hoped to know God. They added to the gospel and made themselves a hierarchy of authority and power to control the lives of their subjects. They through away the knowledge that the gospel was a free gift and that eternal life hinged upon one thing. To believe on the man who God has sent.
John 6:28,29: Then they said to Him, "What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?" Jesus answered, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent."



C. Pinkney  05-30-2020