This blog is not meant to offend anyone. However, I am seeing a bigger and bigger trend towards “rugged individualistic christianity” and it seriously concerns me. I wrote this about a month ago for my church and this may not be the only time it gets redone on the blog 🙂
How necessary is the Church body for your growth as a believer? How necessary is it to join together with fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord for you? Honestly? Often what we say and what we do may show us two different answers. The moment something else comes up that we’d rather be doing do we end up with the Church or on our boat on a sunny day, camping with friends, sleeping in bc I was up last night, or even I just don’t feel like going to church today so ‘nough said? What do our actions show? What do they say about our priorities?
Do we really believe coming together as a body of believers is vital for our growth and relationship with Jesus?
I understand people get sick and life happens. When my dad was working as a physician sometimes he worked Sunday bc there had to be a Dr. in the ER. I understand that. However, how many times it it an honest I have no choice vrs simple preference- I’d rather be doing something else… This… whatever it is happens to be more important to me today.
Today in America we love our rugged individualism. We all fancy ourselves as John Wayne’s able to do it on our own!! As long as I make it to church most Sundays I’m doing really well. But the Bible shows a different picture.
It has been stated that the Bible KNOWS NOTHING of the individual christian.
The Bible ONLY knows the idea of Christians in community, together living out God’s plan of salvation, together bringing the Kingdom of God to earth. The many Bible verses that we use to encourages ourselves in our “personal” walk are almost all GROUP-oriented. Phil 1 for instance – Paul writes “in all my prayers for ALL of you I always pray with joy bc of your (plural) partnership in the gospel from the 1st day until now, being confident of this that He who began a good work in you (the body of believers at Philippi together) will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”
I will challenge you to find passages that speak to the individual Christian – they’re very rare. It’s hard for us bc we don’t get the plural form of ‘you’ in the English that would come out in the greek I understand but look at the context! Who did Paul write to? Who did the other authors write to? What did they say to the Church as a body??? Vrs what did they say to the individuals?
May we the Church and we the individuals learn the important truth that when God called us into Covenant with Himself He called us also in to a community with Himself and with other believers. Not only do we belong to each other, we need each other to affirm, encourage, challenge, love, teach, rebuke, pray for and with, and simply grow together. We are the body of Christ together and we are called to walk this path with each other.