Church and Community

1 Peter 2

1Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. 2Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.

4As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him— 5you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6For in Scripture it says:
“See, I lay a stone in Zion,a chosen and precious cornerstone, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame.”[a] 7Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe, “The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone,[b][c] 8and,

“A stone that causes men to stumble and a rock that makes them fall.”[d] They stumble because they disobey the message—which is also what they were destined for.9But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

11Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. 12Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.

Have we ever truly realize that God is in the process of bring His family back together?  If you were to look at the Church what is it that you see?  Do you understand what the Church suppose to be?  When we think of the Church, our first thoughts are about a building.  We see Church as bricks, mortar, wood, stain glass, pews and the like.  But Christ never describe the Church that way.  The Church is the body of Christ; 1 Corinthians 12:27-28  and we are apart of the body and we each have are parts to play as apart of the body.  Just to understand what the Church is and you’ll see!  Now since we see the Church as bricks, we naturally don’t always assoicate the Church with the community it stands in.  But actually it goes beyond just the community the Church is in and the activities within the community.

In biological terms, a community is a group of interacting organisms sharing an environment. In human communities, intent, belief, resources, preferences, needs, risks, and a number of other conditions may be present and common, affecting the identity of the participants and their degree of cohesiveness.

In sociology, the concept of community has caused infinite debate, and sociologists are yet to reach agreement on a definition of the term. There were ninety-four discrete definitions of the term by the mid-1950s. Traditionally a “community” has been defined as a group of interacting people living in a common location. The word is often used to refer to a group that is organized around common values and social cohesion within a shared geographical location, generally in social units larger than a household. The word can also refer to the national community or global community.

The word community is derived from the Old French communité which is derived from the Latin communitas, a broad term for fellowship or organised society.[1]

Since the advent of the Internet, the concept of community no longer has geographical limitations, as people can now virtually gather in an online community and share common interests regardless of physical location.

The Church or body of Christ is a community of former sinners that are now Saints.  We have now reconciled to God and are now adopted into a family of a royal priesthood.  These Saints are now in communion in one body under one Lord for one cause the glorifiying of God the Father.  We are apart of the living stone and are now building the church, brick by brick.  We too are now a living stone: “5you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”  So the Church is a interacting fellowship of believers organized around one Redeemer and the worship of one sovereign God.  This community is global and universal.  So how can me as being a living stone apart of the same spiritaul house, hate the stone next to me?  A brother my disagree with his sister but he can’t cast her out of a family that she has been born again into?  Isn’t blood thicker than water?  How can a christian that is called out and apart of a holy priesthood and holy taburnacle be against each other?  We are all going through the same thing, towards the same goal all together in the body of Christ.   That physical building is just a meeting place, we shouldn’t live for the building but we should give the building life!

1 Corinthians 12:13

For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

This community or better yet Church or body of Christ is  righteous and  justified by the Redeemer‘s blood. Christ resurrection and the coming of Holy Spirit, which is all apart of the Gospel leads to reconciliation and prodigal sons/daughters returning home to the body of Christ .  Church, Fellowship, Community, Relationship, Worship and above all God’s Glory propel the Gospel forward. Mercy, love, grace, faithfulness, holiness, reconciliation and restoration of the elect people of God to bring under the Lordship of Christ.  Can you see it now?  We are adopted into God’s royal family and we are now a community.  So how can you have a Church without community?  It is impossible because we are one.  Regardless of what country or nationality we are a fellowship of believers.  So why are the communities in which our physical churches stand suffer?   Honestly, we have to ask a hard question… is Jesus Christ there?   Why do we push the building of bigger churches when the true Church suffers?  Have the pastors egos become to attached to the size of their pulpit and not the growth of the members, one part of the body is not more important than the other.  They all have to serve the head of the Church.  As the members grow in faith they grow in their knowledge of God and they learn of the will of God.  And if you have Holy Spirit filled Christians who deny the flesh, walk in the will of God and speak the word of God then a neighborhood can be transformed.  The Church Community can then be the deliverer of the communities where we rise our families.  But be not confused, the Church Community is not that building down the street; its every born again child of God.  Now with that in mind Jesus’ description of His disciples should make more sense to us now.    John 13:35 By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

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  1. […] know that every believer that is in Christ is indwelt with GOD the Holy Spirit.  The Church is a community of believer and we worship in fellowship of the Spirit.  Thus, we are commanded to worship GOD the […]

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