I recently read an article where the author was putting to its readers whether the bible should be used as a moral guide. My immediate response was, of course which followed a series of questions including questions surrounding our impact as a church and how effective we have been.
Whilst the mandate remains true I somewhat believe we have strayed.
The Real Church
The church functions in our community, society and our nations as the moral compass of a people. It is through this medium that right and wrong is defined and adhered to. The church serves the widows, and the most needy through our welfare programmes, we teach young believers and our children through Sunday schools, bible studies.
We engage members in fellowship activities through young people’s meetings, field trips etc. Most importantly we seek to save souls through the teaching and preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Over the years these important roles and functions of this institution has become very insular as we seem to be doing these activities and more within our four walls. Our evangelistic events such as crusade that use to be taken to the communities where the lost/unsaved could be found are now located on the premises of our churches.
I suppose some may argue not within the four walls but on the compound. For whatever reason, administratively or otherwise we have become saved disciples encouraging our fellow saved brethren to continue to walk the transformed life.
The Church Repositioned.
What have we truly been called to? Why have we become an entity committed to itself and its sustenance through our inspirational words. Jesus in Matthew 28 before ascending from the earth encouraged his disciples
“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Matthew 28: 18-20
Our responsibility has always been to reach the lost where they are…not for them to come where the righteous reside. Whilst the administration of churches are within the four walls, or mandate has always been beyond it.
The command of our Saviour and Lord is to go into all the world, a command the disciples who walked with Christ took literally. Literal to the point where it is recorded in the book of Acts, that they turned the world upside down.
Church during and after this Pandemic
This pandemic has definitely brought the great commission of the church full circle causing the entire world and more specifically the church to fellowship outside its four walls.
Churches who never thought of online services were all of a sudden forced to invest in equipment to preach the gospel through online media like FB, youtube and via websites. Events such as bible study and prayer meetings, the heartbeat of our churches, are now all done online.
Moreover, we are refocused to acknowledge that the church is really the individuals who have come into right relationship with Jesus the saviour. We are the temple 1 Corinthians 12:27 “Now you are Christ’s body, and individually members of it,” where the Holy Spirit now resides, to accomplish His good work.
In this time of crisis the Holy Spirit has used many of us outside of the four walls to care , give and encourage and share the gospel to many who have fell on hard times, who have become hopeless and need a Saviour. This was the redemptive work of Christ on the cross, which saved many of us outside the churches four walls and it continues to be the redemptive work that will save many others.
For years to come the channels used to spread the gospel will change and I believe they will change rapidly as technology advances. The church will have to become adopt and change with the times in our methods of reaching the lost. Instead of being forced out of our church buildings by worldwide crisis, we must be discerning and fully committed to the transformative work of the cross and the real reason Christ came which was to redeem man.
May we individually position ourselves to walk in right relationship so that the gospel of Christ may be spread abroad as we have been commanded…as we the church, GO.
Dacia Miller from Jamaica, West Indies is a wife, mother and trained communicator who enjoys dancing. She is involved in youth ministry and loves to see lives transformed.