Church Is Not the Answer

Two common conversations continue to trouble me.

I pose the question to a stranger in the park:
“Would you consider yourself a Christian?”
“Yes.”
“Would you please explain why?”
“Well, I go to church . . .”

And then the response of some professing Christians to anyone who doesn’t go to church: “You just need to get back in church.”

And all I wanna say is – Church is not the answer!

church is not the answer

First off, the church is a body, not a building. A people, not an experience. We say it often, but I’m not sure we get it.

Furthermore, when the church gathers, they worship. Unbelievers should feel out of place. Darkness doesn’t really fit in the light.

Upon leaving the gathering, the church then scatters to inform the rest of the world what it’s all about. Therefore, most evangelism does not happen in the church gathering.

Redemption brings about membership in the body. Participation in the gathering is a response to that redemption. Therefore, participation in the body by those outside the body doesn’t make much sense.

And so, to the person who says, “I’m a Christian because I go to church” . . .

Why do you go to church?

If it’s because you think God will give you a pass, think again.

If it’s because your grandma does . . . your point is?

But if it’s because you love to gather with your brothers and sisters in Christ and worship the One who is your Head . . . Well, that’s because you’re a part of the body. Which means Jesus bought you with his blood. And that’s why you’re a Christian.

To the well-meaning Christian who emphasizes “church” in evangelistic conversations, may I kindly issue a word of concern.

Church never saved anybody. Only the Head of the church does that. So invite your friend to meet him. Tell them about him. Ask them what they think about him.

And then, should they observe the gathering of the body, may they find it strangely alluring. May they see the body working properly and be drawn to its Head. May “church” become, for them, a beautiful expression of a personal reality.

And may they see that church is not the answer. Only Jesus is.

And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

Speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Eph 1:22-23, 4:15-16

 [image credit: unsplash.com]


17 thoughts on “Church Is Not the Answer

  1. Thank you for speaking/writing these words. You are so right!
    Jesus is Who we meet and, because of Him, we become part of the Body of Christ, the church. The church should reflect the image of Christ through its actions and unconditional love.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is SO true! There are seasons of life where people who are truly born again believers cannot attend church and plenty of people who regularly attend church but whose lives are not changed by their presence in it.

    I invite you to share your article at Inspire Me Monday at Create With Joy.

    Have a blessed week! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Amen, my friend. Jesus is the answer. The Church is a wonderful place to find community, to hold ourselves accountable, to serve, to worship, and a multitude of other wonderful things … however it is not the answer to our faith. Jesus is the simple, but oh-so-powerful answer.
    Blessings and smiles,
    Lori

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Christ is the answer . . . yet we — the church, a motley crew for sure, are His Bride, and the messengers of His grace. May GOD reform us, each and all so we have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying while there is time.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh my – yes, I have had people tell mw “I am a good person, so God will have to allow me into heaven.:” They fail to understand the Scriptures, that there is only ONE way into the Kingdom, and that is through Jesus Christ. You are correct, just going to church is not the key to eternal life. Thank you for sharing your lovely post with us here at Tell me a Story.

    Like

  6. Very thought provoking, indeed. The church has such a crucial part to play that we should want to be very clear on what the Bible says, so as not to lead others astray. Neither do we want to be misled.
    Thanks for sharing this on #FaithnFriends where I found your link.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Lydia, I couldn’t agree more! I grew up in a church where evangelism was emphasized. It was always how we should invite all our unsaved friends to church. Then when I was older I found the same thing in many churches. My husband and I would always say that church attendance is for believers to gather and worship, to help equip us and strengthen our faith so that we are able to go out to share God’s love with others. “Church never saved anybody. Only the Head of the church does that.” Amen. Thanks for sharing at #LMMLinkup!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Very true! Thank you for sharing with us on the Art of Home-Making Mondays at Strangers & Pilgrims on Earth! We hope to have you share today for the new link up this week!

    Liked by 1 person

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