• Christ and Church Life and Building Spirit and Bride

    基督與召會
    生命與建造
    那靈與新婦



    As a lover of Christ and a pursuer of truth, I write down my joys, memories and reflections.

    May God lead us all into the secret of His presence, and build us into the oneness of His body in love.
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The practical church building 2- The prerequisites building genuine church

 

(I am sorry for the random thoughts of the following writing. They were not well-organized.) We can also view this topic of the prerequisites of building genuine local churches as the definitions and meanings of the genuine local churches. 


First of all, the first requirement, character, or prerequisites of a local church is its acceptance, receiving, and inclusiveness. A genuine church is composed of all the genuine believers that God has received and saved. A local cannot receive who God has not received, and cannot reject who God has received. The standard of God’s receiving is one God, one baptism, one Lord, one faith, one hope, one one body, and one Spirit. If a church add any additional criterion besides these 7 ones, such as race, rituals, non-essential teachings, practices, nationalities, etc, it may exclude genuine believers from the assembly. One the one hand, it is important to properly receive God’s believers as brothers and sisters. On the other hand, it is also important to always welcome unbelievers to join the church life. A church having no new ones added to it is a dying one.  

Secondly, since building a church is a lengthy, dynamic, and potentially painful process, a church requires mutual commitment from all its members. A church cannot never be built up if some of the members are not committed, thinking of running away or not having the sense of belonging. We need to know that being built into the church is not an easy task; some of part of us need to be crucified so as to smooth out all the edges and ruggedness and to build members into one building. It requires life growth and transformation for the building up. Yet before all the building is taken place, the members need to commit to one another to hang in there together, to walk through the valley of death  together, to pass through the tough and rough trial hand-in-hand. Eventually, the the church will see the light shining out from the end of the tunnel, and enter into the realm of genuine church. 

Thirdly, a church must struggle to find a way to reach oneness and one accord from the varieties of individual differences. Evey member has his or her own gifts in the church life, yet how does a church manage to resolve all the differences and work out the one accord. A genuine church is never a dictatorship or democracy. It is something higher and better. It is led by Holy Spirit within each member. However, why a church can rarely reach oneness, even on some small issues. The obvious reason is that people are not turning into, listens to, and obeyed their indwelling spirit. The harder reason is that one’s flesh, natural man, and soul life have not been dealt with yet. Denying one’s soul life is the key not only to the salvation of the soul, but also enable God to be expressed. 

The fourth point is that the status of a church is both heavenly and earthly, that means, it also need to solve and deal with down-to-earth problems. A church cannot be purely spiritual, but also need to be practical. Given the current atmosphere, of many churches, I actually would argue that churches need to be much more realistic and practical rather than spiritual and heavenly. It is when dealing with realistic and practical problems that members are built together concretely. 

Finally, a genuine church is filled with love, where members feel safe, secure, loved, disarmed, protected, and being received as they are. A genuine church is a place nurturing its members to grow in life and build up together. Members in a genuine church should not have any suspension, fear, and insecurity. 

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