In the world of Ancient Greece, Aristotle believed that the household was a microcosm of the empire at large. From this point of reference Paul writes to the Ephesians in a most scandalous way. He poses that if the kingdom of God invades a household, it can have a large exponential difference through genealogy and by working its way out to the community. In Ephesians 5 and 5 we see how this is played out.
It’s been said that God is not about religion but relationship. There’s some element to which this is true. But what does being religious really mean? In Mathew 9, we’ll take a look at what Jesus really thinks about religion.
We're creatures of habit, and habits are powerful. Daily decisions create habits that determine the substance of our days and either drag us down or help us become the person God created us to be. With all the voices vying for our attention, how do we practice Life in Christ day after day? How do we grow up in our faith? In 1 Timothy we learn the value of spiritual disciplines.
Nothing is wasted when our lives are lived together as the Body of Christ, carrying out His mission in our community & throughout the world. Because of the resurrection, we live a different life. We learn in 1 Corinthians 15, the resurrection is not just something we celebrate. The resurrection is something we live.
The Holy Spirit helps to give us an identity in Jesus together. He desires for us to grow up into one another & each find our place in the Body; in the family together. We learn in 1 Corinthians that He thoughtfully gives us spiritual gifts to help with that.
The Church is not a place to go but it is a people, a family, with whom we belong. It’s not a place where you just show up but a people with which you live together in harmony of purpose. In 1 Corinthians 12, we learn we will not be, experience, or express the full wisdom, beauty, and power of God unless we embrace that He has Sovereignly guided our steps and our lives, to one another.
It’s really inconvenient to be a good friend but that is what God is calling us to be. In Mark 12, we learn that in order to be a true friend, you have to make room for people and their brokenness. If we do it right, it makes room for the gospel to shine.
Like working out at the gym, it takes showing up regularly and determination to “do the work” in order to build true Biblical community. We read in Acts about the first gospel shaped community; a community that we can be a part of as well but it takes work.
In this technologically-driven age, it has become quite easy to isolate ourselves. We take on the lone-wolf mentality that says, “I don't need anyone. I can pull myself up from my bootstraps. I can fend for myself.” We see in Ecclesiastes, however, that the most powerful and wisest man in the world says we need community.
The Psalms are a collection of praises, complaints, pleas, declarations, & questions. They teach us how to go to God at all times & trust Him in all things to be our God & Good Father. When we do that – we are worshippers in Spirit & in Truth.