What is God doing (update)

Marc posted an extensive report on the seminar of last Friday. You can tell which one of us is the reporter – he manages to write a very clear report on what happened, whereas I can only try… but anyhow. It’s worth reading his thoughts.
What is puzzling me is how it can be that people cling so much to church structure being crucial. If I read the New Testament, there is no clergy, no formalized structure, but only an pragmatic (or organic, as Marc would call it) structure that supports the spreading movement of the Spirit. And also: why do people define Church as being an Institution? It is even in contrast with the original Greek meaning of ecclesia – ‘called out’, and not ‘instituted’. (By the way: I believe this ‘called out’ refers to the yoke of the Law, not the ‘world’ – basically saying we’re pulled into freedom). Church in in my humble opinion is nothing else (nothing more, nothing less) than the Body of Christ on earth. At least, I don’t see any other definition in the New Testament. Being part of a so-called para-church organisation, this is always a tricky point. Recently somebody argued that missions and evangelism are the task of the church, meaning that a movement like Agapè should actually not be doing it. The statement is that para-church organisations exist because of an ‘unpaid debt’ from the churches.
In my definition, Agapè is as much part of Church as any other group of christians, whatever form they may choose. Our focus is to win people for Christ – are we not allowed to do so? Our focus is to build them to become mature christians – shouldn’t we? Our focus is to send them out to do the same – who says we can’t? I believe in the church – whether institutionalised or non-institutional, traditional or post-modern, out-going or not. I don’t care which form it takes, as long as it is focuses on Jesus and honors Him as its head. And I see the Spirit at work both inside the (very high) walls of traditional churches and outside, where even heretics and prophets seem to be truly following Jesus 🙂
Let’s not get distracted from the mission we all agree on, but join hands and get to work…

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