What kind of statement is it when we claim we are the New Testament church? Does that justify our souls in God's sight? Is this supposed to cause those around us to go silent regarding debate and argument?
I believe Jesus established and continues to build his church. Too, I think what we look like today has little reflection of what he started and continues. The main reason is modern day believers have fallen for a New Testament Church Legal. Jump the hoops, dot the dottable and cross the crossable....wa la....there you have it....THE CHURCH!
A thing I like about the N.T. church of today is the legal is appropriately losing ground to the spiritual. Legal can be explained. Spiritual lavishes in mystery. Legal follows rules. Spiritual believes in the invisible supports from the heart. Legal bosses. Spiritual yields.
There is the true church. We want in on it. A thing going well today is the legal church is shifting to the spiritual. One area this is appearing is the transfer of activity from the building (of which the early N.T. church did not have) to the streets in service.
Our teens have led the way summer to summer via local and distant mission efforts. Congregations follow suit as ones in Ft. Worth, Memphis, St. Louis, Little Rock, and even the Contact Church of Christ in Tulsa are doing. These numbers are growing.
The church is gaining momentum when it wins fewer arguments and wins more hearts through the hands-on-touch of Jesus to the homeless and abused in society. More and more congregations, as is Memorial Drive, are beginning to see their meager efforts to the poor begin to open wider and wider doors.
It is an encouraging thing to see the N.T. church develop to look more like the N.T. Savior. Yes, we have baggage. Yes, we have lots to overcome. I'm both a part of the baggage as well as the obstacle to overcome. Nonetheless....we can be wide-eyed as the things which really matter (people) to the Son of God seem to be ever increasing to the N.T. church....his body.