Saturday, October 14, 2006

Some thoughts on church

Seems it is the week for long titles. Over at Vintage Faith, Dan has a long post entitled Pews, Pulpits, Pastors, Preaching and other things that can get in the way of the church "being" the church. Well worth the–long–read. I only quote a brief section or two:

…my growing theory of most churches is that when churches become so inwardly focused, we can produce the fruit of knowledgable but usually negative and critical people always pointing out the wrongs in everything. Or when we become so outwardly focused, we can become shallow theologically and produce Christians who barely know the Bible. Or when we become so felt-needs and methodology focused , we can produce consumer Christians who end up depending on which church best meets their needs which produces a bigger and better cycle for the church leaders to deal with. All of these things can produce a people who aren't seeing themselves as missional Christians being the church throughout the week - but people who have faulty (in my opinion) definitions of church and then they "go to church" for meeting the faulty expectations we have set up for them to define "church" by…

He goes on to name pews, pulpits, pastors, and preaching. Here is the one on pulpits:

Pulpits – There were no such things as "pulpits" in the early church or first in the 300 years of the church. They were primarily adapted from Greek and Roman forms of communicating and at first people sat to speak and standing to "preach" developed later. Pulpits became a focal point and raised high primarily after the Reformation. They create a definite distinction between the people in the seats and the person who gets behind the pulpit.

You really owe it to yourself to trot on over and read the other ones. You may not agree with all of it, some of it, or any of it, but you should at least let your horizons be broadened. One last quote, and then I’ll stop “preaching”

I am wondering more about what we produce whether house, small, or large church and how we do things and why we do what we do, when there isn't any biblical basis for most of what we do (in method and style and format).

UPDATE: I fixed the link, sorry about that.

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