If you could put the world in a bottle, would it be a good idea?
Imagine, if you had the power… for fun… you put the earth in a bottle, a very, very large bottle. How would that work out? Let me guess… it would cause some problems. My guess, not just a few little things would go wrong; really big things would happen – big things, bad things. Well, at least that is probably not going to happen. It could ruin the natural order.
There is this thing that Jesus came to establish. His Kingdom. He is the King. He is putting things under his rule, his domain, his Kingdom. Of course, the Jews were wondering if he was going to establish a Kingdom like the Kings of old. The Jewish covenant people lived in a theocracy. A King, ruling under God, conquered lands and set up his rule over the land, the citizens and the foreigners. So, naturally the Jews wondered if Jesus was going to be the King, imposing his rule over the land, the citizens and the foreigners.
Well, Jesus did establish the Kingdom. And, he is the King. However, it is not a natural kingdom, a kingdom of this world, it is a spiritual Kingdom. You don’t enter his Kingdom because someone, at the point of the sword takes over the land and its inhabitants. This Kingdom has NO foreigners in it. Anyone who would try to insist that the non-believer live by Biblical principles is in for an immediate surprise.
“Do such and such”
“Because the Jesus is the King. He is in charge. This is what he wants. Haven’t you heard of ‘What Would Jesus Do? This is it.”
Laugh out loud. “What? Are you kidding? Hmmm… are you serious? You are? Are you crazy? Jesus is not MY king. I don’t live by what he says. I am my own boss. Got it?”
Citizenship is usually reserved for people born into it. The Kingdom is no different. We are born into the Kingdom when we recognize and pledge to the King. As with other kingdoms, split allegiance is frowned upon. Jesus is pretty picky regarding this. “My way or the highway” would be a good paraphrase of numerous things He voiced: “I am the Way, the Truth and the Light. No man comes to the Father but by me.” So narrow. We can be part of the Kingdom. Or not.
If we are part, Jesus is in us and the Kingdom is within us; the others are outsiders, outside of the ecclesia.
Here is a key issue: We do not have an equivalent English word to use to translate the Greek word ‘ecclesia’.
So, we use the word, ‘the church’ which has come to have a common definition when we think of the ‘local church.’ And, what is that? First of all, we KNOW that ministries are NOT the ‘local church’.
Churches have services in designated, public locations.
Churches invite the general public to attend Church Services.
Church Services are held weekly and focus on the Ministry of the Word and Worship, in the sense of singing and praying.
For the complete Minibook, Church is NOT in the New Testament: http://bit.ly/dlOkBZ