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Jan

19

2011

The People Are the Church

The significance of the church as a people, as assembly under authority, as congregation in mutual covenant has been weighing more heavily upon me these days as I study church membership. The leadership is not the church; the church (congregation) is the church. While the leadership does indeed play an important part in the church and has a crucial role, the church is the church.

This focus reveals the duty and responsibility of each individual member, as well as the sober and weighty task of leading such a people, not to mention a great sense of accountability to them. 

A healthy church means a healthy people, not just a healthy leadership--though, no doubt, with no healthy leadership, there probably will be no healthy church. An evangelizing church means an evangelizing people, not just a church that teaches evangelism--though, no doubt, with no teaching on it, it will not happen. A church that does discipline means that each member is lovingly on the lookout, and each member follows through with it should it escalate to excommunication--though, no doubt...you get the picture.

May God's people awaken to the remarkable privilege it is to be a member of the church of God which he purchased with his own blood (Acts 20:28). May God's people see the great responsibility the "priesthood of all believers" lays upon them. May God's ministers stand in fear and awe at the great task of leading God's people, and may God's people help them to do this with joy.

May God reform the leadership of many churches, and through them, reform the churches.

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Matt Hauck (郝柏昇)

A once enemy now son, forgiven and freed by Jesus' blood, adopted and called by grace for glory.   (more...)

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