You Are the Church!

You Are the Church! June 7, 2019
Photo by Dušan Smetana on Unsplash

You really don’t need anything at all to be the church. Wait, what? “Be” the church? Is that what I said?
Yes, I said what I said. You are the church. You don’t need to go to a church building, nor do you need to organize a home church (which is still a church).

Jesus said we would B-E the church.

The Body of Christ is also the church of Christ. That’s us- all of us; you, you, you, and you! Whether or not you call him “Lord, Lord”. Whether or not you acknowledge “Jesus is Lord”. Whether or not you even flip open a Bible- you are still in Christ which makes you THE church. It’s a collective term that identifies all of us.

So many of us, unfortunately, get caught up in this idea that we need to reinvent the church, or restructure it, or “unchurch” it. We like our revitalization programs, don’t we? We are innovative creatures that are so stuck on reinventing the wheel that we often forget we actually don’t even need the wheel.

“I will build my Church.”

**Hint, hint- that’s us. You and me, and him and her, and they and them. We were built to be the Church of God.

Upon this rock I will build my Church.

Upon this rock- this dirt- this earth; Jesus was set to build his church. Not by electing elders. Not by appointing pastors. Not by ensuring that those who wish to proselytize were properly educated through seminary school so they could speak over hundreds or thousands of others as seniority. But by laying down the foundation- L-O-V-E, and hoping for that love to grow and spread as quickly as the rumors do when your neighbor gets arrested.

Where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.

When I am in the kitchen with my husband, or with my children; “there am I with them”.
When you are making love to your partner- no matter how BDSM related it may be; “there am I with them”.
While you are putting a Band-aid on your child’s scraped knee; “there am I with them.”
While you and a friend are tossing back a beer during happy hour; “there am I with them.”
Even if you and two friends are passing a joint around and philosophizing about existence; “there am I with them”.

See, Jesus came to show us that we didn’t need a wheel; only that we needed to recognize and harness the power from within. This power is that when we are connecting with another, we are bringing forth the presence of God.

Therein lies the greatest exemplification of church- connection. It is through connection that we continue to build the church. It is when we gather because of love that we have God with us. Every act of love is a demonstration of Jesus’s teachings.

Church is connection. Connection is free! You don’t need to buy a book, attend a speaking event, listen to a podcast, nor attend a service in order to connect and bring forth Christ.

About Danielle Kingstrom
Danielle Kingstrom is an author, podcaster, and home-school teacher. She cohosts the podcast: Book Ish- The Canon Continues. Danielle lives in Minnesota, with her husband Cory, and their five children. You can read more about the author here.
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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Danielle Kingstrom

    That’s always one of the first retorts I hear from people …that I must not understand the Bible. I wonder why that is?
    Every person does make up the church, atheists, Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, all the rest. I wonder why you are content with segregation of God’s people? We are ALL created in the image and likeness of God, are we not? That alone is enough to tell me that we are all of God’s people and that we all receive God’s love.

  • Danielle Kingstrom

    If this is an argument that you find valid, then isn’t the onus on you to prove it? Telling me I am wrong could merely create an instance where we just go back and forth accusing each other of wrongness. So, prove it.

  • ElectricStrawberry

    All twelve apostles were present, yet Jesus promised to give to Peter alone the keys of the kingdom, symbolizing the authority of Christ—the authority of heaven—over the kingdom of heaven on Earth, which is the Church. Yet millions of Protestants believe that there is a distinction in meaning in the Greek text between the two “rocks” that would eliminate Peter from consideration for being the rock.

    “Thou art petros and upon this petra I will build my church . . .” The first rock, petros, is claimed to refer to a small, insignificant rock: Peter. The second, petra, is claimed to mean a massive boulder: that would be either Jesus or Peter’s confession of faith. The argument concludes Jesus did not build his church upon St. Peter but either upon himself or Peter’s faith.

    1) Matthew, we have pretty solid evidence, was originally written in Aramaic. Jesus would not have spoken his discourse of Matthew 16 in Greek. Greek was the dominant language of the Roman Empire in the first century, but most of the common Jewish folk to whom Jesus spoke would not have been fluent in it. Aramaic was their spoken language. The name Cephas is an anglicized form of the Aramaic Kepha, which means simply “rock.” There would have been no “small rock” to be found in Jesus’ original statement to Peter.

    2) Even well-respected Protestant scholars will agree on this point. Baptist scholar D. A. Carson, writes, in The Expositor’s Bible Commentary:

    “[T]he underlying Aramaic is in this case unquestionable; and most probably kepha was used in both clauses (“you are kepha” and “on this kepha”), since the word was used both for a name and for a “rock.” The Peshitta (written in Syriac, a language cognate with a dialect of Aramaic) makes no distinction between the words in the two clauses.”

    3) In Koine Greek (the dialect of Greek used by the authors of the New Testament), petrosand petra are masculine and feminine forms of words with the same root and the same definition—rock. There is no “small rock” to be found in the Greek text, either. A simpler line of reasoning gets away from original languages and examines the immediate context of the passage. Notice, our Lord says to St. Peter in Matthew 16:17-19:

    4) And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
    Jesus uses the second person personal seven times in just three verses. The context is clearly one of Jesus communicating a unique authority to Peter.

    Jesus here makes St. Peter a true “father” over the household of faith, just as God made Abraham our true “father” in the Faith (cf. Romans 4:1-18; James 2:21). Hence, it is fitting that Peter’s successors are called “pope” or “papa,” as was Abraham (cf. Luke 16:24). In Revelation 1:18, Jesus declares, “I have the keys of Death and Hades.” He then quotes this very text from Isaiah in Revelation 3:7:

    And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: “The words of the holy one, the true one, who has the key of David, who opens and no one shall shut, who shuts and no one opens.”

    No Christian would deny Jesus is the King who possesses the keys. Who does he give the keys to? Peter!