Chapter Thirteen: A Gathered Church: Putting Together the Membership of the Church
“The physical gathering of the church presents a theological reality. The refractions of God’s image in thousands of cultures and races and millions upon millions of individuals is presented, however partially and imperfectly, in the weekly meeting. The visual witness of the diversity of the body of Christ united together is celebrated by the elders in heaven who sing to the Lamb (Rev 5:9)…. The picture of people assembling in one place for worship points the world to this marvelous end-of-history congregation.”—pg 133–134
Reflection Question: Do you ever get frustrated because someone in the church doesn’t think or act a little bit more like you? The diversity that Christ can and does bring together into one body is one of the most powerful aspects of the church’s witness!
Chapter Fourteen: A Congregational Church: Putting Together the Structure of the Church
“Both in Scripture and in history, congregations have cultivated care and concern for one another. In the New Testament period, collections were taken and given, missionaries and teachers were sent, and recommendations and cautions were shared between congregations.”—pg 140
Reflection Question: Does the care and concern that you have for other congregations of believers reflect this paradigm?
Chapter Fifteen: A Baptist Church: Should We Have Baptist Churches Today?
“A sin can consist of either an action or an intention. Certainly the intention to disobey God is sin. But a disobedient action toward God is also a sin even if the individual does not intend to sin. The Bible teaches clearly that there are unintentional sins. Intentions are an important consideration in the nature and gravity of a sin, but they are not the only consideration.”—pg 147
Reflection Question: It isn’t enough to mean well when it comes to church life—we must search the Scriptures to be sure that we know what God wants.